Way back in 1996 or 1997, when RootsWeb began offering free listserv mailing lists, LOWER-DELMARVA-ROOTS-L was born. Over the years, the list grew to have over 700 subscribers, among whom were some of the most knowledgeable genealogists and historians researching families on the lower Delmarva Peninsula. LDRoots list members were so generous with their time and expertise, and became like a family. When RootsWeb was bought by ancestry.com, this continued for a while, until ancestry discontinued the mailing lists in 2020. Ancestry is an excellent resource that has fundamentally changed the hobby of genealogy, but they are in the business of making money. The listservs were not money makers, I guess, so they had to go. What a sad day that was.
Over the last couple of years, our world has been through a great upheaval due to the COVID-19 pandemic. As an infection control RN, it has been a time of great change, much work, and little time to concentrate on other things for me. But always, in the back of my mind, I wished that I could somehow resurrect LOWER-DELMARVA-ROOTS in some way.
As a web designer, I am a hack who knows just enough to be dangerous. I dabbled in it through simple web sites like MDGenWeb and the Wicomico, Somerset, and Worcester County sites, and with my Eastern Shore Genealogy Project site. But when faced with the technology needed to set up a listserv or a bulletin board/forum ... yikes.
Fast forward to August 2022. I found that enough brain bandwidth had opened up for me to consider tackling this project and becoming active in updating my other sites again. Through my web hosting service, I was able to download this bulletin board program and it was really quite easy to set up. I shouldn't have feared the process after all!
And here we are. I present to you the LOWER-DELMARVA-ROOTS forum, and I invite you all to join and share and learn, together again.
If anyone out there has more experience than I do with this stuff - especially in setting up an actual listserv - and would be willing to help me do that, please let me know. My ultimate goal is to really bring the LOWER-DELMARVA-ROOTS-L mailing list back to life.
I also could use some assistance in setting up a query and surname registry system. Remember the Delmarva Surnames Project? The DSP allowed users to enter a list of surnames to the registry. The list of surnames, along with the user's name, email address, web site and mailing addresses (if they wished to include them), and the date of the submission were written to a database, which, in turn, used a template to automatically write the data to a web site in somewhat raw form, but formatted in such a way that it could easily be run through a program that was available at the time called CC Helper. CC Helper formatted the surname registry into web pages that listed the data in several ways:
- Pages where each surname was listed with all the users who had registered it,
- pages where each user was listed along with all the surnames they had registered, and
- pages that listed the registered surnames by the date they were registered.
The query boards worked the same way, with the addition of a field where query text could also be submitted.
Looking forward to reconnecting with old friends, and making new ones!