Regulatory Compliance: Part II

This is the second part of the business presentation.

Regulatory Compliance
The IRS (Internal Revenue Service) is perhaps the most crucial government agency for nonprofits and has a good section on its site for information. The Center will be a 501(c)(3) educational organization. Using GuideStar, the overall grouping for the Center will be ‘Arts, Culture, and Humanities’ with the following specific categories: History Museums, A54; Libraries and Library Science, B70; Citizen Participation, W24; Museum & Museum Activities, A50.

Cyber Assistant is a new feature being implemented by the IRS, giving a discount for those who file for tax-exempt status. Rather than $850 it costs $200, regardless of size. I have subscribed to email updates to be notified when Cyber Assistant is available. Let’s hope it’s soon.
        
The State of Oregon regulates nonprofits via Secretary of State’s office and its Corporate Division.

AJH

Incorporating: Part I

This is part of a presentation I was to give to the MERIT class at the Small Business Development Center, part of Chemeketa’s Center for Business & Industry. I gave a much abbreviated version using a white board because the computer projection setup wasn’t working. I’ll be posting the entire thing in sections. This is Part I.

Incorporating
One of the first steps for the ‘Center for the Study of Family History’ will be finding volunteers to join the Board of Directors (BoD). Among the list of potential board members are relatives of mine, since the ‘Center’ is focused on family, including Paul Davis, Ann Davis, Loren Hill, Doug Hay, Gordon Heber, and John Stucke. Of course, Taxman Dan’s warning on conflicts of interest is worth noting, to avoid any headaches. I’ll be adding to this list over time. I do want to find national figures within relevant fields who would be willing to join the board. Each person will have contact information compiled and then be sent a letter asking the person for input and if he or she would like to volunteer in any way. 

Determining the term of office for board members is important. I am not sure if there is a standard, but I will ask candidates how long they’d be willing to serve. I am thinking two or four years. If a person does not want to be on the Board of Directors, then I’ll ask him or her to consider being an advisor, thus creating an Advisory Committee.

Although I have written the initial Mission Statement, the BoD may amend it at any time. I also want to make it simple to amend the Articles of Incorporation and Bylaws. The board will be using Robert’s Rules of Order and parliamentary procedure, and I’ll be helping the chair and vice chair during board meetings, if necessary. The fourth edition from 1915 is online and CSU-Fresno has a good site dedicated to the subject.

AJH

The Need for a WWI Memorial

World War I has no national monument. No iconic images. And only one soldier is still alive.”

In early 2008 Tony Dokoupil of Newsweek set out the need for a national memorial to honor those who served during World War I (“The War We Forgot“). Unfortunately, more than two years later, there’s still not much accomplished in that regard.

Of the 2 million American soldiers sent to the trenches during World War I, only Frank Woodruff Buckles is still alive.”

Thankfully and quite amazingly, Frank Buckles is still with us. A photo of Buckles when he enlisted in the Army in 1917 adjoined the article. In 2008, the only other known WWI veteran in the United States was Harry Landis, but he died in February of that same year at age 108.

Bob Patrick, director of the Library of Congress’s Veterans History Project, argued at the time that losing Landis and eventually Buckles will result in the loss of “a living touchstone of history.” Yet now as then U.S. officials have made no plans.

Britain plans to hold an elaborate ceremony at Westminster Abbey when the last of its three remaining WWI veterans die. Canada and France, which each have one remaining veteran, have also announced plans to hold a state funeral.”

It “remains a largely forgotten conflict.”

There wasn’t even a list of living veterans until author Richard Rubin began  researching a book in 2004, The Last of the Doughboys. He wrote a profile of Buckles for the Smithsonian magazine. “Nobody–not the Department of Veterans Affairs, or the Veterans of Foreign Wars or the American Legion–knew how many there were,” Rubin said.

But it might ultimately come down to records: WWI was the last war fought without modern methods of bearing witness. There are virtually no film reels, few battle photographs, only a smattering of reliable frontline news reports, and much of what exists was either produced under suffocating censorship or made as propaganda.”

Buckles doesn’t have any candid photographs from his time during the war. He has only three posed portraits.

In recent years, Buckles has also become a reluctant spokesperson for his generation–its impact and its memory. “Might as well be me,” he told Newsweek, adding that an official service honoring all U.S. veterans when he dies would be the “right thing to do.”

The World War One Museum in Kansas City is the only national institution with plans to commemorate the Doughboy generation. “We just don’t know what that means yet,” Denise Rendina, a spokeswoman for the museum, said.

Consider writing to your Member of Congress, Senators, the Veterans’ Administration, and the White House Commission on Remembrance, which is tasked with remembering “America’s fallen.”

AJH

‘A doughboy home at last’

Some have called that battle [the Second Battle of the Marne] a turning point in the war, halting German advances toward Paris.”

In the fall of 2006 The New York Times reported on the remains of a man from World War I being recovered in France, 88 years after his death on July 21, 1918 during the Second Battle of the Marne. Seven days later, on July 28, Leslie Darling was cut down my machine gun fire in the same battle and then died from his wounds after a few days in a crude, rudimentary field hospital and, ironically, his remains have been lost too.

The subject of the article was Private Francis Lupo of Cincinnati. He was in Company E of the 18th Infantry Regiment, First Infantry Division.

His remains were found by a French archaeologist in 2003 and identified by the Pentagon’s Joint P.O.W.-M.I.A. Accounting Command and the Armed Forces DNA Identification Laboratory. He is the first World War I casualty to be recovered and identified by the special command.”

Lupo was buried at Arlington National Cemetery. He was 23 when he was killed “in some of the most gruesome fighting of the war.”

An extract from the diary of an officer in his unit described the artillery and aerial attacks in stark terms. ”Oh, how maddening are these horrible bloody sights!” he wrote, according to an Army history of the war. ”Can it be possible to reap such wholesale destruction and butchery in these few hours of conflict?”

The First Infantry Division had 12,228 men at the outset of the Second Battle of the Marne. Only 3,923 remained unscathed by the end. Eight thousand, three hundred and five were killed, wounded, taken prisoner or missing in action.

(The news story, “A doughboy killed in action is home at last,” was published in the September 24, 2006 issue on page A29.)

AJH

Anniversaries

Today – April 19 – is my parent’s wedding anniversary. They were married in 1969. Here’s what was happening on the music scene that year.

April 19 is an important date in American history. In 1775 the American Revolutionary War began with the battles of Lexington and Concord. It’s Patriots’ Day, although celebrations are limited. It’s also the date of the Oklahoma City bombing and the end of the 51-day siege of the Branch Davidian compound near Waco, Texas. And, on a more positive note, it’s Dutch-American Friendship Day.

Internationally it’s Primrose Day in the United Kingdom. In 1999 the German Bundestag returned to Berlin, the first time since the Reichstag was dissolved in 1945. The Christian calendar of saints lists it as the feast day for Ælfheah of Canterbury, Emma of Lesum, Expeditus and George of Antioch. In 2005 Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger became Pope Benedict XVI. What’s odd is Bicycle Day and its assocation with LSD.

Tomorrow – April 20 – is my best friend’s wedding anniversary. He currently lives with his family in Zhengzhou, China, teaching English. I went with him on a sort of scouting trip to China with him in 2005.

AJH

More of What’s Out There

Here are some of the search engines and other tools I have been sorting through since looking through what was mentioned in Going Beyond Google. Unfortunately the authors left out some good resources, but I have, while writing this, been able to track down many sites I’ve used in the past and some I’ve just discovered.

Wolfram|Alpha is a “project to make all systematic knowledge immediately computable by anyone.” I think the name alone is cool. To get a sense of its capabilities check out the Wolfram|Alpha Blog and the ‘Examples by Topic ’ page. A search on life expectancy in the United States in 1933 yields all sorts of breakdown numbers and a few graphs.

There’s Search Engine Land, a “news and information site covering search engine marketing, searching issues and the search engine industry.” A recent article on peculiar, but ‘cool’ search engines (‘8 Crazy-Cool Search Engines You Should Know’) was on Google’s Fast Flip.

The Historical Census Browser via the University of Virginia Library has data on each census from 1790 to 1960 and the capability of generating maps.

OAIster has a catalog of more than 23 million digital records. It’s accessible via WorldCat and even has a tutorial on genealogy.

Scirus is “the most comprehensive science-specific search engine” with more than “370 million scientific items indexed” allowing searches “for not only journal content but also scientists’ homepages, . . . patents . . . and website information.”

Science.gov is “a gateway to government science information and research results,” accessing more than 40 databases and more than 2000 websites. I am particularly interested in biology, specifically human genetics. The site has a ‘Genetics and Molecular Biology’ section.

IncyWincy searches both the visible and deep Web. It’s touted as ‘The Invisible Web Search Engine’.

CompletePlanet is “the Internet’s largest, most central and complete access point for all things relating to Internet searching.” There’s a list of the largest ‘deep Web’ sites, with about 750 terabytes of material. This is roughly 40 times the size of the known surface Web.

One engine, hakia, has semantics-based searches. A “single query brings a full set of results in all segments” including websites, news, blogs, video and images.

There are many more to come, which I’ll be posting later.

AJH

Search Engines & Databases

So “Google isn’t up to the task when it comes to serious research. . . .”? That’s what the authors of Going Beyond Google say. I don’t quite agree, especially with the so many features being added. Older classics such as Google Books and Scholar often provide worthwhile results.

However, the duo does provide a lot of good background on how to search for information, using both the Internet as most people understand and use it—the ‘visible Web’—and what’s called the ‘invisible Web’. The major factor is whether or not a particular site or page is stable, with a way to link to it. It’s static and reliable, unless someone moves the page or site, or deletes it completely. This is why I try to not change much of anything in existing links I have put out there. Google’s cache feature on searches helps to combat this, as does the Wayback Machine. If it’s not linkable, then the information has been queried and retrieved from a database. It’s dynamic, meaning the links change with each new search.

Most of these are subscription-based, requiring some money (or a library) to access. Yet, others, such as FamilySearch.org are completely free. Ancestry, on the other hand, is notorious for charging exorbitant fees to libraries and institutions (Ancestry Library Edition). There was even a plan a few years ago to stop offering the Ancestry databases for free at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, which created quite a controversy and bad publicity for Ancestry.

When Ancestry took on the task of hosting the volunteer-based RootsWeb community, there was a similar backlash from many participants. RootsWeb is mostly part of the ‘visible Web’ with permanent links to material, including WorldConnect. I use various mailing lists to document what I happen to be thinking about and anything I may have found to further my research. It’s a great way of archiving material for fellow researchers and future generations. Ancestry does have some linkable features, such as message boards, but is primarily database-based.

Footnote has a partnership with the National Archives. I discovered that one of my great-great-great –I forget how many greats—uncles, William Tidd, had a nearly 200-page Revolutionary War pension file.

There are several sites in the Beyond Google book. So many that I will probably have to break them up into a few different postings.

AJH

The ‘Center for the Study of Family History’

I’ve been dreaming about a library and museum for a long time now and it’s about time I actually started doing something to make it a reality. For the past few weeks, while attending a business startup class (MERIT), I have been doodling ideas for a name and logotype.

After mulling it over, I have decided to use the name Center for the Study of Family History. Whether or not to use the ‘the’ (as in The Center for the Study of Family History) I haven’t really determined, but as of today the word is not on the logo, so it is de facto not an official part of the name. We’ll see what the board of directors—or I should note the potential board members—have to say.

After looking for an online graphics editor, I ran into Aviary again, which I first learned about a few months ago. It seems to be the best, or among the best, of the free online editors where you don’t have to necessarily download anything, although Flash is needed. As I am at the library quite a bit, I can therefore do some work graphics there, but have to use Explorer rather than Firefox, because the version is so out-of-date.

I just created a fan page for ‘the center’ so please take a look and become a ‘fan’ on Facebook.

AJH

‘Library of Congress Archives Twitter History’

I’ve been using Twitter for quite awhile now, mostly as a sort of diary, just to somehow preserve what’s happening from day to day. So when I read this morning about how the Library of Congress has plans to archive every public tweet, I was both surprised and flattered.

When I run across news stories and find something curious during research I may post it on Twitter, depending on how convenient and relevant the item may be. It’s what I call my tidbits of history. Often I find reams of stuff, and this is one way I have decided to catalog it, that and blogging my notes.

In the past when visiting a library or similar institution, I used the slips of note paper often near the library catalog computers to jot down any relevant notes. But I never seemed to get around to typing these up or organizing them in any serious way. So I have scraps of these notes laying around, mixed in with who knows what. Every once in awhile I will come across one or two and try to remember when and where I wrote it.

Instead of this paper trail, I have gone as paperless as possible. It’s the new thing in office settings, too. Rather than print out a story or information, you simply print to a file or, in some other way, store it digitally. Of course, the PDF format is one of the most popular. And having redundant systems—backups—is critical.

I’ve been doing this for years with the wide variety of mailing lists I manage or have joined. Sure, occasionally I’ll grab some paper and take notes, but for the most part, I am busy typing, editing, storing, and eventually posting. The ‘Paperless Archives’ is an example. Microsoft’s Small Business Center has some tips for a ‘paperless’ office.

Wired has a good piece on the plans the Library of Congress has for Twitter and tweets, and something I didn’t know, Google’s search capability.

AJH

German Explorer Gustav Radde & the Two Heinzs

Searching for the surname Radde at Wikipedia I discovered a German naturalist and explorer named Gustav Radde (1831- 1903). I am a descendant of some of the Radde clan on my mother’s side. It is, or was, a relatively common name in the Stolp area of Pomerania (Pommern). It’s now known as Słupsk. I started a Radde family mailing list in 2006.

A man named Heinz Radde has worked to document the history of the region, including the expulsion of Germans from Gross Tuchen following World War II. He currently lives in Switzerland. His site is very useful for anyone researching Pomerania. I particularly like his ‘Milestones in Pomeranian History’ section. Heinz Chinnow, who recently passed away, discussed Heinz Radde in his book Pomerania 1945 Echoes of the Past.

Regarding Gustav Radde, an obituary was published in the May 1903 issue of The Geographical Journal, a publication of The Royal Geographical Society in the UK.

Although Gustav was born in Danzig (Gdańsk), he worked and lived in Caucasia for most of his life. In 1864 he settled in Tbilisi, the current capital of the Republic of Georgia, and explored the region around Mount Elbrus. While studying and documenting plants, he recorded the languages, ballads and customs of the local tribes. He established a ‘Caucasus Museum and Library’ in Tbilisi for his exhibits.

Prior to his time in Tbilisi, he spent two years in the Crimea with botanist Christian von Steven, collecting specimens. With Johann Friedrich von Brandt and Karl Ernst von Baer, Radde made trips to southern Russia and in 1855 was on the East Siberian Expedition, led by Ludwig Schwarz.

In 1895 he sailed to India and Japan with the Grand Duke Michael, and was official naturalist on a visit by members of the Russian Imperial Family to North Africa.

Animals named after him include birds such as Radde’s Warbler and Radde’s Accentor, and the Radde’s Toad, or Siberian (Sand) Toad (Bufo raddei).

Radde was an avid entomologist. His insect and other collections are divided: among various institutions: some in the Zoological Museum of the Russian Academy of Sciences and some in the Georgian National Museum Zoological Section.

AJH