Illinois Ancestors: Immigration issues not new in U.S.

Illinois Ancestors: Immigration issues not new in U.S.

"It does seem strange that a nation of immigrants has so often attempted to place restrictions on immigration." Dick Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter recently made this statement, which can be read at He also noted that Angelica Quintero has documented immigration laws in the Los Angeles Times article, "America's love-hate relationship with immigrants," which can be read at

Also, Matthew Deighton has written an interesting article, "Debunking the American Dream: Immigrants Did Better in 1900 Than in 2000," an blog, which can be read at

Confederate symbols too plentiful to obliterate

It has been estimated that at least 1,503 symbols of the Confederacy are in public places in the U.S. These include monuments, statues, names of schools, roads, cities, lakes, military bases and more. A 59-page Wikipedia list of such symbols can be found at with such categories as history, removal, coins, stamps, geographic location, and locations having laws prohibiting their removal.

Historians and politicians continue to disagree on the value of such symbols of America's past. Columnist Joyce Holley has written a thoughtful article, "Confederate monuments only tell part of the story; ... they don't acknowledge the whole of our history in the South or the reasons behind the war" and she names some types of markers that could do that and thus "add to our collection of Confederate statuary" rather than destroy existing ones. Read her article at

Some genealogists have had to come to grips with the dilemma of finding an ancestral family that had family members fighting for both the Union and the Confederacy. They were all patriotic Americans — doing what they thought best for their country. Memorials help us to remember our history — right or wrong — and not repeat past mistakes. Why destroy any of them!

Canada's archives listed on web

Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia, has posted a List of Archives in Canada at Presented in chart form, the list includes the names of archives in alphabetical order, along with website/link, city, province/territory, and type. A click on any category's icon rearranges that list in alphabetical order. The provinces are Alberta, British Columbia, Manitoba, New Brunswick, Newfoundland, Northwest Territories, Nova Scotia, Ontario, Prince Edward Island, Quebec, Saskatchewan, Yukon and Yukon Territories. The types include arts, business, community, cultural, educational, government, health care, human rights, military, museum, professional, regional, religious, science, sport and university/college. Visit this helpful website at

Have you contacted a Canadian organization's archives (e.g., military, religious, government) that may have information on an ancestor? Or have you visited that archives' website to determine what, if any, helpful data might be available online? Also, an interesting video on Canada's Library/Archive can be found at

YouTube has many genealogy videos

YouTube is a video-sharing website that allows users to upload, view, rate, share, add to favorites, report and subscribe. Visit and in the box at the top, conduct a search for "YouTube genealogy." There are over 2 million results, so it would be wise to choose wisely.

For example, a click on "YouTube has Genealogy Resources/" takes one to a page with a further choice of video suppliers such as Brigham Young Family History Library, — which can be accessed at, FamilySearch — which has over 100 videos, My Heritage, and Megan Smolenyak.

Beginners as well as advanced genealogists would be wise to learn more about genealogical research (and probably pick up some helpful tips) from the comfort of their homes with these instructional videos.

Queries, genealogical questions from researchers and genealogical materials readers would like to share will be printed in this column free. Joan Griffis may be reached via email at or by sending a letter to Illinois Ancestors, c/o The News-Gazette, P.O. Box 677, Champaign, IL 61824-0677.

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JohnRalphio wrote on September 13, 2017 at 9:09 am

If there's a convenient list of 1,503 Confederate memorials, it seems like it would be a pretty straightforward process to remove them all. Which we should do, because they are memorializing traitors to our country. The Confederacy was an explicit betrayal by people who preferred slavery to national unity. Here in Illinois, there's absolutely no reason to maintain Confederate memorials. The only real motivation for keeping such memorials is to evoke a romanticized picture of a racist past.