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  • New Year Baby

    Jan 1

    Many cultures recognize and celebrate when a baby is born on New Years Day – a new beginning – a new year. The symbol of an old man 'Father Time' representing the old year but a baby represents a new year – a fresh start. The concept started in 600 B.C. with the Greeks, though the early Egyptians can also be given credit for using a baby as ...

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  • Colonial New Year – March 25th

    Jan 1

    The Puritans of New England, including the Pilgrims of Plymouth in 1620, did not recognize the beginning of a new year as of January 1st. The Puritans were English Reformed Protestants in the 16th and 17th centuries who sought to "purify" the Church of England from its "Catholic" practices, maintaining that the Church of England was only partially ...

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  • FamilySearch Awarded Silver Anvil Honors

    Jan 1

    FamilySearch International was awarded Silver Anvil Honors for its supportive collaboration that led to the success of the Freedmen's Bureau Project. FamilySearch credits the 25,000 volunteers who helped with the Freedmen's Bureau Project as “silent recipients” of the 2018 Silver Anvil Award for Integrated Communications. The award was besto...

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  • New Years Traditions

    Dec 31

    Your grandparents and their parents knew how to celebrate the coming in of a new year. Here is a look at some of those forgotten traditions. New Years Tree See not just a Christmas tree but putting up a different tree and decorating it for the new year. This dates back to the 1600s. Placing on the tree in the house or place of work was very com...

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  • Newspaper Digital Search

    Dec 29

    It is wonderful how many public libraries have microfilmed their local hometown newspapers and now even converting the microfilm to digital images. Most can even scan a document searching for a keyword name and highlight that for you in the search. This process is also used with the subscription newspaper collections such a 'Newspaper.com' and 'Ne...

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  • Weddings between Christmas and New Years Day

    Dec 27

    It is not always been traditional to have a June wedding. In Victorian England (from 1840s to early 1900), many weddings took place on Christmas Day and Boxing Day (a day after Chrisman Day when employers distributed money, food, cloth (material) or other valuable goods to their employees). Working class people typically worked six days a week in t...

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  • Strange Traditions for Christmas Time

    Dec 25

    The date, December 25th was set as the date for Christmas in the 4th century by Pope Julius I as an attempt to Christianize the Roman midwinter pagan holidays, such as Solstice and Saturnalia. Just a few of the traditional events your family practiced in the past or even still today are: The traditional German family decorates their Christmas tree...

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  • How Popular New Year’s Eve Traditions Started

    Dec 25

    How does your family celebrate New Year's Eve? Many families include a mix of old traditions and new ones that are specific to them. Do you know how some of the old traditions got started? Here is a look at the story behind the traditions you participate in on New Year's Eve. Auld Lang Syne This song began as a poem written by Robert Burns in 1...

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  • Strange Practices Done by our Ancestors

    Dec 23

    Our ancestors tended to do things a bit different than is done today. Here are a few examples. They would be good to include with your family history. In the Middle Ages in Europe people slept at two different times. First, they went to bed at sunset until midnight. Then got up to do things around the house or visit with neighbors for 2 to 3 hours...

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  • World War One in the News

    Dec 21

    Yes, it was in all the newspapers of the time – The Great War, the war to end all wars. Now through the Library of Congress, they have coverage from newspapers from the beginning to well past the post-war efforts. It begins with June 29, 1914, with articles focusing on the assassination of Archduke Franz Ferdinand of Austria and continues into th...

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  • MyHeritage Changed its Data Upload Policy

    Dec 20

    MyHeritage announced that it has changed its DNA upload policy. As of December 16, 2018, MyHeritage users can upload their raw DNA data from other testing services for free and still receive all DNA Matches for free. Unlocking extra features for uploaded DNA data will cost an extra fee. MyHeritage points out that uploading your DNA from a diffe...

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  • The Third Eye Kiss

    Dec 19

    You have all had that experience, a nice kiss on your forehead by a family member, either as a greeting, act of kindness or goodbye. But did you know about its history? It is referred to as 'the third eye kiss' placed just above a person's eyebrows in the center of the forehead. It can be much more intimate because you are reaching out to the very...

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  • Colonial Christmas Customs

    Dec 18

    How far back does your family tree go? It is possible that you may have identified ancestors who lived in the thirteen colonies. The way your ancestors celebrated Christmas is likely different than how your family celebrates it today. In eighteenth century colonial Virginia, people celebrated Christmas by going to church. Later, they had a grea...

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  • Finding a Female Ancestor’s Maiden Name

    Dec 17

    Not an easy task sometimes … locating a female's maiden name. It can be hard enough when a female was solely referred to by her husband's name (Mrs. Harry E. Wilson) – not given name even provided. So to assist in the search for a maiden name (her birth surname), here are a few suggestions: Check her death certificate, her husband's d...

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  • Scandalized Dances of the 1910s

    Dec 15

    One thinks the dances of the 1990s to the present have been a bit outrageous but there was a time in the early 1910s when a whole series of dances spread across the nation. Some considered more scandalous than the dancing of the Roaring Twenties. In the 1910s, a long-forgotten dance craze known as 'animal dances' were very popular. These dances em...

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