January has been nothing short of busy and productive. But as luck may have it, my area of North Central Mass has received little to no snow, so I’m able to save some time for contemplation on long walks.  I had a wonderful time last week presenting a webinar to the Massachusetts Society of Genealogists on researching seafaring ancestors at the National Archives (NARA). For those who attended or are interested in the subject, a thorough research checklist is available in the “Publications” page titled as “Maritime Genealogy Guide and Bibliography.”

Last night, I attended a talk given by journalist Mike Richards who gave his “View of the Gardner Scene.” Gardner is a small city in North Central Massachusetts that is struggling in the post-industrial world. While I’m not from Gardner, I could appreciate what he was talking about and understood how important his role as a local historian and journalist was. He and many others take the time to keep the stories alive and preserve them for the generations. This is an important action for communities to take and we should be grateful to those who give their time so we can reminisce and revel in the days of old. My observations have led me to conclude that interest in genealogy is not particular to any region. From large cities to the smallest hamlets, there is a universal desire to learn the stories of our ancestors. I am especially glad this remains true for my own area based on the fact I am booked for so many lectures locally. For more information on where I’ll be appearing and teaching genealogy, visit the Lectures page.

Most of my readers are already “GeneaBloggers.” but for those who are not or if you know someone who is just getting into genealogy, consider sharing some of the benefits of having a genealogy blog with my newest post for Legacy News, How can blogging help your family history?” I did not underestimate the importance of the research I conducted over the last seven years, therefore I was very excited to receive a print copy of my blog this month. Not only is it wise to keep a hard copy backup, but it serves as an important tool in my genealogy library.

Hope you all enjoy all of the links I shared and find them useful. It seems that the genealogy community is back to it’s normal level of business and it seems I’m finding multiple useful articles daily. It is an exciting time to be involved with genealogy!

Looking forward to updating everyone next month, in the meantime, new research posts are coming to you shortly.

– Jake Fletcher

Recent Travelogues

Who is Elizabeth Shields?” posted 15 Jan 2016.

Azrow D Freeman, Postmaster of Belmont, Portage Co., Wisconsin.” posted 23 Dec 2015.


Recommended Articles, Resources, and More!

Drake Baer. “Here’s Why Writing Thing Out By Hand Makes You Smarter.”http://www.businessinsider.com.au/handwriting-helps-you-learn-2014-12

“Boston Public Library – Digital Commonwealth.” https://www.digitalcommonwealth.org/institutions/commonwealth:sf268508b

Christopher Child. “ICYMI: Tips for online genealogical research. ”http://vita-brevis.org/2016/01/icymi-tips-online-research/

Zoe Craig. “London’s Entire History To Be Mapped By New Project.” http://londonist.com/2016/01/layers-of-london-londons-new-mapping-project

Lisa Louise Cooke. “Why Google Bought YouTube – And Why That’s Good For Genealogy!” http://lisalouisecooke.com/2016/01/youtube-for-genealogy/

Niall Cullen. “How to use Griffith’s Valuation for Irish family history research.” http://www.irishcentral.com/roots/How-to-use-Griffiths-Valuation-for-Irish-family-history-research.html

Bruce Dearstyne. “History Resources To Watch in 2016.” http://newyorkhistoryblog.org/2016/01/07/history-resources-to-watch-in-2016/

Amanda Foreman. “The British View the War of 1812 Quite Differently Than Americans Do.” http://www.smithsonianmag.com/history/british-view-war-1812-quite-differently-americans-do-180951852/?no-ist

Zachary Garceau. “The last survivor.” http://vita-brevis.org/2016/01/last-survivor/

Guest. “Researching African American Families that Came out of Slavery.” http://bcgcertification.org/blog/2016/01/researching-african-american-families-that-came-out-of-slavery/

Yvette Hoitnik. “Five Things I Learned From Working With Archivists.” http://www.dutchgenealogy.nl/five-things-i-learned-from-working-with-archivists/

Alison Kimball. “how rootstech changed me.” http://www.allisonkimball.com/my_weblog/2015/11/how-rootstech-changed-me.html

“Louisiana, New Orleans Passenger Lists, 1820-1945.” https://familysearch.org/search/collection/1916009?cid=fb-src-4144

National Public Radio. “When Ancestry Search Led To Escaped Slave: ‘All I Could Do Was Weep’.” http://www.npr.org/2016/01/18/463164866/when-ancestry-search-led-to-escaped-slave-all-i-could-do-was-weep

Catherine Robertson. “Agridulce.” http://connected.pem.org/agridulce/

Chris Smith. “Virginia Untold: Freedom Suits.” http://www.virginiamemory.com/blogs/out_of_the_box/2016/01/06/virginia-untold-freedom-suits/

Tyler S. Stalhe. “3 Ways To Use Your Smartphone for Family History.” https://familysearch.org/blog/en/3-ways-smartphone-family-history/

Eric Stanway. “Central Mass. Genealogical Society explores roots of family trees.” http://www.telegram.com/article/20160122/NEWS/160129955

Frederick Wertz. “Discovering your World War I family history.” https://blog.findmypast.com/finding-your-world-war-i-family-history-1555718261.html

Frederick Wertz. “Militant politics: Did you ancestors participate?” https://blog.findmypast.com/the-wild-world-of-19th-century-politics-how-your-ancestors-campaigned-1563668514.html

Michael Wood. “Keeping up with the ancestors.” http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2016/jan/16/china-genealogy-family-ancestors-history-spiritual-bbc2-story-china-michael-wood

Simon Worrall. “Making Maps Under Fire During the Revolutionary War.” http://news.nationalgeographic.com/2016/01/160117-american-history-revolutionary-war-map/




Jake Fletcher

Genealogist, Historical Researcher, Blogger

Lunenburg, MA



Follow and connect with Jake on social media:


Google +


Instagram: @jake_fletcher226

Copyright © 2015 Jake Fletcher. All materials protected under the laws of copyright. Do not copy or reproduce without author’s permission.