Tuesday, January 28, 2014

World War I Diaries, an Irish World War I Soldier, Holocaust Survivors, and More

It seems there are always more projects looking for volunteers, doesn't it?  The fact is that genealogy relies heavily on volunteers.  These are some projects that I've learned about recently.  Maybe there's something here that you can help with.

The National Archives of the United Kingdom have digitized World War I unit war diaries and are now turning to crowdsourcing to help make the information in them searchable.  They are looking for volunteers ("citizen historians") to go through the digital files, classify the types of pages in the diaries, and tag important data.  The idea is to create a detailed index rather than a full transcription.  The home page for Operation War Diary has a prominent link to a tutorial.  After completing the tutorial you can get started.

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Private James Brown, from an Irish family that migrated to England, enlisted with the 1st Battalion of the Lancashire Fusiliers when World War I began.  He died during the war on a battlefield near Comines-Warneton, Belgium.  It is believed that his body is among six sets of remains that were found near the village in 2010.  The Ministry of Defence is looking for relatives of Private Brown so they can test for a DNA match and positively identify the body.  An article on the Irish Independent Web site has information about the family's background.

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Amy Smith, the Ben and Zelda Cohen Fellow at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum and a Ph.D. candidate at Yale, is conducting research on the lives of Holocaust survivors, specifically the experiences of survivors who created families after the war, spent time in DP camps, and immigrated to the United States or Canada.  If you are a survivor, or the child of a survivor, who fits these criteria, please contact Amy at amy.smith@yale.edu.

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Thomas Macentee posted about a grave marker found on some property in Portland, Oregon.  The names on the marker are Manin, Smith, and Templeton.  Death years of 1974 and 1975 are listed for two of the names.  More details are on the Geneabloggers site.  The hope is that the marker can be returned to family members.

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The current editor of Die Pommerschen Leute ("The Pomeranian People"), published by the Pomeranian Special Interest Group (PSIG) of the Immigrant Genealogical Society, will step down after the publication of the Summer 2014 issue.  PSIG is looking for a volunteer to be the new editor beginning with the Fall 2014 issue.  The editor solicits and edits articles and stories that deal with the history of the former Baltic duchy of Pomerania and the culture, traditions, and way of life of its people. The editor handles the layout and design of approximately 10 pages of content for each of the four yearly issues.  The "Die Vorfahren" section of DPL has its own editor.

All editorial duties can be accomplished over the Internet, so the editor can be based anywhere. MS Publisher has been used in the past.  The new editor could begin working immediately with the outgoing editor to get oriented and would have the next eight to ten months to work on the Fall 2014 issue.  This is a good opportunity for someone who would like to work on a publication about the history and culture of the Pomeranian people.

If you are interested, contact Toni Perrone, the president of PSIG, at tperrone2@verizon.net. She will discuss the editor's duties and responsibilities.

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