by Eowyn the Forest Elf

It’s Family History Month!

October (in the United States) is a time to not only remember where we’ve come from but also to celebrate our individual histories, lineages and identities. Back in 2001, Congress passed a resolution that was originally introduced by Senator Orrin Hatch.  He wrote, “By searching for our roots, we come closer together as a human family.”  Since then, every October, genealogists, researchers and family history enthusiasts have celebrated Family History Month!

Celebrate on WikiTree

Here’s some ideas of ways to celebrate Family History Month on WikiTree:

  • Update and add to some of your profiles that haven’t been touched in awhile. From your Watchlist click the fourth header ‘Last Edit’ to sort the list so that the first profile listed is the one that’s gone the longest time without being edited. Check it out! Maybe there’s something you can add or improve!
  • Post in the G2G forum for help on breaking through one of your brick walls.

Celebrate with the Younger Generation

Get your younger kids and teenagers involved in celebrating your family history!  Here’s some ideas:

  • Visit your local cemetery or a cemetery where your relatives and ancestors are buried.  Do some tombstone rubbings!
  • Throw an ancestor a birthday party.  You could wrap up a few mementos of the person, have your children unwrap them and then you can share the stories behind them.  Or celebrate the same way your ancestor might have celebrated.
  • Prepare an ancestor’s favorite family recipe.

More Celebration Ideas

The ways you could celebrate are endless but here are a few more suggestions to get you going:

  • Begin writing down some of your own life story.
  • Call a relative you haven’t heard from in awhile and rebuild that connection.
  • Create a family cookbook. Include recipes of ancestors and living family members.  Encourage people to share stories related to food and family.
  • Scan and preserve your family pictures.
  • Take a trip to visit an area your ancestor(s) lived.




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Greetings fellow WikiTreers!

Welcome to the September 2014 edition of News from the Tree, our monthly report on new features and changes around the site, notes on community leaders, tips, etc.

What’s New?

New Search Features

You can now sort search results.

You can resort the top 100 results by first name, last name, birth date, death date, or profile manager.

New Form for Creating Profiles

We’ve made major improvements to the process for creating a profile for a new person.

The match suggestions will now appear on the same page so you don’t risk wasting a lot of time adding info and sources only to find out the person already exists. The matches should also be better, and rejected matches will be saved.

Daily Limit on Messages Raised from 10 to 20

The daily message limit is something we’ve been forced to impose because of spammers.  The good news is that we’ve just increased the limit on private messages and comments from 10 to 20 per 24 hours.  Read more about the limit and what counts as a message here.

Badge Pages Now Have Photos

Here’s a fun little addition to badge pages: they now have member photos.

For example, check out our Leader list:

If you haven’t uploaded a photo of yourself, this is another reason to do it. If you’re shy, you could always use an avatar. Having some image adds a nice personal touch to your presence.

Connect for the Cure

The Global Family Reunion team is seeking researchers of all levels to help people who trying to find their connection to A.J. Jacobs and the global family.  This month they launched their Connect for the Cure initiative as an incentive to individuals who might be interested in donating some of their time to assist in making these connections for the Reunion, which is also a fundraiser for Alzheimer’s.  If you are interested in participating, you can learn more about it here.

Who’s New?

We’re thrilled to announce three new Leaders:

Sally Stovall -Sally has been with us since December 2013.  She’s been very active in many of our projects including our Titanic Project  and she is one of our exceptional Greeters.  Sally is now also co-Leader of our Profile Improvement Project.

Michael Stills – Michael has been a member since December 2011.  He’s the co-Leader of our 1776 Project.  Among other things he is also active in our Global Family Reunion project. You can learn more about Michael in his “I Am A Cousin” feature.

John Atkinson – John has been a member since January 2011 and is active in many of our projects, such as the European Aristocrats Project. He is also  involved in our G2G Forum.

Quick Tips

  • Spend some time learning the menus at the top right of your page. These drop down menus give you shortcuts to everything from help, to the relationship finder, to categories.
  • If your research includes anyone that might be an Historically Significant Ancestor check carefully for duplicates in any project that might contain them. For example European Aristocracy has almost all Kings and Queens of Europe and their families, all US presidents and Mayflower passengers are already here. Please check with the relevant Project for naming conventions and other information. In the menu at the top right of pages, see Find > Projects.
  • Before uploading a GEDCOM for matching or import check the tree you are creating the GEDCOM from, add estimated birth and death dates based on baptism or burial dates if you can, this will improve the accuracy of GEDmatches and allow the profile to be imported.
  • If you are not sure about how to format your sources yet still add them as text, you can always re-edit the profile when you have found a better way to do it.

Resource Roundup

Members are working hard to create outstanding free-space resource pages.  Here are a few:

Community Accomplishments

Top 10 contributors for last month:

WikiTree Club 1000 August 2014

  1. Doug Lockwood (12,565 edits in August)
  2. Vincent Piazza (9639)
  3. Betty Tierney (7648)
  4. Michelle McQueen (7433)
  5. Austin Pérez (6813)
  6. Susan Tye (6613)
  7. Greg Rose (6200)
  8. Mr Robert Blais (6055)
  9. Mary Hammond (5892)
  10. Kirsty Ward (5469)

Super Star recipients (recognized by a Leader for extraordinary contributions that go far beyond what is normally seen on WikiTree):

Thank you so much for your hard work and dedication: Ron Woodhouse and Vivek Chamaria!

New Member Comments

When a guest volunteers to become a full member we ask them to leave a comment telling a little about how and/or why they’d like to volunteer with WikiTree.  We get some really great responses.  Comments such as:

  • “I have been researching my family off and on for almost 40 years by interviewing family members in person or by mail. Only within the past 3 years have I learned the importance of documenting my sources. I have also been swept up by the DNA bug. I still work full-time so my time for research is limited, but I love the addiction.” Karen 
  • “My family research has been haphazard at best for several years and I am hoping for a jump start, as well as sharing what I have gathered with others. Knowledge is more powerful when you share it. ” Jeff
  • “I just had twins and would love to be able to tell them about their family. I’ve always been interested in genealogy, and as I age I realize that the older generation I have always used as a source for information is going away. I’d love to be able to maintain a sense of history.” Dara
  • “I’m a first year college student with a few siblings. My grandmother is interested in lineage and I don’t really care if I’m the 20th cousin of a celebrity, there must be thousands of people in my history. If I were related to Alexander the Great or something that would be pretty awesome but I’m not looking for anything that exciting. My history class really got me interested so here I am.” Mycalea
  • ” A world-wide tree has tremendous potential in terms of medical and historical research. Having such a resource free to all removes barriers to the positive things that can done with it. Behaving as a cooperative and responsible adult – which is what the nine simple rules seem to call for – sets an example within the field and outside it as well.” Patricia

Anyone can view these comments on the New Volunteer Feed.

If you have a few minutes to spare they are fun to read through and a great way to find people with interests similar to your own or researching the same surnames/locations. When you see a comment that resonates for you, click the thank-you link or post a comment to make them feel welcome to WikiTree.

Thank you for your contributions to our great community.

The WikiTree Team and Leaders

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Hi WikiTreers,

Welcome to  another installment of “Meet our Members”! It’s time to get to know another awesome person who is part of our outstanding community. Meet Doug:

Doug is the top poster in our G2G Forum and very helpful answering questions there.  He also leads our Integrators Project as well as our One Name Study project.


I’m listed on WikiTree as Douglas Lockwood. I go by Doug. My Dad named me for his hero, General Douglas MacArthur. I feel very blessed to be able to participate in this interview. Over a year ago, I received a liver transplant due to a genetic disease. I’m told I only had  several days to live at the time of the operation. Since then I have dedicated my life to helping others as I am able. Currently, the best I can do is help others by answering their questions on G2G. As I continue to heal I hope to do more.

Surnames you are researching:

I search all names related to my family tree and that of my beloved wife. The prominent names in my tree are Lockwood, Turse, Bowers, Granger. A little further back are the names Grinrod, Corn, Straut, Conklin, Rudlum, Federlichner, Lauth, Wood & Mellor. The prominent names in my wife’s tree are Schiffhauer, Woodruff, Barnes, Stokes, Wunder, Selby, Braddock, Trimble & Merritt.

Locations you are researching:

My Lockwood line has origins in and around Brighouse, Yorkshire, England. My mother’s Toers/Tuers/Turse line originates around Amsterdam, Netherlands. Both lines were immigrants to northern New Jersey and southern New York. My wife’s lines originated in the German/Swiss Alps and England/Ireland. They all immigrated to southern New York and southern New Jersey.

When and how did you get interested in genealogy and family history?

I guess I owe my interest in genealogy to being an incorrigible child. I’m told I “mouthed off” a lot to my Mom. After getting my mouth washed out with soap, or whatever the appropriate punishment was, I would normally get banished to my room for a few days. With nothing else to do, I started reading all the history books my parents had put in my room.

Considering my track record for banishment, it did not take long for me to develop an intense interest in history. It was not long after that I started asking my parents about our history. To my amazement, neither of them knew much at all about their family beyond their grandparents.

It wasn’t until the late 1990’s that I started my research. Eventually I ran across the Guild of One Name Studies which listed a Lockwood study. I checked it out and found people in it that I recognized. For me this was like finding the Holy Grail. From this study I have found cousins, lots of info to build on and the best is yet to come.

Albert Lockwood

Who’s your favorite ancestor and why?

My Dad. He is my hero. He had a hard life growing up in the Great Depression. He served in WWII and was highly decorated while serving as a tail gunner in the B 29 bomber City of Trenton, named after his hometown of Trenton, NJ.

He went on to become a very successful aviation engineer working as a civilian employee of the U.S. Navy and retired with the equivalent civilian rank of rear admiral. He was a very intelligent, selfless, humble family man.

Tell us about the brick wall you most want to tear down.

I imagine most of us have more than one including me. However, if I have to pick one I would have to say finding the truth behind the parentage of my 3x great grandfather John Lockwood (1793-1868).

Apparently, records say he is the illegitimate son of Mary Lockwood. No father listed in birth record. I recently received an email from a cousin in England explaining that a persistent story in his family is that John was fathered by Sir Thomas Lister, 1st Lord of Ribblesdale. He went on to say that the Lister family paid the way for the Lockwoods (several dozen) to move to the states in the 1850’s.

I find that to be an interesting story, but how do I find out the truth? I have taken the appropriate DNA tests, but do not have any samples to compare. The last direct male Lister heirs died in war before 1920. I guess some things will have to be left to speculation.

If you could pick one person in history to be related to, who would it be and why?

Jesus …how cool is that???

What are some of your interests outside of genealogy?

I had a swimming scholarship in college and still love to be involved with competitive swimming, officiating, etc. Also, I have been a landscape designer for over thirty years and love gardening, especially with flowers and vegetables. Aside from that I am learning to play the guitar, although I doubt Eric Clapton(one of my favorites) has much to worry about; and I love history and science(I was born in Philadelphia, PA and live in Williamsburg, VA – two cradles of American history). Hopefully, soon I will have grandchildren to indulge.

How long have you been on WikiTree and how active are you?

I joined WikiTree on November 6, 2013. It took me a month or two to get the hang of it. Once that happened I became very active. Now the only time I’m not on-line several hours a day is when I don’t feel well or have appointments.

What are some of the features/aspects of WikiTree that you love/don’t love as much?

As I think most people would say, the friendly atmosphere and spirit of collaboration are quite infective. WikiTree has given me a way to pursue genealogy and communicate in a positive way with people around the world. I don’t know how much more I could ask for. I also love the free space profiles. Being able to create silly things like a page dedicated to my many cats is very meaningful to me, as well as, a page dedicated to my Dad’s military career.

The only thing I don’t like is the rare occasion that emotions run high….life is too short.

Oh, I almost forgot – I’m still having a heck of a time figuring out all the fancy coding you can do to make profiles really stand out.

Any tips for someone just starting out on WikiTree?

Be patient.

It takes a little while to figure out all the neat things you can do, stay positive and no matter what….be polite, we’re all striving for the same goal..

If you could leave one message for your descendants, what would it be?

Please don’t laugh at all the mistakes I made trying to piece our family tree together. Document your life because it comes and goes before you know it.


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Happy Monday WikiTreers!  See what you missed from WikiTree and around the genealogy community!

From the Community Abroad

From The Tree

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by Bob Fields

On September 28:

Georges Clemenceau (Image Credit: Wikipedia)

Ed Sullivan (Image Credit: Wikipedia)

Brigitte Bardot (Image Credit: Wikipedia)










1841 – Georges Clemenceau*, French journalist, physician, and politician, Prime Minister of France (1906-09, 1917-20), one of the principal architects of the Treaty of Versailles (d. 1929).
1901 – Ed Sullivan*, American television host (d. 1974) (The Ed Sullivan Show).
1901 – William S. Paley*, American broadcaster, founded CBS (d. 1990).
1909 – Al Capp*, American cartoonist (d. 1979) (Li’l Abner).
1916 – Peter Finch*, English-Australian actor (d. 1977) (Network).
1924 – Marcello Mastroianni*, Italian-French actor (d. 1996) (La Dolce Vita).
1934 – Brigitte Bardot*, French actress, singer, and animal rights activist (And God Created Woman).
1967 – Mira Sorvino*, American actress (Mighty Aphrodite).


King Wencealaus of Bohemia (Image Credit: WikiTree)

Herman Melville (Image Credit: WikiTree)

Louis Pasteur (Image Credit: WikiTree)










48 BC – Pompey Magnus, Roman general and politician, assassinated in Egypt after defeat at the Battle of Pharsalus  (b. 106 BC).
935 – Wenceslas, Duke of Bohemia, is murdered by his brother, Boleslaus I (Good King Wenceslas).
1891 – Herman Melville, American author and poet (b. 1819) (Moby-Dick, Billy Budd).
1895 – Louis Pasteur, French chemist and microbiologist (b. 1822) (rabies and anthrax  vaccinations, fermentation, and pasteurization).
1938 – Charles Duryea*, American engineer and businessman, who produced and road-tested America’s first gasoline-powered car (b. 1861).
1953 – Edwin Hubble*, American astronomer (b. 1889) (extragalactic astronomy).
1964 – Harpo Marx*, American comedian, film star, mime artist, and harpist (b. 1888) (the Marx Brothers).
1970 – Egyptian President Gamal Abdel Nasser (b. 1918) dies of a heart attack in Cairo. Anwar Sadat* is named as Nasser’s successor.
1978 – Pope John Paul I (b. 1912) after 33 days as Pope.
1991 – Miles Davis, American trumpet player, composer, and bandleader (Miles Davis Quintet) (b. 1926).
2000 – Pierre Trudeau, Canadian journalist, lawyer, and Prime Minister of Canada (b. 1919).
2003 – Elia Kazan, Turkish-American actor, director, producer, and screenwriter (b. 1909) (A Streetcar Named Desire, On the Waterfront , East of Eden).

Other Events:

William the Conqueror (Image Credit: WikiTree)

Napoleon (Image Credit: WikiTree)

Alexander Fleming (Image Credit: Wikipedia)










351 – Battle of Mursa Major: eastern Roman Emperor Constantius II (317-361) defeats western usurper Magnentius* (303-353), one of the bloodiest battles in Roman military history.
1066 – William the Conqueror (1028-87) invades England and begins the Norman conquest.
1781 – American Revolution: American forces backed by a French fleet begin the siege of Yorktown, Virginia.
1785 – Napoleon Bonaparte (1769-1821) graduates from the Paris military academy (42nd in a class of 51).
1787 – The US Constitution is voted on by the U.S. Congress, to be sent to the states for approval.
1918 – World War I: The Fifth Battle of Ypres begins.
1928 – Sir Alexander Fleming* (1881-1955) notices a bacteria-killing mold growing in his laboratory, discovering penicillin.
1939 – World War II: Germany and the Soviet Union agree on a division of Poland after their invasion. The last Polish troops surrender.

The individuals marked with “*” don’t have a profile on WikiTree yet. Please help grow our tree.

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