Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Indiana Genealogist March 2010

The new quarterly issue of Indiana Genealogist has some treats -- a nice going-away present from editor Annette Harper, who has acquired a job.

Judy Lee transcribed a Civil War journal of unknown origin and has found evidence to attribute it to Gillis J. McBain (1829-1914), a Canadian who died in Idaho. In between, he served as sergeant and sergeant major in Company G of Indiana's 73rd infantry. Like most 19th-century diaristsm McBain is laconic and rarely tells us what we most want to know. Nevertheless he still conveys the soldier's unique mixture of boredom, discomfort, and terror. As a postscript, there' s a shorter journal of his train travel west in 1882.

James R. Miller offers an introduction to philatelic genealogy in Indiana, which consists of using stamps and envelopes as evidence, not trying to determine the family tree of a given stamp. It reminded me uneasily of the old envelopes we destroyed as children in the name of "collecting" the stamps stuck to them.

Jay B. Wright does a clear and concise job of distinguishing between the related but distinct sins of plagiarism and copyright violation. You can do both, or neither, and you can also commit either one without committing the other. Read it, don't try it!

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