Monday, May 25, 2015

Free Live Streaming of the SCGS Jamboree

The Southern California Genealogical Society has announced the sessions that will be streamed live on the internet next week. Thanks to diamond level sponsor these sessions will be available for free. The email I received stated that session descriptions, speaker bios, and schedule details are provided on the registration site and will soon be posted on the Jamboree website. Click here to register. 

Here is the lineup of presentations that will be broadcast:

Friday, June 5
FR007: Be Prepared with a Genealogy Disaster Plan - Denise May Levenick.
FR018: Five Tips for Successful Research in a New Location - J. H."Jay" Fonkert, CG.
FR019: Genetic Genealogy and the Next Generation - Blaine T. Bettinger, PhD, JD and Paul Woodbury.
FR032: Finding and Utilizing German Church Records - Dr. Michael D. Lacopo.
Saturday, June 6
SA007: Google Tools and Procedures for Solving Family History Mysteries - Lisa Louise Cooke.
SA014: Tho' They Were Poor, They May Have Been Rich in Records - Paula Stuart-Warren, CG, FMGS, FUGA.  
SA021: No Easy Button: Using Immersion Genealogy to Understand Your Ancestors - Lisa A. Alzo, MFA.
SA033: Plotting, Scheming and Mapping Online - Cyndi Ingle.
SA035: Midwestern and Plains States Level Census Records - Paula Stuart-Warren, CG, FMGS, FUGA.
SA047: Update: Google! Everything New that You Need to Know for Genealogy - Lisa Louise Cooke.
Sunday, June 7
SU005: Family History Adhesive: Science and Simple Tech 4 Binding Families - Janet Hovorka, MLIS.
SU015: The Hidden Web: Digging Deeper - Cyndi Ingle.
SU022: Who, What, When, Where? Using Journalism Techniques to Write Your Story - Anita Paul.
SU030: Get to Know Your Geezers - Matthew Hovorka.

Friday, May 22, 2015

Drawing for a Free Course at the Virtual Institute of Genealogy

I am excited to share the press release from the Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research. In honor of Memorial Day they are having a drawing for a free course, and everyone that registers this weekend will be entered in the drawing. There are some excellent courses that have just opened up for registration (Disclosure: I will be teaching one of the courses).

Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research Announces Upcoming Courses and Offers Memorial Day Drawing for Free Course  

RALEIGH, North Carolina, 22 May 2015
Registration is currently open for six upcoming courses offered by the Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research.

“We are very excited about these new courses, covering genetic genealogy; English, German and Native American research; and U.S. federal land and Revolutionary War records,” said co-administrator Michael Hait, CG. “The response to our courses has been outstanding! The Virtual Institute is an excellent option for in-depth genealogical education, especially for those with limited travel options.”

In celebration of Memorial Day, the Virtual Institute is also offering a drawing for everyone who registers for a course between Friday, 22 May 2015 and Monday, 25 May 2015 at midnight (U.S. Eastern). Each registrant will be entered into the drawing to win a free additional course ($69.99 value). Those registering for multiple courses will receive multiple entries. Three winners will be drawn. The prizes can be applied to any standard course prior to 31 December 2016, not including the original course registration.

Registration for the following courses is currently open:

●      Paul Milner, “An In-Depth Look at the Big Four Records of English Research,” 30 May–6 June 2015

●      F. Warren Bittner, CG, “Reading German III: Practice Reading German Church Records”, 8 June, 15 June, 22 June, 29 June 2015

●      Bille Stone Fogarty, MEd, and Rick Fogarty, “Verifying the Family Legend of Native American Ancestry,” 20 June–27 June 2015

●      Craig R. Scott, CG, “A Day in the Revolution: Researching Your Soldier,” 1 August–8 August 2015

●      Angela Packer McGhie, “Digging in Federal Land Records,” 19 September–26 September 2015

●      Blaine Bettinger, PhD, JD, “Genetic Genealogy for the Professional Genealogist,” 7 November–14 November 2015

About the Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research

The Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research offers year-round online education on a wide variety of genealogical subjects. Each course consists of six hours of live instruction, extensive syllabus material, and practical exercises. Limited class sizes and a Plus course option allow for a higher level of class participation and instructor feedback than typically offered by genealogy webinars. For more information visit or email

Sunday, May 17, 2015

NGS Conference Blog Compendium

If you are like me and missed attending the National Genealogical Society (NGS) Conference this week, then I would recommend visiting the NGS 2015 Conference Blog Compendium compiled by Randy Seaver on his Geneamusings blog.

Every year, and for almost every major genealogy conference, Randy compiles a list of blog posts written about the conference. I enjoy reading about others' perspectives on the conference, and pick up tidbits of advice from the presenters via the bloggers. I appreciate Randy's compendium as he catches articles on blogs that I may not already follow. 

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Openings at the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh

There is still time to get in some of the courses at the Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh. There are openings in many of the courses, and the early-bird prices are good until May 15th. I am excited to attend the Practical Genetic Genealogy course and expand my understanding of using DNA in my research. here are many other courses to choose from, taught by some of the best instructors in genealogy. To register for any of the following courses, click here.

These six courses to be held June 28 to July 3, 2015:

Writing Your Immigrant Families’ Stories: From Research to Publishing with John P. Colletta, Ph.D. and Michael Hait, CG
Determining Kinship Reliably with the Genealogical Proof Standard with Thomas W. Jones, PhD., CG, CGL and Karen Mauer Jones, CG, FGBS
Researching New York State with Karen Mauer Jones, CG , FGBS
Problem Solving with Church Records with Rev. Dr. David McDonald, CG
Advanced Research Tools: Land Records with Richard G. Sayre, CG, CGL and Pamela Boyer Sayre, CG, CGL, Angela McGhie, and Judy G. Russell, CG, CGL
Practical Genetic Genealogy with Debbie Parker Wayne, CG, CGL, CeCe Moore and Blaine Bettinger, Ph.D., J.D.

These six courses to be held July 19-24, 2015:
Intermediate Genealogy: Tools for Digging Deeper with Paula Stuart-Warren, CG, FMGS, FUGA, Joshua Taylor, MA, MLS, and Debra Mieszala, CG  
Advanced Research Methods with Thomas W. Jones, PhD., CG, CGL, Judy G. Russell, CG, CGL, Rick Sayre, CG, CGL, and Pam Sayre, CG, CGL -- SOLD OUT  
Refresh, Rebuild and Recharge Your Genealogy Career with D. Joshua Taylor, MA, MLS, Paula Stuart-Warren, CG, FMGS, FUGA, Judy G. Russell, CG, CGL, and Debra Mieszala, CG Pennsylvania: Research in the Keystone State with Sharon Cook MacInnes, Ph.D. and Michael D. Lacopo, D.V.M. -- SOLD OUT  
Practical Genetic Genealogy with Debbie Parker Wayne, CG, CGL, Patti Hobbs, CG, and Blaine Bettinger, Ph.D., J.D.        
Law School for Genealogists with Judy G. Russell, J.D., CG, CGL and Richard G. “Rick” 
      Sayre, CG, CGL, Marian L. Smith

The early bird deadline for registration is May 15 for the discounted tuition price. Online registration will end June 19 for the courses being held June 28 – July 3, and July 10 for the courses held July 19-24.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Openings at the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research for June

Have you always dreamed of attending the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) at Samford University? Well there is still time to get in the institute this June! There is space in the following courses, but you need to decide quickly as the absolute deadline is May 15th. 
I have taken both the Writing and Publishing for Genealogists and the Genealogy as a Profession courses, and recommend both of them. I know the coordinators of the other courses, and am sure they will be excellent as well.

Courses with room available for June 7-12, 2015: 

4.   Writing & Publishing for Genealogists (Coordinator: Tom Jones)
5.   Military Records II (Coordinator: Craig Scott)
7.   Land Records: Using Maps (Coordinator: Rick Sayre)
9.   Genealogy as a Profession (Coordinator: Elissa Powell)
10. Virginia's Land & Military Conflicts (Coordinator: Victor Dunn) 

You can register for any of these courses on the IGHR website here.

If you are interested the courses that are full, be sure to sign up on the waiting lists as sometime there are cancellations and you can get in at the last minute. Sign up here.  

1.  Methods & Sources (Coordinator: Pam Sayre)
2.  Intermediate Genealogy & Historical Studies (Coordinator: Angela McGhie)
3.  Advanced Methodology & Evidence Analysis (Coordinator: Judy Russell)
8.  Research in the South: The Colonies of the South (Coordinator: Mark Lowe)

Course Reviews
Here are reviews of some of the IGHR courses if you want more details on the course content from someone who attended in the past. 

“Writing and Publishing for Genealogists” - Review of IGHR Course 5 
New IGHR Course on the Five Civilized Tribes


Saturday, April 25, 2015

BCG Webinars Now Available Online

I was excited about the announcement this week that the webinars hosted by the Board for Certification of Genealogists are now available on demand. I attended most of these webinars thwen the were offered live, but have been waiting for the one I missed to become available as a recording. 

These presentations are excellent, and I recommend them to others interested in these topics. Two of the presentations are available to view for free, and the others are available for a very reasonable price of $2.99. You can watch a review of each presentation to be sure you like it before making a purchase. For more details, or to watch the recorded presentations see 

Here is a listing of the topics and presenters:

Baker, James A., “Elementary, My Dear Watson! Solving Your Genealogy Puzzles with Clues You Already Have”

Bittner, F. Warren, “Complex Evidence What it is, How it Works, Why it Matters”

Hait, Michael, “‘Of Sound Mind and Body’ Using Probate Records in Your Research”

Hibben, Jean Wilcox, “Certified or Certifiable? Why a Genealogist Would Go Through All that Trouble”

Jones, Thomas W., “Fine Wine in a New Bottle: Guidelines for Effective Research and Family Histories” (FREE)

Russell, Judy G., “Kinship Determination: From Generation to Generation” (FREE)

Friday, April 17, 2015

Scholarship Available for the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy

Here is a unique opportunity to receive a full tuition scholarship to the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy. The Jimmy B. Parker Scholarship is available to someone who shows a commitment to genealogical excellence and community involvement. If you are interested act quickly as essay applications are due May 15th.

SALT LAKE INSTITUTE OF GENEALOGY SCHOLARSHIP Jimmy B. Parker Applications Now Being Accepted
Salt Lake City, UT, April 8, 2015–The Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, sponsored by the Utah Genealogical Association, is pleased to announce that essay entries for the Jimmy B. Parker Essay Scholarship are now being accepted.

The scholarship recipient will receive full tuition to the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy 2016. The scholarship will be awarded to the individual whose essay and application reflect a commitment to genealogical excellence and community involvement. Past winners are Debra Hoffman of New Windsor, Maryland, Susan LeBlanc of Gladstone, Oregon, and Patti Gillespie of Decatur, Texas.

Since 2012, the Utah Genealogical Association has offered this scholarship in honor of Jimmy B. Parker, a Utah family historian and teacher of more than 50 years. He said, “Few things have greater impact on us in this life than knowing about our heritage—who we are, where we have come from, our culture, our ancestors.” The winning essay with be posted on the Utah Genealogical Association’s blog.

Applicants are asked to submit the following via email to

  • A one page essay detailing how attending the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy will prepare you to give back to the genealogical community.
  • A short biography or resume detailing your previous volunteer and research experience.
  • The name of the course you hope to attend, and why.
  • A letter of recommendation from someone who has benefitted from your volunteer service.

Essays and applications are due May 15, 2015, and the winner will be announced June 15. The winner will be chosen by a committee comprised of SLIG committee members and the family of the late Jimmy B. Parker.

Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy registration opens June 20, 2015 at 9:00 AM MST.