Thursday, January 31, 2019

Advancing My Professional Genealogy Career

When I decided to start my career as a professional genealogist in 2017 I had a great grasp on how to do genealogy research but I had a lot to learn about being a professional. I read what was available online about becoming a professional genealogist and reviewed available reports. Joining professional genealogy groups and attending continuing education has been very helpful as well. Yet the biggest help overall have been two books; Professional Genealogy: Preparation, Practice & Standards and Evidence Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills.

I had bought Genealogy Standards before I decided to go professional, which gave a great baseline on how to conduct research, but didn't really go into anything about the in-and-outs of the actual profession. I first decided to get Professional Genealogy: Preparation, Practice & Standards (ProGen) after reading an article by Judy Russell, the Legal Genealogist,  about the release of the newest version. I had heard about the book but had gone a little over a year without it. The reports I prepared for clients went over well and the information was conveyed nicely but I just always felt like they could be better. I had built them based on the reports I could see through samples from BCG and my membership through APGen but there wasn't a lot of explanation as to why everything was done as it was.

Once I received the book I went through it and began to redo the reports I was currently working. To say it was helpful is a huge understatement. Not only did the book explain what choices were available for different situations but it also gave great examples. I have felt much more confident with the reports I have been writing and they look much more professional. Besides help with reports ProGen also goes into all sorts of information on having a career in genealogy; legal information, ethics, career management, and much more.

I bought Evidence Explained a little later after being contacted by a genealogy company interested in working with me. They suggested I look into the book as they preferred to use specific citations which are defined in the book. I got a sample of it on the kindle app and was instantly blown away at how detailed it was on how to build citations. I quickly got online and bought the book. The hardest part of doing citations in genealogy is the fact that there are so many types of documents from so many types of sources, so using guides online are difficult because there are lots of situations they don't take into account. Evidence Explained goes into a bunch different types of situations, gives multiple examples for most situations, and has a great index and chapter listing that allows for quick lookups when you have something you need to find. It has made creating citations much easier all around.

For anyone who is looking to become a professional genealogist or who is looking to advance your career, I highly suggest getting these books. 

Sunday, July 29, 2018

The Ninth Waxman

In researching my Waxman family from Tulchin, Ukraine I have been able to connect almost all of the family, including connecting with the living generations of my Great-Grandmother's siblings. Yet there is one missing piece that is still unknown...the ninth sibling.

Isaac Waxman and Sarah Remer arrived in Philadelphia with most of their children in 1904 and almost all of them were still living in the same house by 1910. Of the children of Isaac and Sarah I knew about eight of them; Zisel Artzis, Katie Shore, Samuel Waxman, Hyman Waxman, Charles Waxman, Pearl Ross, David Waxman, and Fannie Shubert. Yet the 1910 census clearly states that Isaac and Sarah had 11 children with 9 living, so there is a ninth sibling unaccounted for in my research. I have yet to find the immigration documents for Isaac or Sarah, which would hopefully give more information, although the Census records seem to indicate neither naturalized.

There are a few possibilities as to where this unknown sibling was living. They may have stayed back in Tulchin, they may have immigrated later, or they may have even been the first to immigrate. The oldest known sibling, Zisel, immigrated with her husband and children a few years after the rest of the family, so we already know the family hadn't all travelled together.

One clue is the death record for Isaac Waxman, which lists the informant on the record as an M. Waxman. Looking at the tree around the time Isaac died there are no adults in the family who would have been an M. Waxman (including the wives of Isaac's sons), so it is my belief that this M. Waxman may be the 9th sibling. I have since looked at many searches for Waxmans living in Philadelphia with a first name starting with M, both male and female, but have yet to turn up anything fruitful. Over time this mystery may become resolved, especially if we can find more records of the family from Ukraine. 

Monday, July 3, 2017

GeneaVlogger: A New Web Series

For those who have followed this blog closely you may have noticed that things have been quiet for a long time now. While my last post was in September of last year, I have continued my genealogical quest although focusing on some branches other than my Sephardic heritage. Specifically I have been focusing on an Ashkenazi branch of my family which came from Russia to southern New Jersey to be one of the original families at The Alliance Colony in 1882. This research led to me using my videography skills (little known fact about me, I have a minor in Film along with my BA in communications) and brought forth the idea of going from blogging to vlogging.

After a little work creating a basic setup for the idea I am now happy to introduce my new youtube channel - GeneaVlogger. I will be releasing a new Vlog and a new quick tip each week. As much as I enjoy blogging, a video format gives me room to explore a lot more and be more artistic with what I create. I will definitely post more articles here, so don't expect this to be the death of the blog,  but now you have a whole other format to enjoy my research!