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  • Coloring Books

    Oct 17

    The first coloring books were created to teach aristocrats how to paint. The books were made using woodcuts or copper plates, so they were expensive to produce and not usually made for children. However, the invention of the lithograph changed all that. With cheaper production costs, the first children’s coloring book, The Little Folks’ Painti...


  • Sunglasses

    Oct 15

    Everyone has today at least one pair of sunglasses and in many parts of the nation, a person needs several pairs, including the prescription lens. The first mass-manufactured sunglasses were done in 1929. Those early glasses were sold by Sam Foster on the Atlantic City, New Jersey boardwalk. People loved how the glasses protected their eyes at the...


  • 23andMe Provides Equity and Inclusion for People with Disabilities

    Oct 14

    23andMe’s CEO and Co-Founder, Anne Wojcicki, signed a letter, along with dozens of CEOs, making a commitment toward advancing equity and inclusion for employees and customers with disabilities. The move deepened 23andMe’s ongoing commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion through participating in the Diversity Equality Index. The in...


  • Female Ancestors Using the Thimble

    Oct 13

    A thimble is a small pitted cup worn on the finger that protects it from being pricked or poked by a needle while sewing. The Old English word þȳmel, the ancestor of thimble, is derived from Old English þūma, the ancestor of the English word ‘thumb’. It was Queen Elizabeth I is said to have given one of her ladies-in-waiting a thimble set ...


  • FamilySearch Completes Massive Microfilm Digitization

    Oct 12

    FamilySearch, a genealogy company that is provided as a service by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, has completed the digitization of a massive microfilm collection. This effort makes billions of historical genealogy records freely available online. According to Family Search, it is a milestone 83 years in the making. Family...


  • Sliced Bread

    Oct 11

    We all take for granted everyday things that in fact are not that old. A good example is the ability to purchase from a store a loaf of bread already sliced and packaged. Sliced bread was first manufactured on July 6, 1928, at Frank Bench’s Chillicothe Baking Company in Chillicothe, Missouri using the machine invented by Otto Frederick Rohwed...


  • Tiffany Girls

    Oct 9

    The famous Tiffany lampshades and other popular items designed and made by Tiffany took many workers to make. Using the finest materials and the popular Art Nouveau movement of the beginning of the 20th century his works consisted of art unto themselves. Many people have owned one or more Tiffany pieces. Girls were hired to work with the fine g...


  • Ancestry Appoints Executives to Propel Family History and AncestryDNA

    Oct 9

    Ancestry, the global leader in family history and consumer genomics, announced it has named former Amazon and Facebook executives to its leadership team. Brian Donnelly, formerly head of Diagnostics and Genomics at Amazon, has been named Senior Vice President and General Manager of AncestryDNA, and Ashish Nayyar, Facebook’s Senior Directo...


  • Flip-flops

    Oct 7

    Another item associated with summertime and being on vacation at the beach or lake are flip-flops. Now residents of Florida who have summer almost year-round, wear flip-flops all the time. But most everyone else, these types of shoes are limited to certain places and times. So the beginnings of flip-flops go back to ancient Japan in Asia. Tradi...


  • Sand Pails

    Oct 5

    With Summer over and Fall just beginning, one item traditionally used by your ancestors over the years also gets put away for the season. A fun activity has been trips to the lake or beach. One popular item to bring was the American sand pails. The making of sandcastles, forts, walls with a pail filled with sand was a great activity. Here is how i...


  • Early Radio

    Oct 1

    People living today do tend to take for granted the various items we have and not realize most of our ancestors did not have such conveniences. A good example is the 'radio'. An excellent method for people in their homes to be connected with the outside world, to hear other voices, to be entertained, listen to sports events or know the national an...


  • Peanut Butter and Jelly Sandwiches

    Sep 29

    Now many of you and your ancestors grew up eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. My husband at age 72 still will eat at lunch four days a week P & J. You everyone can relate to this food item. But here is how it all started. In the early 1900s, peanut butter was a new food that was considered quite elegant. Tearooms in Manhattan, NY se...


  • Yield Signs

    Sep 27

    Here is a common item seen all the time in cities, towns and even rural areas. Yet it is a more recent item for our ancestors. Its history does not go back to the turn of the 20th century. Automobiles only just started appearing on roads at the beginning of 1900. Thinking about stop signs, traffic lights and even yield signs would be years in the ...


  • Cufflinks

    Sep 25

    Many individuals may have inherited from their father, uncle, grandfather, etc., a pair or several pairs of men's cufflinks wore at the end of their shirts by their wrists to close the opening. These pair of men's clothing fasteners have been popular for many years with all types of styles. Check with relatives to see if they have any ancestors' c...


  • Red Barns

    Sep 23

    Your ancestors may have lived on a farm. Most farms also had a barn, and those barns may have been painted red. But why? It started hundreds of years ago that barns were painted red. In the 1700s blood from slaughtered animals was used as the paint. When it dried it turned a dark, burnt red. Later farmers used linseed oil to help seal the barn ...


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