While many are reflecting on the past year, I want to take a moment to encourage you to think about the upcoming one.
Every day, one of my first actions is to read the activity of my favorite blogs. I have learned a great deal about a wide variety of subjects by doing this, particularly in genealogy. If you’re not reading blogs, you should be. These are one of the easiest and best ways to stay on top of happenings in the genealogy world, to meet new researchers, including family, and to grow as a researcher. I use Google Reader to access nearly every blog I read, but I’m sure there are other options available.
Before recommending specific blogs, I’d like to take a moment to acknowledge two men whom I consider to be blog masters, Thomas MacEntee and Randy Seaver.
Thomas MacEntee is a specialist in the intersection of genealogy and technology, and a widely regarded author and speaker to boot. His professional web site, High Definition Genealogy, has a blog component where, among other things, he introduces readers to new technology. Thomas is also the man behind GeneaBloggers, one of the best resources of the genealogy blogging community. (My favorite posts are published on Saturdays and contain links to and information about new blogs.) And in his spare time, he blogs about his family at Destination: Austin Family and about Flip-Pal Mobile Scanners at, appropriately enough, Flip-Pal Mobile Scanner Genealogy. Thomas is an invaluable member of the genealogy community, and an irreplaceable resource.
Randy Seaver, also a well-liked author and speaker, only has one blog, Genea-Musings, but he makes the most of it. Among other things, Randy reviews and gives blow-by-blow demonstrations on how to make the most of genealogy software and web sites. Other favorite topics are on New England ancestors (including document transcriptions), Saturday Night Genealogy Fun, and Surname Saturday. One other feature of Randy’s blog is a weekly review of his favorite posts, a list to which I’ve had the pleasure and honor of being named a time or two. He just published his annual Best of the Genea-Blogs for 2012, with mentions of some of my favorite bloggers, including Judy G. Russell, the Legal Genealogist, Michael Hait, and Harold Henderson. Randy’s best-of-2012 list includes 18 other blogs, all highly recommended.
And now, on to my personal recommendations. In addition to the blogs already named, here are a few others y’all might enjoy:
- Elizabeth Shown Mills, QuickLessons. Ok, ok, these aren’t part of a blog, but I can think of no better way to start the new year than with a review of these articles.
- Angela Packer McGhie, Adventures in Genealogy Education. This is a great way to stay on top of new educational opportunities in the genealogy world, written by an administrator of the ProGen Study Program.
- Julie Cahill Tarr, Writing Your Way to the Past. In addition to advice on writing genealogy, Julie also provides regular updates on genealogy writing contests. Julie is also the author of GenBlog and Who Will Tell Their Story?.
- Robyn Smith, Reclaiming Kin. Well-written posts on African American and Southern genealogy.
- Kerry Scott, The Clue Wagon. A humorous and often pointed look at genealogy.
- Craig Roberts Scott, As Craig Sees It and Stump Craig. Military records and opinions, not necessarily in that order, from a mildly acerbic wit.
- Linda Woodward Geiger, Woodward Genealogy Blog, Anamensis, MyFamily, and North Georgia Families. Musings from one of Georgia’s leading genealogists.
My list includes several certified genealogists, but there are many other such blogs out there. Back in May, Michael Hait was kind enough to publish a list of blogs written by board-certified genealogists. (I believe this was created before Harold Henderson became certified, but he’s also a CGSM.) I add my recommendations to his.
I hope your new year’s resolutions include adding some or all of these blogs to your reading list for 2013.
A safe and Happy New Year to you all!