February 2015

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Genealogy Recap for February 2015

Posted February 27, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
wwii_class_guide

It’s finally the end of February! Check out our recap of some of the most interesting articles from this month: 10 Odd Jobs From the World War II Military Classification Guide / mental_floss The Genealogy Sphere 10 Odd Jobs From the World War II Military Classification Guide (mental_floss) – Interesting list of odd jobs from WWII Whatever happened to ‘Cateryn, Jayne and Amee’? (DailyMail UK) – Haunting graffiti scrawled by tragic young sisters found on… Read the full story

Profile of the Day »

Profile of the Day: Josh Groban

Posted February 27, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
jgroban

Happy birthday, Josh Groban! Today the popular singer turns 34. Groban was born Joshua Winslow Groban on February 27, 1981 in Los Angeles, California. His younger brother, Chris, was born on his fourth birthday. He first sang in public in the seventh grade and continued to pursue an education in theater and music. Today, Groban is a best-selling artists with over 25 million records sold worldwide. He’s also made several notable and hilarious appearances on television…. Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Levi Strauss

Posted February 26, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
Levi_Strauss

Do you have a favorite pair of blue jeans? On this day in 1829, Levi Strauss, the founder of the first company to manufacture blue jeans, was born in Buttenheim, Germany. Strauss immigrated to America in 1847 to work for his brothers’ dry goods business in New York. After gaining his American citizenship, Strauss headed west to open his own branch of the family’s business in San Francisco, California. The city had become the commercial hub of the California… Read the full story

Geni User Tips »

Geni Tips: How to Share Your Tree with Others

Posted February 25, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
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Geni is the perfect place to collaborate on your family tree with your family. The easiest way to do that is to invite your relatives to join so they can contribute and help preserve your family history. But did you know you can also share your tree with other people not on Geni? Geni enables you to share a limited read-only view of your tree with your friends outside of Geni, either by sending them a link… Read the full story

Profile of the Day »

Profile of the Day: Pierre-Auguste Renoir

Posted February 25, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
renoir

Do you have any artists in your family tree? Today we celebrate the life of French artist Pierre-Auguste Renoir on his 174th birthday. Renoir was born on February 25, 1841 in Limoges, Haute-Vienne, France to a working-class family. As a boy, he worked in a porcelain factory and utilized his talents to paint designs on fine china. Intent on pursuing his craft, Renoir enrolled in art school and often visited the Louvre to study the French… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Don Knotts

Posted February 24, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
knotts

Today we remember actor Don Knotts, who passed away on this day in 2006. Knotts was perhaps best known for his memorable portrayal of Deputy Barney Fife on the hit sitcom The Andy Griffith Show, which earned him five Emmy Awards. Jesse Donald Knotts was born in Morgantown, West Virginia on July 21, 1924. After graduating from high school, Knotts joined the U.S. Army and spent most of his service entertaining troops. In 1960, he got his big… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Julianne Moore

Posted February 23, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
moore

Congratulations to Julianne Moore for finally winning her first Oscar! This year marked Moore’s fifth Academy Award nomination and her first trip to the podium. Moore won Best Actress for her moving performance of a woman suffering from early-onset Alzheimer’s in the film Still Alice. She was born Julie Anne Smith at the Fort Bragg army installation in North Carolina to Peter Moore Smith, a paratrooper in the U.S. Army, and Anne Love, a psychologist and social worker from Greenock,… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Frederick Douglass

Posted February 20, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
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Today we remember abolitionist Frederick Douglas, who died on February 20, 1895. Douglass was born into slavery in Talbot County, Maryland. Although the exact date of his birth is unknown, Douglass chose to celebrate it on February 14. At the age of 12, his master’s wife, Sophia Auld, began teaching him the alphabet, despite state law that prohibited teaching slaves to read. He continued to secretly teach himself to read and write, believing that “knowledge is… Read the full story

Community »

World Family Tree: Connecting an Entire Fifth-Grade Class

Posted February 19, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
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Remember those school projects about your family history? Whether it was writing a story or mapping out your family tree, you’ve likely taken that dip into our family’s past in school. When Geni Curator Randy Schoenberg’s son, Joey, came home with such a project, Randy saw it as a great opportunity to make some new family connections. With the news that his son’s fifth-grade class was participating in the worldwide “My Family Story” competition sponsored by Beit Hatfusot, the Museum of the… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Nicolaus Copernicus

Posted February 19, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
copernicus

Before Nicolaus Copernicus, the world believed the Earth was the center of the universe. Copernicus’s revelation that planets actually revolved around the sun, transformed scientific thought throughout the world. Today, we remember the famous astronomer, who was born on this day in 1473 in Torun in northern Poland. Copernicus was born into a wealthy merchant family and received the best education. With a keen interest in astrology and astronomy, Copernicus began to study with astronomer… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Mark Twain

Posted February 18, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
twain

Do you remember reading Adventures of Huckleberry Finn? On this day 130 years ago, the classic novel by Mark Twain was published for the first time in the U.S. Considered one of the greatest authors of all time, Samuel Clemens, better known by his pen name Mark Twain, grew up in Hannibal, Missouri. His childhood experiences in the Mississippi River port town were the basis for his novels The Adventures of Tom Sawyer and its sequel, Adventures of Huckleberry… Read the full story

Community »

RootsTech 2015 Recap

Posted February 17, 2015 by Amanda | 2 Comments
team

What an amazing few days at RootsTech! This year saw the largest crowd ever with over 20,000 genealogists and family historians coming together for the largest genealogy conference in the world. The Geni and MyHeritage teams together again It was wonderful to be together again with our MyHeritage family, many of whom flew in from across the world! With offices in Israel, Utah and California, it’s a rare treat to have this many of us together in… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: René Laennec

Posted February 17, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
laennec

On February 17, 1781, French physician René Laennec, inventor of the stethoscope, was born in Quimper, France. Considered one of the greatest physicians in history, Laennec made many significant contributions to the world of medicine. In 1816, he invented the stethoscope and pioneered its use in diagnosing various chest conditions. The inspiration for the groundbreaking device came from Laennec’s observation of schoolchildren who played with long hallow sticks to amplify sounds. Different from today’s stethoscope, Laennec’s early instruments… Read the full story

Community »

Vintage Valentine’s Day Greetings

Posted February 13, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
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Valentine’s Day is just around the corner! Will you be sending a Valentine to a special someone? If you need a little bit of inspiration, check out these Valentine’s Day greetings from the early 20th century: Will You Be Mine? Library of Congress, 1919 To My Valentine Library of Congress, 1919 Funny Valentine National Library of Norway, c.1900 Say You’ll Be Mine “Pray Sweetheart, send me just a line to say you’ll be my Valentine.” Library… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Thomas Edison

Posted February 11, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
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Happy birthday to Thomas Edison! Edison was born 168 years ago today in Milan, Ohio to Samuel Ogden Edison, Jr. and Nancy Matthews Elliot. His father was an exiled political activist from Canada after participating in unsuccessful Mackenzie Rebellion of 1837. A prolific inventor, Edison held over 1,000 US patents, as well as many others in the UK, France and Germany. From the electric light bulb to the telegraph, his inventions significantly impacted life around the… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Laura Ingalls Wilder

Posted February 10, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
Wilder

Today we remember author Laura Ingalls Wilder, who died on this day in 1957 at the age of 90. See what you can learn from Laura Ingalls Wilder’s death certificate here. Born in a log cabin outside of Pepin, Wisconsin, Wilder’s life in the Big Woods with her pioneer family formed the basis of her autobiographical series of “Little House” books. Her stories proved to be immensely popular with readers and inspired the hit television show, Little House on the Prairie,… Read the full story

News »

The Geni Team is Heading to RootsTech 2015

Posted February 9, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
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The Geni team will be heading to RootsTech this week from February 11-14. We will be joining the MyHeritage team in Salt Lake City, Utah to share with everyone the latest developments in the World Family Tree. RootsTech is one of the largest family history events in the entire world! This unique genealogy conference brings techies and genealogists of all skill levels together to discover new technologies for researching your family history. Many hands-on presentations and… Read the full story

Profile of the Day »

Profile of the Day: William Henry Harrison

Posted February 9, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
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On February 9, 1773, William Henry Harrison, the ninth President of the United States, was born on the Berkeley Plantation in Charles City County, Virginia. In honor of his birthday, check out these interesting facts about him: His father, Benjamin Harrison, was a member of the Continental Congress and signed the Declaration of Independence. He was the last U.S. President to be born as a British subject before American independence. Harrison briefly established a distillery to produce whisky…. Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Aaron Burr

Posted February 6, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
Burr

Today we remember former U.S. Vice President Aaron Burr on the 259th anniversary of his birth. Burr was the third Vice President of the United States, serving during President Thomas Jefferson’s first term. History perhaps best remembers him for fatally shooting his greatest rival, Alexander Hamilton, during a duel in 1804. Although charges for the illegal duel were eventually dropped, Burr’s political career never recovered. Did you know Burr was once tried for treason? According to accusations, Burr sought… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Hank Aaron

Posted February 5, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
aaron

Do you have any baseball players in your family tree? On this day in 1934, baseball player Hank Aaron was born in Mobile, Alabama. Henry Louis Aaron was the third of eight children born to Herbert and Estella Aaron. He spent much of his youth dedicated to baseball, and in 1951, quit school to play for the Negro Baseball League’s Indianapolis Clowns. Soon he caught the eye of the MLB and signed to play for the… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Charles A. Lindbergh

Posted February 4, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
Lindbergh

Do you have any aviators in your family tree? On this day in 1902, pilot Charles A. Lindbergh was born in Detroit, Michigan. From a young age, Lindbergh was interested in mechanics and aviation. In 1927, he became the first American aviator to fly the Atlantic solo nonstop from the United States to Europe. He made the flight in a custom-built monoplane called the Spirit of St. Lois. This amazing achievement instantly made him famous around the world…. Read the full story

Fun with Genealogy »

Naming Laws from Around the World

Posted February 3, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment

Many countries around the world have their own set of laws or customs for naming children. The reasons behind these policies varies widely from country to country. Image: Nationaal Archief, flickr Check out these interesting naming laws from around the world: ICELAND Parents in Iceland may only choose names approved by the Icelandic Naming Committee. The Personal Names Register includes about 1,800 approved Icelandic names for each gender. Girls should be given female names and… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Buddy Holly

Posted February 3, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
Holly

Today is the 56th anniversary of the tragic plane crash that took the lives of rock musicians Buddy Holly, Ritchie Valens and J.P. “The Big Bopper” Richardson. The day has become known as “The Day the Music Died,” popularized by a lyric in the song “American Pie.” Born Charles Hardin Holley in Lubbock, Texas, Buddy Holly learned to play a variety of instruments at a young age. He began performing with a band as a teen, and… Read the full story

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Profile of the Day: Farrah Fawcett

Posted February 2, 2015 by Amanda | No Comment
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Do you remember watching Charlie’s Angels? On this day in 1947, star Farrah Fawcett was born in Corpus Christi, Texas. She was the youngest of two daughters born to Pauline Alice Fawcett and James William Fawcett. Upon arriving to Hollywood in 1968, Fawcett appeared in commercials and made numerous guest spots on television. In 1976, she made her debut as policewoman Jill Monroe on the TV series Charlie’s Angels. However, it was her iconic poster that catapulted… Read the full story