Friday, May 9, 2014

Friday Finds And Follows

Early start to the day today...and lots of cars pulling into the parking garage for the Richmond Convention Center. The National Genealogy Society's Annual Conference is a great success!  Congratulations...and thank you...to all who have made this possible.

The view from my location at the "standing room only" session .
(Thanks to the crew at the Marriott for bringing in extra chairs!)
Just popped out of the most amazing session so I'd have time to post this morning.  I am a HUGE Ancestry.com fan (and member), and I wouldn't have missed the chance to hear Crista Cowan (Ancestry's own rock star) comment on "What's New" at my favorite genealogy website.  I'll write more later, but for now wanted to share something important with those of you who use Ancestry.  Did you know the "shaky leaf" you find by an ancestor's name, which indicates more info about that ancestor, represents only 10% of their databases?  It is, as Crista says, "low hanging fruit"...so be sure you dig deeper!

If you are an Ancestry.com user, too, here's a piece of helpful advice...When you want to subscribe or renew, check them out online and then call the number you see on that page.  I upgraded my membership to World level last night, and by doing what I described above, I saved $100!  Also, if you are an AARP member (being over 50 can be a blessing), that can get you up to 30% off.  Just mention AARP to them and the deals start flowing.

Speaking of deals, conference attendees are getting great access (and deals) to sites such as www.fold3.com and www.newspapers.com and www.archives.com. Check them out!

Today I am bringing my great-grandmother to the conference with me in my heart and "around my neck."  As the only member of my family interested in genealogy, I inherited a lot of wonderful things.  Some of that included my great-grandmother's jewelry and gold pieces.  Her engagement ring was a very pretty amethyst and her wedding ring a wide gold band.  Also with her things was a gold dollar piece, with a handwritten note, saying it had been given to her by her grandmother on the occasion of her baptism.  The other piece of gold was a $5 gold piece that was a mystery to the family.  Why had these two gold pieces been kept, when everyone was supposed to turn in their gold in the 1930's?  The answer was clear on the baptismal coin, but what about the $5 piece?  It was when I inherited the family Bible and found the year of her marriage to my great-grandfather that I understood...for it matched the year on the coin.  Once I knew that, I had the coin set in a bezel, so I could wear it and remember her.  In that way, she's with me today here at the conference!

My great grandmother, Minnie McMeekin Ragsdale, around age 16.
Minnie's engagement ring, wedding band and baptismal coin


What I'm wearing today!

More soon!

Cheers,
Liz

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