Do You Have Old Messages on will introduce a new real-time conversation tool soon (FamilySearch Chat). It will replace the old messaging system.

When FamilySearch Chat fully replaces the old messaging system, messages from years prior to 2022 will not transfer to the new system. However, users can access and backup older messages they wish to keep. If you want to keep old messages DOWNLOAD THEM NOW! All messages older than 2022 will be available at until 31 December 2023

To save and backup your older messages, recommends using one of these methods:

  • Go to to download a complete .docx or .zip file of all your old messages to your personal device.
  • You can also look through your messages manually at and copy and paste the ones you would like to keep. Once you have the messages in a document on your device, you can save the document in your personal files.

To read more about FamilySearch Chat, click here.

1950 Census Is Almost Here

In case you haven’t heard (not sure how you missed the news!), the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is releasing the 1950 U.S. Census at midnight on 01 Apr 2022. NARA will provide free online access to the population schedules for U.S. states and territories, enumeration district maps, and enumeration district descriptions.  

According to NARA’s website, they used Amazon Web Services’ artificial intelligence / optical character recognition (AI/OCR) Textract tool to extract the handwritten names from the digitized population schedules. Because the initial name index is built on optical character recognition (OCR) technology, it will not be 100-percent accurate. NARA, FamilySearch, Ancestry, and a host of others are calling for eager volunteers to help “check and correct” the census — not transcribe names like we’ve done in the past. FamilySearch published a great “how-to” video during RootsTech on how to get involved in their effort. The video is available here.

Even though an index won’t be available for a while (hopefully a short while), you can still find your people (or maybe even yourself!). Steve Morse has published an excellent article on getting ready, including how to find your all-important enumeration district.

Let’s Talk About…………. Avocados!

Yes, that’s me just a few weeks ago holding a Butter Avocado that was just picked from a huge tree in Volcanoes National Park in Hawaii. We drove to an over look and while there chatted with a group of park worker-fellows who were doing trail maintenance. (Covering up to a dozen miles a day carrying gas and a weed whacker…supermen!) As they rested a bit, one pulled out a 30-foot collapsible fruit picker and proceeded to harvest these special fruits……… and generously gave one to me. “It won’t ripen for a week or so,” he told me. Alas! We were leaving the next day so what to do? What any red-blooded gal would do: I mailed it home! Please don’t tell on me. I’m anxiously watching it on my counter…

There are 7 to 15 varieties of avocados, depending on what source you consult. Mexico is the top producer of these fabulous fruits and ships most of their crop to the U.S. The variety Hass is the one we see most regularly in our markets.

If you wish to sprout your avocado pit and grow your own tree, it’s possible but will take up to six years to produce fruit and then only if conditions are right.

Did our ancestors enjoy avocados? “The avocado made its way to the Land of Liberty in 1833 and enjoyed moderate popularity where avocado farms existed, such as California, Florida and Hawaii. People in other areas of the country largely avoided avocadoes until the 1950s when the fruit became a supporting actor in delicious salads. Part of the reason for people’s avoidance of this delicious fruit was due to the long-standing reputation of avocados as an aphrodisiac, which made the fruit taboo among the conservative American public.” (From )

Saving Military History One Soldier at a Time

In This Issue of Saving Military History One Soldier at a Time
August 2020 Issue
We have now gone over 500,000 web pages of history! More is on the way.
History Reminder: Saturday August 15 is the 75th anniversary of V-J Day and the end of World War II. A special salute to those veterans who have departed our ranks during 2020 and to those still with us on this day.
We have been scanning manuals and other documents and in this issue we will highlight a few (USMC, Navy, USAF, USAAF). Also find a spotlight on the SETAF command, photos, facts regarding the Army Commendation and recent donations.
Now, an important question. What topics or material would you like to see in these monthly newsletters? Drop us an email to let us know!
We continue and will continue to “Save Military History One Soldier at A Time” and preserve the artifacts of your or your families’ service. We are honored to be the custodian of this material. Our growing collection of programs are all a result of your support.
If you think history matters, please connect with us on Social Media or via our website and even make a donation. Thank you.
You can help us get the word out about our organizations. Please tell all your friends and family and follow our Facebook pages.
Army Air Corps on Facebook    Sons of Liberty on Facebook    Remember those that made the #ultimatesacrifice #sonsofliberty. #patriots
Join us on this journey.
In Their Memory, Robert Coalter, Jason Weigler Executive Directors
  “Saving Military History One Soldier At A Time”.SM  “Saving History One Soldier At A Time”SM
Visit Sons of Liberty Website
Visit Army Air Corps Library and Museum Website
Sons of Liberty Museum
The Sons of Liberty has hundreds of uniforms and thousands of other artifacts in our collection from the U.S. Civil War to Present day. Our web presence now numbers in excess of 325,000 pages. We continue to accept new material for education and research programs; a number of these items will make their way on to the website. Our collection includes memorabilia from the front line soldier to the rear echelon clerk. Drivers, infantrymen, pilots, tankers, seaman, medical, artillery, armorers, engineers, quartermasters and much more. Those that were drafted or volunteered; those that did a single tour or made it a career. Those that returned with all types of injuries and those that gave their full measure being killed in action (KIA). All MOS are welcome from the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard and Marines. We are Saving Military History One Soldier At A Time. We are honoring the service of the Citizen Soldier.
We have uploaded a few documents / manuals for reading and research. The first is “Fighting on Guadalcanal” This booklet published in 1943 recounts the thoughts of Marines on the ‘Canal’. Six men quoted are currently in our database for awards received during the fighting.
Next is “Ship Shapes”, 1942, the Anatomy and Types of Naval Vessels. These pdf files may take a few minutes to download an open.

We need volunteers to transcribe award and roster documents. You will place the material into a spreadsheet where it will be added to our database and website. We welcome new dedicated volunteers to work from home and help us with this project!
Interesting Links & Resources
Visit Our Facebook Page: Videos on YouTube: Researching History: Honor Roll:
We welcome donations of papers, books, photos, gear, uniforms, jackets, medals, ribbons, weapons, equipment, scrapbooks, biographies, diaries and more. Please Contact Us
Civil War, Spanish-American War, World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, Cold War, Gulf War and current conflict donations accepted. From small to large multi-item donations, they all tell a story.
We need you ! We need your help to further our mission of preserving and bringing this history to you and your families. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit your qualifying donations are tax deductible.
Army Commendation – ARCOM Did you know? The Army Commendation award was not a medal to begin with it was only a ribbon.
Army Commendation Medal, abbreviated and often called ‘ARCOM’, was instituted in 1945 and was awarded retroactively to those who served after December 6, 1941. The ARCOM is awarded to those who have served with the U.S. Army and have demonstrated heroism, meritorious achievement, or meritorious service.
Originally, the ARCOM was a ribbon-only award
In 1949 the ribbon was changed to include a medal was approved to be a ribbon with a pendant and then in 1960 the Army Commendation award was completely redesigned to the current medal.
SETAF Southern European Task Force, U.S. Army Africa A History from the US Army:
“SETAF was formally activated during a ceremony October 25, 1955. The headquarters, commanded by Maj. Gen. John Michaelis, was temporarily established at Camp Darby with units stationed in Vicenza and Verona. Shortly after activation, SETAF moved its headquarters to Verona. Troop strength reached 10,000 and SETAF was formally established with a U.S.-Italian agreement.
In 1959 a third agreement brought significant changes to SETAF, to include assigning Italian Army personnel to the SETAF general staff to assist with unique bi-national responsibilities.
In 1963, SETAF lent a helping hand to our Italian neighbors when a huge landslide forced a deluge of water over the Vajont Dam in the Piave Valley killing more than 2,000 people. SETAF helicopters were the first on the scene to provide assistance.
Its headquarters moved again in 1965 to Caserma Carlo Ederle in Vicenza. SETAF’s mission and geographical area of responsibility increased in 1972 when the command enlarged its signal support unit and took control of two Army Artillery Groups in Greece and Turkey. With the assignment of the 1st Battalion, 509th Infantry (Airborne Battalion Combat Team) in 1973, SETAF accepted the missions of maintaining and deploying the battalion on its own or as part of the Allied Command Europe Mobile Force (Land).
Throughout the 1970s and 80s, SETAF continued its tradition of helping out our Italian neighbors whenever disaster struck. Until 1992, SETAF was considered to be a logistical command, but changes in Europe in 1989 and 1990 resulted in new missions. SETAF shifted focus to regional tactical operations as a command and control headquarters for Army and Joint units. In March 1991, SETAF’s 3rd Battalion (Airborne), 325th Infantry Regiment, deployed to northern Iraq during Operation Provide Comfort, the U.S. led humanitarian mission to feed and provide other life support for thousands of displaced Kurds.
In July 1994, SETAF deployed to Entebbe, Uganda as the core staff of Joint Task Force Support Hope. A total of 2,100 U. S. military personnel, including SETAF’s 3rd Battalion (Airborne), 325th Infantry Regiment, deployed to the region to help prevent a humanitarian crisis resulting from large-scale refugee movements caused by the civil war in Rwanda. SETAF demonstrated its role as the theater’s reaction force in December 1995 by deploying as the lead element of the Dayton Peace Accord implementation forces into Bosnia-Herzegovina. April 1996 proved to be exceptionally busy: Elements of the SETAF Infantry Brigade deployed to Dubrovnik, Croatia to secure the crash site of U.S. Treasury Secretary Ron Brown’s plane. Another company-plus deployed to Monrovia, Liberia with special operations forces to facilitate noncombatant evacuation operations.
In November 1996, portions of the SETAF-led Joint Task Force Guardian Assistance deployed to Uganda and Rwanda to assess the needs of Rwandan refugees in Zaire. In March 1997, a SETAF-led JTF headquarters deployed to Brazzaville, Congo, in preparation for the potential evacuation of non-combatants from Zaire. The JTF redeployed in April 1997 upon a peaceful government transition in Zaire.
On March 26, 2003, during Operation Iraqi Freedom, SETAF’s 173d Airborne Brigade conducted a parachute assault into Northern Iraq. About 1,000 paratroopers jumped into Bashur Airfield in a historical and critical mission called Operation NORTHERN DELAY. The brigade remained in Iraq for a year conducting a variety of missions from defeating insurgents to building and renovating schools.
On July 25, 2003, SETAF was designated to lead the US military mission in Liberia to help prevent an impending humanitarian disaster. A peace agreement was implemented, forces of the warring factions were separated, air and seaports were reopened, and the United Nations and private humanitarian organizations resumed delivery of badly needed relief. In February 2005, both SETAF and the 173d Airborne Brigade were called upon to do their part in the global war on terror, deploying to Afghanistan, as part of the Combined Joint Task Force-76. The U.S. Army’s transformation saw the 173d Airborne Brigade change into an Airborne Brigade Combat Team in 2006.
The 173d ABCT, with its headquarters and two battalions from Vicenza and four battalions in Germany, deployed in May 2007, again to Afghanistan, in support of NATO’s International Security Assistance Force. The brigade redeployed in the summer of 2008.
From June through November 2007, SETAF Soldiers deployed to Romania and Bulgaria as a part of Joint Task Force – East. JTF-East is an on-going United States European Command initiative to strengthen relationships between the United States and our Eastern European allies.
In July 2008, SETAF provided command and control for Exercise Immediate Response in the Republic of Georgia. IR08 provided U.S. European Command another opportunity to develop a partnership with our allies. SETAF went through major changes in the fall of 2008.
In August 2008, SETAF conducted its final airborne operation and shortly after, SETAF Soldiers replaced their maroon berets with black ones and replaced their airborne tabs with historic SETAF scrolls.
Then in early December 2008, the U.S. Ambassador to Italy and the Italian Minister of Foreign Affairs announced in Rome that SETAF officially assumed duties as the Army component headquarters for U.S. Africa Command. U.S. Army Africa, as the Army Service Component Command for U.S. Africa Command, strengthens the land force capabilities of African states and regional organizations, supports AFRICOM operations, and conducts decisive action in order to establish a secure environment and protect the national security interests of the United States. USARAF/SETAF remains available for deployment in support of NATO operations.
From October 2011 through January 2012, U.S. Army Africa was called upon to participate in Joint Task Force Odyssey Dawn and Odyssey Guard. With a coalition of more than a dozen nations, JTF-Odyssey Dawn assisted to enforce United Nations Security Council Resolution 1973 to protect civilians in Libya under threat of attack by Gaddafi regime forces. It also orchestrated the aero medical evacuation of 26 injured Libyan freedom fighters. In January 2012, by Department of Army general order, SETAF was officially re-designated USARAF/SETAF and further designated as an Army Service Component Command, connecting USARAF/SETAF to Ninth U.S. Army’s lineage, fitting USARAF/SETAF fully within the Army’s evolving structure for units above the division level.
From December 2013 to mid-September 2014, the Ebola virus had swept through Liberia, Guinea, and Sierra Leone, killing thousands and threatening to spread throughout western Africa and beyond. By order of the President of the United States, the U.S. Department of Defense established Joint Force Command–United Assistance as part of a unified-action approach to combat the growing Ebola threat. Formed with a core of soldiers from U.S. Army Africa, the Army Service component command for U.S. Africa Command, Joint Force Command–United Assistance reached a combined strength of 686 personnel before transferring responsibility to the 101st Airborne Division (Air Assault) on 25 October 2014.
In the years since USARAF’s inception, it has made progress through a consistent program of senior leader engagements and regionally focused activities. It has witnessed the restructuring of the African exercise program to address regional concerns, built multilateral relationships and supports a shared vision of 54 stable, secure nations. U.S. Army Africa, known also as Ninth U.S. Army, will continue the path of success and the command will remain in close collaboration with and responsive to our African and interagency partners in the years to come. The U.S. Army Africa team and its dynamic partners will continue to partner today for Africa tomorrow. America’s premier Army team dedicated to positive change in Africa.”
Credits US ARMY
Army Air Corps Museum
The Air Corps Museum online presence encompasses over 225,000 web pages with thousands of photos and other materials. Our artifact collection contains hundreds of uniforms, albums, logs, medals and more from the Army Air Service, Army Air Forces and U.S. Air Force.
World War I, World War II, Korea, Vietnam, Desert Storm, Cold War, Gulf War and current conflict donations welcome!
We will be highlighting more donations in upcoming issues; this month it is Matthew Pekar. Also are some interesting manuals for your reading pleasure.

We need volunteers to transcribe documents, placing the material into a spreadsheet. We welcome new dedicated volunteers to help us with this project! Work from home.
Interesting Links & Resources
We are on Facebook: Trace a Family Members Military Service: Pinterest: Honor Roll: YouTube Videos:
We welcome donations of papers, books, photos, gear, uniforms, jackets, medals, ribbons, weapons, equipment, scrapbooks, biographies, diaries, letters and more. Please Contact Us
You can make monetary donations through the following links. As a 501(c)(3) non-profit your qualifying donations are tax deductible.
Matthew Pekar
A small display of artifacts from Matthew Pekar, 1069th Signal Company based in the Pacific, 13th Air Force during World War II. This group was involved with encryption equipment for secure communications.

Issued by the War Department an Army Air Forces Field Manual on Combat Orders June 16, 1942.
A Syllable of Flight For Pilots, 1963 1st Lt. Josephine Sansone receives an Air Medal from Lt. General Lewis Brereton the commander of the 1st Allied Airborne Army. Ms. Sansone a light nurse with 9th Air Force Troop Carrier Command completed many flights aboard transports bringing wounded from the front to rear area evacuation hospitals.
Preserve This History, Honor the Service, Provide Education For Future Generations.
Make a $ Donation to the Army Air Corps Library and Museum Thank You For Your Support ! Make a $ Donation To the Sons of Liberty Museum Thank You For Your Support !
Unfortunately because of the current events all of our events are cancelled or postponed until further notice. However, we continue to receive donations and work on collection-artifact preservation plus web projects. We look forward to the day when we can get out in the community again.
Need a Good Book? Check out these new titles.
I was a navigator in the 459 Bomb Group 758 Bomb Squadron flying B-24’s from Torre Giulia Field, tower named ‘Coffee Tower’, a gravel airfield near Cerignola, on the Foggia Plains of Southeastern Italy during the period August 4, 1944 to May 16, 1945. I flew 50 combat missions over targets in Germany, Austria, Hungary, Poland, Yugoslavia and Northern Italy.
Project Option: 6×9 in, 15×23 cm # of Pages: 386 IsbnSoftcover: 9781714032860 Publish Date: Dec 12, 2019
Buy It $24.99 Most aircraft of World War II had pictures of sexy girls, tributes to sweethearts, songs and home. The planes were fondly referred to in a feminine manor. That was not the case with this B-17 tail number 42-25233. He was Rigor Mortis.
This is the story of Rigor Mortis and his men who flew over 120 missions from North Africa and Italy in 1943 and 1944.
Project Option: 8×10 in, 20×25 cm # of Pages: 382 IsbnSoftcover: 9781714727803 Publish Date: Apr 20, 2020
Buy It $29.95
MIAs – Missing in Action
We have information on over 90,000 MIAs. This includes most all the World War II MIAs and some from World War I, Korea, Vietnam and the Cold War.
With our strategic partners, the MIA Recovery Network, we want to tell the last chapter in the life of these Citizen Soldiers.
We would also like your help in telling the first chapters of the lives of those still Missing in Action. Do you have service photos of a family member that is or was MIA? News articles? Service related material?
Material on Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines MIAs:
Air Corps: X-Files – Buried Unknowns
There are many citizen soldiers whose body was recovered, but they are unidentified. There are thousands of these unknowns buried in American Battle Monument Cemeteries around the world. They are also known as X-Files.
Material on Army, Navy, Air Force and Marines X-Files can be found:
Get Donation Information: Artifacts Monetary
Awards, Rosters Unit Documents
We need you ! A continued big thanks to our fantastic army of volunteers. We have much more so if you can type and have a couple hours each week we can use you !
Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force
We have received material on many units and are hoping to compile much more.
Unit Citations, Awards, Transfers, Rosters
Many groups received unit citations during their particular conflict. The paperwork, in triplicate, would include a roster of all assigned and attached personnel. We are seeking and requesting copies of those roster documents. Please search your papers, talk to your association and help us out with this information and get them to us pronto! Attention Website Owners & Veteran Associations
Many WWII veterans organizations have shut. Many these organizations had developed some type of website, some with enormous amounts of data and history. Sadly, many had/have not made provisions for their website to be continued and thus when the bill stops being paid, the website disappears and all the work and information is lost. We want to help and we need you to help us. If you know of a disbanding group, please have them get in contact with us; we would like to bring their website and information under our wing. If they want to continue to maintain it we can give them access to continue that as well. One of our top goals for this and every year is to preserve this history not lose it!
Not a WW2 unit? That’s ok. We are also interested in your history and want to help preserve it. Korea, Vietnam and all other conflicts.
If your organization has physical materials such as uniforms, patches, photos and other memorabilia do you have plans for them when you cease operations? We would be honored to be the custodian of your group’s history. .
Contact Sons of Liberty Museum   Army Air Corps Library and Museum  
Directors’ Line: 214.957.1393

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If you wish to continue to receive our newsletters, do nothing; however, please help spread the word and share and like this with your friends and family and on social media. You can help us to preserve this history.
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QSL Card

The Seattle Genealogical Society receives many interesting and valuable donations. One such donation came in the mail from a gentleman in another state. Inside the letter was a post card with a photo of a man on it. The caption read “Old Man Ryan Ex US Navy.” Above his photo was a set of letters and numbers reading W7FSH. What is this? There were smaller words above the strange code that said: Amateur Radio Station.

The post card sent to us was a QSL card. A “calling card” for a Ham Radio Operator. Wikipedia says this about QSL cards: “it is a written confirmation of either a two-way radio communication between two amateur radio stations or a one-way reception of a signal from an AM radio, FM radio, television or shortwave broadcasting station. The QSL card derived its name from the Q code ‘QSL’. A Q code message can stand for a statement or a question (when the code is followed by a question mark). In this case, ‘QSL?’ (note the question mark) means “Do you confirm receipt of my transmission?” while ‘QSL’ (without a question mark) means “I confirm receipt of your transmission.”.

According to a knowledgeable volunteer at Seattle Genealogical Society, the QSL card is used to confirm contact between two radio stations, in a creative, personalized way. This QSL card was telling the recipient “W8JPY” that W7FSH had not received the maps that he requested. Our volunteer explained that Ham Radio Operators exchange these cards not only to let the other operator know that they contacted one another, but as a “simple gathering of printed documentation of a ham’s communications over the course of his or her radio career” from locations all over the world.

The name under the photo “Old Man Ryan” has a special meaning also. Male radio operators are called “Old Man” while female radio operators are called “Young Lady”. Each operator creates a card with enough information on it so that the person receiving the QSL will know just where in the world they came from. As you can see on this card Mr. Albert H. Ryan used to be in the US Navy, lives in Seattle and his station call letters are W7FSH. The date that Mr. Ryan communicated with the station W8JPY (Mr. K.S. Vogt of the Tower Club at Ohio State University) was 7 April 1937.

QSL cards are still in use today and our volunteer has a vast collection of her own cards with one sent from Christmas Island!

Thanks to Mr. David Doss from Michigan for sending us this card and to A.W. for her explaining its significance to us.

Sue Jensen, Director of the Library, Seattle Genealogical Society

Looking for Authors for the Blog

A while back I asked our member about writing articles that might interest our subscribers, so far I have received one and it was the most read article that week.

The South King County Genealogical Society has been posting wonderful stories on their blog like this one so I will ask again, anyone have an article that might be interesting to our subscribers.

Find a Home for City Directories

Hi Donna,Our Library needs to get rid of some city directories.  Do you know anyone in WA or ID who has such a need?  Is this something appropriate to run in the Blog?  They are as follows:
Blackfoot, ID 1992; Everett, WA 1976; Flagstaff, AZ 1970; Idaho Falls, ID 1993; 1994Olympia, WA 1992; Pocatello, ID 1993; Port Angeles, WA 1993, 1994; Seattle, WA 1979, 1980; Vancouver, WA 1958, 1978; Wenatchee, WA 1979; Yakima, WA 1991, 1993.

Contact Janet Damm, Whitman County Genealogy Society,

Thanks for any suggestions you have, Janet

Lost Photos

WSGS has received a packet of photos from Shelley Cardiel in Portland, OR.   I’ve attached a compiled list of the photos. Some info is faint & difficult to read…   In addition I can scan them and place them on our website in the Gallery.

SCRIBE-ing Report

Reporting in again with a progress report on my SCRIBE-ing fun.

I’m proud to announce that I was number 142 on the list…. meaning that 141 folks had indexed more names than me. But you see I’ve risen up to number 84! So “only” 83 folks have done more indexing than me. I likely will never catch up with (WSGS Past President) Stephen Baylor or Charles Hansen but that’s okay. I’m SCRIBE-ing and that’s the point.

SCRIBE is the indexing opportunity afforded by the Washington State Archives. Google it to get yourself set up to contribute and you too will soon have happy news to report!