RootsTech 2017 Schedule

Subject to change

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7:00 am
(Closes at 6 p.m.)
3:00 pm
Beyond Hints – Research strategies for beginners
Crystal Farish, Ancestry ProGenealogists


Room: 250A
Session number: RT7456
RootsTech Track
Records Created at Death
Ginny Ackerson | Beginner

Many records are created when someone dies. We will discuss death certificates, death registers, probate records which include wills, letters of administration, heir proofs, estate distribution records and many more. We will also discuss casket makers records, sexton's records, church records, funeral home records, newspaper notifications, etc.

Room: 250D
Session number: RT2086
RootsTech Track
Preserve Your Memories - Digitizing Family Photos
Jens Nielsen, pictureline inc. | Intermediate

To enable attendees to preserve their family photos and memories through basic knowledge of scanning, file restoration, and the storage of both digital files and physical photographic materials.

This class is endorsed by Pictureline

Room: 151
Session number: RT0609
RootsTech Track
Street Savvy: Discovering Your Urban Roots
Juliana Szucs, Ancestry | Intermediate

Feeling overwhelmed with research in the big city. Juliana shares tips that will help you pin down your ancestors in cities—large and small.

Room: 255A
Session number: RT9713
RootsTech Track
DNA: The Glue that Holds Families Together
Diahan Southard, Your DNA Guide | Beginner

My mom was adopted from an unwed mother’s home in Seattle, Washington. Come learn how we were able to use a combination of genetic and genealogical tools to connect with our biological family, and how it has affected our lives. Leave with concrete ideas on how to apply these same methods to your own personal genetic genealogy endeavors, weather you are looking for your father, or your 3X Great Grandfather.

Room: Ballroom J
Session number: RT1425
RootsTech Track
Technology for Deciphering Foreign Language Record
Randy Whited | Intermediate

Once we have identified the origin of our immigrant ancestors, we are faced with the task of continuing our research in an unfamiliar language. This presentation will show you how to use tools at your fingertips to decipher those records. While a complete, flawless translation may be outside our current expertise, we can apply basic genealogical methodology to obtain the key facts in foreign language records. Focusing on records available from FamilySearch, this presentation will show how to identify common elements, perform a transliteration of the text and use online resources to translate into a meaningful document.

Room: 251D
Session number: RT2088
RootsTech Track
When Worlds Collide: Resolving Conflicts in Genealogical Records
Judy G. Russell | Advanced

The Genealogical Proof Standard says to resolve conflicts in data... but like so many things that sound good, it's easier said than done. What exactly are we supposed to do when we encounter conflicting evidence?  What are the basic types of evidence conflicts and the methods - and tips and tricks - we can use to resolve them?

Room: 255E
Session number: RT3015
Seasoned Genealogy Topics
Prepare for a cemetery search, photo & index trip
Daniel Horowitz, MyHeritage | Beginner
Cemeteries are great resource of genealogical information that every researcher will have to use some day. Here your relatives are just waiting for you to visit them, and start collecting all the information they have to offer you. Be prepared and make sure you make the most out of your visit. Don't waste the time in your local cemetery or the one abroad. Come to learn from Daniel the preparation tasks you need to do before and during the visit for your personal research or for an indexing project. This lecture will help you understand the tombstones terminology and symbols; how to transcribe and translate efficiently the written texts. Daniel will offer you different tools, tips and technologies to help you overcome many of the troubles you will have when dealing with the death people, and those in charge of their care. You should not die without hearing this lecture.
Room: 255B
Session number: RT1600
RootsTech Track
Metadata: “Writing on the Back” of a Digital Photo
Alison Taylor, Pictures and Stories | Beginner

Writing on the back of a print is an easy way to identify what’s in a photo. But how do you identify a digital file? The answer is metadata: editable information that stays with a digital image no matter where it travels. Captions, keywords, search terms, family names, dates, and copyright information can all be added to a digital photo, and it’s not hard to do! This class will explain in a fun, non-techy fashion, using clear visual examples, how to find and add captions and other metadata to your digital photos no matter what computer, platform, or software you’re using.

Room: 155 - Getting Started
Session number: RT9227
RootsTech Track
Underused Databases for Scottish Genealogy
Christine Woodcock, GenealogyTours of Scotland | Beginner

Scotland is a world leader when it comes to preserving their national history and national memory. Archivists all over the country are working to conserve, preserve, digitize and make available records that can be used for genealogical research. This lecture will assist you in learning where you might find information on your Scots ancestor that will help you to fill in their story and add to your understanding of their social history. There comes a time when you have done all of the online researching you can do using the standard databases. In this workshop you will learn of lesser known databases to assist in breaking through your brick walls. These include: • FindMyPast • Deceased Online • British Newspaper Archives • Emigration Databases • Military Databases • Poor Law Records • Medieval Ancestry • Local, Offline resources

Room: 150
Session number: RT0550
Seasoned Genealogy Topics
Share the Work: ResearchTies and Multi-User Logs
Jill N. Crandell, Brigham Young University | Beginner

Frequently, multiple people in an extended family are researching the same ancestral line. Societies sponsor research projects where multiple volunteers participate and contribute to the work. This class will demonstrate how the multi-user feature of ResearchTies will assist in streamlining a coordinated research effort. All researchers work from the same research log, contributing their effort to the same goals and “to do” lists. When any researcher completes a search and links in a document, all participants have access to it. Learn how to share the work and work together!

Room: 255D
Session number: RT2085
RootsTech Track
Nature & Nurture: Family History for Adoptees
Janet Hovorka, Family ChartMasters; Amy Slade | Intermediate

Two sisters, one adopted and one not, discuss the underlying concepts of genealogy for adoptees and their families. Come learn the difference between nature and nurture genealogy. The adoptee’s biological “nature” family history, enhanced by careful use of DNA testing, can fill in blanks where records can’t and help adoptees better understand their biological origin. The adoptive family’s history can help explain the formative “nurture” foundation of an adoptee’s life and create connections with adoptive family members and the adoptive family narrative. Using best practices, family history can be a powerful tool in binding adoptive families and in helping adoptees learn about and make peace with their individual life story.

Room: 251A
Session number: RT9819
RootsTech Track
How will DNA continue to disrupt our industry (PANEL)
Angie Bush, Ancestry ProGenealogists; William Fisher, Fisher Voice Works; CeCe Moore, The DNA Detectives; Scott Woodward, Utah Valley University | Intermediate

Where is DNA heading?  A panel of DNA experts (CeCe Moore, Angie Bush and Dr. Scott Woodward) explore the changes happening that will disrupt the way that we use DNA and its impacts on genealogy.   The experts will come from a range of backgrounds in DNA, genetics, forensics, and genealogy.  This lineup will share insights on experience, challenges, and market direction.  Scott Fisher ( - Syndicated Radio Show) will moderate this conversation about innovation, strategies and changes in the future of DNA.

Room: 155A - Getting Started
Session number: RT8642
Innovator Summit Track
Google Books: the tool you should use every day!
Lisa Cooke, Genealogy Gems | Beginner

25 million digitized and searchable free books are at your fingertips at Google Books. Learn how to make the most of this goldmine chock full of historical data! You’ll discover the best techniques for finding fully digitized book FAST, and search secrets for locating genealogical data. Learn to capitalize on and translate the foreign language volumes from your ancestor's homeland. Then we’ll go beyond the obvious and track down maps, images, photos and more. Google Guru Lisa Louise Cooke will help make you a Google Books master, and you'll find yourself using this valuable tool nearly every day.

Room: Ballroom C
Session number: RT0535
Seasoned Genealogy Topics
Legacy As Art: Celebrating Family History As Art
Brian Knapp, Legacy Republic; Sharleen Reyes, Legacy Republic | Intermediate

As humans, our life’s memories are intended to be cherished. The idea of legacy as “art ” is a powerful one worth having; art being a physical work that is appreciated for its beauty, creativity and imagination.

In other words, how we cherish our life’s memories, matters. And you get to elevate the beauty of life’s memories to art status.

In a year when Snapchat usage is at an all-time high, and shared memories are soon erased, let’s step back to appreciate a different perspective on generations of everyday moments and memories. These moments don’t purposely disappear, but we instead create from life’s memories heirlooms for our future generations. 

During this session, you'll learn some ways that family photos and albums can be transformed into masterpieces, using online technology and resources, and how these works of art leave a lasting legacy for generations to come. 

Room: 254A
Session number: RT1808
RootsTech Track
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4:30 pm
The Latest on Mexican Research
Karina Morales, FamilySearch
FamilySearch and have partnered to make the best resources available for Mexican Research. This class delves into the record collections, techniques for research success, and tips for unveiling the story of your ancestral past.
Room: 155A - Getting Started
Session number: RT3454
RootsTech Track
Family History on the Go! –FamilySearch Mobile Applications
Todd Powell

Now it is even easier to maintain your family history on the go with FamilySearch mobile apps. The mobile app provides users the ability to engage in small family history “micro tasks” that gives users simple tasks to weekly participate with your family.

Room: Ballroom C
Session number: RT4116
RootsTech Track
Mothers, Daughters, Wives: Tracing Female Lines
Judy G. Russell | Intermediate

Our family history isn't complete without the stories of the women of our families. But all too often they're the ones who just aren't there: not in the records, not in the censuses, not on juries, not in the voting booth. Yet despite the limited public existence of women under the law, there are many records left by, about or relevant to our female ancestors. Learn how to find the mothers, daughters, wives in your lines through their own records and the records of their menfolk.

Room: Ballroom B
Session number: RT3017
Seasoned Genealogy Topics
Using Identity Characteristics to Locate Ancestors
Angela McGhie | Advanced

Genealogists compare information such as age, occupation, religion, residence, names of family members and signatures to help determine if two records refer to the same individual. This can be useful in locating individuals in specific records, and in distinguishing men of the same name.

Room: 254A
Session number: RT2096
RootsTech Track
Family at the Center: Making the Family History Center a sacred place
Tamra Stansfield

Exceptional, spiritual experiences, that change families, forever can be had in your family history center, when you enable Spirit led personal family history experiences to be the center of everything you do. Learn how to create sacred family experiences that will invite the Spirit of Elijah into the lives of all who visit. 

Room: Ballroom I
Session number: LDS4033
Organizing Your Genealogy Files and Correspondence
Drew Smith | Beginner

In this session, attendees will learn how to process and organize information relevant to their genealogical research, including paper documents, digital files, and email. The session will discuss how to organize paper using either binders or folders, and the basics of preserving unique documents. Attendees will learn an organizational system for naming digital folders and files, as well as the process of synchronizing those files across multiple devices and backing up the files to a cloud service. Attendees will learn how to quickly process their email inbox, using unsubscribing, deleting, filtering, forwarding, and saving to other systems.

Room: 255D
Session number: RT0084
RootsTech Track
Billy Yank or Johnny Reb: Civil War Ancestors
Anne Mitchell, Ancestry

Have you identified ancestors who fought in the Civil War? Have you looked at their documents with an eye towards determining kinship? How about their actual story? Your ancestors part in this definitive part of American history both on the battle field changed their lives and likely theirs. Learn how to discover the story.

Room: 250A
Session number: RT7642
RootsTech Track
The New Frontier: Genealogy on Facebook
Schelly Talalay Dardashti, MyHeritage | Beginner
Facebook's massive and growing global membership makes it ideal for genealogical research opportunities. This session will address discovering relevant groups and people, how to organize your own group for a specific town or a surname, along with essential moderator and guideline issues. Learn how to attract people to your group who have similar interests in a certain topic, and work collaboratively in an international environment. Discover the pros and cons of open or closed groups, Facebook’s ever-changing features, and much more!
Room: 150
Session number: RT1405
RootsTech Track
Documenting My Freedmen Ancestors
Janice Sellers, Ancestral Discoveries | Intermediate

This class will take some of the guesswork out of documenting your freedmen ancestors. You will learn where and how to access Freedmen's Bureau records and how the groundwork laid in researching prior to this time period enables you to more easily locate your ancestor and other related family members in Freedmen's Bureau records. You will learn how to identify ancestors who were emancipated. You will also see the importance of researching the family who had enslaved the instructor's family. We will see examples of different record types, and we will discuss the reasons why your ancestor may not appear among these records.

Room: 255A
Session number: RT9851
RootsTech Track
Jewish Genealogy Resources on the Internet
Daniel Horowitz, MyHeritage | Intermediate

Learn about the main repositories for Jewish Genealogy available on the cloud. This program will illustrate how to search efficiently in different Jewish (JewishGen, GesherGalicia, JRI-Poland and Jewish Genealogy Societies like IGRA and IGS) and not-so Jewish (FamilySearch, Ancestry, MyHeritage) databases, to find the information you are looking for; even if you don't know it existed. Daniel will also help you overcome the barrier of the language with a basic lesson of Hebrew, focusing the tombstones terminology and how to translate efficiently to English; as many of the Jewish repositories available are only in Hebrew. If you have Jewish ancestors, you suspect you have a Jewish ancestor or you only want your daughter to marry a nice Jewish doctor; you cannot miss this informative lecture that will show you there is light at the end of the tunnel.

Sponsored by MyHeritage

Room: 251A
Session number: RT1602
RootsTech Track
Locating Your Ancestors’ Naturalization Records
Ken Bravo, Nuts & Bolts of Jewish Genealogy | Beginner

This is a program designed to help you locate your ancestors’ naturalization records and unlock the secrets of those records. In 1906, the United States took control of the naturalization process. Although one could still be naturalized in state court, the paperwork filled out by the applicant for citizenship was now uniform and contained questions calling for much more detailed biographical information. It’s in the answers to the detailed questions that we are able to find out a great deal more about the immigrant and the members of his family. Learn to locate and access these records and follow up on the results.

Room: 255E
Session number: RT1111
RootsTech Track
Oral Genealogy: Crossing Generations in Africa
Brent Hansen, FamilySearch | Beginner

It is estimated that over one third of people on earth do not have written records, many of these people are in Africa. This presentation discusses recent work by FamilySearch to collect and preserve genealogical information from the oral traditions of ethnic groups in Africa. FamilySearch has interviewed over 16,000 people worldwide, and the participants have shared their history and up to 15 generations of genealogy. This has resulted in over 7 million genealogical records preserved and published for use. Interviewers have been recruited, and then trained to identify and interview ethnic groups in Africa which have deep oral genealogy. A number of challenges have had to be overcome in capturing and processing this information. This oral history and oral genealogy will be the primary, perhaps only, source of information about ancestors for the future generations of their people.

Room: 155D - Getting Started
Session number: RT1254
RootsTech Track
The Digital Revolution in Irish Genealogy
Brian Donovan, Eneclann & Findmypast | Beginner

Once upon a time Irish genealogy was considered impossible, but all that has changed. True, its still difficult, but thanks to the work of archives and libraries in Ireland, and, there are now over 140 million records online. They include traditional sources like civil records of birth, death and marriage, census records and church registers. But they also include census substitutes like the land valuation records and tax records. Moreover entirely new classes of records have been trail-blazed in Ireland, like magistrate court registers, rebel and military records, and much more. These sources can be difficult to use. So this lecture will describe and explain so users can get the most of what is available. But it is also time now to take stock. Where do we need to go to finally make Irish genealogy achievable for all. Brian will give a sneak peak of what's planned by, and also address the remaining challenges to access our historic records.

Room: 151
Session number: RT0607
Seasoned Genealogy Topics
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