African-American and Ellis Island research featured

"African American Genealogy Research" and "Ellis Island Research" are the two newest additions to Genealogical Publishing's "Genealogy at a Glance" series of four-page, laminated quick-reference guides.

The African-American research guide is by Michael Hait and is divided into quick facts, basic research sources, Reconstruction-era records, Civil War record sources, free African-Americans in the North and South, researching enslaved ancestors, online resources and a list of four major books on the subject.

This succinct guide certainly can help someone get started and become familiar with the major sources. It is easy to read and includes lots of websites.

"Ellis Island Research" is by Sharon DeBartolo Carmack, a well-known author and certified genealogist. Her guide, which is focused narrowly on Ellis Island and immigration through New York City, starts with the background of Ellis Island and its predecessors. Also covered are passenger lists, the "name change myth," the two main databases ( and and the various problems with each.

She follows with other research strategies, microfilmed lists, and a section on "detainees." Four main databases are discussed again at the end.

Each of these guides is $7.95 plus $4.50 postage, unless ordered together. Check for ordering details, as well as for the other three guides in the series which cover Scottish, Irish and French-Canadian genealogy. 1-800-296-6687.

Genealogy writing, publishing workshop

The R. J. Taylor Jr. Foundation will hold a workshop Aug. 13 to help potential authors understand how best to work with the foundation, which gives publishing grants for books containing Georgia genealogy source materials, but not county, church or family histories.

Speakers will be Linda Geiger and Vivian Price. It will be held at the Auburn Avenue Research Library, Atlanta, from 8:30 a.m. until 4 p.m. Admission is free, but pre-registration is required. Lunch is provided.

For information on the grant process, see To register, contact Vivian Price at

The foundation places the books it has funded in about 45 genealogy and local history collections within Georgia and some key libraries elsewhere.

Family health history

For help in compiling your family's health history, use the form on the Department of Health and Human Services website,, to record medical background.

This is a project of the surgeon general, and should be helpful for sharing with family members to be sure they know what hereditary diseases are in the family.