My teenagers introduced me to a new site that has added a spin to Genealogy. It is called Google Earth. There is a free version that is absolutely great. Google Earth combines satellite imagery, maps and the power of Google Search to put the world's geographic information at your fingertips. These pictures are not real time, but taken sometime within the last three years.
If you have an older version Computer, it may not download properly; but, all the newer computers should have no problems.
How will Google Earth assist in Genealogy? There are options of what you would like highlighted as you “fly by” cities you want to search. Some of these options are water areas, cemeteries, churches, parks, railroads, dining areas, hospitals, airports and much more. I particularly love the cemetery option! It gives the general location and names of the churches and cemeteries.
You also can input an address and Google Earth will find it for you. This is great for directions for those hard to find places that we all encounter when doing our research travels. The pictures can also be seen in 3-D!
My husband’s family is from Sicily. How exciting it is to sit in my living room and view the Termini coast from my computer screen. I can now more than imagine the coast line, but see how the people lived so close to the seaside. I understand now why these ancestor’s were mostly fishermen.
While reviewing Dick Eastman’s online genealogy message he relates the following:
Using satellite images from Google Maps and Google Earth, an Italian computer programmer has stumbled upon the remains of an ancient villa. If this is true, then just imagine what else it can locate.
I know the implications of Google Earth will greatly assist genealogists. I am just beginning to learn its features, but definitely think it is a worthwhile download.