ARCHIVED: Mondays with Myrt – 11 Mar 2019


Summing up this edition of Mondays with Myrt, Gary Gauthier writes “Really enjoyed the DNA discussion” while Doris Haskell adds “You are absolutely amazing!” I couldn’t agree more – the discussion among our webinar panelists and attendees is amazing. How I wish more of our in-person genealogy society meetings could be held in discussion rather than lecture format.

We demonstrate the problem with Ancestry DNA tools pages not loading, returning a 404 error. We shouldn’t have to clear our cache several times a day to overcome the problems at We discovered the “incognito” web browser option works best. We also discussed Debbie Parker Wayne’s interpretation of the DNA standards published in Genealogy Standards Second Edition, compiled by the Board for Certification of Genealogists, released in March 2019.

About half-way through, we wax poetic and discuss the definition of family. It can be more than blood relations, and thankfully most mainstream genealogy software can handle multiple sets of parents – adopted, step, disproved, etc. We demo how to add these using RootsMagic 7.



09:54:03 From Cousin Russ to All panelists :
10:01:01 From Robbin Smith : hello from Miami
10:01:53 From Gary Gauthier : DNA?
10:01:56 From Mary Lou Gravatt : New DNA tools.
10:02:23 From Gary Gauthier : I’m in Canada – Alberta
10:04:40 From Sheryl Whisenhunt : Yes, each time.
10:05:18 From Gary Gauthier to All panelists : Are you using Chrome to access Ancestry?
10:06:16 From Randy Seaver : I’m using Win7 and Chrome – had problems all week until I used the “Open Window Incognito” trick
10:06:17 From Gary Gauthier : Ok. It’s just that two browsers having the same issue seems to eliminate the browser.
10:06:21 From Lynn Tenney to All panelists : By deleting just the cookies, I was able to load the DNA pages without the error.
10:06:42 From Randy Seaver : Deleting Ancestry cookies helped me, but not consistently.
10:07:01 From Molly McKinley : I just got in without issues. I use Chrome and Windows 10
10:07:11 From Mary Lou Gravatt : I have ThruLines comes up when I click on an ancestor it says not found. I restarted the computer and it worked. I use Foxfire.
10:08:10 From Molly McKinley : New traits shows up on top
10:09:24 From Molly McKinley : Same here too
10:09:46 From Mary Lou Gravatt : I tried again and now ThruLines does not work.
10:10:38 From Linda Stufflebean : Roberta Estes wrote a post about now you see it, now you don’t last week.
10:11:06 From Molly McKinley : It goes right through to True Lines for me.
10:11:50 From Deb Andrew : I use Firefox, Windows 10, have ever thing that Russ has, it been there since they started the new items.
10:11:59 From Gary Gauthier to All panelists : Are you all using the same access port? Eg. .ca or .uk or .com? Maybe they all don’t work the same?

10:12:08 From Randy Seaver : In Windows, in the browser right click on the site you want (e.g. Ancestry) and open it by clicking “Open in Incognito Window” and it should work. Every time for me.
10:12:30 From Randy Seaver : Until they fix it all – coding, servers, etc. this is the best way to use it…

10:12:49 From Mary Buchholz to All panelists : When I signed in this morning — circles were back, NO ThruLines although I had used it on my page before.
10:13:28 From Randy Seaver : Google “incognito window” for a Mac.
10:13:36 From Randy Seaver : and follow directions
10:14:28 From Leslie Reyes to All panelists : I have not had any issues on iPad/Safari, MS Edge and chrome. I do remember that I needed to sign up for the beta about a week ago.
10:15:07 From Danine Cozzens : I’ve not had the trouble — the ThruLines are working well for me, on Chrome, Mac, updated. I use a utility which “tidies up” my caches. I’m a paid Ancestry customer. I have had “slow” days with Ancestry, mostly Sundays.
10:18:15 From Valerie Lisk : Ancestry hasn’t been working will in Chrome, I’ve only been able to use it on Firefox.
10:18:29 From Randy Seaver : Has anyone been able to see an updated ThruLines – one that has changed because you have changed your tree persons? I haven’t.
10:19:20 From Randy Seaver : This is from a “BIG Ancestry tree” created a year or more ago, and it’s probable that the lines won’t change.
10:28:11 From Randy Seaver : I use private trees to do research on ancestry of friends who don’t want it public, and also to build a quick tree for DNA matches with a small tree to find common ancestors. Works about 50% of the time.
10:30:40 From Cousin Russ :
10:31:34 From Hilary Gadsby : The link worked for me
10:32:07 From Dave Robison to All panelists : I get the error message in Chrome but it opens just fine in Firefox.
10:32:12 From Randy Seaver : link worked for me and started the video…
10:32:17 From Valerie Lisk : Myrt that is the page I get when I use Chrome. Try Firefox.
10:32:36 From Michelle Minner to All panelists : The color coding works the same as Blaine Bettinger’s color dots…and I have been using that…and I hope Ancestry keeps it!
10:33:39 From Michelle Minner to All panelists : DNA CONNECTION! woo hoo
10:33:44 From Michelle Minner to All panelists : MULTIPLE SPOUSES
10:33:51 From Randy Seaver : I’ve done some color coding for DNA matches, but haven’t used TreeTags. My working tree is temporary – I’ll eventually replace it.
10:34:45 From Randy Seaver : I ‘ve been adding “DNA Match” Facts in RootsMagic to identify my DNA Matxches, and then put them in AncestryDNA, MyHeritageDNA, 23andMe, FTDNA groups.
10:34:47 From Michelle Minner : Being able to FILTER on the tags is the BEST !!!
10:34:53 From Mary Lou Gravatt : My Ancestry Tree is private and unsearchable do not want to give wrong information. My DNA tree is smaller and public searchable.
10:34:54 From Randy Seaver : drat, Match!
10:35:37 From Michelle Minner to All panelists : yes’
10:36:30 From Shelley Murphy : My tree on Ancestry is nothing but all lines with a brick walls, which is a lot. It’s a mess. Once I figure it out or resolve the issue, I put in RootsMagic.
10:36:44 From Michelle Minner to All panelists : Don’t forget to show the other tags by dropping the down arrow… lots of different tree tags.
10:37:05 From cyndy Bray : Can you have more than one tag?
10:37:35 From Michelle Minner : Cyndy, YES! I have several tags on some individuals
10:38:01 From cyndy Bray : Thanks

Genealogy Standards 2nd edition

“DNA Standards – Part 1” see In the first part Debbie Parker Wayne paraphrased the standards for using DNA evidence for genealogy into bullet points.

10:40:37 From Gary Gauthier to All panelists : Nice to see someone boiling it down. (The standards.)
10:41:06 From June Butka : Not yet in an official way.
10:41:24 From Shelley Murphy : for DAR it’s a support tool
10:41:56 From Randy Seaver : I could start a proof argument for a DNA connection but I don’t know the connection between my Devier Lamphier Smith and his grandparents, Isaac and Rosina Lanfear.
10:42:22 From June Butka : DAR under specific guidelines to follow. The don’t accept a blanket DNA evidence.
10:43:37 From June Butka : Yes, that is what I’m saying . Thank you.
10:44:23 From June Butka : Guidelines for using DNA Evidence in DAR Applications
10:46:54 From Michelle Minner : I hired a DNA expert, because my sister did not match to parents or siblings…
10:48:10 From Gary Gauthier : I would imagine that when you don’t have firm links to family members, it’s wise to hire an expert.
10:49:32 From Robbin Smith : In genealogy terms, family is usually means a “blood” relative
10:49:39 From June Butka : My grandson is adopted. I still consider him my grandson.
10:49:52 From Kathleen Daetsch to All panelists : It depends on whether you are talking about genetic family or emotional attachments
10:50:10 From Janine Edmée Hakim : I fully agree with you DearMyrt….family as a concept has evolved over the time humans have been here….
10:50:19 From Michelle Minner : My sister and I are STILL sisters, but she is obviously not BLOOD family.
10:50:27 From June Butka : PS I do have a bio family tree for my grandson.
10:50:45 From Randy Seaver : then there is “kin”!

10:50:51 From Shelley Murphy : DNA really raises the flags for me. I love the research and the connections, but if things are surprises or brings the unknown, folks need to be ready for it, its emotional and does damages to some.

10:50:55 From Valerie Lisk : 3 of my grandchildren are from my stepsons. They are still my grandchildren.
10:52:04 From June Butka : I’m everybody’s auntie June.
10:52:08 From Cheri Hudson Passey  : Y’all know I have both birth and adopted children. They are ALL my children. I hate it when people ask which are my real children. My answer? They all look real to me!!
10:52:40 From Randy Seaver : agree completely, Cheri!
10:53:03 From Andrew Hatchett to All panelists : It can be quite a shock when you find out that your brother- isn’t!
10:53:14 From Gary Gauthier : I understand that this is why France doesn’t allow DNA testing
10:54:56 From Kathleen Daetsch to All panelists : My children’s friends children are like grandchildren to me their parents have been a part of my life since they were children now they have children who have been a part of my life since they were born We have become an extended family.
10:55:01 From Randy Seaver : bye cousin Dave!
10:55:13 From June Butka : I found the most of the DNA hints already in my tree.
10:55:44 From Cassandra Davis to All panelists : Deciding what your DNA tree is a huge question for me. What to include? How big? Today’s discussion great for me. Thanks.
10:55:51 From Randy Seaver : My daughter is a nanny for 3 children from infancy – she is part of their family. Holidays, dinners, etc.
10:57:17 From Cassandra Davis to All panelists : How to add non-blood family to your tree?
10:58:24 From Randy Seaver : Cassandra – I add them as individuals and then add Facts to tie them to a family. A nanny might be in a Fact like “Friend” or “Caregiver”
10:58:47 From Michelle Minner : My sister’s genetic line does not show up properly either! it keeps throwing MY DNA to her tree on Thrulines
11:00:32 From Cassandra Davis: Thanks. That is similar to how I have added midwives, pallbearers, ministers, and neighbors.
11:01:17 From Randy Seaver : good examples, Cassandra
11:01:37 From Shelley Murphy : I have not done it.
11:03:05 From Cheri Hudson Passey : You can do the same in Legacy.
11:03:19 From Cassandra Davis : Do you include Play or Second Mom’s? Had not thought of it, but I should. Just I should add Godparents. Thanks.
11:03:45 From Deb Andrew : You can add others in Legacy.
11:04:03 From Michelle Minner : I had one set of biological parents, an adopted father, and a set of guardians…I have in family tree maker all set up.
11:04:27 From Randy Seaver : I have many small “Seaver bushes” in my RootsMagic tree and AMT because I’m trying to find all Seaver folks. They are not connected to my really big Seaver tree.
11:04:49 From Cassandra Davis to All panelists : People may only live in your trees, so it is important.
11:04:53 From Danine Cozzens : Yes, Reunion [for Mac iOS] can do this, too.
11:06:01 From Cassandra Davis to All panelists : if you do a one pace or one name study, you have bushes.
11:06:02 From Danine Cozzens : I track some parallel families that I know were close but not related that I know.

11:07:14 From Gary Gauthier : I track some associated families to flesh out the story/context.
11:09:00 From Shelley Murphy : But that is not how most view it, sadly to say.
11:09:10 From Robbin Smith : This post is particularly true in Miami, we have Bahamian-Americans, Haitian-American, etc.
11:09:13 From Shelley Murphy : “I am a rebel”
11:10:01 From Shelley Murphy : Things keep happening to make these things come out.

Ethnicity graphic created by DearMYRTLE
11:10:48 From Cousin Russ : DearMYRTLE and Cousin Russ recognize the United Nations’ International Decade for People of African Descent 2015-2024. We reach out to _all_ regardless of race, color, creed, sexual orientation or national origin with support for researching family and documenting cultural inheritance.
11:11:08 From Shelley Murphy : Take me with you to Wales… [NOTE from DearMYRTLE: We would have a blast, Shelley. 🙂  ]
11:12:44 From Valerie Lisk : Shelly, I am happy to say I have not seen this. Might be that I am in the MidWest and I am ALWAYS the only one.
11:13:29 From Shelley Murphy : Thank you Cousin Russ..
11:14:20 From Shelley Murphy : Scared = many things, Fear, embarrassed & etc.
11:14:20 From Kathleen Daetsch to All panelists : I live in NYC when I attend a class at the New York Public Library we have people of different nationalities and races I never assume anything I have learned that people come from all over the world and you can’t assume anything, and that is just from living in New York
11:15:37 From Shelley Murphy : Valerie it’s all over, I am from the Midwest and now live in the South. I typically am the only one in most of the group I flow.
11:16:50 From Michelle Minner : Disability prejudice is RAMPANT! My husband was in a wheelchair, and everyone always asked what he wanted, or assumed I was paying the bill, etc.
11:16:52 From John Laws : Currently in the UK referring to folk as being ‘people of color’ is considered old language and offensive.
11:17:14 From Hilary Gadsby : We cannot assume anything we need to approach our research with an open mind.
11:18:23 From Shelley Murphy : We can make the change needed.
11:18:50 From June Butka : Even in our own communities, words have different meaning depending on where you live. You can easily hurt someone’s feelings without even knowing it.
11:18:53 From Michelle Minner : Shelly Murphy…YES! It is up to each of us to be the ones that make that change!
11:19:40 From Shelley Murphy : Amen Pat!
11:20:28 From Shelley Murphy : They are telling a little story!
11:20:45 From Kathleen Daetsch  : My neighbor is from Suriname and what we have in common is our Dutch ancestry we forget that South Americans were also immigrants from different part of the world.
11:21:59 From Danine Cozzens to All panelists : Russ, someone did an Excel spreadsheet that helps analyze several of those pre-1850 families on the same page. I’ll try to find that.
11:22:29 From Cousin Russ : Danine – I think that is the one I have looked at and want to study
11:25:00 From Launa : Are Hilary and Pat sharing male intruders?
11:26:11 From Cheri Hudson Passey : Yet!!!!
11:26:27 From Hilary Gadsby to Launa and all panelists : My husband brought me a cup of tea.

11:26:42 From Cousin Russ : RANDY SEAVERS’ RootsTech 2019 SLC Blog Compendium – Updated
11:27:38 From Danine Cozzens to All panelists : Russ, I think this is the site that had some census tools.
11:27:56 From Cousin Russ : Thank you, Danine
11:29:55 From Gary Gauthier : Really enjoyed the DNA discussion.
11:29:58 From Janine Edmée Hakim : Thank you
11:29:59 From Doris Haskell to All panelists : You are absolutely amazing! Thank you
11:30:02 From Sheryl Whisenhunt : Thank you.
11:30:04 From June Butka : Awesome job all.
11:30:11 From Michelle Minner : Yes…good day meeting!
11:30:14 From Shelley Murphy : Enjoyed it. Thanks Always good to be here and be involved.
11:30:17 From Doris Haskell to All panelists : Hugs from my heart to everyone
11:30:19 From Kathleen Daetsch to All panelists : Thank you for sharing with us

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Myrt’s Musings

For future reference, this is the link to DearMYRTLE’s Event Calendar –

Here’s the link to the GeneaWebinars Blog & Calendar of other genealogy webinars, chats and hangouts –

Most DearMYRTLE Webinars are embedded in a Myrt’s Musings blog post, along with selected comments and links we mention.


QuickLook Video: RootsMagic – Adding Media Files

RootsMagic Adding Media Files

My friend Maria T. and I are assisting our neighbors with RootsMagic, genealogy software to manage the data and images we’re collecting as we climb our family trees. We are to the stage now where folks have scanned or downloaded family photos and vital records of birth, marriage and death. It’s now time to attach the photos and documents to the people in question and it’s a snap.

In this short subject video DearMYRTLE demonstrates how to add a photo to her ancestor’s profile, and add the death certificate to the ancestor’s death event line.


img_2515.jpgMyrt’s Musings

If you’d like more detailed information for handling media files in RootsMagic, see “Pictures and Media in RootsMagic” at RootsMagic TV (YouTube), shown below. The RootsMagic Magician and his partner Michael Booth do a marvelous job explaining all sorts of additional options including attaching files, sound clips and video clips.



WackyWednesday Q_A

Participate in an unscripted, open discussion in which we consider WHAT are our personal rules for genealogy databases?

  • DOCUMENTATION – direct, indirect, authored work?
  • GPS – Genealogical Proof Standards
  • ONLINE TREES – Private or public (if 90% sure of relationships)
  • CITATIONS – DearMYRTLE’s “Ragu method” (it’s in there), cite first
  • ANALYSIS – is helped when we transcribe and cite well
  • DESKTOP SOFTWARE permits multiple databases
  • BACKUP – cloud, offsite, external hard drive
  • COMPARING ONLINE TREES – Ancestry, FindMyPast, MyHeritage, FamilySearch



19:01:47 From Melissa Barker : Hello Everyone!
19:02:16 From Betty-Lu Burton : Hello Everyone
19:02:58 From Melissa Barker : Hello Deb, hope you are fully recovered!
19:03:29 From Betty-Lu Burton : My son once said he wanted a garage full of antique cars, you know those older than 1960. I and the other lady in the car at the time were both born before 1960.
19:05:41 From Deb Andrew to All panelists : Old Alabama Family Photos
19:06:03 From Marian Koalski : Vegas?
19:06:29 From Betty-Lu Burton : I think any car older than 20 years is considered an antique
19:09:05 From Marian Koalski : I put possibles into my database with a first name of “maybe”
19:09:32 From Marian Koalski : That way I can see them as I research
19:09:55 From Marian Koalski : And I attach whatever sources I have to them
19:10:23 From Betty-Lu Burton : I put in the various larger databases I have received as well as the various family history books I have received as one of my sources. I then note if I had proved it wrong.
19:11:23 From Betty-Lu Burton : Some of these records are what others have used to start their research
19:14:51 From Marian Koalski : I don’t generally put “possibles” into online trees. That’s work, and I don’t invest that effort until I’ve figured things out more definitely.
19:15:34 From Betty-Lu Burton : Find them in all the censuses that they should be in, both Federal and State
19:17:51 From Marian Koalski : I agree, Russ.
19:21:14 From Marian Koalski : Yes, and sometimes I find an index entry for a name that begins with M on the page for C-names. Someone entered it but didn’t notice that he was working on the wrong page.
19:24:47 From Marian Koalski : You’re right, Russ, but this is in my Reunion database, which looks for a name anywhere in a name.
19:25:28 From Marian Koalski : Mine will read something like “maybe Richard Higbee”
19:26:09 From Marian Koalski : I do the ___ for names that I don’t know
19:28:49 From Marian Koalski : I don’t have a mike.
19:29:13 From Marian Koalski : Maybe my difference from Russ is that I don’t do automated searches.
19:34:02 From Marian Koalski : me

19:41:09 From Cousin Russ : Family Tree Maker
19:41:12 From Cousin Russ : .
19:41:19 From Cousin Russ : Legacy Family Tree

19:41:25 From Cousin Russ : RootsMagic

19:42:55 From Cousin Russ : Ancestry App

19:43:47 From Cousin Russ : FAMILY HISTORIAN 6
19:43:48 From Cousin Russ : .
19:46:49 From Sue Holmes Burns to All panelists : I use One Drive for backups as well as an 8T external hard drive.
19:50:26 From Launa Droescher : I use to rotate Tape, then Zip backups. Some day I’m going to delete old backups
19:53:33 From Launa Droescher : that was tape in 1990s and a few years later zip
19:54:54 From Betty-Lu Burton : I know this is not correct, but it helps me to think of the cloud as the internet
19:56:42 From Betty-Lu Burton : because I have to use the internet to get to the cloud
19:56:44 From Sue Holmes Burns to All panelists : When I backup my family file I direct the backup to One Drive, therefore not a copy. A copy of that backup then gets put onto my external hard drive.

20:09:41 From Sweet Sadie to All panelists : This is Robert Kehrer the Product Manager for “Search” at FamilySearch. The % of unindexed digital images is now 77%. You *must* use the catalog to access these records that cannot be found by search, browse or hints.

20:09:58 From Sue Holmes Burns to All panelists : I hate to admit this but I didn’t know where my brother was buried. Yesterday I got a hint from MyHeritage showing me he’s buried at Arlington National Cemetery. Quite a find and surprise.

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Myrt’s Musings

For future reference, this is the link to DearMYRTLE’s Event Calendar –

Here’s the link to the GeneaWebinars Blog & Calendar of other genealogy webinars, chats and hangouts –

Most DearMYRTLE Webinars are embedded in a Myrt’s Musings blog post, along with selected comments and links we mention.


ARCHIVED: WACKY Wednesday 2 BIG Questions

So what are the questions we will tackle in this webinar?

  1. Need some input! I’m one of many getting irritated with Ancestry. What other options are there, other than Family Search, that allow the same type of actions?
  2. I’m aggravated with my Legacy Family Tree software. I downloaded my Ancestry Member Tree, but there are no images of documents.



19:11:24 From Susan Bleimehl  One or many places to go would be go through the relevant topics in Cyndi’s List or Linkpendium or the Ancestor’s Hunt newspaper site. You can spend lots of time doing that. Also, I don’t think anyone’s tree is clean or perfect. I like to spend some time cleaning up my databases.
19:12:29 From Deb Andrew : Roots Finder and American Ancestors are other places. I work on my photos, cleaning them up and refining those skills.

19:14:50 From Deb Andrew : There are so many webinars and YouTube Videos that can be watched to do more educational training, when a site is not functioning correctly.

19:16:57 From JoAnn Lawrence : I’ve joined Genealogy Facebook groups. They are great.
19:18:27 From Cousin Russ : Katherine R. Willson’s Genealogy on Facebook listing of over 12,300+ groups and pages:

19:25:25 From Linda Jordan : I’m a member of a Facebook group that doesn’t want duplicate posts on a topic. They want you to search their site 1st. They will block you from posting for a certain time period.
19:25:40 From Shelley Murphy : I like it when an Admin sends a welcome – are the welcome’s set up and sent automatically. [Note: Welcomes are not sent individually.]
19:26:21 From Deb Andrew : If you watch, you can tell who is always posting, what is posted, who to make your post more effective and relevant to a thread.
19:29:50 From Deb Andrew : My Heritage has just started forwarding the messages to your e-mail like Ancestry does with their message system. 
19:34:20 From Shelley Murphy :  Legacy webinars at
19:37:30 From Susan Bleimehl : Podcasts are fun and interesting.
19:38:06 From Deb Andrew : Evidence Explained is another good site to learn on citing. and on Facebook at
19:41:38 From Shelley Murphy : That’s where I was a few months ago, Rensselaer.
19:42:59 From Deb Andrew : I just sent someone to Joy Flips for the photos.
19:43:03 From Cousin Russ :
19:45:37 From Shelley Murphy : did you save your chart?
19:45:47 From Deb Andrew : I’ve learned so much to just attending your webinars and going to the links that are suggested and looking at the books recommended.
19:46:30 From Deb Andrew : Genealogy Gems is another good site.
19:48:28 From Deb Andrew : Legacy Family Tree has a photo re-linker.
19:52:08 From Deb Andrew : When Legacy 10 is released it will sync with My Heritage.
19:56:27 From Deb Andrew : Legacy has hints for FamilySearch, My Hertiage and Find My Past.
20:00:01 From Susan Bleimehl : Joining your local genealogy society is a good place to find other people who use your chosen software. Getting together with these folks is a good way to explore and learn to use all of the features of your software. Special Interest Groups (SIGs) are great fun to attend.
20:00:17 From Shelley Murphy : Roots Trust I have not heard of – going to look it up
20:00:54 From Shelley Murphy : Also, let’s get a Genealogy Buddy!
20:01:10 From Shelley Murphy : eastman

20:02:09 From Cousin Russ :
20:04:48 From Shelley Murphy : RootsMagic for me.
20:06:45 From Deb Andrew : The have a trial version.
20:08:02 From Shelley Murphy : Thank you, enjoyed it…
20:08:17 From Cindy Hilomen : thank you

20:40:45 From Cousin Russ : The home of my (female) DAR person —
20:45:53 From DearMYRTLE : Bernice Bennett
20:49:38 From DearMYRTLE : Coming to the Table

and on Facebook at

20:52:38 From DearMYRTLE : Black ProGen

20:56:03 From DearMYRTLE : BlackProGen LIVE: Ep 60: Indian in My Family: DNA, Identity, and the Making of Africans in America

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Myrt’s Musings

For future reference, this is the link to DearMYRTLE’s Event Calendar –

Here’s the link to the GeneaWebinars Blog & Calendar of other genealogy webinars, chats and hangouts –


Having Your Own Database

Since there is no Mondays with Myrt until next week, let’s assist our new DearMYRTLE Facebook Group member Linda who writes:

“Primarily, my first question is there some way I can save all my data from I can no longer afford it. If I have to pay for 1 more subscription, to somehow salvage it, I will do that. Then I would like to learn about all the free sites…”


To meet your requirements, Ol’ Myrt here recommends RootsMagic desktop software. It’s one of two desktop computer programs that can download to your computer everything from your Ancestry Member Tree including attached photos and documents. However, in my tests, RootsMagic is able to do TreeShare more reliably than the other program. The RootsMagic program has a free version and a $29.95 upgrade version and installs on both PC and Mac computers. This is a one time charge, not annual, and permits you to work with multiple family trees like adopted, bloodline, or disproved. I have nine databases on my computer right now – several because I am not yet sure if the family I’m working on belongs in my family tree.

This video explains how to download all data and attached images from an Ancestry Member Tree to a new RootsMagic database.

As with any program, eventually enhancements may be made to the software that might require an upgrade of about $19, but that has happened only every few years or so in my experience.

Don’t worry, Ancestry isn’t planning to get rid of your tree. You just won’t be able to get to the database images you’ve attached to each ancestor until you reactivate your Ancestry account. I’d recommend finding a time dedicated to this transfer process. Then activate your Ancestry account for the minimum one month time period and go for it.

As for free genealogy websites, a good place to begin is with a free account at

The product manager for FamilySearch “search” and “hints” advises using the FamilySearch Catalog, since only about 30% of the site’s images are browsable or indexed. Using the catalog you’ll spend most of your time looking for records created in the place where your ancestors once lived. And you won’t know if those ancestors are mentioned in the record set until you look. Some images must be viewed at your local Family History Center, owing to stipulations by the church, courthouse, archive or library that holds the original documents.

Find a local Family History Center here:

The following short 8-minute video features using the FamilySearch Catalog to locate the other 70% of digital images not yet browsable or indexed, demonstrated by Robert Kerher, the FamilySearch product manager I mentioned earlier. Nothing better than getting it directly from the source.

DearMYRTLE logoMyrt’s Musings

Keep me posted on your progress. Cousin Russ and I would be more than happy to walk you through the steps for downloading your Ancestry Member Tree to a new RootsMagic database on your computer. As you may know, we are both out of town on family business at the moment.

For future reference, this is the link to DearMYRTLE’s Event Calendar –

Here’s the link to the GeneaWebinars Blog & Calendar of other genealogy webinars, chats and hangouts –