Serendipity Day

Having just been for two weeks in Egypt, learning about all the 4000 year old temples and pyramids, and experiencing the warmth and friendliness of the Egyptian people, Egypt is on my mind today.


Here is my picture from the Mena House Hotel where we stayed several nights. The old part of it was built in 1869 to house the dignitaries who came for the opening of the Suez Canal.

Are there resources for folks with Egyptian ancestry? Very darn little, I found. The Wiki on FamilySearch has a “Egypt Genealogy” page but there is not yet much there. Could find nothing in the Ancestry catalog.

Reading Mountains of the Pharaohs: The Untold Story of the Pyramid Builders, by Dr. Zawi Hawass, 2006, my eyes jumped at this:  “The ancient Egyptian government took a census of cattle every two years, and kings of the early periods numbered their reigns according to these censuses.”  That’s cool, but of no genealogy help.

There are folks with Egyptian ancestry who will be wanting to trace their family tree. I hope some resources will soon be coming.


Had a great read on my Kindle on the long flight over:  Murder Bay, by David R. Horwitz. This is good fiction:  The year is 1958 and police sergeant Benjamin Carey is appointed head of a new department housed in a century-old house in Washington, DC. Sleeping in the turret room, Ben learns of and begins to unravel the mystery of Mordechai Finkel, a Civil War soldier who died in the room a century before. The story line jumps between 1862 and 1958 and is wonderfully told….a genuine page turner. I highly recommend this book whether or not you’re facing a long flight.


Wishing you had access to some of the premium subscription websites but your budget don’t allow subscriptions at this time? No problem.  Visit your nearby Family History Center and through the Family History Center Portal  you can access fourteen different for-pay websites including Ancestry, Fold3, Newspaper Archives, Find My Past, Paper Trail (website of the Oregon California Trails Association which has lists of 99% of the pioneers who migrated west in the 19th century), and Heritage Quest Online. For the days and hours when these centers are open, visit our EWGS website ( or click to and “search for a center near you.”


If you’re one of those who really have not liked the new website….well, too bad. It’s official:  that will be the one-and-only Ancestry website so we must learn to appreciate and use it. I personally think it’s a case of impatience…just not wanting to take the time to click around, read and learn how best to understand and use the new site. But, bottom line, that’s the way it is. Until the next time Ancestry decides to update their website!


There are some, including my dear late mother-in-law, who had no use for genealogy. She not only believed it was hogwash but was a shameful waste of time. Being a Bible-reading Christian, her opinion came from 1 Timothy 1:4 (KJV):  “Neither give heed to fables and endless genealogies….” Or Titus 3:9:  “….avoid foolish questions and genealogies…”  To my understanding, after some study, the answer is this:  Jews of the day strove too often to prove their descent from Abraham thus claiming that they were automatically saved above the Gentiles…that they were better than the Gentiles. Paul emphasized personal righteousness no matter what your ancestry.  What is your opinion?


What blogs do I follow? This is on my mind as I have nearly three week’s of catching up to do. I follow the Ancestry blog, the Ancestry Insider (yes, different), the Genealogy’s Star blog, the Legal Genealogist blog (often over my head but interesting nonetheless), the Geneabloggers blog, Dick Eastman’s newsletter (… the free version) and the Fold3 blog. It costs nothing to subscribe to these blogs and by scanning them weekly you’ll keep yourself updated on what’s going on in the genealogy world. “Takes too much time!” you say. Psshaw… I can scan five blogs posts in five minutes and so could you. Zero in on what’s important to YOU.


Here are some more Cyndi Ingle-isms that I quickly scribbled down on the day she was with the Eastern Washington Genealogical Society:

“Avoid a website or an email that looks kinky.”

“I don’t know if I believe everything I tell you.”

“For cryin’ out tears!”

” I do believe that everything you need to do efficient research today is on the Internet. 

              but if you’ve looked everywhere and have not found your answer or ancestor,

              you are not looking in the right place and at the right record.”