Category Archives: Specialties

TGP 10 Michael Strauss – Diversifying Services

Featured Guest

Michael Strauss, AG

Michael L. Strauss, AG – Professional Genealogist, Author, and Lecturer — is an Accredited Michael Strauss, AGGenealogist for the Eastern States Region with the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists (ICAPGEN). A native of Pennsylvania and a resident of Virginia, he has been an avid genealogist for more than 30 years.

Strauss holds a BA in History and is a U.S. Coast Guard veteran. He is a recipient of a grant from the Foundation for Coast Guard History in Spokane, WA and received a research scholarship from the General George C. Marshall Foundation in Lexington, VA.

He currently serves as President of the Virginia Beach Genealogical Society since 2012. In addition he is a published author and is currently an expert witness in kinship estate matters in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. Strauss is an approved genealogist for the United States Army to locate DNA-qualified family members of MIAs from WWII, Korean War, and Vietnam and is a licensed Private Investigator in the Commonwealth of Virginia.

He is a Civil War re-enactor with the 99th New York Infantry. He also likes to appear at lectures in uniform and with real artifacts in order to give the audience the most realistic experience possible.

Contact Links

Michael’s website – www.genealogyresearchnetwork.com

Frederickburg, Pennslyvania History website –  www.fredpah.com

Information on Civil War Re-enacting – Camp Chase Gazette

One Action Genealogists Can Take Right Now

Look at different records that you haven’t been exposed to before.

Productivity Tool

Drop Box – File Sharing

Google Drive– Collaborative File Sharing

Advice

“Genealogy is full of serendipitous moments. Let your ancestors find you because they will.”

Action Item

Michael is both an Accredited Genealogist and a licensed private investigator. He would like to obtain his CG as well because he believes strongly in furthering his education.

ACTION: Explore educational opportunities and licensing that could diversify and further your career.  Would you benefit from obtaining a CG or an AG? Are you interested in discovering what’s involved in becoming a licensed private investigator?

Determine what certifications and/or licenses might fit in with your business and future business goals.  Next, find out what is involved in achieving these goals. Then plan a time line for when you might realistically achieve these goals. It could be now, in three years or even in ten years. Determine what works best for you.

Direct Link to this post: http://www.TheGenealogyProfessional.com/michael-strauss/

TGP 8 Linda Woodward Geiger – New England Roots

Featured Guest

Linda Woodward Geiger, CG, CGL

Linda Woodward Geiger is an associate of the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG), Linda Woodward Geiger, CG, CGLholding credentials as a Certified Genealogist (sm) and as a Certified Genealogical Lecturer (sm). She is a nationally known speaker, author, and historical researcher. She has spoken at genealogy conferences and seminars in over twenty-five states, and has served as a coordinator and staff member of a variety of courses at the Institute of Genealogical and Historical Research (IGHR).

She currently serves as president of Friends of the National Archives Southeast Region (FNAS); as hostess for webinars sponsored by FNAS and serves as their webmaster.

Linda specializes in federal records; Georgia’s state and county records; and training researcher’s in methodology standards. She is also recognized for her work documenting Cherokee Heritage.

Contact Links

Linda’s website – www.woodward-geiger.com

Linda’s blog – Woodwards WeSearch Blog

One Action Genealogists Can Take Right Now

“Make sure you join a local genealogical society and it doesn’t matter if you have ancestors there or not!”

Recommended Book

Tracing Ancestors Among the Five Civilized Tribes  by Rachal Mills Lennon 

Records of the Bureau of Indian Affairs (volumes 1 & 2) by NARA

The Preliminary Inventories for Federal Records of what’s available at the National Archives – Here is an example from Heritage Books

Productivity Tool

Drop Box – File Sharing

Evernote – “Remember  Everything with Evernote”

Advice

“Don’t ever take down any information without having the source citation. Keep a research log.”

Action Item

This week’s action item stems from Linda Woodward Geiger’s last piece of advice where she advises not to take down any information without having a source citation.

This week your action item, if you choose to accept it, is to practice gathering the citation information before you study original documents or images of original documents.  This is for online and offline research. As well, when you check a source but do not find anything you need to write that down too!  See if you can consistently do this for an entire week and you will be well on your way to great genealogical research habits!

TGP 7 Sheri Fenley – Genealogy California Style

Featured Guest

Sheri Fenley

Sheri Fenley is a professional genealogist from Stockton, California who specializes in the genealogical research of North Central California with an emphasis on San Joaquin County. She also focuses on lineage society applications.

She is a member of numerous organizations including

Sheri Fenley, the Educated Genealogist

Sheri is an alumni of the ProGen 1 class completing the course in 2009.  As well, she did two years of coursework at the Institute for Genealogical and Historical Research  (IGHR) at Samford University.

She is the editor of the San Joaquin Genealogical Society newsletter and author of the popular blog “The Educated Genealogist” which was voted as one of Family Tree Magazine’s Top 40 Blogs.

More Alphabet Soup

SLIG – Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (sponsored by the Utah Genealogical Association)

GRIP – Genealogy Research Institute of Pittsburgh (Pennsylvania)

 Contact Links

Sheri’s website –  sherifenley.webs.com

Sheri’s blog – The Educated Genealogist

Follow Sheri on Twitter – @sherifenley

One Action Genealogists Can Take Right Now

Start a blog.

Recommended Book

Genealogy as a Pastime and Profession by Donald Lines Jacobus and

Pittfalls in Genealogical Research by Milton Rubincam

Productivity Tool

Google Hangouts – Google Hangouts allow you to have a video conference with up to 10 other people (for free).

Advice

“Jump in with Both Feet”

Action Item

This week’s action item is about getting to know an archive and its staff. Sheri Fenley talked about the importance of getting to know the staff at local archives.

For this action item first choose a local archives or research library in your local area. Next schedule to visit the archives daily for a week. If you can’t go during the week then go on consecutive Saturdays.  You will make progress just having the staff see you return multiple times. You will make more progress if you introduce yourself to the staff, ask them for a brief tour or ask for their procedures and policies.  These will all act as ways to help you interact with the staff.  After your week of visits or multiple Saturdays you should be well on your well to getting to know the staff at one of your local archives or libraries!

TGP 5: Cinamon Collins – Tennessee Genealogist

Featured Guest

Cinamon Collins

Cinamon Collins has been conducting genealogy research for the past 16 years and taking clients for the past two years. She enjoys the chase and the thrill of discovery. Cinamon has the good fortune of having adventurous ancestors who have migrated and traveled Cinamon Collinsthrough many states, allowing her to become familiar with various archives.

Before turning genealogy into a full time career, Cinamon was an elementary school teacher and professional photographer. It is not unusual to find her traipsing around cemeteries putting her photography skills to use.

Cinamon has completed the Boston University Genealogical Research Certificate Program, the National Genealogical Society Home Study Course, ProGen Study Group (9), National Institute of Genealogical Research (NIGR) Advanced Methodology and Evidence Analysis, and is a graduate of the 2012 Forensic Genealogy Institute. She also volunteers at the Tennessee State Library and Archives.

You can check out Cinamon’s website at: www.crcgenealogy.com or follow her adventures on her blog: www.misadventuresofagenealogist.blogspot.com or on Twitter: @CinamonC.

One Action Genealogists Can Take Right Now

Join the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG)

Recommended Book

Mastering Genealogical Proof by Thomas W. Jones

Evidence Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills

Productivity Tool

Evernote – a tool to help you organize and remember

Advice

“Think outside the box. Look for alternative sources of information that are not the expected.”

 

TGP 4: Kirsty Wilkinson – Scottish Records & Paleography

Featured Guest

Kirsty Wilkinson

Kirsty Wilkinson is the owner of My Ain Folk, a Scottish genealogy research firm.

Kirsty began researching her own ancestry when she was in her early 20s and soon Kirst Wilkinson My Ain Folk Genealogy - Scotlanddeveloped a passion for family history. She increased her knowledge of genealogical sources through personal and formal study and in 2006 launched My Ain Folk to assist others with tracing their ancestors. Since then she has gained many hours of practical research experience in Scottish archives and record repositories and helped clients worldwide to discover their own family story.

She has a particular interest in paleography (old handwriting) which enables her to carry out research in pre-1700 records and to transcribe handwritten documents from the 1500s-present. Another specialisation is heir- or descendant-tracing and locating living relatives. She has successfully located heirs to estates on behalf of probate research firms in the UK, Europe, Asia and the US and enabled private clients to reconnect with long-lost cousins.

Learn more about Kirsty at her website www.myainfolk.com.

One Action Genealogists Can Take Right Now

Set realistic fees and work out how much you can realistically make.

Recommended Book

Tracing Your Scottish Ancestors, the Official Guide, 6th Edition, by the National Records of Scotland

Productivity Tool

Kirsty does use Dropbox but she is otherwise fairly low tech.

Advice

“Just do it. Don’t let anyone tell you that you’re wasting your time.”

 

TGP 3: Melanie Holtz focusing on Italian Research

Featured Guest

Melanie Holtz, CG

Melanie Holtz, CG, is the owner and principal researcher of Lo Schiavo Genealogica . She is a Certified Genealogist specializing in Italian research.

She has 20 years experience in genealogical research and has worked extensively in all Melanie Holtz, CGtypes of Ital­ian records. Lo Schiavo Genealogica has worked in all regions of Italy, San  Marino, and the formerly Italian island of Corsica.

As a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG), Melanie abides by the Code of Ethics set forth by that organization. She served on the APG Board of Directors  in 2010 and is again serving the organization between 2013–2014. Her work on the APG Professional Development committee has helped to expand the educational services offered by the organization. She also belongs to the North Carolina Chapter and serves as Vice-President and Director of Programs. Melanie is also a member of the Utah Genealogical  Association (UGA).

Learn more about Melanie at her website www.HoltzResearch.com

One Action Genealogists Can Take Right Now

Make an honest assessment of what you can do right now in your business.

Recommended Book

BCG Standards Manual

Professional Genealogy edited by Elizabeth Shown Mills

Productivity Tool

Pages application for iPad

OfficeTime application to track hours and expenses

Google Docs (now Google Drive) to track work and log employee time cards

Advice

“Don’t take too long educating yourself. Get started.”