Monday, September 28, 2015

What's that you say, Lassie? Someone needs help?

Avro Lancaster bomber
I only recently read about this search, so it's very short notice.  Every living veteran who served in the UK Bomber Command during World War II is being sought for the unveiling of a new memorial, the International Bomber Command Centre, on October 2.  Anyone knowing of any Bomber Command veteran should register the name by e-mailing or writing to The IBCC, 13 Cherry Holt Road, Bourne, Lincolnshire, PE10 9LA.  More information is available in a BBC article.

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The Minnesota Military Museum has a "Veterans Registry" on its new Web site and is requesting assistance to gather stories from veterans.  The registry is a statewide database with information about the military service of Minnesota veterans.  A qualified veteran is anyone who once served or is currently serving in the U.S. military and was either born in or lived in Minnesota.  The plan is to have the most comprehensive online database of Minnesota veterans available to the public.

Anyone can submit a Minnesota veteran's story and pictures of veterans ranging from the Civil War to today.  The service is free of charge and is part of the museum's mission.  If you are interested in learning more or making a submission, visit the museum's site and click on "Veterans."

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The Jewish Community of Nuremberg is in possession of the so-called Sturmer or Streicher Library, a collection of approximately 10,000 books taken by the Nazis from Jews, Catholics, Freemasons, and others.  The books primarily appear to have been taken from Nuremberg, Franconia; Strasbourg, Alsace-Lorraine; and Vienna, Austria.  The Jewish Community is asking for assistance in finding the former owners or their descendants so that the books may be returned.

More background on the collection, a list of known owners, and photos of identifying information from the books is available on GenTeam.  Contact Leibl Rosenberg, representative of the city of Nuremberg, with questions and research results.

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A new cemetery project is looking for help from genealogists everywhere.  Ryan Vinson’s "Here Lies" encourages users to visit cemeteries and catalog grave sites via an app using GPS data.  Someone using the app uploads a photo of one or more tombs or gravestones, then adds the name and date of birth, and possibly comments.  The digital recording of that burial location will remain forever, even if the markings on the stone fade or are damaged, or the stone itself no longer exists.

Vinson is particularly interested in information from small family graveyards and similar cemeteries that often become neglected and forgotten, and where lack of regular care can lead to deterioration that makes gravestones impossible to identify.  At present only a small number of gravestones is on the app, but with the help of volunteers, it could grow to be a useful database.

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The Fittonia
The town of Grimsby, England lost about 375 fishing trawlers during World War I to mines and U-boats.  Most were destroyed while fishing, while some were requisitioned by the British government to assist with the war effort and were lost as far away as Iceland, Canada, and South Africa.  Twenty-five of the boats have already been researched, and funding has been obtained to research thirty more.  There is now an outreach effort to volunteers worldwide to help map the other lost fishing boats.

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England's Tate Museum is asking for help in identifying buildings and landscapes in nearly 1,000 photographs of the English countryside taken by artist John Piper from the 1930's to the 1980's.  The museum is also looking for contributions of current shots of the almost 6,000 locations that Piper photographed.  If you think you might be able to identify some of the unknown locations in the photographs, visit the Tate's page about the Piper collection.

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Two researchers from the Santa Clara County (California) Historical and Genealogical Society are working on a national project called Faces Never Forgotten, an effort to collect photographs of every Vietnam War casualty for placement in a museum near the Vietnam Memorial Wall in Washington, D.C.  They are working on service members from Santa Clara County.  They have found many photographs in obituaries in local newspapers, but for those casualties whose obituaries lacked photographs, they have been searching in high school yearbooks.  In pursuit of the final missing photos, they are now searching for copies of the following yearbooks:
Andrew Hill: 1967, 1968Mountain View: 1960 through 1969
Buchser: 1966, 1969Overfelt: 1966, 1967
Campbell: 1966, 1967, 1968Pioneer: 1968
Cupertino: 1966, 1967, 1968, 1969  Ravenswood: 1962
Del Mar: 1964, 1965Samuel Ayer: 1966, 1967
Fremont: 1968San Jose: 1966, 1967, 1968
James Lick: 1966Santa Clara: 1952
Leigh: 1965, 1966, 1967Saratoga: 1965
Lynbrook: 1966, 1967 1968Washington (Union City): 1965
Mount Pleasant: 1966Westmont: 1965, 1966, 1967, 1968

If you have one of the yearbooks being sought, please e-mail and put “High School Yearbooks” in the subject line.  The researchers will get back to you and let you know what to do next.

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This might not be considered genealogy-related by some, but I tend to think of archives such as this as wonderful places to look for information about people.  The San Francisco Opera Archive is looking for volunteer assistance with organizing materials related to the history of the San Francisco Opera.  A minimum time commitment of three hours per week is required.  PC skills, including Word, Excel, and Outlook proficiency, are important.  Knowledge of opera is helpful but not required.  If you are interested, contact


  1. I haven't checked them all, but your "Here Lies" link is a bad link. Easily fixed though - take out the "" and it works fine.

    I hope that project is better than another GPS grave locater app I was trying out. The app was a little clunky and their customer service was either rude or non-existent.

  2. Thanks for letting me know about the bad link. Apparently Blogger seems to have auto-inserted itself in there.

    Sorry to hear that the other grave locator didn't work out. Not having a smartphone, I can't test any of them.


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