Saturday, February 19, 2011

Who Do You Think You Are, Season 2 Episode 3

Celebrity: Rosie O'Donnell
Aired: 18 Feb 2011

Ancestry.com Presence: Two commercials and two product placements.


Pros:
  • Highlighting the New Poor Law. Would have liked a few more details regarding its background information, but there is a time element to the show so they can't include everything. For those interested in learning a bit more about the Poor Law and workhouses look at the following excellent National Archives (UK) guides:
  • It definitely highlights the importance of finding cousins in that they were able to confirm who the woman is the picture was. I'm still trying to find someone with an identifiable photo of Roy Atchley (d. 1958) because I've never seen a photo of my grandfather that we KNOW to be my grandfather since he died when my dad was 7. As luck would have it, our box of photos have tons of candidates but are not labeled...
  • O'Donnell saying that it wasn't as easy as it looks on tv. YES! 
  • This is a personal preference, but I love it when they get to Europe. 

Cons: 
  • The music, but I'm finding I can tolerate it more each week. Desensitizing myself to it I suppose...
  • Most of my detractions are the same week to week like wanting them to give an estimate of how many research hours it took to produce the program.
  • I found it interesting that they did the microfilm for the census record and I wish they'd at least mentioned why they didn't look it up online. Would have thought that to be another prime opportunity for Ancestry to advertise itself.
  • Commercials: The leaves are a good start (sometimes) to forming a family tree but they don't bring up everything about your family on ancestry.com or even everything available that Ancestry doesn't have access to. Keep that in mind. A good search and tweaking search variables can bring up things that the leaves just didn't pick up on. 

In the End: I suppose the bits about the workhouse brought out more nostalgia than horror out of me. Keep in mind though, I spent nine months studying various records and administrative history of the UK. I guess that it wasn't as eerie for me because I knew full well what the workhouse was like. One of my lecturers read us a really depressing poem about the workhouse, which I would share if I could remember the title.


Rating: 4 out of 5 (Not terrible on mistreatment of documents, but she got a whole lot more info than some people ever could. It really isn't always possible to find the COUNTY someone is from in Ireland, the UK, etc...)


Things I'd Like to Reiterate:
  • Pencils, people, pencils. I prefer pens myself, but I wouldn't want to explain why my pen marks are on a 200 year old document. Would you?
  • If anyone wants to pay me to travel over to England and help them along for research, I'm totally open to it. If  your budget doesn't include that, I do know a few people over there that I trust that might be willing to do some work for people. :)

Next Week: Kim Cattrall (Which I'm 99% certain is the same UK version episode that they've just brought over here. I will most likely be VERY detailed about any differences!)

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