Sunday, June 27, 2010

Taking Your Research To The Next Level

If a picture's worth a thousand words, a video must be priceless. Every time I go on a research trip, one singular thought comes to mind : How I wish I had a cameraman with me. Well, that'll never happen because I can't afford one. Over several months, my subconscious busily worked on a solution.

One day, while in the camera section of Office Depot, I noticed that their cameras were mounted to an upright device. I went home and saw that my digital camera had this same thread feature that allowed for attachment to another device. I googled "camera mount, car" but nothing seemed to jump out at me.

In late November 2009, I came upon a device that seem to fit the bill. Unfortunately, I already had planned a research trip to Mississippi and the device wouldn't arrive in time. In January 2010, I had a second chance when I booked a quick trip to South Carolina. Not bad, huh?

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Saturday, June 26, 2010

When There's No TV

Wednesday's brownout carried over another day. I'm okay without TV but not being able to use my laptop is a different story. I didn't need the Internet, I just wanted to crank out a couple of stories in Word. Yeah, I could do them by hand but I'm spoiled. I admit it.

Instead, I located my Newsletters binder and decided to catch on some reading. I spent a long time reading/rereading several editions the Illinois State Genealogical Society Quarterly. Cover to cover reading of the Summer 2010 edition prompted me to:

• Reconsider the Social Networking phenomenon (e.g., Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, podcasts, etc.) as suggested by an article entitled Virtual Networking for the Genealogist: Part 1.

• Visit antiques stores, flea markets, and garage sales for old, identifiable photos and attempt to reunite them with their family members as suggested in an article Faces from the Past.

• Sourcing my articles with Microsoft Word via the Reference and Footnote tools as suggested in the column entitled Confessions of an Aging Genealogist.

Update: I uploaded my first Youtube video the other day.

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Saturday, June 19, 2010

Pritzker Military Library Presents: Jeff Shaara

Pritzker Military Library | Jeff Shaara

Two years ago, after discovering my Civil War ancestor, I enrolled in a two part course on the Civil War at the College of DuPage, wanting to know if it really was "The War of Northern Agression". Required reading included tens of articles, James McPherson's Battle Cry of Freedom (1988), Killer Angels (1974), which was later adapted to film as Gettysburg (2000), and Gods & Generals (1996), the story of the Battle of Chancellorsville.

The other day, on www.wycc.org, I stumbled on a rebroadcast of a Pritzer Military Library interview of Jeff Shaara. Shaara is the New York Times best-selling author of several military trilogies. His father, Michael Shaara, is/was the Pulitzer Prize winning author of Killer Angels , a fictional but very readable account of the three bloodiest days of the Civil War.

Almost 80 minutes long, Shaara gives the backstory that makes his father's and his writing careers so fascinating. Who knew that Jacques Cousteau was a Civil War buff?! Checkout this riveting interview at Pritzker Military Library | Jeff Shaara.

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