Friday, October 03, 2008

A Salute to the Old Timers!

As Tim Agazio noted a couple of days ago in his post Everyone's Turning 2 This Year, there are indeed a bunch of genea-bloggers and genea-websites that came on the scenes in 2006. Bloggers especially are notorious for starting-up and then, after a few months, no longer posting or even deleting their blogs. Two years is a long time in the blogosphere. A few genea-bloggers have been blogging for three, four or more years! I think they can be considered "Old Timers" in regards to blogging ;-) and as such, I think they deserve some recognition!

These are the blogs I've been following for the past two years...The listing is presented in two THREE sections. The first includes those who blog about their family history while providing some tips and resources along the way. The second group doesn't blog about their own genealogy research, rather they provide us with the latest information about Genealogy Resources, Tips and News. The last section will be updates to the list...

Where I could find it, I've linked to the first post of each blog. If you have the time, please explore their archives, you will no doubt find it rewarding, interesting, and entertaining.

Section I :: These are the people that inspired me to start blogging. And, for better or worse, have inspired me to continue to blog. I've laughed with them, and cried with them, and ran the gamut of feelings in between. They write about their families, relatives, and ancestors. With each post they give us a little of themselves. They have my heartfelt thanks for doing what they do, and doing it so well.

Susan Kitchens :: Family Oral History
April 23, 2004 :: Family Oral History weblog begins!

Lori Thornton :: Smoky Mountain Family Historian
June 8, 2004 :: Welcome to My Family History Page

Craig Manson :: Geneablogie
September 06, 2004 :: Blogging My Genes Off

Denise Olson :: Family Matters and Moultrie Creek
Denise uses Wordpress and doesn't have an archive feature on her blogs so I can't determine how long she has been blogging, but I know it has been awhile; it seems like forever ;-) Well, anyway, I'm pretty sure she was blogging long before I was, so she's included with the old-timers. Update: Denise notified me that she has been blogging since February 2005!

Tim Abbott :: Walking the Berkshires
September 30, 2005 :: Hi Tim. This is your first post

Jasia :: Creative Gene and creator of the Carnival of Genealogy
October 25, 2005 :: Intro to NaNoWriMo

Miriam Robbins Midkiff :: AnceStories: The Stories of My Ancestors
January 16, 2006 :: Moses Crothers - possible son of John Crothers and Mary "Polly" Wyckoff?

Janice Brown :: Cow Hampshire
March 2006 :: Cow Hampshire: Celebrating My Second Anniversary
Does anybody know anything about where Janice is? She hasn't posted anything since August 26th. Hopefully there is nothing majorly wrong and she is just taking a break from blogging.

T. K. :: Before My Time
April 1, 2006 :: Evelyn

Randy Seaver :: Genea-Musings
April 15, 2006 :: Who? Me? Blog? OK...

Steven Danko :: Steve’s Genealogy Blog
April 18, 2006 :: First Day of My New Website

David Bowles :: Writing the Westward Sagas
June 28th, 2006 :: Welcome!

Chery Kinnick :: Nordic Blue
August 28, 2006 :: Welcome, Family and Friends

Tim Agazio :: Genealogy Reviews Online
October 23, 2006 :: Welcome to my Blog!

Apple :: Apple's Tree
December 4, 2006 :: Older Articles
Apple started blogging in December 2005 at The Apple Doesn't Fall Far From the Tree and created Apples' Tree just for her genealogy.

On January 12, 2007 I started blogging. And a few others came along in the first two months of the year, including:

Bill West :: West in New England
January 23, 2007 :: Beginning

footnoteMaven :: footnoteMaven
February 28, 2007 :: Shelter From the Storm, Stories of the Home and Hearth

John Newmark :: Transylvanian Dutch
February 28, 2007 :: 100 Years Ago

Cheryl :: Two Sides of the Ocean
February 2007 / August 27, 2008 :: Immer Etwas
Some kind of big screw up with Blogger caused the disappearance of Cheryl's blog in August. She had been blogging there for the past 18 months. Her older posts are currently not available but she will be recreating them in the future on her new blog site. Right now, Cheryl is on her long-awaited trip to Germany!


Section II :: This second group of bloggers have also been blogging since sometime in 2006 or before. In most cases, they don't blog about their own genealogy, rather they provide us with the latest information about Genealogy Resources, Tips and News.

Pat Richley, as Dear Myrtle, gave us her first blog post on December 3, 2002. Yes, 2002! But she began posting in the current format in earnest on April 1, 2005 with Oh where, oh where is my ancestor from?

Kimberly Powell :: Kimberly's Genealogy Blog has had a column at since before blogging came along!

Dick Eastman :: Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter
In June 2004, Dick converted his long-running email newsletter to a blog format.

Leland Meitzler :: Everton's Genealogy Blog has been around for a few years too.

Chris Dunham :: The Genealogue and mastermind behind the Genealogy Blog Finder where he has catalogued 1,092 blogs in 29 categories that are related to genealogy in some way.
May 26, 2005 :: The Dark Side of Genealogy

John D. Reid :: Anglo-Celtic Connections
March 14, 2006 :: Library Elf

Michael John Neil :: RootDig
March 17, 2006 :: Civil War Pension Indexes

Joe Beine :: Genealogy Roots Blog (and others)
April 18, 2006 :: Missouri Death Index 1910-1955 Now Online

Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak :: Roots Television Megan's Roots World
Started her blog in April 2006, Roots Television went live in September 2006.

Schelly Talalay Dardashti :: Tracing the Tribe: The Jewish Genealogy Blog
August 8, 2006 :: What to expect from Tracing the Tribe

Sally Jacobs :: The Practical Archivist
I don't know when Sally started her blog, but one of the earliest posts I came across was December 14, 2006 :: Life Catching Life Hack

In all probability, I've likely missed a blog or two, so I apologize in advance! If you started blogging genealogy BEFORE January 2007, are still ACTIVELY blogging and not listed, please let me know (leave me a comment or send me an email).

Section III :: Updates to the list (updated October 5, 2008).

As Thomas MacEntee stated in a comment, his very first post at Destination: Austin Family was on December 28, 2006 with The journey "re-begins". So, "technically" he could be considered one of the Old Timers of genea-blogging ;-) However, Thomas didn't commit to posting regularly until September 28, 2007 when he posted The Weather Gets Colder - That Means Only One Thing . .

The Staff of the Sandusky Library and Follett House Museum :: Sandusky History
June 06, 2006 :: Libraries in Sandusky - A Brief History

Lorine Schulze :: Olive Tree Genealogy Blog
February 9, 2003 :: Alms House Admission Records, New York City, NY 1855-1858

Juliana Smith :: Family History Circle
March 31, 2006 :: The First Issue

Arlene Eakle :: Arlene Eakle's Genealogy Blog
June 12, 2006 :: Hello World!

Henk van Kampen :: Trace Your Dutch Roots
August 3, 2006 :: What this blog will be about

Colleen McHugh :: The Oracle of OMcHodoy
October 23, 2005 :: Why bother blogging?

M. Diane Rogers :: CanadaGenealogy, or, 'Jane's Your Aunt'
February 3, 2005 :: 101st Canadian Heroine-2005 Contest


Jasia said...

What a nice post, Becky! It must have taken you a lot of time to put it all together. I was surprised how long some people have been genea-blogging. Sometimes it feels like I've been doing it forever. Other times I can't believe nearly 3 years have gone by since I first started blogging. I remember back when I had to think long and hard to try to come up with something to write, something others would find interesting. Now I have a never-ending list of topics just waiting for me to get to them... so many ideas, so little time!

Thanks for thinking of us Becky!

Miriam Robbins said...

Thanks, Becky! I've been thinking a lot about us "old-timers" lately, and how the genea-bloggers and their blogs have evolved over the last couple of years. Your post is very timely. I'm glad you've been around for the journey with us!

Bill West said...

Hi Becky,
Funny,I was thinking the other day about how much the genea-blogger community has grown and about how
good an experience it has been because everyone is so friendly.

Thanks for the mention!

Thomas MacEntee said...

This is a great post - I designate you the official Genea-Blogger historian.

My blog history is weird. Technically, I started the blog on 12/26/2006 with the post entitled "The journey 're-begins'" but I really did not commit to actively posting until 9/28/2007 with "The Weather Gets Colder That Means One Thing."

Anonymous said...


What a nice post! I very briefly considered doing something similar when I wrote my post, but after 2 seconds I realized it would be a lot of work...I'm glad you made the effort.

Thanks for mentioning me twice!




What a very nice post! I know how long it must have taken you to compile this information. Since I began Tracing the Tribe back in summer 2006, I've learned so much about technology and also from my genea-blogger colleagues.

Becky, thank you again!


Anonymous said...

A nice post Becky. It was interesting to see who some of the early bloggers are. Lori Thornton, starting in 2004, was my inspiration to start a blog. For months she twisted my arm and I finally relented and started a blog for the historical society where I volunteer. Thanks to her, the society's blog is going on two years and it has certainly been a success bringing in lots more interest, membership and material to our organization and offering the society an opportunity to share the rich history and heritage of our county to a wide audience.

Bob Franks
Itawamba History Review

Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak said...

Thanks, Becky! Very kind (and ambitious!) of you to gather all this info in one place!

Take care,

Becky Wiseman said...

Thanks y'all for the kind words. Yes, it did take some time (well, actually quite a bit of time, much longer than I thought it would), but worth it. I was also surprised by how long some of you have been blogging! I can only hope you will continue for a long time into the future.

Bob - I checked your archives and May 22, 2007 was the date of your first post. Close to being an "Old Timer" but not quite yet ;-(

Craig Manson said...


Thanks for a great piece about a great community that continues to evolve!

Charley "Apple" Grabowski said...

Thanks Becky! It seemed like such a small group a couple of years ago. I still have some blogs in my reader that haven't had a new post in ages but I keep hoping they'll pick it back up. It's been interesting to see how the blogs you've listed have evolved and friendships developed. I'm still amazed that I can write about a problem I'm having and have several of you jump in with possible solutions. It's also great to see all of the new start ups but I admit to having trouble keeping up with them all.

Sally J. said...

Becky, what a marvelous treat!

When I started Practical Archivist, I felt like I was (literally) the only archivist in the world with a blog. My first post was November 11, 2006 -- you managed to find me by post #3, Becky!

So there I was, lonely and alone, and then the most wonderful thing happened...

A group of talented, smart, warm and funny geneabloggers welcomed me as one of their own. I am so grateful -- you guys are the best!


-Sally J.

Henk van Kampen said...

It takes less than two years to become an old-timer?

Trace your Dutch roots has been around since 2006 - just like all geneablogs, it seems. I think these blogs were already around before mine: Arlene Eakle - June 2006, Family History Circle - March 2006, and Olive Tree - February 2003.

Steve Danko said...

It's a lot of work to commit to blogging regularly, but it certainly has its rewards. This post is one of the rewards! Thanks for recording our history.


Moultrie Creek said...

Becky, thanks for the kind words regarding Family Matters and this wonderful history of genea-blogging. What a great walk down memory lane!

For the record, Family Matters published its first post in February of 2005.

Colleen said...

Great post Becky! I had my first blog post on October 23, 2005, at The first post was entitled "Why Bother Blogging" (, as I didn't really see the point of blogging at the time. I haven't had to ask that question since!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for putting together this list and thanks for the shout out.

My "begin date" is kinda ambiguous. I kept a blog for nearly 2 years without really linking to it or seeking outside readership. It was a notes to self thing for then.

Currently on a quasi hiatus; will resume after the votes have been tabulated in the wee hours of Nov 5.

Terry Thornton said...

Becky, Thanks for this wonderful salute to the old timers! It was the old timers who encouraged me to (1) start blogging (Lori Thornton sorta shamed me into doing a blog at a time when I didn't know anything about the blogging world) and (2) to continue blogging by accepting me so warmly into the small group of "genea-bloggers."

Those of us who arrived more recently on the geneablogger doorstep owe a tremendous debt of thanks to all the old timers you mentioned! THANKS TO YOU ALL for your nurturing, caring, encouraging, prodding, and hard work in helping so many of us newbies learn about blogging.

Terry Thornton
Fulton, Mississippi

Anonymous said...

Thanks so much for this great post Becky! It's amazing how much genealogy blogging has grown in recent years. I actually couldn't remember how long I'd been "blogging" so I had to go back and look in the archives. My first "blog post" was a tiny little thing (more of a link than the longer blogs of today) titled Nicknames in the Family Tree from June 28, 2003! But all of the great genealogy blogs started in recent years have really challenged the way I look at blogging - for the good :)

Anonymous said...

Even though I am not on this list, I admire all the work that went into compiling it. Good job! Before I set up my current Wordpress blog iPentimento just for genealogy topics, I wrote a few genealogy posts on my Typepad blog Pentimento. After reading this article I went back to see when I posted some of my family history articles, etc., and my first one was 5 Oct 2007. Again, this was a wonderful post to read Becky. Thank you!

Kathryn Doyle said...


A job well-done! As Thomas says, you are the genea-blogger historian. You should all know that Schelly speaks about gen-blogging. She includes some history and speaks warmly of many of you "old timers." I've been in her audience twice to witness the well-deserved homage to the community. We "middle-aged" and newbie bloggers thank you for your excellent example and continuing encouragement.

California Genealogical Society and Library blog

M. Diane Rogers said...

Interesting! Thanks for doing all this research. I've been blogging at 'CanadaGenealogy, or, Jane's Your Aunt' since February, 2005

Genealogy said...

I agree that genea-bloggers are turning into old timers. I am working on genealogy research and for this i keep on looking for some knowledegeable content and i think i have checked most of the blogs you have mentioned here. Blogging is a great way to share the knowledge.