Wednesday, June 14, 2017

SCGS Jamboree 2017 - Saturday

Saturday morning I began the day with "Understanding DNA for Genealogy" by Jim Brewster of FamilyTree DNA.  It is a beginner level class on DNA and discussed the three basic types of DNA for genetic genealogy.  Jim explained about haplogroups and the various DNA tests and how and why they might be used.  He also mentioned the types of projects people can become involved in.

At 11:30 I joined Shannon Christmas for his talk on "How to Get More From Your DNA with  This was categorized as suitable for beginners through advanced.  GEDMatch is a "third party" DNA vendor. They don't actually do DNA testing but they do provide a place to upload raw DNA data from any of the testing companies so that you can compare with others who have tested with any other company. In other words I can compare my DNA test from 23andMe with those who have tested at Ancestry.comDNA and FamilyTree DNA.  More matches = more chances of finding cousins! Shannon explained the free utilities available at GEDMatch as well as Triangulation and Matching Segments.

Lunch in the Quad between the conference center and the tower of the hotel was very pleasant and it is always fun to talk about genealogy with others.  Making new friends and greeting old friends. No one is lonely at a genealogy conference unless they choose to be!

After lunch, I went to Drew Smith's "Your Ancestor's FAN Club: Using Cluster Research".  Drew pointed out that we can often find records to tell our ancestors' stories in looking at their friends, acquaintances and neighbors.  Since people often moved together, we can follow a group to see their story.  Did your ancestor marry the boy or girl next door? Who did they work with, go to church with or serve in the military with?  Many times, the stories of our ancestors are intertwined with theirs.

After Drew's class, I stayed in the same room to listen to Randy Whited discuss ""Technology Resources for Deciphering Foreign Language Records".  Randy talked about the tools we can employ to further our understanding of what a foreign language record is telling us. He mentioned the use of dictionaries and wikis for translation helps and also using both Microsoft Word and Google Translate.. Randy also talked about types of records to be found and how record layout might be a clue to understanding the meaning of the record.

Both Drew and Randy's lectures are part of the streaming video available to watch until July 10.

My last session of the day was Lisa Alzo's "Creating Family History ebooks: Your Blueprint for Success". Lisa talked about the Self-Publishing Process and the dos and don'ts. Lisa also showed us some of the online tools that can be used as part of the process.  The writing process was discussed and mind mapping was explained. Lisa's syllabus has a wonderful list of self-publishing toolkit items. Lisa's best and last advice was to Write, Write, Write! Make time every day to write>

After five presentations, it was time to meet my roommate for dinner at the Daily Grill and then put my feet up while my brain tried to absorb all the information it had been exposed to.