My Photo

Search This Site for Past Articles

  • WWW

Meet Dick Eastman in Person


One-Line Bio

Dick Eastman kept his first genealogy database on 80-column punch cards.


Dick Eastman has been involved in genealogy for more than 30 years. He has worked in the computer industry for more than 40 years in hardware, software, and managerial positions. By the early 1970s, Dick was already using a mainframe computer to enter his family data on punch cards. He built his first home computer in 1980.

In the mid-1980s, Dick actually went knocking on the door of a rising online star called CompuServe to propose a genealogy forum: a move by which he built a community of family historians over the next 14 years. At the same time, he preached the benefits of technology to an even wider audience of genealogists, including national and international genealogical organizations, and of course, GENTECH, an organization that helped him to spread his message.

In late 1995, before most people had heard of the World Wide Web, Dick had a conversation with Pam Cerutti and expressed an interest in creating a weekly newsletter that he could e-mail to genealogists all over the world. Pam replied, "You'll need an editor." Dick agreed, and Pam instantly became that Editor.

On January 15, 1996, the two launched Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter as an e-mail publication and announced it to 100 surprised friends and acquaintances.

The weekly newsletter has since grown into a daily publication, still available in e-mail but also now available on the World Wide Web. The present newsletter is read by more than 75,000 genealogists all over the world. Other guest authors occasionally publish articles in as well.

The newsletter also expanded to two versions: a free version supported by advertising at and a subscription-based Plus Edition at The Plus Edition has more articles, focusing on the more in-depth topics. The Plus Edition also contains no advertising.

Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter has also expanded to offer more online services to the genealogy community, including an online genealogy encyclopedia (at, and an online genealogy bookstore at The bookstore sells thousands of genealogy and history-related books, CDs, and software.

Nowadays, Dick Eastman splits his time between a home near Boston, a home in Orlando, and also travels often in his motorhome and sometimes by plane when vast expanses of saltwater would turn his RV into a leaky submarine.

You can contact Dick Eastman at


ham radio, recumbent bicycling, flying, genealogy