February 2014

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Profile of the Day: James Watson

Posted February 28, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
James_D_Watson

Have you made any genealogy discoveries using DNA testing? On this day in 1953, scientists James D. Watson and Francis Crick discovered the chemical structure of DNA. Using experimental data collected by Rosalind Franklin and Maurice Wilkins, the pioneering duo deduced the double-helix structure of DNA and revolutionized our understanding of genetics and heredity. Watson, Crick and Wilkins were awarded the Nobel Prize in 1962 for their contributions to this groundbreaking scientific discovery. Sadly, Franklin died in… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Elizabeth Taylor

Posted February 27, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
elizabeth taylor

Today we remember star Elizabeth Taylor, who was born February 27, 1932. Elizabeth was born in Hempstead, London to American parents, Francis and Sara Taylor. From her early years as a child star, she became one of the greatest actresses of Hollywood’s Gold Age. Remembered for her stunning beauty and sometimes scandalous love life, Elizabeth spent much of her life devoted to charitable organizations and became an outspoken advocate for those suffering from AIDS. What… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Jackie Gleason

Posted February 26, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
Gleason

Did you watch The Honeymooners? On February 26, 1916 star Jackie Gleason was born in Bushwick, New York. Gleason experienced great loss during his childhood; his father abandoned the family when Jackie was eight and his only sibling died at a young age. A pioneer of television comedy, he began his career as the host of the variety show Cavalcade of Stars, before he took on his iconic role of blustery bus driver Ralph Kramden…. Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Harold Ramis

Posted February 25, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
HaroldRamis

Do you remember watching Harold Ramis in Ghostbusters? Yesterday, February 24, the comedic legend passed away at the age of 69. Ramis was born on November 21, 1944 in Chicago, Illinois. For over 40 years, Ramis was a leading figure in the world of comedy. As an actor, writer, and director, his films also included the classic comedies Caddyshack, Stripes and Groundhog Day. What was your favorite film? Explore Harold Ramis’s family tree on Geni to discover how you’re connected.  … Read the full story

Monday Recap »

Monday Recap for February 24, 2014

Posted February 24, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment

Get your genealogy and family history fix with this week’s roundup! The Genealogy Sphere Shakespeare’s 14th great-niece baptized at church where he is buried (DailyMail UK) – The 14th great-niece of the famous writer was baptized at the church where the playwright is buried Are You Related to A.J. Jacobs? (WNYC) – Listen to A.J. Jacobs on The Brian Lehrer Show discussing his global family reunion event The transported child (The Legal Genealogist) – Judy… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Steve Jobs

Posted February 24, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
Steve Jobs

Today we remember innovator and Apple co-founder Steve Jobs on what would have been his 59th birthday. On February 24, 1955, Steve was born in San Francisco, California to two University of Wisconsin graduate students who gave him up for adoption. He was adopted by Paul Reinhold and Clara Jobs, who encouraged his education and hobby of tinkering with electronics. Steve’s unique vision and creativity not only led Apple to become one of the most profitable… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Peter III

Posted February 21, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
Peter_III_of_Russia

On February 21, 1728, Peter III was born Karl Peter Ulrich in Kiel, Germany. Although he didn’t speak much Russian, Peter III was named heir presumptive by his aunt Elizabeth, Empress of Russia, who also arranged for Peter to marry his second cousin, Sophie Friederike Auguste, who then took on the name Catherine. In 1762,  Peter succeeded to the throne, but proved to be an unpopular ruler. He served a mere 6 months as the… Read the full story

Featured Project »

Winter Olympics Sochi 2014

Posted February 20, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
Sochiolympicrings

Are you watching the XXII Olympic Winter Games taking place in Sochi, Russia? Although initial reports depict less than ideal conditions at the games for the first time Olympic hosts, the athletes have brought their A-game as they compete against the best of the best from all over the world. If you’re a big fan of these winter sports, here’s your chance to bring your love of the winter games and genealogy together – the Sochi… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Ansel Adams

Posted February 20, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
ansel adams2

Are you a fan of photographer Ansel Adams’ work? Today we celebrate the 112th anniversary of the fame photographer’s birth. He was born on February 20, 1902 in San Francisco, California to distinctly upper-class parents. Although his grandfather founded a prosperous lumber business, Adams condemned the industry for cutting down many of the great redwood forests. His photos of the American West helped promote the conservation of the American wilderness. Are you related to Ansel… Read the full story

News »

Geni and BillionGraves: Digitally Preserving the World’s Cemeteries Together

Posted February 19, 2014 by Amanda | 2 Comments
Geni+BillionGraves1

We’re excited to announce that Geni has teamed up with BillionGraves to launch a global crowdsourcing initiative to digitally preserve the world’s cemeteries. In the world of genealogy, gravestones play an important role in telling us information about our ancestors. They can not only provide the name, birth and death date of the deceased, but also the names of close relatives. Epitaphs often provide insight into the person’s life, and may include a brief description… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Nicolaus Copernicus

Posted February 19, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
Nicolaus Copernicus

Do you have any astronomers in your family tree? On February 19, 1473, Renaissance mathematician and astronomer Nicolaus Copernicus was born in Torun, Poland. In one of the most significant astronomical breakthroughs in history, Copernicus formulated a heliocentric model of the universe, which placed the Sun, rather than the Earth, at the center. Just before his death, he published his findings in De revolutionbus orbium coelestium (On the Revolutions of Celestial Spheres). His work caused immediate… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: John Travolta

Posted February 18, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
John_Travolta

Happy birthday John Travolta! Today the film star turns 60. Born in Englewood, New Jersey, Travolta dropped out of high school to pursue a career in acting. After appearing on the television series Welcome Back, Kotter, he skyrocketed to international fame in the box office hits Saturday Night Fever and Grease. Did you know he is the youngest of six children born to a family of entertainers? His father was a semi-professional football player and his… Read the full story

Community »

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Posted February 14, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
eisenhower_nixon

Happy Valentine’s Day! With romance in the air, today is an especially affectionate day of love. It’s also the best time to share the love stories found in our families. Below is a sweet picture from the 1957 inaugural parade. At first glance, you may find it adorable for the capture of President Eisenhower with his grandchildren and Vice President Nixon with his children as they enjoy the parade together. However, it’s even sweeter when you realize the little boy, David… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Frederick Douglass

Posted February 14, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
Frederick_Douglass

Today we celebrate the birth of abolitionist leader Frederick Douglass! Douglass was born into slavery around February 1818. Although the exact date of his birth is not known, later in his life, Douglass celebrated his birthday on February 14. As a slave, he tried to escape from twice before he succeeded. After his escape from slavery, Douglass became one of the most important leaders of the abolitionist movement. Frederick Douglass is connected to over 75… Read the full story

Genealogy Research »

Family Heirlooms

Posted February 13, 2014 by Amanda | One Comment
family-heirloom

What’s your favorite aspect of genealogy? For many, one of the best parts is getting to learn the stories behind the items family members leave behind. Reaching far beyond what a census record or land deed can tell us about our ancestors, family heirlooms gives us a more personal connection to who are ancestors were as individuals. Chances are your family has accumulated many family heirlooms throughout the years. These are a great place to… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Sid Caesar

Posted February 13, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
Sid_Caesar

Yesterday the world lost another great legend. Sid Caesar, one of televisions earliest stars, died at his home in Beverly Hills at the age of 91. Sid was born on September 8, 1922 in Yonkers, New York to Jewish immigrants. A pioneer in television, he generated laughs on his live variety show, Your Show of Shows, and its successor Caesar’s Hour. Do you remember watching the funny man on TV? Explore his family tree and perhaps… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Charles Darwin

Posted February 12, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
darwin

It’s Darwin Day! Each year on the anniversary of Charles Darwin’s birth, the world of science highlights Darwin’s enormous contributions to the field. Charles Darwin was born February 12, 1809 in Shrewsbury, Shropshire, England in his family home, The Mount. He was born into a prominent English family, his father was a wealthy society doctor and financier and his grandfather was Erasmus Darwin, a renowned botanist. In 1831, Darwin embarked on his famous expedition aboard… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Shirley Temple

Posted February 11, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
shirley_temple

Today we remember beloved child star Shirley Temple, who died in her home Monday night at the age of 85. One of the most famous child stars in Hollywood history, Shirley’s signature dimples and precious optimism captivated audiences around the world. She landed her first film contract at the age of 3 and through the 1930s, she starred in a series of films that brought smiles to movie-going audiences. Her movies were especially uplifting as… Read the full story

Monday Recap »

Monday Recap for February 10, 2014

Posted February 10, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
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Still recovering from RootsTech? Check out these articles from the past week! Image: World War One: How did 12 million letters a week reach soldiers? / BBC News The Genealogy Sphere World War One: How did 12 million letters a week reach soldiers? (BBC News) – Read how letters from home reached WWI soldiers in the battlefield Mystery girl in iconic photo comes to life (MSN News) – Amazing story of how a genealogist identified… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Arthur Miller

Posted February 10, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
Arthur-miller

Do you remember reading the plays by Arthur Miller? On this day in 2005, the American playwright died in his home in Roxbury, Connecticut at the age of 89. Miller is perhaps best remembered for his plays Death of a Salesman, The Crucible and A View from the Bridge. In 1956, he married Marilyn Monroe and later that year, the House of Un-American Activities Committee refused to renew Miller’s passport and called him in to appear before… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Garth Brooks

Posted February 7, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
GarthBrooks

Are you a fan of Garth Brooks? Today the country music superstar turns 52! He was born Troyal Garth Brooks in Tulsa, Oklahoma to Troyal Raymond Brooks, Jr. and Colleen McElroy Carroll. Garth’s integration of rock elements into his recordings and live performances earned him immense popularity. This approach helped him dominate the country music scene and crossover into the mainstream. With record breaking sales, Garth is one of the most successful and best selling… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Bob Marley

Posted February 6, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
bob marley

Do you remember listening to Bob Marley? On February 6, 1945, Jamaican musician Bob Marley was born in St. Ann Parish, Jamaica. Marley achieved international fame for his distinctive vocal style and introduced the world to reggae music. Sadly, he passed away from cancer at the age of 36. Marley sold over 20 million records and was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1994. What’s your favorite Bob Marley song? Explore Bob… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Red Buttons

Posted February 5, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
Red_Buttons

On February 5, 1919, comedian and actor Red Buttons was born in New York City, New York. The fiery-haired comedian was born Aaron Chwatt to Jewish immigrants Sophie and Michael Chwatt. Did you know Red acquired is famous moniker at the age of 16, while working as a bellhop at Ryan’s Tavern? The combination of his red hair and the large, shiny buttons of his uniform inspired orchestra leader Charles “Dirty” Moore to call him… Read the full story

News »

MyHeritage Adds 815 Million U.S. Public Records

Posted February 4, 2014 by Amanda | One Comment
US_Public_Records1

The good news keeps rolling in! We’re excited to share with you that 815 million U.S. Public Records of people living in the United States have been added to MyHeritage’s growing collection of historical records. You can find these records available to you through Record Matches on your Geni profiles or in SuperSearch™, MyHeritage’s powerful search engine for historical records. With information that spans the last five decades for hundreds of millions of people living… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Rosa Parks

Posted February 4, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
RosaParks

The month of February is Black History Month in the U.S. Today we celebrate the birth of Rosa Parks! On February 4, 1913, the inspirational civil rights activist was born in Tuskegee, Alabama. In 1955, she was thrust in front of the American public when she refused to give up her bus seat for a white passenger. The incident resulted in her arrest and sparked a city-wide boycott, known as the Montgomery Bus Boycott. Her… Read the full story

Monday Recap »

Monday Recap for February 3, 2014

Posted February 3, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
nytimes

Still recovering from yesterday’s Super Bowl party? Treat yourself with these articles from around the web. Image: Loot No Longer / The New York Times The Genealogy Sphere Are You My Cousin? (The New York Times) – Author A.J. Jacobs is organizing the largest family reunion and you’re invited! Geni is proud to be a part of this journey! Loot No Longer (The New York Times) – MyHeritage CEO Gilad Japhet is featured in The New York… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Norman Rockwell

Posted February 3, 2014 by Amanda | No Comment
NormanRockwell

Today we remember American illustrator Norman Rockwell, who was born on February 3, 1894 in New York. Known for his illustrations of everyday American life, Rockwell’s creations were loved by the public. Perhaps one of his most famous images is Freedom from Want, also known as “The Thanksgiving Picture.” The image was a part his “For Freedoms” series, inspired by President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s speech in which he described four basic principles for universal rights…. Read the full story