Genealogical research is a popular video topic offered by YouTube. A website that provides links to the top 25 genealogy YouTube channels is a handy place to start. The channels listed at include Ancestry, FamilySearch (includes videos of many RootsTech seminars), Lisa Louise Cooke’s Genealogy Gems, Family History Fanatics, Dear MYRTLE, Brigham Young University Family History Library, Amy Johnson Crow and The Browning Genealogy in Evansville, Ind., to name a few.

At any desired channel, click on the link following the word “Channel.” Note that this website offers a free subscription to its Genealogy Videos Newsletter, “a comprehensive summary of the day’s most popular videos” from the best channels.

Be prepared to spend a lot of time at this valuable learning experience! It can be time well spent.

Research guides

Probate Record Pathfinder is one of the resources offered by the New York State Library that offers information on probate records created in New York from the British colonial period to the present. Visit and take advantage of the many links that are offered. For example, visit the link to the New York State Library’s Genealogical Resources and also the State Archives’ guide to Genealogy Resources.

A good place to start is the library’s website, Genealogy Research Topics, at, with links to such topics as Getting Started, Official Records, Military Records, and Regional Information. For example, the Getting Started topic includes a Pathfinder for searching surnames, immigration information, adoption research and African-American resources.

Free magazine available

In celebration of the New York Genealogical & Biographical Society’s (NYG&B) 150th anniversary, the society is offering its latest issue of its quarterly magazine, New York Researcher, free to read or download through Labor Day at . This issue includes, in part:

• A letter from NYG&B President D. Joshua Taylor

• New York Vital Records Updates

• What Next? Six Steps to Take with a Death Certificate

• Highlights from its blog

• Exploring Our Past: NYG&B Visits the Netherlands

• Did You Know? (“A majority of genealogical organizations founded before 1900 did not allow women to join as formal members.”)

• New Online Records & Databases

DNA Testing

Three DNA testing companies — Ancestry, 23and Me and Helix — “are forming a new coalition on best practices for handling DNA information and to promote the industry in Washington as lawmakers put more scrutiny on their privacy practices.”

Alex Gangitano’s article in The Hill can be read at The testing companies are “under the microscope on what they do with the vast amounts of DNA data they collect.” The coalition would “let Congress know what the best practices are for protecting customers’ data.”

Fake DNA kits

Eastman’s Online Genealogy Newsletter warns that counterfeit DNA kits are being sold and “duping millions.” Read his article at Valid kits can be purchased from Ancestry DNA, MyHeritage DNA, FamilyTree DNA, Living DNA, 23andMe, or FindMyPast DNA.

Queries, as well as a general exchange of genealogical material that readers would like to share, will be printed in the column for free. Contact Joan Griffis by e-mailing

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