President's Message - March 2018When this newsletter is published, I will be at RootsTech, the largest family history and genealogy gathering in the world. In 2017 we met with over 12,000 of our closest friends, with over 30,000 being there on Saturday. The live streamed videos had over 100,000 viewers.
With that many people in one place how do you find someone you are related to? By chance works, sort of. Two years ago, I was sitting at one of the small bistro tables relaxing when an individual sat down next to me. After a little conversation we discovered we are distant cousins. While this works, it is not very effective. This year, the organizers have leveraged the FamilySearch Family Tree mobile app. We will be able to identify other attendees, that have opted-in, that are related to us. They are even providing a messaging feature and meetup location.
I expect this to be a fun exercise, I have already discovered that one of the other Ambassadors is a 5th cousin. That may not seem exciting for those of you with large families, but her and I do share a 4th great grandmother and lots of relatives in between.
This led me to think about the relationship we each have with one another. Do we have a connection other than our love of genealogy and family history? The BYU Family History Technology Lab has created a website, relativefinder.org, that shows you how you are connected to other individuals in the FamilySearch Tree. One of the options is to create a Group and as people join the Group, they can see how they are related to each other, if at all. Awhile ago, I created an FHSA group on Relative Finder. To join us click here: Relative Finder.
Yes, you need have a free FamilySearch.org account, and have yourself connected to the tree for this to work. If you donít, I encourage you to at least create a free account. With the changes in contracts with some of the third-party record providers, FamilySearch is now requiring that you have a registered account before you can access these records.
Give it a try, let me know how it goes. Maybe we will find some surprises in our trees.
FHSA President 2017-1018