Mar 29, 2013
GEM: A Blast from the Past -Episode: # 10
Original Publish Date: May 01, 2007
GEM: Stephen Morse
On August 21, 2007 I attended a seminar sponsored by a local genealogical society. The speaker was Stephen P. Morse who is very well-known in the genealogy community for his ingenious database search tools available to everyone free from his website: www.stevemorse.org
It’s estimated that nearly 40% of Americans today have an ancestor who arrived in the United States at Ellis Island. I know I certainly do.
Well, ship’s passenger records are really exciting to find and to work with. If you have an ancestor who came through Ellis Island, you’re going to want to make it a priority to find their record.
Steve Morse, described to those of us at the seminar, the success
and the frustrations that he encountered in trying to retrieve
records from the ellisisland.org database.
Steve experienced much of the same frustration that we often do. However, he just happens to be a world renowned engineer. He holds electrical engineering degrees from three universities, which he put to good use when he designed the Intel 8086, the predecessor to today’s Pentium processor.
And being an amateur genealogist he put those skills to good use by developing the One-Step Ellis Island website to make those records easier to find. Since that time the One-Step site has really been expanded to include new search capabilities and an array of color-coded search forms.
Today Steve recommends use of his Gold Form that searches all New York passengers using enhanced search options. It uses the database at ellisisland.org but has its own search form and search engine that provides the enhanced features.
When you use the Ellis Island website you’ll most likely have to keep going back and revising and adding to your search to get what you need. But using the Steve’s Gold Form website, all the search criteria are there on one page for you to choose from and use. You’ll be using your search time much more effectively – and you know me, I want to get the most I can out of my research time.
The One-Step website started out as an aid for finding these ship passengers in the Ellis Island database. Shortly afterwards it was expanded to help with searching in the 1930 census. Over the years it has continued to evolve and today includes over 100 web-based tools divided into twelve separate categories. They range from genealogical searches to astronomical calculations. He even has a last-minute bidding form you can use for e-bay! If you listened to Episode 3 of the Genealogy Gems Podcast on Ebay, then you know that I was excited to hear that!
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GEM: Interview with Genealogy Guru and Storyteller Darius Gray at RootsTech 2013
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