Today I am speaking on Chinese American immigration and genealogy at California’s Family History Day in Sacramento!
Starting tomorrow, January 5, the Alameda County Fremont Main Library will be hosting a special one-month event and exhibit in honor of the 1882 Chinese Exclusion Act and its reversal. Catch four free lectures (one per weekend) that touch on various aspects of Chinese American history. I will be lecturing on January 19 about genealogy research for Chinese Americans. Hope to see you there!
Fremont Main Library
2400 Stevenson Boulevard, Fremont, CA 94538
This February 25-26, the town of Marysville, California will come alive in their annual Bok Eye or Bok Kai (the North god) festival and parade. Additionally the Chinese American Museum of North California will be hosting a lecture series.
Learn more about the festival and the temple HERE
and watch this video for a bit more about the Chinese American Museum of Northern California (warning, this starts a little loud!):
I gave a little presentation today at the local Family History Center about finding Chinese genealogies in the familysearch.org catalog. I used Prezi for the first time, I think it went pretty well. Here is my first Prezi:
to my next Chinese genealogy workshop! This is a little last minute, but why not share, I figure.
Saturday, November 12, 2011
12:00 p.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Oakland Regional Family History Center
4766 Lincoln Avenue
Oakland, CA 94602, USA
Are you curious about what Chinese resources are available at the Oakland Regional Family History Center but haven’t had the chance to check it out? Come learn from Assistant Director Marge Bell of the center and Kay Speaks and Christine DeVillier as they tell us how they have used the resources of the center and its Salt Lake City parent, the Family History Library, to research their Chinese roots. Kay will be covering research techniques at the center and Christine will talk about using the FamilySearch catalog and Chinese databases. All are welcome to attend – you don’t have to be a church member.
12 noon – Bring a bag lunch to talk story with the group. Bring your discoveries or share any roadblocks you are facing in your research so the group can brainstorm some research options.
1:30 to 3:30 p.m. – Orientation to the center by Marge Bell, examples of research by Kay Speaks and Christine DeVillier, experienced genealogists.
The classroom has seventy seats and about sixty computers, so we will take the first 60 respondents, and then have a wait list.
RSVP by emailing Kay Speaks. When you respond, if you wish, please list your name, city of residence, village, surnames, etc. Depending on response, we may limit the number of attendees from each family.
I have long enjoyed using Geni.com to host my family tree online, but recently, they have made changes that render Geni.com near completely ridiculous. They have restricted basic/free account holders to a limit of 100 profiles. Now, anyone serious about family history is going to have a LOT more than 100 family members, dead or alive. They have removed monthly membership options for their so-called “Plus” and “Pro” level accounts, leaving one to fork out a hefty fee for annual, bi-annual, or lifetime membership. Keep in mind, Geni.com does not actually give anyone something they did not already have — it’s not a record center. It’s a platform to build a tree, enter the info you already know, and hopefully connect your tree to long distance relatives or ancestors (but you have to pay for that too!) and it’s only as useful as the number of connections you can make, unless you are satisfied at capping your tree at 100 entries, which IMHO is not worth the time to even start the tree. By contrast, Ancestry.com allows people to start family trees for free, no limit to number of entries, and then when you want to find records for your relatives, you can start paying, and you will get actual sources. You can start and stop, month to month, whenever you need. You can search other member trees for clues. No one can hijack your tree, and you can make it “private” if you like, no questions asked.
Why is this related to Chinese genealogy? I can find things on Ancestry for Chinese relatives and ancestors that give me immigration, residence, names changes, citizenship and naturalization, and death information. Geni does not have this. If you are trying to find clues on Geni, you will only luck out if you have Chinese relatives who have also entered their family tree information on the site, and even then, neither of you will be able to connect or even see each other to verify the connection, unless you shell out $119.40 at the minimum for a one-year membership, which comes out to $7.95 a month (but they don’t let you purchase it month to month). That’s right, you cannot use all the features of the site unless you hand over $119.40 for a one-year Geni Pro membership. At Ancestry.com, the lowest single payment you could make is $19.95, which gets you one month of U.S. record searching and downloading, and ability to get clues from other member trees. Comparing one-year rates, you can also choose to buy a one-year Ancestry membership for a flat fee of $155.40, which comes out to $12.95 a month. If you are choosing to pay for a service and expecting actual service or results, Ancestry wins my credit card payment by a landslide.
Sorry Geni.com, you have indulged yourselves enough, time for a reality check.