It’ll be back to the drawing board for many historians who thought that Shakespeare’s Curtain Theatre was round. It’s been unearthed in London, and it’s actually quite rectangular! Read all about it! Fisher
Fisher opens the show explaining his recent family history research discovery of the itemized invoice from the funeral of his great-great grandfather in 1907! David Allen Lambert, Chief Genealogist of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and AmericanAncestors.org, then joins the show from London where his genealogical tour continues. David tells about his remarkable evenings during low tide along the Thames where he searches for centuries old items. He’ll tell you what he has found… including some items that will make your jaw drop! David then tells the shocking DNA story that has rocked England concerning the Archbishop of Canterbury. He’ll have another Tech Tip, and NEHGS guest user free database.
Next up on the show (starts at 11:09) is Paul Woodbury, a DNA genealogist for LegacyTree.com. Paul shares with Fisher the remarkable story of how he helped a client identify the birth father and birth mother of her grandmother, who was born and adopted in Alabama in 1916! How was it done? Paul will explain, but you’d better keep a flow chart. What DNA testing can reveal continues to amaze!
Then, Jenn Utley, head genealogist for TLC’s “Who Do You Think You Are?” visits to give us some behind the scenes info about the 2016 episodes of the program every genealogist loves to watch. You’ll be interested in how the show prepares the celebrity guests for travel to foreign lands. Who knew?!
Then, Preservation Authority Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com revisits the topic of audio as we move into reunion season. The tips he shares could just save your recordings of the seniors in your family before the record button is even pushed.
That’s all this week on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show!
Transcript of Episode 135
Segment 1 Episode 135 (00:30)
Fisher: I cannot believe in all my searches, through all the years, that I’ve never run across one of these things, and when I finally do, it’s within my own family.
Hi, it’s Fisher here! Your Radio Roots Sleuth on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show. The program where we shake your family tree and watch the nuts fall out.
This past week I found this itemized invoice for the funeral of my great, great grandfather. Yeah, it talked about the cost of the carriages to carry the mourners, the cost to embalm him, by the way it’s like ten bucks to clean him and embalm him! The cost of his grave was five dollars and twenty five cents. I mean it’s insane stuff, and in thirty five years of researching I’ve never run into anything like that. Absolutely incredible.
Hey, I’m excited about our guests today! We’ve got DNA Day going on again today. Paul Woodbury is going to be here from LegacyTree.com. He is a DNA results analyst for them, and he is going to tell you about a recent case where they were able to identify the birth father and birth mother of a woman who was born and adopted in 1916. Unbelievable! That’s coming up in about eight minutes.
And Jenn Utley, the head genealogist for “Who Do You Think You Are?” is going to be here to give us some inside baseball on this season of the show, and that will be coming up a little bit later on.
And, Preservation Authority Tom Perry talks audio and microphones, as you prepare for the reunion season.
But right now let’s head out to jolly old England! And talk to my good friend the Chief Genealogist of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and AmericanAncestors.org, David Allen Lambert! How are your journeys going across the pond?
David: They’re doing great! It’s a little different, got that sleep deprivation going, but I’m caught up and I’m on England time now.
Fisher: [Laughs] Now you were telling me off-air a little bit, David, about some adventures you’re doing in the night time there along the Thames River. Fill us in on this, this is incredible.
David: Well, you know, I’ve been a lover of archaeology and I have a couple of friends of mine, they call it ‘mucking’or looking for pottery shards and things. Of course the Thames has had occupation for thousands of years, and as the tide recedes twice a day people will go out, and you can’t dig. You can’t use a metal detector, but you can surface hunt and you can find pottery there that goes back to the Roman era, and I thought to myself “There is no way”.
I’ve been there three times since. I probably have about 500 pipes stems from colonial pipes, some of the bowls still attached to them. Pottery that’s from the Roman Empire to the Tudor era, and a lot of little pieces of Victorian, but the really disturbing thing, and something I won’t be bringing back… are the bones.
Fisher: The bones?
David: The bones! Yeah, there’s probably a good share of animal bones, but I might be seeing some of the ancestors of our listeners!
David: We’re just going up to shore and going back.
Fisher: And this happens every day?
David: Every day.
David: Twice a day.
Fisher: So this remains have been in there forever?
David: They have! The bones are like chocolate brown and they are obviously not recent. I mean they’re water worn and stuff, but it’s been interesting.
David: But the NEHGS Tour to London has been great. We’ve gone to the London Municipal Archives, we just finished up two days at the Society of Genealogists, and we’ll be heading to the National Archives in Kew for the last two days of the tour. Then I take off on my own genealogical adventures. But there’s been a lot of adventures going on in the press in England, DNA related. Did you see the story about the Archbishop of Canterbury?
Fisher: Yes! Incredible story, and he’s been very open about it. Fascinating find for him.
David: It really is. I mean, obviously this DNA has opened up that, well his mother would admit, that there’d been a little liason after a little bit too much drinking, with Sir Anthony Montague Brown, who ironically was Churchill’s last private secretary.
Fisher: Right, and he only died what, in 2013?
David: Yeah, he was like about eighty nine years of age. So there was almost a chance he could have met him.
David: But yeah, it’s crazy. Another exciting story is a World War II veteran out here from England, at the age of a 100, took a 10,000 foot skydive! He was a veteran of D-Day and he decided for his birthday he wanted to go skydiving. So my hat’s off to Verdun Hayes.
Well, I’ll tell you, there’s a lot of things that are interesting, but when you get to meet our listeners at “Who Do You Think You Are?” thousands of miles away, and that included two listeners from Germany…
Fisher: Wait, you are talking about Extreme Genes listerners from Germany? That’s awesome!
David: Extreme Genes listeners from Germany. I didn’t think the antenna went that far. Those podcast listeners are finding us from everywhere.
David: Timo Kracke, he was there with another friend Sebastian, and they’re both listeners of Extreme Genes and I got to interview them. I also interviewed an interesting fellow by the name of Andrew Tatham. Andrew is an author of a book he worked on for twenty years called ‘A Group Photograph’. He found a WWI photograph for his great grandfather. A group picture, and researched everybody in the picture.
Fisher: What a great idea!
David: It’s great! I mean it’s absolutely great, because I tell people all the time “You have to adopt the regiment.”
David: In this case he’s adopted forty six individuals from this photograph and tracked them all down.
David: That’s kind of a Gen Tip, but my Gen Tip for this week is “Go out and have a portrait painted of your family.” Create a family legacy heirloom that you can pass on forever, and it doesn’t matter if it’s an amateur artist or a professional artist, someone who can capture an essence, something that a photograph can’t.
Julia Sterland, who is an artist in England, was painting portraits for free with a small donation to the Mary Curie Foundation, which is kind of like hospice here in the States.
David: And I got a portrait painted by her and I’m going to treasure it. It’s a great thing.
Fisher: Post it! We’ve got to see it.
David: I will. I looked at it and I was like “Oh my gosh, you did that in like twenty minutes!”
David: And of course the free database for NEHGS guest users till April 20th, is of a billion records that we have available for you. Search on AmericanAncestors.org just as a guest user.
Fisher: Hey, you extended the deadline on that. I love that. So till next Wednesday, April 20th.
David: Correct, and I just want to say a shoutout to all the listeners out there on this side of the pond, from the opposite side of the pond.
Fisher: [Laughs] They’re everywhere.
David: Exactly. So that’s all I’ve got for this week from London, and look forward to talking to you next week.
Fisher: All right, thanks David! And coming up next; We’re going to talk to Paul Woodbury from LegacyTree.com. He’s a DNA results analyst, and wait till you hear about the case he has put together concerning a woman adopted in 1916. Love DNA! It’s coming up next in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 2 Episode 135 (11:10)
Host Scott Fisher with guest Paul Woodbury
Fisher: And welcome back to America’s Family History Show, Extreme Genes and ExtremeGenes.com
It is Fisher here, the Radio Roots Sleuth. We’re doing DNA day today with Paul Woodbury, he is a DNA genealogist, and Paul, you have to analyze an awful lot of tests don’t you?
Paul: I do, yeah. I probably do about 4 to 5 projects a week.
Fisher: And DNA results are so fascinating for what they do for families and typically it’s more about current living generations and once in a while you put some together that will go back and you’ll find a deceased birth parent from one side or the other.
But in your case, this was just an amazing case. I was excited to hear about it. You’ve actually identified the birth father and the birth mother of a woman who has since passed, who was adopted in 1916, using DNA.
Paul: Exactly. So after the decease of this adopted woman, her daughter Lauren wanted to explore her mother’s biological history. Her mother, Mary Stoddard, was adopted in 1916 in Alabama, and typically with adopted cases you can begin by looking for case files and documents that might reveal the parents.
But in this case the organization that handled Mary’s adoption was no longer existent and the records were destroyed. So really DNA was the only option that we had to really explore the biological parents of Mary Stoddard.
Fisher: And this time you not only did an autosomal, you were able to isolate the X chromosome. Now I don’t have a lot of knowledge of how this works, explain a little to us about X chromosomes and DNA tests, and by the way people, if you haven’t done one before, it’s a simply thing to do, you spit in a cup and you send it in. That’s all there is to it.
Paul: Very simple.
Fisher: You can analyze a lot of this and then if you need people like Paul at LegacyTree.com they can help you out.
Paul: So, the X chromosome is the female sex chromosome and it’s often confused with another type of DNA called ‘mitochondrial DNA.’
Paul: A lot of people confuse those two types of DNA because they do have a unique inheritance pattern that focuses on the female line. Now, mitochondrial DNA is located in a completely separate part of the cells and with your mitochondrial it’s your kind of powerhouses of the cells, and it’s passed along the direct maternal line. So it comes from your mother’s, mother’s mother….
Paul: The X chromosome meanwhile, is part of the nuclear DNA and it’s a sex chromosome. Males receive one X chromosome from their mother, and females receive one X chromosome from their mother and they also receive one from their father. So males, instead of receiving an X chromosome from their father, receive a Y-chromosome which is what makes them male.
Fisher: So how are you able to use this knowledge to actually isolate who a person might be if you’re trying to, say, identify a birth parent?
Paul: Okay. So the X chromosome, because it follows this pattern of, you know, males, will receive one X chromosome from their mother and females will receive one from their mother and one from their father. It means that we can limit the number of possible ancestors that shared X DNA may have come from.
So if you have an X DNA match, then that severely limits the possible candidates that could have contributed that common DNA. And that we’re interested in when we’re doing genealogy is we’re looking at that shared inheritance of genetic material.
So if you have shared inheritance of DNA on the X chromosome, then we can identify the possible candidates that may have contributed that DNA.
Fisher: So it acts as another elimination factor.
Paul: It does. And the X chromosome doesn’t require its own test, each of the DNA testing companies offers an autosomal of the DNA test and as part of that test they will test some markers on the X chromosome.
Fisher: I see. Okay, so what was the case here then? You had a woman born in 1916, sent out for adoption, then theoretically the birth parents disappear into time. So what did you have to do?
Paul: Exactly. So what we had to do, first we looked at the client’s genetic matchings. So Lauren, the daughter of Mary the adoptee, decided to take a DNA test and using her DNA test results we identified her closest matches based off the amount of DNA that they shared in common with her.
Using these genetic matches and then also being able to identify which genetic cousins were also related to each other. We were able to identify common ancestors of these genetic matches that had to have been in the ancestry of Lauren’s mother Mary Stoddard.
Fisher: So we call this ‘triangulation’ right? Where you identify the common ancestors of two people who were related to you, the assumption then is that, that ancestor is also your ancestor.
Paul: Exactly, and particularly when you’re able to see how much DNA you share in common with each of those individuals and how they relate to each other. That can be really helpful in recreating the trees of the ancestors beyond the brick wall of adoption.
Fisher: Now the problem is typically though trying to figure out ‘All right, we’ve got these cousins, but which side do they come from, the father’s side or the mother’s side?’ how’d you deal with that?
Paul: So what we did is, with Lauren’s test results we found that she had her closest match shared 240 centimorgans with her and that is the amount of DNA that you’d expect to observe between second cousins.
Paul: So we knew that, because we’re looking for Lauren’s great grandparents and for Mary’s grandparents, at the level of second cousins the common ancestors between that match and Lauren, would have been the parents of one of the parents of Mary. So they would have been the grandparents from one of the sides. We don’t know if it was paternal or maternal.
Paul: So Lauren’s closest genetic match was the great grandson of a man named Joseph Jones.
Paul: And he was the son of Levi Jones and Julia Rockwood, and Levi Jones and Julia Rockwood were the common ancestors between two of the client’s genetic matches. One was an estimated second cousin; one was an estimated third cousin. So based on that, we know that two of the grandparents of Mary were Joseph Jones and Laura Adams.
Paul: We next looked at some of her other matches and we determined that they were not related to the Jones or the Adams family, and so it was from a separate part of the client’s biological family tree and using those matches we were also able to follow a similar process to determine that one of Mary’s parents was a daughter or a son of Marian Smith and Alice Rogers.
Fisher: Got it.
Paul: Now Joseph Jones and Laura Adams and their family lived in Northern Alabama, in a town where Mary was supposedly born, and Marian Smith and Alice Rogers and their family also lived in the same town.
So our next step was to identify which couple were the paternal grandparents of Mary and which were the maternal grandparents of Mary.
Fisher: Right and this is a huge step because even if you couldn’t identify which of the children of these grandparents were the parents of your people, at least you had a line to work with right?
Paul: Yeah. So even within the first few hours of research we were able to identify each of the grandparents of this adoptee.
Fisher: Okay. Now you have to narrow it down among the children of these and figure out was it the father’s side or the mother’s side with these couples right?
Paul: Yeah, exactly. So in this case Joe Jones and Laura Adams had five children, two boys, Charles and Joseph were the two boys and then there were three daughters.
Paul: And we knew that Martha could not have been the mother of Mary because she was the ancestor of the client’s closest match. So if she was the mother then Lauren and her closest match would have shared a lot more DNA in common.
Fisher: Got it.
Paul: So we could eliminate Martha as a candidate to be Mary’s mother. We also suspected that it wasn’t going to be Lula because she would have been only about 13 years old at the time of Mary’s conception.
Fisher: She’s out. [Laughs]
Paul: She’s out. [Laughs] So that left us with three candidates, namely Charles, Joseph and Jenny. So either Charles or Joseph was the father of Mary, or Jenny was the mother of Mary.
Fisher: Got it.
Paul: So the other couple had ten children.
Fisher: Oh boy. Well, let’s not go through every one of them and how it worked out. But how do you figure than, the father’s side, the mother’s side, and who they were?
Paul: So we figured it out by transferring the client’s DNA test results to GEDmatch.com
Paul: It’s a third party site which allows analysis of the shared segment data, and through analysis of one of the client’s matches who shared a segment of DNA on the X chromosome, we were able to determine the identity of Mary’s parents.
So if Mary was the daughter of Lou Smith and Jenny Jones, then she could have inherited her X DNA from just three people, either she received it from Alice Rogers, Julia Rockwood, or Laura Adams. She couldn’t have inherited any of the DNA from Celesta Wood.
However, on the other side, if Mary was the daughter of Charles Jones and Betty Smith, then she could have inherited X DNA from Laura Adams, Celesta Wood or Alice Rogers.
Paul: Since we know that she inherited X DNA from Celeste Wood based off of her X-DNA match, we know that she had to have been the daughter of Charles Jones and Betty Smith.
Fisher: Wow! [Laughs] Does this stuff keep you awake at night?
Paul: [Laughs] Sometimes!
Fisher: [Laughs]We should mention by the way that we’ve been using pseudo names to protect the identity of the people involved. But what an incredible journey, not only for the clients, but for you to go through this. It’s mind wracking isn’t it?
Paul: Yeah, so it was a really exciting project to work on.
Fisher: All right, great stuff! Paul Woodbury with LegacyTree.com. He’s a DNA analyst. Paul, I appreciate it and I hope you’ll come on again sometime.
Paul: All right, thank you.
Fisher: And coming up next… we’re in the middle of another season of “Who Do You Think You Are?”
Whose on the show, what are some of the behind the scenes stories. We’re going to try and pry some of those out of Jenn Utley, head genealogist for the show. Coming up in five minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 3 Episode 135 (24:50)
Host Scott Fisher with guest Jenn Utley
Fisher: And welcome back to Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com
It is Fisher here, the Radio Roots Sleuth, and another season of “Who Do You Think You Are?” is going on right now on TLC.
And I have my good friend Jenn Utley from Ancestry.com on the line with me right now. She is one of the genealogists, well, you’re the head genealogist, not one of them, Jenn. You’re overseeing this entire operation. How’s the season going so far?
Jenn: Oh, it’s going really great so far. We’re pretty excited about it.
Fisher: Well, you’ve got a good list of people this season. Katey Sagal coming up this coming weekend, and of course, she’s in ‘Married with Children’ and has made her name doing that. And I bet you’ve got some incredible stuff to share with us about that episode.
Jenn: Right. So, Katey has always been known for her larger than life characters, like Peg Bundy and what she does on the Sons of Anarchy show, but it’s really interesting to see the contrast of what she’s like in real life, because she’s really a grounded down to earth kind of person. So, that makes a really interesting thing to see her and how she responds on “Who Do You Think You Are?” So, her episode that is coming up, it’s the very first episode that ever got me a little bit teary eyed before the first commercial break.
Fisher: Are you saying you’re a hard and crusty person? Come on now!
Jenn: No, I tend to get teary eyed on these things.
Jenn: But it’s never been that early in the program. It’s really interesting, because her mother died when Katey was really young, and so, there’s not a lot she knows about her mother and her mother’s family, so she really wanted to look into that. So, the very beginning of the episode was really just an investigation just one generation back, talking about her mother and that’s where I got a little teary eyed.
Fisher: And how far back did you manage to take it and where to?
Jenn: So, she’s going to start out in New York, talking about her mother, but eventually, she’s going to find herself in the middle of a tragic story in Pennsylvania, long before the Revolutionary War.
Fisher: Nice! Okay, Molly Ringwald is on the week after that, and everybody knows her, of course, started with ‘Facts of Life’ and went on to become a big star in movies, and probably the biggest name you have this season I would say.
Jenn: Ah, I think so, and I think that because it’s Molly Ringwald and she’s such an iconic figure, I think everyone wanted to fight to get to work on her geneaology.
Fisher: [Laughs] And did you win?
Jenn: Oh, I get to work on all the trees, so I don’t have to fight for anything.
Fisher: Oh, nice!
Fisher: Okay, well, what do we know about Molly Ringwald? She’ll be week after next, about the 24th.
Jenn: Yes. When we talk to Molly, there’s a family legend in her tree that her father is descended from Swedish nobility.
Jenn: So, when we saw the Sweden line, we wanted to jump right into that one. And the other thing that’s so great about Sweden is, the Swedes are such good record keepers.
Jenn: So, we use those parish records in Sweden to put together the tree and learn about the comings and goings, and once again, the stories of tragedy and resilience and these dangerous mining occupations these people had.
So, it’s really fun, because taking someone on a journey to a place is just as important as the research, because it’s all about having the celebrities take a walk where their ancestors walked, and usually, the celebrities don’t know where they’re going in advance.
All they know is, whether or not they need to bring their passport with them. So, sometimes, they end up in a place where they haven’t properly packed and they have to run out and buy a coat or boots or something.
Fisher: Wait a minute! You don’t even fill them in on what kind of clothes they should wear!? Or is that too much of a hint?
Jenn: It’s just all, it’s more fun when it’s a surprise, and they’re more engaged in the journey when they don’t know where they’re going.
Fisher: You know, I am 3/8 Swedish myself and I think about what you said about the records, and I think you know, it’s a darn good thing the Swedes are good with their records, because of the fact, you know… Sven Svensson, Yon Yonson…
Fisher: All those names that are all the same. If they didn’t have good records, it would be a real mess, wouldn’t it?
Jenn: Oh, it sure would.
Fisher: All right, now Lea Michele from ‘Glee’ is on this season. That’s going to be a great name, especially for younger viewers. Tell us a little about that episode
Jenn: Well, yeah, especially because she’s so used to playing a character, right?
Jenn: From her Broadway background and then on Glee, I’m really interested. This is the only episode I haven’t seen yet. So, I’m really interested to see how she responds when the story isn’t about her as a character, but she is one of the characters in the story.
Jenn: Her research is really amazing. We had to really call in some expert researchers on some highly specialized language to uncover the immigration story of her ancestors, which is fabulous. This is the one of all the six seasons that I have been the most excited to see, and so, it’s just killing me that I haven’t seen it yet.
Fisher: Now wait a minute! You’re talking about a very specialized language. Can you reveal what that is?
Jenn: I can’t. I can’t. You’re going to have to watch the show to see.
Fisher: Argh, you’re killing me!
Fisher: I’m thinking she had to have been from some northern Russian frontier or something.
Jenn: Yes. I learned so much just working on her tree.
Fisher: How far back did you manage to get it? You can tell us that much.
Jenn: Hers doesn’t go back super far. It’s more of an immigration story, somewhere only back, 100, 150 years, if you look at the tree as a whole.
Fisher: All right, and then the last one that I’m aware of is Chris Noth, right? From’Law & Order.’
Jenn: From ‘The Good Wife’.
Fisher: Yes, and that too, right?
Jenn: Yeah, and then he was ‘Mr. Big’ too, so I think he’s got a lot of fans out there. It was fun to see where his story was going to take him, because on The Good Wife, he’s a politician in Chicago. So, it’s really kind of fun when we get to start out his whole episode, we’re taking him to Chicago.
Fisher: Was he aware that he had a link there?
Jenn: You know, off the top of my head, I don’t recall. I think he knew that, but I don’t remember.
Fisher: Most of these people, they come in, really they don’t have much of a hint, do they? About their backgrounds or some of these stories.
Jenn: It’s really varied. Some people don’t know anything, for lots of reasons. A lot of them had parents who died when they were young and so there was no one to pass on the stories.
You’ll also be surprised how many come in and, like Bill Parkerson came in and he knew so much. Like he came in and he was like, “Here’re my Civil War ancestors, but see if you can help me out, because I’ve always wanted to know a Revolutionary War story.” So, it’s really a big spectrum about who knows what about their tree.
Fisher: Yeah, absolutely. All right, a little more about Chris Noth.
Jenn: Well, we’re in Chicago and his ancestors are going to find themselves in a devastating disaster, and then we’re going to take him to both Spain and Ireland, where we’re going to have an ancestor who fought in one of the fiercest battles of all time.
Fisher: Oh, boy! Well, that sounds intense. For most of these folks, it’s quite an impactful thing. I think people who are performers and actors are very in tune with their emotions, and when they learn these things, it’s pretty personal, isn’t it?
Jenn: It is, and I think they’re also quick to see how the lives of their ancestors parallel the experiences they’re having today.
Fisher: Yeah, I think you’re absolutely on board with that. It’s on TLC, Sunday nights. What are the times? Because I’ve got to keep them straight from coast to coast.
Jenn: So, I’m not sure exactly when it will be on based on your cable provider, but it’s usually 10, 9 central time.
Jenn: It’s usually on right after the show ‘Long Lost Family’.
Fisher: So, typically, you’ll see it say, in the Mountain Time zones, which would also be 9 o’clock and then 7 o’clock though on the West Coast. It’s kind of weird how that works out, isn’t it?
Jenn: Yeah. Like for my own personal provider, it’s been on at 8 o’clock and 10 o’clock on Sunday nights.
Fisher: And you had Aisha Tyler this year, Scott Foley. If you’ve missed it, you can go back and catch those right, on TLC, TLC.com?
Jenn: I think they put the full episodes on for a limited time after the run.
Fisher: All right, that is great stuff. Jennifer. You just keep going with this thing. How much longer do you think you can do this?
Jenn: I don’t know. I feel pretty fortunate. I think I’ve got one of the greatest jobs in the universe.
Fisher: [Laughs] I think you do, too. I’m very jealous. Get me a signed picture of Lea Michele, will you?
Jenn: Oh, that’ll be fun! I’ll see what I can do.
Fisher: [Laughs] Okay. Jennifer Utley from Ancestry.com and another great season of “Who Do You Think You Are?” Thanks Jennifer!
Jenn: You’re welcome.
Fisher: Hey, it’s exciting to see how interest in family history keeps growing and because of that, I’ve got a couple of shoutouts to do today. One is to Mark Jones and Tom Parker, they’re the guys that run NewsTalk 1490 and FM 107-7, in Vicksburg, Mississippi. They’ve just added Extreme Genes to their Sunday night lineup at 6 o’clock. We are thrilled and honored to be on your station, guys, so thank you so much.
We also want to give a shoutout to Victoria Holschevnikov in Dobrush, Belarus. I got an email from her the other day. She’s been listening to Extreme Genes via podcast for the last two years and just wanted to say, ‘hello.’ And Victoria, back at you! Thanks for listening to Extreme Genes, and we hope it’s helping you in Belarus.
And coming up next, Tom Perry, our Preservation Authority, talks about microphones and audio and how best to use it, especially with the reunion season coming up. In three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show!
Segment 4 Episode 135 (37:10)
Host Scott Fisher with guest Tom Perry
Fisher: It is preservation time at Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com. Fisher here, the Radio Roots Sleuth with Tom Perry. He’s our Preservation Authority from TMCPlace.com. Hello, Tommy!
Fisher: And, last week were talking about transcribing old audio. Sometimes it’s very difficult to understand on its own, but if your spend some time playing it over and over again and trying to pick out the words and transcribing it, you can make it so it’s much easier for people to understand the tape when they hear it, because they can follow along with the words that you’ve copied.
Now, as a result of that conversation about audio, we’ve got a great email from Schenectady, New York, from Melanie Smith and she’s asking about microphones, Tom, and it’s been a while since we talked about them.
Tom: Back in the old days when I was back in college, I would hear all the times when I was working on different TV productions, “Oh, don’t worry about the audio. We’ll fix it in post.” And it’s like, don’t worry about it. We’ll fix it in post? Well, that’s what the TV engineers say.
Tom: So, I actually when to Full Sail University in Florida to learn more about audio, and found out it’s best to do it right in the first place than fixing the mix.
Fisher: Well, imagine a movie without the music behind it and how it would affect the mood and feel of the whole thing.
Tom: Oh, some of these B grade movies just drive me nuts when their audio’s bad. In fact, we actually did an experiment. We had a movie where we went in and tinkered with the sound track a little bit and had a focus group that we showed one movie to, had them review it. Showed the other movie too. The movies were exactly the same. The only thing that was different was the sound track. And the difference is rating it, one star, two stars, up to five stars. It was tremendous difference, and all we did was change a little bit of the background music and things like this, where the content never changed.
Tom: Almost everybody nowadays has an iPhone or some kind of a smartphone, and you can download some really good apps for a good recording, but one thing you’ve got to realize is, the microphone on your smartphones are made for you just talking right to them. It’s not really an Omni directional microphone. It’s not really that good.
So, it’s basically about your budget. We have people that call in and say, “Hey, you know, I want to do such and such, but I’ve got a limited budget.” Just remember, it’s better to do something now, then wait and maybe you’ll be gone tomorrow.
If you’re in a position where you’re doing a lot of this, you’re going to family reunions, you want to get some really good killer audio, there’s one microphone out there that’s really good, and I’ve mentioned these people before.
Go to VideoMaker.com, they have all kinds of good stuff. They have webinars that you can attend, but they have this one microphone that they review that’s really, really nice. If you want to go in and do an Amazon search, you just type in B, as in boy, 00TV90DX0, and it’s a great microphone.
It’s kind of pricey. It retails for about $600, but you can pick it up for under $400 on Amazon. And you think, ‘Wow! $400 is a lot of money’. Well, if you’re doing family reunions, you have a budget, and this isn’t something that’s a one time thing. You can set it up, different family members can check it out for when they’re doing their own family reunions on the other side.
It’s a good investment. It’s really, really nice. It’ll plug into an iPhone, it’ll plug into just about any kind of a recorder. If you have the old digital ones, even the ones that take the small cassettes, you can actually record all these things too. So, it’s a lot of money, but it’s a good investment if you’re really serious about doing family history and such. Like I say, do what you can do.
If all you have is your iPhone, go ahead and start doing your narration, because once you have it in your iPhone or in the cloud or you’ve burned it as an MP3, you can now go and take this and add it as an attachment in a PDF, or as we mentioned last week in Heritage Collectors, you can actually go and add these little audio parts to it, and then you’ve got this incredible, searchable document where you can find all these things.
So, it’s really important that, (if) you can’t understand grandpa; you want to make sure they can understand you when you’re doing your part.
Fisher: Boy! There’s so many assets now for putting together a multimedia display, essentially.
Tom: Oh, it is. That’s exactly what you’re doing. What we can do today, you couldn’t even conceive about it ten years ago. It’s just crazy!
Fisher: Right, and all the components are very important… the microphone, the video and the enhancement of the audio that you get.
Tom: Exactly. A lot of times, if you’re in a large city, you can go to a professional place and rent these microphones, you don’t even have to buy them.
Fisher: Boy! That’s great advice. All right, what are we talking about in the next segment?
Tom: I’m going to talk a little bit more about microphones, make sure you get the right kind of microphone for what your event is going to be.
Fisher: All right, coming up in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 5 Episode 135 (44:20)
Host Scott Fisher with guest Tom Perry
Fisher: We are back for our final segment of Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show. It is preservation time. We’re talking with Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com. I am Fisher, your Radio Roots Sleuth, and, I am speaking to you through a microphone.
Fisher: And we’re talking microphones right now, because so many people who’re into family history, of course, like to do interviews with their loved ones, and sometimes it’s not appropriate… sometimes they get nervous, by the way, about being on a camera, and not only that, when you record them with video, sometimes the audio isn’t as good. So, a microphone right up in their face is often much better for your purposes.
Tom: Oh, absolutely! But what is your final objective? What are you going to do? Is this going to be one on one interviews? Is this going to be grandma and grandpa talking, being interviewed by you? Are you going to sit around the Thanksgiving table? All those require different kinds of microphones. What’re going to do?
Fisher: And I think if you’re sitting in a room that has a lot of bounce and echo to it, a video isn’t going to come out as well as far as the audio side of that is concerned.
Tom: Exactly! And we have said this so many times, and please engrain this into your head, whenever you’re using a camcorder, somebody needs to have headphones on that are hooked to that camcorder, because you will not notice the refrigerator, you will not notice the air conditioner coming on and off, you will not notice the cat meowing outside, because your ears are trained to tune into and to focus on what you want, and it will drive you nuts.
And you can do simple things like we’ve talked about before, get cushions off your couch and put it around on the walls, hang up blankets; throw them over the top of the blinds. You can do all kinds of things of what we call, ‘soften up the room’, so you’re not getting those echoes.
You won’t even know they’re happening unless you have your headphones on and you’re listening what’s coming from the camcorder.
Fisher: You know, oddly, a closet is not a bad place to do an interview.
Tom: Oh, yeah. Anything like that where you can shut off. Just make sure your closet isn’t right next to your heater or your air conditioner.
Fisher: Right. [Laughs]
Tom: Because that will cause problems. Another good reason to use the headphones is, if you’re using an external mic and you don’t have it clicked in just right, you might have just defeated your audio, because how it works is, when you plug the little apparatus in there, it turn off the mic that’s built onto your camera. And so, if you push it in far enough to disable that audio, but it’s not far enough to get the new audio, then you have nothing.
Fisher: That’s right. Even if you have video, if the audio is bad, then it doesn’t matter. It’s going to be very frustrating to watch it.
Tom: Absolutely true! I would rather have really good audio all by itself and no video, than video with really bad audio. So, make sure you get the right kind of microphones.
If you are sitting at a dinner table, the best kind of microphone is what they call a PZM, ‘pressure zone microphone’, because it basically turns your table into a giant microphone. So, no matter where somebody is sitting around the table, it’s going to pick them up.
And remember, you don’t have to buy all these microphones. If you’re in a major town, there’s got to be pro audio places that you can rent these microphones from. Even if you live out in the boonies, contact the big city, and microphones are really inexpensive to ship. Overnight shipping on a microphone that weighs under a pound isn’t going to be that expensive.
Go to VideoMaker.com, you can get some good tips there. Go to MixMagazine.com, you can get some good tips there, but make sure if you’re just doing an interview, you have a good lavalier mic.
If you’re doing a big group of people around a nice, hardwood table, use a PZM. There’s another microphone really quickly you can look into, that’s also talked about on VideoMaker.com. It’s called a Sennheiser which makes killer microphones. I love Sennheisers.
Fisher: Yes, yes, great brand.
Tom: It’s called a VR mic and it’s so small, you can actually put it on a drone. If you want to film some stuff on your family reunion, it’s a great way to get audio of everybody talking about what’s going on.
Fisher: All right, interesting stuff, Tom. I don’t think I’ve ever thought about it attached to a drone. [Laughs]
Tom: Oh, absolutely! It’s the best way to get good audio and video of your huge family reunion in the park.
Fisher: Thanks for coming on, Tom. Talk to you next week.
Tom: We’ll be there.
Fisher: Hey, that’s it for this week! Thanks for joining us. Hopefully you learned something that will help you with your family history research.
Thanks to Paul Woodbury from LegacyTree.com for coming on and talking about his recent DNA discovery on behalf of a client.
Also to Jenn Utley, head genealogist for “Who Do You Think You Are?” talking about what’s happening this season on the show. If you missed any of it, catch the podcast.
Talk to you again next week. Thanks for joining us! And remember, as far as everyone is knows, we’re a nice, normal family!
Fisher and David Allen Lambert, Chief Genealogist of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and AmericanAncestors.org, open the show with Family Histoire News… good and bad. They start with bad… The National Records Office in a major UK city has been hit by ransomware. People wishing to research their ancestors while visiting there will not be able to do so for at least a while. Listen to learn which one. The Daily Mail of the UK says many of us still sense the presence of deceased loved ones. David shares one story from the article, as well as one from his own family concerning this very thing. David then talks about the “Fat Man’s Club of America.” A hundred years ago, it was HUGE! (Pun intended.) Was your ancestor a member? David will tell you all about it. He then shares his Tech Tip… how to find millions of ancient London court records from a university in Texas. David wraps up his visit with another guest user free database from NEHGS.
Next (starts at 11:39), Fisher visits with professional genealogist Kate Eakman from LegacyTree.com. Kate has the inside story on the “SS-5” form… a government Social Security document we’ve all had to fill out, as have our parents and grandparents and other relatives. It’s a record that was filled out by hand in previous decades that gives the date and place of birth, and the names of parents, including the maiden name of the mother. But there are rules governing whether or not you get to see those important ancestral names! Kate will fill you in what those rules are, and how she got around them in one case. It’s a lesson that can apply to other problems dealing with government records.
Larry Gelwix, the “Getaway Guru” from Columbus Travel Agency pops in to talk about the Extreme Genes cruise, set for September 13th out of Boston, cruising to Nova Scotia. Want to join us? Larry and Fisher will share the details and tell you how to sign up.
Preservation Authority Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com then joins the show to talk about what to do when you find undeveloped film from back in the day! How do you get it developed and is it even developable anymore? It’s a great topic. Tom continues the subject at the back end of the show, talking about undeveloped home movies. Tom will help you avoid making mistakes that could permanently destroy your film.
That’s all this week on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show!
Transcript for Episode 133
Segment 1 Episode 133 (00:30)
Fisher: Hello, you! Welcome to America’s Family History Show, Extreme Genes and ExtremeGenes.com
I am Fisher, your Radio Roots Sleuth, on the program where we shake your family tree and watch the nuts fall out. Great guest today! Kate Eakman is here, with LegacyTree.com. She’s going to be talking about a very special record that has been left by many of your more recent ancestors.
Did you know that they actually wrote down when they were born, where they were born, the name of the parents, including the maiden name the mother? Yes! And you can actually obtain that record through the government. She’ll tell you about it and some of the tricks and rules involved, coming up in about eight or nine minutes.
Then, later in the show, Larry Gelwix, the Getaway Guru from Columbus Travel is going to be here talking about our Extreme Genes cruise that’s scheduled for September 13th out of Boston, going up to Nova Scotia, and it’s going to be a great family history cruise… fall foliage too.
So, you’re going to want to hear all the details on that and plan to join us in September. I’m very excited to let you know, by the way, that our shows are now being transcribed. So, if you hear something on the air, or you hear something on the podcast, and if you want to find where that was in the show, you can just search the transcription that’s posted along with the podcast. So, it’s a great help as you follow along with us at home, on Extreme Genes. And right now, it’s time to check in with my good friend, the Chief Genealogist of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and AmericanAncestors.org, David Allen Lambert is here from Boston.
Hi David, How are you?
David: Greetings from Beantown, Fish. How are you doing? I’m just great.
Fisher: Awesome! We got a lot of good news and bad news in our family histoire news today.
David: We definitely do. Going across the pond to Edinburgh, Scotland the National Record Office at New Register House in Edinburgh has a computer virus which has shut down the whole system.
Fisher: Oh my goodness!
David: So, you could go into Edinburgh, pay a fee and actually look up your ancestors. Not the case right now.
Fisher: Wow! That is really sad. And you know, that’s happening in a lot of places. This ransomware, it actually happened at the radio station I’m headquartered at, about a month or so ago. So, it’s very prevalent.
David: You know, it’s nice to know that ScotlandsPeople.gov.uk, which is the main website that people access from home, isn’t affected, so people shouldn’t be worried about their accounts. So, I won’t toss that out of there, just the in-house access. So, if you’re planning a trip to Scotland anytime soon, call ahead. You know, there’s a really interesting story that was in England’s Daily Mail. The story goes, basically six in ten people who have lost a partner will continue to hear them or sense them in some way, and then, you know, I think that’s true in a lot of senses. You have a family member that’s gone and some people are still seeing them and hearing them, but it’s not really reported so much. In fact, one of the stories talks about a grandmother mentioning that their granddaughter, who was very, very small, ran into the kitchen and said, “Come in here! Come in here! Grandpa’s in the other room!” And he wasn’t there, at least to their eyes.
David: I mean, Fish, have you had this happen to you, you know, where there are lost loved ones?
Fisher: No. My wife is very sensitive to that stuff, but not me.
David: I can’t speak for it the same, but I do share them. My daughter was a little girl, probably about three or four. We were driving and my daughter was looking, you know, to the seat beside her, and she’s just, “I have a question for you, mom and dad. When are you having another baby?” And we looked at each other and said, ‘Well, we don’t know, hon. but sometime.’ And I said, ‘Why?’ And she was, “Oh, well, papa just said that he can’t come back unless you do.” My dad had died when my daughter was about three years old.
David: Yeah. So, I mean, so young, why would she be making it up? And this is the only time she ever mentioned it, ever. So, and it’s nice to know that somehow they can still reach out there to us. On a lighter note, well, actually a quite heavier note, have you ever heard of the Fat Men’s Club of America?
Fisher: I have not. Tell us about it.
David: Well, I’ll tell you. Weighing in with this wonderful story, back in 1903, there was a local tavern in Wells River, Vermont, where this club was launched. And essentially, you needed to be a gentleman boasting over 200 pounds, pay a fee of $1, and you learned a secret handshake and a password. They had amazing events. The New England Fat Men’s club had over 10,000 members. They would have an Olympic size breakfast, essentially, where men would cram a huge breakfast into their stomachs, stumble outside, and work up a sweat in a friendly Olympic-style competition showing strength by leapfrog contests, broad jumps and races. And then, come back and have a nine-course meal with oyster cocktail, cream of chicken soup, boiled snapper, fillet of beef with mushrooms, roast chicken, roast suckling pig, etc, etc.
So, I mean, any of the workout that they had, obviously was counteracted by their large meal afterwards.
David: But this was an organization that was very big at the early part of the 20th century, but by 1924, they only had 38 members show up, and none of them met the 200 pound mark. Now I’m not sure if that means they had decided to diet or maybe they cut back the meal portions, but what a funny group to actually find in your family tree. I’ve never seen one in an obituary, but I’m going to look for them now.
Fisher: No. I’ve never heard of it. And the thing is it makes you realize what a different world we live in today.
David: Exactly. I think they’d have to say the ‘Robust’ Men’s Club, The Healthy Men’s Club. Well, my tech tip goes back quite a ways. Actually, it goes back to medieval and early modern England. As you know, next week I’ll be reporting from Who Do You Think You Are in Birmingham, England. And I’ll be over in England for a couple of weeks, but this tech tip is a free database from the University of Houston, Texas. And I’ll provide the link so you can post it, which is, aalt.law.uh.edu. What they have done there, over 9 million frames of historic documents from the National Archives in London. They’re basically going through 12th century court records, all the way from the time of Richard I, Richard the Lion-hearted, all the way to Queen Victoria, and they’re putting them online for free.
David: Yeah. NEHGS, as you know, always will offer a free guest user database. Just become a guest user at AmericanAncestors.org. And this week, we are offering early Vermont settlers with eleven new sketches added to the already comprehensive collection that we’re putting together for your Vermont ancestors in the 18th and early 19th century. Well, that’s all I have. Next time I’ll be talking, it’ll be across the pond, and talk to you soon, Fish.
Fisher: All right. Great to talk to you, David! Thanks for coming on and have a safe trip.
David: Thank you, sir.
Fisher: And coming up next, we’re going to talk to Kate Eakman with LegacyTree.com about a very special document your recent ancestors had to fill out, providing some very important information. That’s in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 2 Episode 133 (11:10)
Host Scott Fisher with guest Kate Eakman
Fisher: We are back! Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com
It is Fisher here your Radio Roots Sleuth with my guest today Kate Eakman from Legacy Tree Genealogist
Kate it is great to have you on the show. You’re in Oregon, and I love the tip you have come across here, ‘Working with the government’ that’s always a challenge isn’t it?
Kate: It is. Sometimes the government has very specific rules. They tell you what they will and won’t do, but they don’t always follow their rules and sometimes you have to find interesting ways to work around them.
Fisher: Well at Legacy Tree Genealogists of course is a collection of great professionals such as yourself and this is a great tip, I’ve actually worked with the forms that we are going to talk about today, the SS5 and of course SS stands for Social Security, and this was the form that people have used to actually become part of the system, especially back in the day, right?
Kate: Correct. The SS5 is the form that everybody uses. Even you and I filled out one when we applied for a social security number.
Fisher: I have no recollection of that [laughs]
Kate: Well I don’t either [laughs] but I’m going to assume that I did.
Fisher: Yeah right [laughs]
Kate: The form SS5 is really useful to genealogists because the person who is applying for a social security number is the person who is filling out the form and providing the information. So unlike a death certificate where you have grieving family members trying to remember who this person’s parents were, this is a person in full health who is saying this is what my name is, this is my date of birth, this is where I was born, this is my father’s name, here is my mother’s name including her maiden name.
Fisher: Yeah it’s really good, isn’t it?!
Kate: It’s a wonderful tool.
Fisher: And one of the few like it that actually take place in the middle of life, typically we can see a birth certificate filled out by somebody else or a death certificate filled out by somebody else, and even the marriage certificates sometimes are filled out by other individuals with reports from the bride and the groom and perhaps other family members, but to actually be filled out by their own hand, asking this very important information, that’s really what makes it unique.
Kate: It really is. As you said, it’s the prime of a person’s life, not anymore now that babies have to have it done at the hospital for them, but we use the ones that we ask for from the government. You can look at the person’s handwriting, you can compare it to other documents, and as you said, it’s not somebody else reporting it, it’s that person, and usually where somebody might fudge something with a census record about how old they are, it seems as though when they completing their SS5 they were being very honest and so to find out what their birth date really was or who their parents really were.
Fisher: That is interesting you mentioned that about the age. I mean the ages just do vary so much, especially on census records and elsewhere, and people thinking they were born in one year but they maybe were born in another. My own grandmother, her tombstone says she was born in 1880 but she was actually born in 1881. I wonder if she actually knew herself what year she was born.
Kate: You are right! And the reason for that is that it’s only been in relatively recent times that our age has allowed us and not allowed us to do certain things.
Kate: So your specific day of birth or year of birth wasn’t important, just knowing you’re about twenty five years was good enough. You didn’t have to prove your age to get a driver’s license or have a drink at a bar or get married.
Fisher: Yeah that’s a good point. I’ve actually only ordered one SS5 form in my entire life in thirty some odd years of researching and that turned out to be for a woman who turned out to be a half-sister of my grandfather, and I suspected that she might be but by the time I got to this, it was like okay she’s got to tell me herself. I want to know. And I remember checking the mailbox on a regular basis because they don’t email these things to you, they stick them in the mail and you have to run out and wait for the postman to bring it to you. They’re kind of pricey as I recall. This was only about eight or nine years ago, and I want to say it was like twenty five dollars or something like that. Do you know what they are now?
Kate: Yes, the base is $29 if you don’t know the person’s social security number, if you do know the social security number they give you a $2 discount and you get it for $27.
Fisher: Yeah somewhere in that area. So when it came it actually had her listing my great grandfather as her father, and this was quite a breakthrough for us because we had no idea that she existed. So it was a good find.
Kate: And that’s exactly why we want an SS5 for that reason. So many times for women especially, we don’t know anything about the woman because she’s listed as somebody’s wife the first time she comes into the family picture.
Kate: And we don’t know who her parents were, and all through her life she’s always Aunt Susan, Uncle Fred’s wife, and that’s always how we know her. We never know who her parents were or what her maiden name was.
Fisher: Now some of these records, though, because of the timing of them, are redacted right?
Kate: That’s correct. The Social Security Administration has two very clear rules, one is they say they use what they call the one hundred and twenty year rule, which means you have to be able to prove that the person has died if they are less than one hundred and twenty years old. They don’t assume that a person who is a hundred years old is dead.
Fisher: Right okay.
Kate: And so that’s the first thing and often times you have to send a long obituary which they’ll now accept that, they don’t have to have a death certificate but you have to send something to prove this person really is dead and then they’ll send you the document.
Fisher: How about the Social Security Death Register?
Kate: That’s what’s really interesting is, you can send a copy of that but they don’t necessarily check their own death registry for that information.
Fisher: Okay [laughs] that’s our government at work.
Kate: It’s like I said, it’s always so hit or miss about what gets done and what gets followed through on.
Kate: The other rule that they have, and these are all designed to protect people’s privacy, if you think about a family member that you may know who has passed recently within the past ten or fifteen years with identity theft on the rise, you can see where somebody who may have passed who is a relatively young person, their identity could be stolen and their name, address and social security number used by the bad guys.
Kate: So that’s what they’re trying to prohibit or prevent, which I can appreciate but it does make our job as genealogists very, very difficult sometimes.
Fisher: Well I love what you did though because you had this problem with this SS5 form, it came in and the names, the very names you were looking for were marked out!
Kate: That’s correct. One of our clients knew who his grandmother’s first name was but he wasn’t even certain of her maiden name, what her last name was. We knew who she married of course but we didn’t know anything else about Grandma beyond her first name really. So I requested her SS5 hoping to learn who her parents were, and after waiting four-six weeks whatever the time period was, I got a very nice copy of her SS5 with two big black boxes over the names of her mother and father, and a very nice letter from the Social Security Administration telling me that because of their privacy rules there was no evidence that her parents were not still living. I needed to prove they were dead in order to get an un-redacted copy of her SS5.
Fisher: But you don’t even know who they are so how do you prove it, right?
Kate: Exactly! And I was a little bit stymied for a few moments because I thought, just what you said, how can I prove these people are dead if I don’t even know who they are?
Fisher: [Laughs] “That’s what I’m trying to find out, hello!”
Kate: [Laughs] Exactly. But I started thinking a little bit, just trying to be really logical, what do I know? What are the facts? Well, I knew that grandma was born in 1916; common sense tells us that if she was born in 1916 that her parents probably were born in 1900 or even earlier.
Kate: So my next question is; that’s pretty old. I mean we’re in 2016 now so those are people that would be a hundred and sixteen years old or older, and I wondered how many people live in the United States who are at least one hundred and sixteen years old?
Fisher: Good question.
Kate: So the answer to that is of course you do a Google search.
Fisher: Yeah [laughs]
Kate: And you ask Google how many people in the United States are over a hundred and sixteen years old, and I was directed to a Wikipedia article about ‘Super Centenarians’ people who were more than one hundred and ten years old.
Kate: But there was only one person in this country that would be a 116 years old.
Fisher: And he wasn’t an Italian right?
Kate: No this was actually an African-American lady.
Fisher: Okay, yes, in Brooklyn.
Kate: Born in Alabama.
Fisher: Yeah, the one, she lives in Brooklyn.
Kate: Yes, she lives in Brooklyn. And my client’s grandmother was of Italian decent and so chances were good that an African-American woman who was born in Alabama, was not her mother.
Fisher: [Laughs] Right.
Kate: So I printed all those articles off, wrote a very nice letter back to the Social Security Administration, because as my grandmother always taught me, you catch more flies with honey than vinegar.
Kate: So this is just somebody who’s trying to do their job and they’re trying to protect people’s identity so I’m not going to get cranky with them and I just explained that I could not find any evidence of anybody who would be old enough to be her parents still alive.
Fisher: Good call.
Kate: And that’s the reason I was asking for this record was to learn who her parents were on behalf of my client. Then I sent it off with fingers crossed and then waited for the mail as you said.
Fisher: And it came back and…?
Kate: And it came back with the black boxes removed and I discovered the names of Grandma’s parents.
Fisher: I bet your clients loved you for that!
Kate: I think they were pretty excited because for years they knew nothing beyond Grandma’s first name.
Kate: They thought they knew what her last name was, but even that was not quite correct. So the SS5 told us her correct maiden name and the name of her mother and her father, which allowed us then to trace her family back to her parents in Italy. So we went from a woman born in 1916 back to her grandparents who were born in the 1850s in Italy.
Fisher: Unbelievable. That is great work. Now where do people order these things?
Kate: You can order the SS5 from the Social Security Administration. There are two ways of doing it; you can order it online, I would just do a search for an SS5.
Fisher: Perfect, and then you can also mail away for it?
Kate: Fill out a form and mail it and that’s a good idea if you have somebody who recently passed away and then that way you can send in copies of obituaries, death certificates, whatever you need to prove everything and you don’t have to waste the time sending things back and forth.
Fisher: She’s Kate Eakman, from Legacy Tree Genealogists, with an incredible research tip for breaking through brick walls, the SS5.
Thanks so much Kate! Good stuff.
Kate: Thank you for having me.
Fisher: Find out more about Kate and the team at Legacy Tree at LegacyTree.com
And coming up next; we’re talking about our family history cruise out of Boston this fall with Larry Gelwix, the Getaway Guru on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 3 Episode 133 (24:50)
Host Scott Fisher with guest Larry Gelwix
Fisher: And welcome back to America’s Family History Show Extreme Genes and ExtremeGenes.com
I am Fisher, your Radio Roots Sleuth, and so looking forward to this September as we’re getting ready for our first ever Extreme Genes Cruise and it’s going to be leaving out of Boston, on Royal Caribbean and going up to Nova Scotia, and seeing some of the places the Loyalists settled after the Revolution. And with me in the studio right now is my good friend Larry Gelwix, who is known to many around the country as the ‘Getaway Guru.’
Larry: Scott, nice to be here with you!
Fisher: I’m excited about this and your Columbus Travel is handling all the bookings for this incredible trip and it’s going to be so much fun! Have you been on this before?
Larry: Oh yes! This is one of my favorite cruise areas and as you mentioned Columbus Travel in Bountiful, Utah, just outside of Salt Lake City, is handling all of the arrangements. You can see the details even a brochure, not only on your website but on ours, ColumbusVacations.com
Now Scott, you’ve put together an incredible package here for family history enthusiasts.
Fisher: I think so! We’ve got David Allen Lambert, of course who you heard earlier in the show, he’s the Chief Genealogist for the New England Historic Genealogical Society.
Larry: Like the Godfather of… no you are the Godfather of family history!
Fisher: [Laughs] No, no, no I am the Mayor of Familyhistoryville, he’s the Godfather!
Larry: You’re one of the wise-guys!
Fisher: [Laughs] So, David’s going to be on the ship with us and of course we’re going to do lectures about Boston, during the Revolution in the colonial days. We’re going to talk about the Loyalists who went up to Nova Scotia and settled some of the very places that we’re going to see, and of course we’re only going to be talking on days that we’re at sea.
If you want to get off at the ports, we want you to be able to do that, we want to do that! It’s going to be a lot of fun.
Larry: Well, the cruise itself departs from Boston steeped in history so many Americans can trace their Extreme Genes, their genealogy, and their family history back to the New England area.
Larry: Where so many immigrants came from Europe, and we have a visit to the New England Historic Genealogical Society, with David Allen Lambert as you mentioned.
Larry: But the cruise itself will depart the afternoon of Tuesday September 13th sailing from Boston. Now catch this itinerary; we’ll visit Bar Harbor Maine,
Larry: Saint John, New Brunswick, Canada
Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada
Some relaxing days at sea, and then back to Boston, this is a 6 day, 5 night cruise. The cruise itself September 13th to the 18th but… and this is so incredible for your listeners Scott, is that you have an optional involvement before the cruise.
Fisher: That’s right. People can go before they get there or they could even stay after the cruise and walk the Freedom Trail, and if you get there a little bit early actually on the 13th we can arrange for a tour of the New England Historic Genealogical Society. It’s the oldest in America, in fact in North America and there are so many things there that David I’m sure would love to show you.
Larry: Right. So it’s my understanding that those who arrive early enough will be going with you and visiting with David Allen Lambert who will also be on the cruise to the New England Historic Genealogical Society.
Larry: Now, your listeners are family history enthusiasts.
Fisher: That’s it.
Larry: What are they going to see, experience, learn and know at the New England Historic Genealogical Society?
Fisher: Well it’s an incredible library; it’s an incredible research facility first of all, and you won’t have a lot of time to spend there but you can get an idea of what’s available in terms of resources if you want to do a little research, you could spend an hour researching right there among their facilities.
Larry: Right. Now are they closed on Mondays?
Fisher: They’re closed on Mondays that’s right.
Larry: So our visit will be Tuesday morning.
Fisher: Yup, before the actual departure of the trip. So you’ll have to get there Monday, we’ll also do a walking tour of the Freedom Trail, if you get there early and we’ll have a place to actually meet up.
Larry: Isn’t it a wonderful experience?
Fisher: Oh it’s incredible! I’ve done it before. I actually have some ancestors who are buried along the Freedom Trail and you can see where Paul Revere is buried, you can actually visit his house from back in the time when he went about warning everybody that the British were coming.
Larry: Right. You know what’s also exciting? This is fall foliage time. Now it’s always difficult to outguess Mother Nature.
Larry: Because as I see fall foliage sometimes we see it in early September, sometimes it doesn’t arrive till early October. But this particular cruise is nestled right in the middle. It’s a wonderful time to experience New England, the Eastern Seaboard of Canada, and Fall Foliage.
Fisher: When you go north it gets a little cooler.
Larry: Exactly! Now our first stop after leaving Boston, is Bar Harbor Maine, what’s interesting about Bar Harbor is you get up into Maine, what do you think, “Heavily wooded areas,’ which this is.
Larry: But Bar Harbor’s actually a community on an Island and the name of the Island makes no sense given the topography.
Larry: It’s about ‘Desert Island’
Fisher: [laughs] Yeah.
Larry: I mean what’s up with that?
Fisher: I don’t know. But that’s what we’re going to find out about when we get there, right?
Larry: Well, all of these stops caught my attention as a foodie. I mean if you love seafood, just fine dining.
Fisher: Ah, oh yes.
Larry: Not only does the ship, but Royal Caribbean, does a great job in the dining room, but the food in each Port…. Now Bar Harbor’s steeped in history, you’ve got a Canadian National Park; it’s a wonderful place to visit in horse-drawn carriages, atv’s, and bicycles. All of these things make for an incredible visit. We then move on to Saint John’s, New Brunswick, now these were where a lot of the Loyalists went after the Revolutionary War in Eastern Canada.
Larry: Well one of the things that I like is the ‘City Market’ now have you been to Pike Place in Seattle?
Fisher: Oh yes, many times!
Larry: Well it reminds me a lot of Pike Place, or the Ferry Building in San Francisco, where I just was with a group. You know the market and the shops and all of these things. So you’ve got this the City Market in Saint John’s, New Brunswick, but one of the most exciting places is Reversing Falls.
Fisher: What’s that?
Larry: Well, you’ve got waterfalls, rapids and whirlpools that change the direction that they flow depending upon the tide.
Fisher: Oh wow! [Laugh]
Larry: So when the tide is out it flows one direction, when the tide is in it flows in another direction. Of course National Parks Ivvavik and Fundy National Parks, and then again think of food, think of lobster and clams and salmon and fresh seafood, and finally back to Halifax, Nova Scotia, you think you’re in a bit of England there.
I like the ‘Waterfront Boardwalk’ the ‘Maritime Museum,’ again parks and outdoors and the walking along the shoreline, and then of course food.
Fisher: I’m not surprised that’s at the top of your list.
Larry: Thank you very much, as I’m wiping the clam chowder from my lips right now.
Larry: The Extreme Genes, Canada and New England Cruise, the cruise itself September 13th to the 18th, it’s a 6 day cruise. Catch this great start at just $699 that includes the Extreme Genes Seminar fee. Now, we can guarantee availability Scott, if cabins are booked no later than Wednesday April the 6th.
Larry: Can you book after April the 6th? Yes. But our group space will be returned to the cruise line on April 6th and we then sell out of general inventory. So for the preferred cabins, the best locations, book your cabin now with a refundable deposit.
Larry: No later than Wednesday April the 6th and join us on the Extreme Genes, Canada and New England Cruise.
Fisher: Well it’s going to be so much fun! Get on the phone because really the deadlines are right here now for guaranteed space.
Larry: Guaranteed space is April the 6th and that’s a refundable deposit so there’s nothing to lose. Hold your cabin now for the Extreme Genes Cruise!
Fisher: All right, it’s going to be a lot of fun. Thanks Larry for coming on!
Larry: It’s my pleasure.
Fisher: And, Tom Perry is coming up next, our Preservation Authority, he’ll be answering more of your questions from AskTom@TMCPlace.com when we return in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 4 Episode 133 (37:10)
Host Scott Fisher with guest Tom Perry
Fisher: It is time to talk preservation with Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com, our Preservation Authority.
It is Fisher here, your Radio Roots Sleuth on America’s Family History Show, Extreme Genes and, welcome back, Tom, first of all.
Tom: Good to be back.
Fisher: Got a great email here from Melinda Lucas. She’s actually from my mother’s home town area, back in Oregon and she’s writing about all kinds of undeveloped films she’s found. And this is an unbelievable list of stuff, thirty-one of 110 millimeter film C41, seventeen of 110 millimeter film CN60, I mean, the list goes on and on, nineteen instant cameras that all seem to be thirty-five millimeter film, and she points out, “Hey, wait a minute! Kodak doesn’t exist for this kind of development anymore. What can be done?” What do you say to Melinda, Tom?
Tom: [Laughs] Uh, well, you should have developed your film when you shot it.
Tom: But you know people do that, they get all excited, they go and shoot all kinds of things, family events and whatever and then they just take the film out and put it in a drawer, and now they’ve got it, but they never do anything with it. We even had people that had eight millimeter super-8 film that they’ve fortunately developed, but then they’ve never ever watched for thirty years.
Tom: And then they bring it in and “I don’t even know what’s on here. All I know is that I found this in Grandma’s drawer or whatever.” And so, the sad thing is as she mentioned, Kodak is no more, as far as chemistry goes, so you’re out luck that way. However, there’re some different people I know that are chemists and they make their own chemicals.
Fisher: Oh, you’re kidding me.
Tom: No. I’ve got a couple of friends that actually make their own chemistry, because they still like to shoot on film. So, what you all need to do is, if you’re in the same situation like she mentioned that she went to Walgreens and they just kind of looked at her and pushed it back towards her off the counter.
Fisher: “Just step away from the desk please, lady!”
Tom: Exactly! Crossed her fingers and said, “No, we can’t do anything like that.” So, what you want to do email me at AskTom@TMCPlace.com
And give me the quantity you have, what type of film it is, like she had some 110s, she’s had some thirty-five millimeter and most importantly, look on the case and it will say something like what you just mentioned, C41 processing, C16 processing, and all these different kinds of processing, because then I’ll know if one of my friends has the chemistry where they can do a lot of these kinds and so the ones that they can do, I’ll have you go ahead and ship it to us, and remember what we teach you on all of our episodes, ‘you want to always double-box everything.’ You want to put it in a box. Seal it just like it’s ready to go with a label on it, but no stamps or postage and put that one inside another box with at least two inches worth of styrofoam all the way around it, to keep the heat in summer, the cold in winter from possibly damaging your film.
In fact, we had somebody just call us one day to send us some SD cards. Those you don’t have to double-box. If you put them in a padded envelope, then put the padded envelope in a box, it will do the same thing, so that’s good too and so organize your film, let us know how many exposures it is, any information you can see. It’s better to have too much information, so you send us something we don’t need, then go, “Oh, we need to call you and say, ‘Okay, particularly what was this? Was this a 24? Was it a 36?” In fact, we’ve even had people run in that they had some old film – like I used to do, I used to load my own film – but unfortunately, it doesn’t say on the case what it is, because I knew mine was always, you know, tri-x or plus x or whatever I was loading. So, you might even have some kinds like that, and so, we have to kind of experiment on your film to find out what it is and hopefully we can get it right for you, but that’s about the only thing you can do.
Fisher: Does this give you any hint as to when this might have been shot? Just by the names of these things?
Tom: Well, C41 fortunately which is what most of her film is, is a pretty standard type of film, so, I feel very confident we’re going to be able to do most of it. She has a couple of them that are little bit different, like the CN16 which is a little bit different.
So, what we’re going to have to do is find out what works. If you see yourself in the same situation as Melinda and you have some old film that hasn’t been developed, go ahead and send me what kind of film you have, what the processing is, and any information on the plastic cartridge or the little aluminum can to AskTom@TMCPlace.com
The eight and Super-8 come in at the same situation, so right after the break, I’ll tell you how we can preserve that as well.
Fisher: All right, coming up in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 5 Episode133 (44:20)
Host Scott Fisher with guest Tom Perry
Fisher: We are back for our final segment of Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show with Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com, the Preservation Authority.
Fisher here, and we were just talking about Melinda in Oregon, dealing with all these undeveloped rolls of film from back in the day and now what do you do to try and get them fixed? And now Tom, we’re looking at movies is that right, old movie film?
Tom: Oh, right, we get a lot of that. In fact, let me tell you what to watch for. In the later years probably more in the late 60’s and the 70’s usually the Super 8 film came in these plastic cartridges, they were kind of squarish but they had rounded corners on them.
If you have any of those, you can usually flip them over and there’s a little window in them and on the window if you can see film, if it’s been exposed all the way to the end there’ll be little white letters that says “Exposed” so you know “Okay that one’s been exposed.” If you see nothing in the window it’s probably been exposed and gone all the way off the edge of the cassette which is still fine. If it has film and it doesn’t say exposed. It’s either never been shot, or it’s been partially shot, so it’s kind of up to you whether you want to take the gamble and have us try to develop it for you and see if there’s something on it so that’s kind of your choice.
Now a lot of people that had it before that, they had the regular 8, they were little tiny round cans almost like a miniature tobacco can like they had back in the day. They’re approximately 1-inch across and usually silver, sometimes black. If there’s black tape around the can and there’s a little paper hanging out, it would usually say “Unexposed” which means it’s never ever been shot. If all you’ve seen is black tape around it or no tape around it at all, it’s probably been exposed.
If you measure the height of the tin, they say “Oh no this isn’t 8 millimeter.” Because this is 16 millimeters you know, or about three quarters of an inch. Well we did it in the old days when I was young. You’d put the film in the camera and it’s in these little round reels and so you put that in your camera and you load it and it’s actually the film that you’re seeing, there’s no lead or anything and then you shoot it. Once you’re done shooting it you take that cassette off, put it back on the other end of the reel and run it again. That’s why it’s 16 millimeters wide because you run it twice.
Tom: Now one of the problems is that some people run it three times.
Fisher: Uh oh.
Tom: And then you get double exposure which is sad.
Fisher: Of course.
Tom: Because some of my dad’s films, some of my favorite pictures are double exposed and there’s not a heck of a lot you can do about it.
But those that come in the raw, it’s just raw film. So if you see a can like this and it doesn’t have any tape on it but you can shake it and rattle something, I would suggest you don’t open it because if you do, you could expose your film and make all the edges foggy. If you say “Well I don’t know if there’s film in there or something else in there. Go into a totally dark room, you know no windows no nothing, something in your basement. Just take it and feel it and if it feels like film then you know it’s film, it’s not some knickknacks in there, then close it up, tape it and then send that to us.
Now one thing with those kinds of films, we have to kind of experiment because we don’t know for sure what they are but usually if they’re old they will be called a ‘Double Wide’ the only way we can develop them is in black and white because we can’t manufacture the chemistry anymore to do true color like Kodak, we can do it in black and white or nothing.
Fisher: This is like the idea that we can put a man on the moon in 1969 but we couldn’t today.
Fisher: Right? This is strange.
Tom: Exactly. I know a lot of wedding videographers and even some TV commercial people and film people that still like to use the old fashioned film and there are some places… like there is this place in Denver, that actually sells the film.
Fisher: So, bottom line is, you can digitize this potentially.
Tom: Oh absolutely! If you’re going to go through the hassle of developing all this you might as well get prints at the same time. With all these things we’ve talked about, we have some friends that can make their own chemistry that can develop a lot of these different things, so if you have stills like Melinda had, we can develop it then we can make prints for you or we can scan the negatives and send them back to you on a photo disk or email them to you however you want them.
If you have the 8, the Super 8, the 16 that hasn’t been developed, I have some friends that can do the developing.
Fisher: It’s kinda like ‘I got a buddy!’ ya know?!
Fisher: [Laughs] Thanks so much Tom!
Tom: Glad to be here!
Fisher: Address your questions to AskTom@TMCPlace.com
Hey, that wraps up our show for this week! Thanks once again to Kate Eakman from LegacyTree.com, for sharing with us a little tip about the SS5. Sounds like something from World War II right?
But no, it’s an incredible document that can help you in your research. If you missed it, catch the podcast. Also, thanks to Larry Gelwix, the Getaway Guru that’s helping us book our Family History Cruise out of Boston this fall.
Take care; we’ll talk to you again next week and remember as far as everyone knows, we’re a nice normal family.
Fisher opens the show with David Allen Lambert, Chief Genealogist for the New England Historic Genealogical Society and AmericanAncestors.org. Fisher announces the new searchability of Extreme Genes shows and podcasts through transcript. David then talks about a story that is being investigated that says something is missing from the crypt of William Shakespeare. What is it and why is it missing? David will explain. Next in “Family Histoire News” David will tell you how a family heirloom has survived the destruction of a home by tornado. The item is a treasure and its journey through the air and back to the family it belonged to is nothing short of miraculous! There’s a new place for your remains, should you go the route of cremation… a recording disk! Who is making this possible and for how much? David Lambert has all you need to know about getting into the recording business. Post mortem. David then shares his Tech Tip, and another NEHGS guest user free database.
Fisher next interviews Nathan Dylan Goodwin, an author living in England. Goodwin’s unique niche is the “genealogical crime thriller.” Fisher says he couldn’t put down the one he has read, Nathan’s latest, called “The America Ground.” Nathan has authored several books and explains the challenges of finding unique stories from the past and somehow making them relevant in the present. Want to take a crack at writing a genealogical crime novel? Nathan Dylan Goodwin will have some great advice for you.
(Starts at 25:16) We are firmly in the present for the next segment when Fisher visits with a Muskegon, Michigan woman, Jessica Fairbanks, who took notes when her estranged father gave her a death bed confession. He had had a son while living in Germany that none of his American family knew about. Jessica went to work to find her unknown sibling. Catch the full story on Extreme Genes!
Then, Tom Perry answers listener emails on preservation. If you have any eight track tapes from decades ago, you’ll want to hear this.
That’s all this week on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show!
Transcript of Episode 132
Segment 1 Episode 132 (00:30)
Fisher: Hello America! And welcome to America’s Family History Show, Extreme Genes and ExtremeGenes.com.
I am Fisher, your Radio Roots Sleuth on the program where we shake your family tree and watch the nuts fall out. Very excited to tell you that we’re actually transcribing all of our shows now, so that when you hear something and you want to find out more about it, our shows are entirely searchable, and of course, you can find out more about that at ExtremeGenes.com.
Guests today coming up in about eight minutes; this guy from England, he gets in touch with me and tells me he’s got a genealogical crime thriller that he has written, would I like to read it? Well, okay. So, he sent it and it was incredible! And so, we’re going to talk to Nathan Dylan Goodwin today about how he took some history from his area and took Genealogy and tied this whole thing together into an incredible genealogical crime novel.
We’ll be talking to Nathan from England, and then, later in the show, we’re going to be talking to Jessica Fairbanks. She’s from Muskegon, Michigan, and not long ago, she took a death bed confession from her dying father, and took that to find an overseas sibling she didn’t know she had. Right now, let’s check in with Boston and our good friend, David Allen Lambert, the Chief Genealogist for the New England Historic Genealogical Society and AmericanAncestors.org. David, how are you?
David: Well, the snow has disappeared and it’s starting to look a little bit like spring each day, and we have some exciting news here at NEHGS.
Fisher: Which is?
David: Well, one of our listeners from Extreme Genes who lives out in Utah, Yvette Beaudoin is now working as a researcher remotely for our research service. Now, what’s kind of neat about this, besides her being a listener of Extreme Genes, is that, this is the first time in nearly a century at NEHGS – we’ve been around since 1845 – has had an offsite researcher. We had the late Henry Fitz Gilbert Waters in England, transcribing probates. Yvette will be at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, being our researcher on the ground there, helping us out with our research service. We’re very excited about it.
Fisher: Well, it’s about time, David. That’s great news!
David: Yeah, we’re very excited! So, a shout out to Yvette there in Utah! This next news story, I don’t want you to lose your head about it, but it’s got a lot of historian’s shaking their heads. This year marks the 400th anniversary of the great bard, William Shakespeare’s death. Do you know that in Stratford-upon-Avon, at the Holy Trinity Church, they’re now doing ground penetrating radar exams of his tomb? Want to know why?
David: It’s head’s missing.
Fisher: Oh no. Now wait a minute. How do they know that?
David: Well, back in 1879, an article in the magazine mentioned that his skull was taken by trophy hunter, Dr. Frank Chambers, who lifted the stone, dug up the grave and stole Shakespeare’s skull. There may be something to it, because from the surveys they’re doing, it looks like there’s been some disturbance on the stone over his grave. Now, it’s interesting that one would want to do that. Have you ever heard of the warning that Shakespeare’s tomb has carved upon it?
David: And I quote, “Good friend for Jesus sake forebear. To dig the dust enclosed here. Blessed be ye man thy spares these stones, and cursed be he thy moves my bones.” I would not want to be the person that has that as an artefact in their China cabinet.
Fisher: Right, right. So, they knew who the guy was and they never pursued this as a case at that time?
David: That’s a real cold case. Maybe you know, you’re so good at this thing, maybe you can track down the skull. That would be a perk for the show.
Fisher: Stop it, stop it.
David: Okay. Well, this news just kind of blew in from across the Mississippi River. A girl by the name of Jill Stewicki who got married in 1987, she wore the dress of her mother from 1958. Now a lot of people recycle wedding dresses but she’s very lucky. Did you hear what happened?
Fisher: This is insane. Go ahead, tell us.
David: There was a twister that hit her house out in Ohio and the dress was found across the Mississippi River intact, in the pristine and plastic box. Somebody posted it online and now it’s back with the rightful owner.
Fisher: Isn’t that great though? I mean, if you’re going to get something back from your house being totally destroyed, why not a family heirloom?
David: Exactly. Well, you know, I see a lot of things where people have heirlooms. Sometimes it’s that urn with grandma in it, well, here’s a chance to put a new spin on your family’s ashes. A company in England called, andvinyly, and andvinyly.com offers for £3000 the effort of making up to thirty records for you, pressed from your own ashes.
Fisher: Oh, stop it! Wait a minute, record? You mean like a vinyl record? Like a thirty-three or a forty-five or something?
David: Well, they didn’t say anything about forty-fives, but LPs, twenty-four minutes of news from you. You can do your last will and testament, you can make shout outs to all your loved ones or you can make your final wishes known, and they can press these records. They can be handed out at the funeral, but guess what? They’ll even go one step further. They have something called FUN-erals where they will actually organize your funeral. They’ll send off the records, they’ll play your record there, they’ll speak to your guests, crack jokes and even generally make people dance, and that only costs £10,000. So, if you’re going to go off, this is a new spin to your death. One of the options is that you can hear the cracking and hissing sound of a record that would be considered the sound of the cremation. A little mid tone, but…
All right, the next is my Tech Tip. And this goes out to the burials overseas for American World War I, World War II, Korea and Vietnam vets. What you may not know, is there is a free database from the American Battlefield Monuments Commission. Their website is simply, www.ABMC.gov, but what you may not know, you can search this database for free, find out the name, the date of death, the serial number, where the person’s buried. If you are a immediate family member, you can request a free photograph, and they’ll make it up as a lithograph for you and mail it for free, eight to ten weeks after your request online. So, I think a real nice fitting thing to get a remembrance.
Fisher: That’s awesome.
David: Speaking of databases, NEHGS and AmericanAncestors.org every week, offers a free guest user database, this week is no exception, where we introduce Barbados, baptism, marriages and burials from the 18th century through 19th century, and this is in conjunction with our partnership, with FamilySearch.org, and it has over 210,000 baptisms, 90,000 burials and 31,000 marriage records that occurred in Barbados. Well, that’s all I have for this week from NEHGS. I’ll be reporting soon from, “Who Do You Think” Live in Birmingham, England in a couple of weeks, and look forward to giving you all the news from across the sea.
Fisher: Thank you, David. And coming up next, we’re going to be talking to Nathan Dylan Goodwin. He’s the author of the ‘genealogical crime thriller’, “The America Ground”, in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 2 Episode 132 (25:20)
Fisher: And, Welcome back to America’s Family History Show, Extreme Genes and ExtremeGenes.com
It is Fisher here, The Radio Roots Sleuth, and it wasn’t that long ago that I got an email from a listener in England that said “Hey, I want you to read my book!” you know, once in a while people on radio get these and it’s like “Okay…” So he sent the book and it’s a “genealogical crime thriller” and it was just killer!
It’s just a terrific book! And so, I’m excited to turn around and say we’ve got a really good book to talk about here with its author from England, Nathan Dylan Goodwin.
Nathan, welcome to Extreme Genes, nice to have you on!
Nathan: Hello, yes thank you, thank you for having me!
Fisher: First of all, as something of a writer myself, and I consider myself more of a historic writer than somebody who could do a piece of fiction like this or an historical novel as this is. One of the things that I look at is, “What’s the formula for this? How do you go back and make something that happened a150 years ago or longer, matter now?”
And you figured out how to accomplish that, let’s talk about how somebody might write an historical novel, and let’s talk about The America Ground.
Nathan: Okay. The America Ground, is my fourth book in a series which features Morton Farrier, he’s a modern day genealogist, and he basically has to look back and in each book he has to solve a crime, usually a murder that’s happened in the past, and as you said in the America Ground, this crime happened 180 years ago.
It’s kind of a detective formula I guess, oh and Morton trying to work it out as he goes along, to try and figure out the ending. But he uses genealogical resources that any genealogist would also use, and so basically the formula is a bit of a tricky one really. It’s got the detective element to it, each book cuts back from the modern day setting with Morton looking in archives and repositories and going to church yards, and using Ancestry and so forth online and it cuts back to the past so in America Ground, that’s 1820s in Hastings, in southeast England.
So, he’s got to try and solve this crime but there’s also in each book there’s a sinister element if you like, in the modern day section whereby somebody wants to try to stop him from doing his research, and that’s the part of it that’s quite tricky because as genealogists we always come up with stories in our tree. Thinking “Oh it would be really good fictional story!” and that’s great but then I have to look for something which makes it still relevant today, that someone would say “Hang on a minute, I don’t want you to research this case from a 180 years ago, whatever it is.” So that’s the tricky part I guess.
Fisher: Yeah that is the tricky part and that’s what I was trying to figure out, and that’s really frankly your genius in this.
Nathan: Thank you.
Fisher: And, I love the fact that you go back and forth from the modern era, and Morton’s working on the case to what was actually going on back then, it’s almost like a parallel universe kind of thing happening.
Fisher: And it’s very fun for him to visit the places that you’ve just been talking about in the previous section and where those spots used to stand, and obviously you’ve done a lot of research because The America Ground is an actual place.
Nathan: Yes that’s right. I come from Hastings. I was born in Hastings, and lived there for the first 19 years of my life and yet I’ve never heard of this area of land which is in Hastings, called The America Ground. And basically what happened was, it was kind of like four acres of land that was yielded up from loads of storms that happened in the 1300s and there was this huge area of land that gradually settled and in 1800s rope makers started to use it to stretch their ropes out.
Then some labourers started to live there and gradually, gradually and gradually about two hundred homes sprung up on this land, about a thousand people were there, and the town of Hastings had no jurisdiction over it, they felt they couldn’t tax the people for living there, they couldn’t impose laws. So there was kind of this lawlessness going on there, and so basically they then tried to impose law and these people who lived on this ground revolted and said “Nope, we’re not going to have your taxes and your laws,” and they declared themselves an Independent State of America.
Nathan: Which you know was really a surprise and so they called this ground “The America Ground” and they called themselves the Americans, and I don’t know where they got it from but they raised the stars and stripes and they held out until an official enquiry was held and the crown felt that the land belonged to them and they eventually turfed off.
Fisher: I would think when the crown decides that they want that land, that’s probably the settling point right?
Nathan: Yes it was, yes. But now you would ride through Hastings and it’s just another area of the town where there are streets and houses and shops and it’s a big part of the main town. So in my book, in all my books I try to use some element of real history in there. So the story of the America Ground, my fictional story I used that real historical background and it’s set in a pub that was on the America Ground land back in the 1820’s which really was there.
But my characters and storyline itself is fictional. But coming back to your point about me needing to do the research, I really do. I make sure that I do exactly what Morton does. So if he goes to church yard then I go to a church yard. If he looks for a record online, then that record has to exist. I don’t just make up the records it’s all real genealogical detail.
Fisher: Unbelievable! So let me ask you this, what is your background first? Are you an historian first or a genealogist or a writer?
Nathan: [Laughs] that’s a tricky one to answer. At university I did radio, film and television studies and then went on to become a Primary School Teacher, and while I was doing that I did a Masters in Creative Writing. But my genealogy I think would be the starting point. I’ve been doing it for a long time now, coming up for 20 years. So I guess that would be my starting point and I just always… when I was doing my own family tree research, I would come across stories and things and I just used to think “This would be an amazing fictional story.” It’s real but it’s unbelievable and it would make a good story. So I guess I’ve pulled all those things together, you know I did before the fictional book I did some factual books on Hastings.
So I guess all those elements have come together, you know my background writing factual books, my genealogy background, and also my Masters in creative writing have all kind of pulled together into this series.
Fisher: I’ve got to think there are a lot of people who like you have come across amazing stories and like myself, and say “wow this would be a great fiction novel.”
Fisher: And I’ve actually been involved with genealogy in a crime situation myself. So I know that is done like you say… the trick is linking it to the present day or to another situation, another timeline.
At what point did you figure it out and say “Wait a minute, here’s how it can be done.” What clicked in your mind that said “This is the key?”
Nathan: That is a bit of a tricky one to answer. I don’t really know the answer to that. I’ve come up with a lot of stories that have been based in fact and I’ve thought “This could make a good story.” But then I’ve thought “That would just become a kind of standard mystery story.” You know going through the process of solving a mystery or a crime that happened a long time ago, and I think it was reading other genealogical crime mysteries and I thought “That’s the thing that’s missing in my mind.”
It’s having that element of the modern day aspects to it if you like where there’s a threat to the modern day part, there’s a reason that someone wants Morton to not do it because it just adds that extra layer of mystery to it I guess.
Fisher: Well you have a lot of twists and turns in there, there’s no doubt about it. What would be your number one tip to somebody who would be thinking of doing something along these same lines?
Nathan: I think it would be to really make sure you get the genealogical aspect of it correct, because my biggest readership are genealogists and I know full well that they like the fact that it’s real and I get a lot of people saying “Wow I didn’t realise that record was out there, or I didn’t think about looking at this problem in such a way.” So I think you need to get that right but also to make sure you have your fictional story in there too so it doesn’t become too genealogical.
Fisher: [Laughs] right. It’s got to be entertaining first, right?
Nathan: Yes. Exactly!
Fisher: This is not a how-to in genealogy and it’s not telling your family history. This is a genealogical crime novel. It’s brilliantly put together, and where can people get a copy of this?
Nathan: So, it’s available from most bookstores like Barnes& Noble and it’s available online in paperback and indoor on Amazon, so yeah just your normal outlets.
Fisher: And it’s called “The America Ground,” a Genealogical Crime Mystery. And what are the other ones?
Nathan: So the first book in the series is called “Hiding the Past” then the second book is called “The Lost Ancestor” and then between The Lost Ancestor and The America Ground there’s a short novella story called “The Orange Lilies” and in that one Morton is researching his own family tree, at last.
Fisher: [Laughs] Yeah that’s right, there’s an actual genealogy interest going on in this thing too. I mean you’ve included everything. I think the thing I was most impressed about was the detail relating to his travels, the places he visited, the history of the area, and how you made that all live. That was the most impressive thing to me. It’s like “Does that man have a life?” how does he have time to know all these things, and to research it?!
Fisher: You must spend a lot of time just in libraries anyway.
Nathan: I do yes [laughs] in fact tomorrow I’m going to the Sussex Record Office just outside Brighton, to do some more research for the next book in the series. I’m about half way through. So I do make sure I do the work first before he does, and lots of things come up from that, rather than mix it from my computer, kind of making it all up. It’s so much more fun and realistic and so many more things you come across just by going to that record office, or that library, or that church, so yeah, it’s a very important part of the process.
Fisher: And do you have another one coming out soon?
Nathan: Yes, I’m working on the next one now; it’s about half way through so that should be out in some point this year. That’s been quite a tricky one to write. It’s taken an awful lot more research than the rest. I won’t give too much away, but Morton develops more of his own family tree answers as well. He finds some answers there, so that’s good.
Fisher: Alright, great stuff. He is Nathan Dylan Goodwin, the author of “The America Ground,” a genealogical crime mystery. It’s great stuff, I’ve read it, and you’re going to enjoy it. He is from near Canterbury England.
Nathan thanks for your time, and thanks for the book, too, by the way, enjoyed it very much.
Nathan: You’re welcome, thank you very much. Glad you enjoyed it.
Fisher: And coming up next; we’ll talk to a Michigan woman who got a death bed confession from her estranged father, about a sibling she didn’t know she had overseas, and she found him! You’ll hear the whole story coming up for you next in about five minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com
Segment 3 Episode 132 (44:45)
Fisher: I love death bed confessions. That’s a whole other source.
Hi, it’s Fisher, and you are back with Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com and I am talking to a woman right now who actually has had that experience… a death bed confession that has led to the discovery of a whole other branch of the family. Jessica Fairbanks is on from Muskegon, Michigan.
Hi Jessica, welcome to the show!
Jessica: Hi, thank you!
Fisher: I am absolutely astonished by your ingenuity and your determination to find out what the death bed confession led to. Let’s start with that whole story. This came from your dad, and from what I’ve read, you didn’t have much of a relationship with him.
Jessica: I didn’t. Our dad, he was in my life until I was about thirteen years old, and it was rough, he didn’t lead a very good life. He was into drugs, he was abusive, and it wasn’t a very good situation. When I was around thirteen, my mom finally got full custody of us, then me and my brother Brian we had never seen him again after that for about seventeen, almost eighteen years.
Fisher: Wow, how sad. Then something changed, you got a little bit of news?
Jessica: Yeah, we got a phone call from our uncle, who is the brother of our biological dad, telling us that our father was in the hospital. He had congestive heart failure and he was dying, and just kind of giving us the option to go and see him and talk to him one last time.
Fisher: And you were willing to do that?
Jessica: Yeah. A few years ago if you had asked me if the situation ever came up would I have gone to see him, I probably would have said no, probably not, but for some reason when it was actually presented to us, my brother and I both decided yeah we’re going to go, we’re going to go see him one more time.
Fisher: And how did that go? Was there some tenderness there from his part, a little kind of an apology?
Jessica: A little bit, more so to my older brother. When we first walked in it was hard to recognize him. He looked very, very different. He had still been in the same lifestyle, so he was not looking very good, plus being sick and dying. So it was kind of surprising for us. There were a little bit of tears, he was surprised and I think probably glad to see us. We kind of made a lot of small talk, tried to say “Hey here’s where I’m at now. You know I have this family,” not a lot of deep, deep talk there, but at that time he did talk with my brother a little bit and told him that he was sorry for things in the past.
Fisher: So he went on from there and told you one big secret that you had no idea about.
Jessica: Yeah. This was actually the second visit or the third visit that I had. I had to go back to the hospital because I had to fill out some legal paperwork and things for his care because we were next of kin, so I went back another time by myself and sat and talked with him again. I said to him, “So what have you been doing all these years? Is there anything you want to tell me? Is there anything I should know about before you die?” And immediately, the first thing that he brought up was “Well, you need to know about your brother in Germany, you have a half brother.”
Fisher: [Laugh] What was your initial reaction to that?
Jessica: I think I was kind of shocked for a minute, and then I quickly grabbed whatever random thing I could find in my purse, it was an envelope to a card I had gotten and I grabbed a pen and I said “Well, do you remember anything about him? A name, anything?”
Fisher: [Laughs] Try to remain calm, right?!
Jessica: Trying to get all the information, I wondered how much was accurate because of his current condition, but I wrote down everything he said.
Fisher: Wow, so then you went to work on it?
Jessica: He actually was still alive in a hospice facility when I decided to actively search for my brother. I had decided to use social media, just figured things travel so quickly on the internet. First I initially just tried to Google my brother’s name by myself and see what popped up, but that was all just dead ends. Then I decided to go buy a big poster board and write down all the information I had gotten from our father, which was basically his name, place of birth, where they were in Germany at the time, our father’s name, and then what my dad believed to have been his birthday, actually ends up being a couple of days off but the month and the year were correct.
Jessica: I wrote it all out on a poster board, than I made a special email address because I didn’t want to put my personal one on there.
Fisher: Sure, right.
Jessica: I didn’t know what kind of response I would get, and I had my husband snap a picture of me holding this poster and then I just posted it on my personal Facebook page and asked everybody to share it.
Fisher: Well I’ve seen the picture, and it’s a charming picture. It’s very welcoming and I think it’s a disarming picture, because you just look very happy and hoping to have this reunion. So talk about how quickly this thing moved, Jessica.
Jessica: Well, immediately all my personal Facebook friends I noticed, they started sharing it, probably about a hundred of them. But also I would notice in their shares, they were tagging maybe somebody that they knew that either knew people in Europe or in Germany or they were tagging people that they actually did know in Germany and saying “Hey spread this around over there” you know “This is my friend Jessica” or “This is my cousin,” whatever, and so I did not know how many times it was shared, for some reason I couldn’t see that information, I could only see my friends who shared it, but I came to find out later that it was shared about 3000 times.
Jessica: And this is only in a day and a half period of time.
Fisher: That is unbelievable, and in a day and a half what took place?
Jessica: Well the very next morning… I posted it on a Saturday afternoon, Sunday morning I had a message from a German newspaper in that part of Germany that he was born in, and it just said that, you know, “We saw your post on Facebook and we’re very interested in helping you find your brother, and we’ll talk about this at our meeting on Monday and we’ll get back to you.” So the rest of Sunday I didn’t hear much of anything else, kind of a few more people shared it, then Monday morning when I woke up, I had another message from that newspaper saying “Congratulations you found him! You’ve already been in contact we heard! We just talked to him.” So initially I’m looking at it like “Oh, okay.” You know, someone is messing with them. Somebody is tricking them. I haven’t found him yet. And then, because it was so early in the morning, I’m half asleep thinking “Hello, check your email address!” Well, I log into that and I’m shaking and I get in there and I have a message from Steven Beckman. So I opened that up and I read it. He just had a couple of questions about maybe if the birthday could possibly be this date instead of the one I had posted, and what part of Germany our father lived in. I wrote him back everything that I knew and that I was told, and very quickly we both found out and realized that this was legitimately him and I was looking for him and we had found each other!
Fisher: In a day and a half. What a world, huh?!
Jessica: It was less than 48 hours from the time of the original post till the time I was in contact with Steven.
Fisher: So Jessica, how has this changed your life and how has it changed Steven’s life?
Jessica: Well the first day we talked, Steven talked with me for a while and I talked to his son… I have a nephew… and on that day he said “I’m usually not very emotional, but I just need a little bit of time, you know, I need to go to bed or something.” I think he was so overwhelmed, because here I had had a couple of weeks from the time my father had told me this information till the time I had made the original Facebook post, it had been almost two weeks probably.
Fisher: You had processed it by that time.
Jessica: Exactly. I had a little bit of time to think it through and prepare myself for what I may or may not find, and here we just kind of burst into Steven’s life. All of a sudden he has siblings and this whole connection to a father he had never known or met. Now since then we talk all the time. Mostly we communicate on Facebook messenger. He knows some English, I know no German at all, so if we are typing something to each other, we can kind of put that into a Google translate or something like that so we can translate the difference in the language. But we talk all the time. We’re getting to know each other. We talk about our families; we send pictures to each other. It’s just really neat getting to know each other now.
Fisher: Well Jessica I wish we had more time [laughs] we just don’t, but what an incredible story. Congratulations on your successful efforts, and it’s got to be a wonderful blessing for you and your family.
Jessica: Thank you very much, it really is. I’m looking forward to meeting him soon.
Fisher: Amazing work, from death bed confession to success.
Coming up next; we’re going to talk to Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com our Preservation Authority, and answering your emails, in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 4 Episode 132
Host Scott fisher with guest Tom Perry
Fisher: It is preservation time at Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com. It is Fisher here, the Radio Roots Sleuth, with Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com. He’s the Preservation Authority, and Tom, we’ve got a lot of emails here, a lot of questions. So, are you ready to give some answers?
Fisher: All right. Let’s start with this one from Kathy Craig. Kathy writes, “Hey Tom. I’m helping flood victims recover their photos. One Kodak picture CD is messed up. Can you help me figure out how to recover the data? This is a part of a group of gift certificates that are being given to the flood victims here in Columbia, South Carolina, using my service to help them. Pro bono time, so any help you can give is greatly appreciated. Thank you! Kathy.” All right Tom, what do you say?
Tom: Hey Kathy. That is awesome that you’re going this extra mile to help these people. That’s just absolutely wonderful. Okay, unfortunately, based on the photos that you included with your email that showed the picture of the disk, it appears that your disks have what they call ‘pinholes’. Pinholes are what we actually talked a little bit about last week, which has allowed water to penetrate the disk itself and has actually separated the laminate from the dye, in effect, resetting the dye back to neutral vs. carrying the binary codes which we talked about, the zeros and the ones, which is required to operate.
So, basically, it just messed it up. It’s not like it’s turned it back to zeros. It doesn’t even know, is this zero or is it a one? And so, unless you have a major over scan computer, it’s going at look at that and freeze up, because it will have no idea what to do. So, the only way I have ever seen a disk recover from this type of damage is to attempt to duplicate the disk in a professional duplicator, not in your home computer. I mean, you can try it, but when you’re doing stuff in your home computer, I consider it a copy. It’s not a true duplicate, because you have software that’s interfering, you have all kinds of things that are going on, whereas if you go to a professional, like ourselves, and I’m sure they’re ones in your area, they use a duplicator. There’s no software involved, and what you want to do is, when you go in and talk to them or send it to us, say, “Hey, I want this duplicated at 1x speed”. And people will think, why would you want it at 1x speed? Because there’s less chance for error, like if you do it at 8x speed, that means it going through your disk 8x as it normally would… 16x.
Tom: And most things nowadays are 16x and even ahead, but you want to go to 1×1, which means, if it’s a two hour disk, it’s going to take two hours to duplicate, however, it’s going to write each zero and one very slowly and very carefully , and so, you have a better chance of recovering the disk this way. I’ve had people bringing disks to us and say, “Hey, I can’t play this anymore”, and we did this, we put it in 1×1 and duplicated it and it worked.
Other times it hasn’t, another thing I’ve heard people try, and I’ve never done myself is, if you have these little pinholes, sometimes if you get black finger nail polish and on the label side, cover up where that spot is, and then, when it reflects up, it will hit the black, and hopefully it will at least see it as a zero vs. a one, whereas before it doesn’t see anything at all. Another thing you can do is if you have a disk that’s got the larger marks in it, you can try getting something metallic which you would go to like a car dealership and buy these, they’re about the size of a fingernail polish that has like a metallic kind of paint in it, a silver metallic. Those are two things I’ve seen on the internet that worked to try to solve that problem.
So, that’s what I would do first, but be really, really careful with your disk, because if it starts to delaminate, if you look at the disk and you can see bubbles in it, be very, very careful, because just twisting the disk a little bit will make that expand, because water is really, really bad. We have in one of our stores a great, big, huge salt water tank, and I put some disks in there just to show people – that we had custom printed to show them what we could do – and they started to dissolve. It totally blew my mind. It actually, the disk delaminated itself and all the silver stuff went away. It was really strange.
Fisher: Are you sure the fish weren’t eating them?
Tom: [Laughs] Nope. There were no shark teeth marks in it at all, so I think the disks were okay
Tom: But it’s funny you say that, S.T. who is our shark, he likes to play with them, but you know, he’s not strong enough to delaminate, but the salt water actually damaged it. So, you want to be really, really careful. If they’ve been through a flood, get them dried out as fast as you can. Keep them flat. Put like some newspaper on the top and the bottom and take care of them that way. And then, after the break, we’ll get some more questions.
Fisher: All right, good stuff. Coming up in three minutes on Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show.
Segment 5 Episode 131
Host Scott Fisher with guest Tom Perry
Fisher: We are talking preservation at Extreme Genes, America’s Family History Show and ExtremeGenes.com
Fisher here with Tom Perry from TMCPlace.com, the Preservation Authority, and we’re answering emails that we’ve received at AskTom@TMCPlace.com
This one Tom, comes from Kevin Henry, Marilyn Heights, Missouri, and he says “Tom, do you still have the ability to transfer eight track tapes to compact disk?”
Tom: Oh absolutely! In fact, eight track tapes are one of the things you either love or hate, why they ever came out, who knows.
I think the problem is the etymology to eight track tapes is, you’ve been in the radio business for so long, and the old days when you had commercials they put them on what we call carts.
Fisher: Yup, cartridges
Tom: Yeah, they were eight track tapes. They just had little 30 or 60 second commercials on them. You’d push the button and it would play the commercial. Now everything is digitized on a hard-drive. That’s how they came up with eight track. They actually had turntables in cars.
Tom: Oh yeah, some of the nice Studebakers, they actually had turntables in cars, and obviously they didn’t work very well and so they thought “What can we do? What can we do?” I think they were actually in the process of developing cassettes but hadn’t got all the bugs worked out of it and they go “Hey, they’re using these carts in studios, why don’t we take this, put more tape on it and then we can get an hour’s worth of music on it.” And they thought “Oh, that’s a brilliant idea”
Now, we can see it wasn’t very brilliant at all. You have all kinds of problems with the eight track tapes, they’re basically what they call “endless tape.”
Tom: So the two ends are actually welded together
Fisher: As carts were.
Fisher: Radio carts.
Tom: Exactly the same way so they would just go endless. So when you pick track 1, 2, 3 or 4, all the way up to 8, they’re all right next to each other. Just like if you look at an audio cassette and it plays stereo both ways, that’s the essence of four track tape because it’s reading two track going one way and then two tracks coming the back way. Eight tracks were the same thing they had eight tracks so they’re all in parallel.
So if you had a problem with one track or a beep or somehow somebody sat on top of your great big monster speakers in the old days, it would make an erase mark on it and so you were going to have this problem on all eight tracks at that spot but the problem is the glue they used back in those days wasn’t very good.
Fisher: No. In fact a lot of the old broadcast cartridges would fall apart on us all the time or they’d break.
Tom: Oh absolutely. Just the labor to fix them is incredible, and so what happens is that glue comes off and then you need a replacement and fortunately some of the carts if you flip them over they have these little grab-pins on them so you can open them, go in and fix them but a lot of them don’t. A lot of people back in the days, back in the 60’s they actually recorded on eight tracks just like we did on cassettes. So they’ve got Grandma’s funeral on it or family history things on it, the tape disappeared into the cartridge.
Fisher: Oh wow.
Tom: So what happens is we have to open it and if it doesn’t have those tabs, if it’s the kind that’s sonically glued together
Tom: We have to actually surgically open the cartridge so we can get to the tape and then we can’t glue it back together, so we have to find a donor shell.
Fisher: Oh boy.
Tom: So we have to go find some old obscure music that nobody cares about and I’ve gone to stores for eight tracks for about $5 a piece but I don’t care what’s on them I just want the shell.
Tom: So I find the shell, that way I’m able to go and fix it for the customer so that they’ve got their eight track again. In fact, one of these days I want to actually videotape with my “Go Pro” how to fix one of these and put it up on the website.
Fisher: Oh we’ll have to do it! That would be really fun to try. [Laughs]
Tom: Oh it is. It’s time consuming that’s why it’s so expensive to fix but once you have them done they’re going to be better than they were before, and every time I have one come in to fix I ring all these teenagers and these kids that are even in their twenties and thirties and say “Hey, come look at this thing.” And they’re going “Huh! Why did they ever design or build that?” and I say “I have no clue.”
Fisher: So the bottom line is, yes you can put it on a CD.
Tom: Yes we can absolutely put it on a CD in fact we actually even make eight tracks for people that have collector cars.
Fisher: Good stuff. Thanks so much Tom!
Tom: Thank you!
Fisher: And if you have a question for Tom Perry, you can AskTom@TMCPlace.com
Well, what did we learn today?
We learned that Shakespeare’s head may be missing!
We found out about a woman who in less than two days found a half sibling she didn’t know existed except for the deathbed confession of her father!
We found out about genealogical crime novels, we didn’t even know people did that. I mean it’s been a great show.
If you’ve missed any of it, catch the podcast at ExtremeGenes.com, iTunes or iHeartRadio’s Talk Channel.
I’m Fisher, talk to you again next week. Thanks for joining us! And remember as far as everyone knows we’re a nice, normal, family!