Virginia

Calendar of Genealogy Events in Virginia:

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Thursday, January 25, 2018 (snow date, February 1) (FxGS Membership Meeting)

Spotlight on Alexandria Library, Local History and Special Collections Branch

7:30 pm
Kilmer Middle School Lecture Room G-107
8100 Wolftrap Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Description: Alexandria was established as a seaport town in 1749 when Virginia’s early purpose was tobacco cultivation. It was the seat of Fairfax County and later a part of the District of Columbia. The Alexandria Library provides the highest quality of professional library services to researchers whose interests range from casual inquiries into their family history to professional writers and doctoral candidates researching specialized topics in local history. Though the collection is deep and rich with material related to Alexandria, the Commonwealth’s cities and counties, and the District of Columbia, the library holdings include items about selected Southern states and some things that might surprise you. So, before you make that “trip across the river” to the National Archives or the Library of Congress come see the Alexandria Library!

Presenter: Leslie Anderson, a native Virginian, is a Reference Librarian at Alexandria Library, Special Collections Branch. Her article, "Tabitha (Bugg) George Smith of Mecklenburg County, Virginia" won the National Genealogical Society's 2013 Family History Writing Contest. Ms. Anderson is the co-author of Alexandria and the editor of Virginia Slave Births Index, 1853-1865. She is a member of the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society, the National Genealogical Society, the Virginia Genealogical Society and several Pennsylvania societies. Ms. Anderson received her MS in Library Science from Case Western Reserve University and her BA in American Studies from Wesleyan University in Connecticut.


Saturday, January 27, 2018 (snow date, February 3) (FxGS Education Program)

1) Private Lives, Public Records: Reconstructing A Civil War-Era Community and
2) The 'Free Negro' Dilemma in Virginia: Under-utilized Records for Blacks and Whites

10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall
2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Descriptions:
1) The research began with an Excel spreadsheet and evolved into a blog that will be launched later this year. The 1st US Colored Cavalry was formed at Fortress Monroe, Virginia. The 1,000-man regiment consisted of free men, freedmen, and contrabands from the US and Canada. This presentation demonstrates the use of pension records, lesser-known documents (available in print and online), maps, photographs, and GoogleEarth.
2) Description of the origins of the free black population in Virginia and its impact on Virginia law. Attendees will learn how to locate city and county documents created in response to legislation passed by state government, for example, Free Negro registers, petitions to be re-enslaved, special tax lists, and requisitions for military and public use.

Presenter: Leslie Anderson, a native Virginian, is a Reference Librarian at Alexandria Library, Special Collections Branch. Her article, "Tabitha (Bugg) George Smith of Mecklenburg County, Virginia" won the National Genealogical Society's 2013 Family History Writing Contest. Ms. Anderson is the co-author of Alexandria and the editor of Virginia Slave Births Index, 1853-1865. She is a member of the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society, the National Genealogical Society, the Virginia Genealogical Society and several Pennsylvania societies. Ms. Anderson received her MS in Library Science from Case Western Reserve University and her BA in American Studies from Wesleyan University in Connecticut.


Saturday, February 17, 2018 (FRGS Monthly Meeting & Seminar)

Records – Between “Garbage” & “Gems Presented by Kristen Hicks

1:00 to 3:00 p.m.
CRRL - Salem Church Branch
2607 Salem Church Road Fredericksburg, VA 22407

Amateur and seasoned researchers know that courthouse records can be a source of incredible frustration, as the all-too-often dusty and disorganized pieces rarely assemble a complete puzzle. Kristin Hicks, local researcher, will explain through a few anecdotes how an understanding of what to look for, follow-up questions to ask, knowledge of available resources, and (sometimes) just LUCK can change the scope of a research project. Researchers are encouraged to bring their own anecdotes and stories to the presentation.

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Thursday, February 22, 2018 (no snow date) (FxGS Membership Meeting)

Real-World Examples of the Frustrations of Endogamy

7:30 pm
Kilmer Middle School Lecture Room G-107
8100 Wolftrap Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Description: Those whose ancestors married within the same community get many more DNA matches than the general population which are predicted to be much closer than they are, making utilizing DNA testing challenging. See why endogamy makes genetic genealogy more difficult with real-world examples of why false positives happen, plus learn methods to find cousins, even with endogamy. 

Presenter: Lara Diamond has been researching her family for 25 years and has traced all branches of her family multiple generations back in Europe using Russian and Austria-Hungarian Empire records. Most of her research is in modern-day Ukraine, plus some Belarus and Poland. She recently assumed leadership of JewishGen’s Subcarpathian SIG and also runs several town-focused projects. She blogs at http://larasgenealogy.blogspot.com 


Saturday, February 24, 2018 (snow date, March 3) (FxGS Education Program)

Photography for Genealogy

10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall
2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Description: This presentation will focus on using photography in conjunction with your genealogy research. Topics covered will include photo quality, photo apps for phones and tablets, and tips on taking good tombstone photos. We will discuss how to upload photos to FamilySearch Family Tree and Ancestry Family Tree. We will take a look at tips for photo organization on a computer and how to share digital files with family members and other researchers. The class is aimed at genealogists of all skill levels.

Presenter: Gary Petranek serves as a co-director of the Washington, D.C. Family History Center. He retired from IBM after 41 years as a technical specialist, and has an extensive background in computers and information technology. Gary provides technical support for the FamilySearch/Maryland Archive digitization project of Probate and Estate Records. He hosts the DC Metro RootsMagic Users Group in Montgomery County and is an avid photographer.


++Wednesday, March 14, 2018, Monthly Meeting & Presentation:
DNA 101: A Simple Guide to Using DNA in Genealogy presented by Ronald Lee Henderson

7:00 to 9:00 p.m.
CRRL - Salem Church Branch
2607 Salem Church Road Fredericksburg, VA 22407

Amateur genetic genealogist Ronald Lee Henderson will give a presentation, followed by discussion and questions and answers. “We are all connected: learn how you might use DNA in your research.”


Thursday, March 22, 2018 (FxGS Membership Meeting)

The Good, the bad, and the ugly truth about published family histories

7:30 pm
Kilmer Middle School Lecture Room G-107
8100 Wolftrap Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Description: Just because it is published does not make it correct. Many researchers cling to family histories as the honest truth on their family line. The discerning research will learn how to take those clues and then find the records they refer to. Learn how to vet the information contained in published family history books to make your research that much better.

Presenter: Shannon Combs-Bennett is an award-winning author and lecturer based out of Northern Virginia. She loves sharing her knowledge with other researchers on a variety of subjects from methodology to genetics. Shannon earned her PLCGS in December 2016 and is working towards her MSc in Genealogical, Heraldic and Paleographic Studies.


Saturday, March 24, 2018 (FxGS Education Program)

1) Create Genealogy Videos and Images for free with Adobe Spark and
2) 10 Databases you need to know about

10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall
2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Descriptions:
1) Do you have images you would like to share and annotate for your own use or maybe to share? If so you should know about this wonderful free web-based program that allows you to create high quality graphics and videos to share for free.
2) With the ease of access to a variety of Institutions researchers depend on computer research more and more. However, we sometimes get into a rut looking at the same places over and over again. Shannon will introduce you to 10 databases that are not frequently visited, but could really change the way you research.

Presenter: Shannon Combs-Bennett is an award-winning author and lecturer based out of Northern Virginia. She loves sharing her knowledge with other researchers on a variety of subjects from methodology to genetics. Shannon earned her PLCGS in December 2016 and is working towards her MSc in Genealogical, Heraldic and Paleographic Studies.


Friday, April 27, 2018 (FxGS Membership Meeting)

Hitting Pay Dirt: Gold in the NARA Homestead and Land Case Files

7:30 pm
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall
2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Description: The Bureau of Land Management distributed the land of the 30 Federal Land States and has posted online the patents, or certificates of final title, for most of them. The patents finalize the first transfer of public domain land from the federal government to private individuals, including women and former slaves. These patents, however, are only the final document in an often years long process, and a Case File should exist in the National Archives for each of them.

Case Files often contain incredible information about your ancestors: military service, specifics about “improvements” they made to the land before receiving final title, and often family information or immigration proof. Even the thinnest Case File at least locates a person in time and place and may include signatures on receipts.

Two million abandoned claims that were filed but never completed also have Case Files. We’ll discuss how to access both the indexed and unindexed Case Files at the National Archives. They have never been microfilmed. These records precede the deeds in county courthouses.

Presenter: Sharon MacInnes is the CEO of Ancestor Tracks (http://ancestortracks.com), a business which is dedicated to publishing online free, downloadable 19th-century maps of every county of Pennsylvania to be used with census records and published county histories.


Saturday, April 29, 2018 (FxGS Education Program)

Reclaim The Records: Using Freedom of Information Laws for Genealogical and Archival Research

10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall
2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Description:
Are you tired of being told by archives, libraries, and government agencies that the genealogical records you want are "unavailable" to the public, are only available behind a paywall, or are only available to view if you can visit them onsite or during limited hours? We were too, so we figured out how to do something about it.

We're Reclaim The Records, a new not-for-profit activist group of more than 3200 genealogists, researchers, historians, and journalists. We use state Freedom of Information (FOI) laws to obtain copies of previously inaccessible archival record sets. We use these laws to force the government to hand over copies of genealogical records to the public, often for the first time ever. Then we then freely publish all the records we win online, as open data without any copyrights, paywalls, or usage restrictions.

Our work has enabled the first-ever public access to more than ten million archival records (and counting!), ranging from marriage records to voter lists to civil service lists to state licensing files. We started with a first-of-its-kind lawsuit in the Supreme Court of New York in 2015, followed it up with a second successful case against the New York City Clerk’s Office in 2016, filed a third case in Missouri against their Department of Health and Senior Services, and are now spreading our legal work to other cities and states. We crowdsource ideas for new projects, publish a free e-mail newsletter, and make snarky comments about government agencies’ intransigence on social media.

This presentation will walk through the history and legal basics of FOI laws, and will teach researchers how to file their own requests for any genealogical or archival records they may want to see returned to the public domain.

Presenter: Brooke Schreier Ganz is the founder and president of Reclaim The Records, and the first genealogist to successfully sue a government archive for the return of records to the public. A computer programmer, she is also the creator of LeafSeek, a free open source records management platform and multi-lingual search engine that won second place in the 2012 RootsTech Developer Challenge.

Her work has helped non-profit organizations like the Israel Genealogical Research Association (IGRA) and Gesher Galicia publish over 1.2 million unique genealogical records online for free use. She is also a volunteer for ArchiveTeam, an online preservationist group that pre-emptively crawls at-risk websites to save copies of the data for the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.


Friday, May 18, 2018 (FxGS Membership Meeting)

Myths, Fairy Tales, and Stories Grandma Told

7:30 pm
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall
2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Description: Family stories usually contain at least some true facts. But what do you do when almost nothing is true? This program demonstrates how a 25-year brick wall was broken down.

Presenter: Charles S. “Chuck” Mason, Jr., is a Certified Genealogist SM, specializing in Southern New Jersey and 19th and 20th Century Death Records. He is a graduate of NGS’s American Genealogy: Home Study Course, (1994), a graduate of the National Institute for Genealogical Research (NIGR) at the National Archives (1996 & 2001), the Institute of Genealogy and History at Samford University (2010).

Chuck teaches genealogy classes for the Fairfax County Adult and Community Education (ACE) program and is an instructor for the NGS course Beyond the Basics. He lectures at many of the genealogical societies in the Washington DC area, NIGR, and in Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania; has published genealogy articles in journals, magazines and newsletters; and is co-host of a public television genealogy program in Fairfax County.


Saturday, May 19, 2018 (FxGS Education Program)

Using Identity Characteristics to Locate Your Ancestors

10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall
2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Lecture Description:
Sometimes you need to be able to identify an ancestor without his “name tag.” Characteristics such as occupation, birthplace, signature, age and family members can be helpful in locating individuals in records, as well as in distinguish individuals of the same name.
Comparing information found in one record to that of another record can help determine if they refer to the same individual. Many different characteristics of an individual can be used in this comparison. This technique can be especially useful to overcome indexing issues where you ancestor’s name may not be identifiable, or in situations where a name has been changed.

Presenter: Angela Packer McGhie, CG, is a professional genealogist, lecturer and instructor. She is a course coordinator and instructor at genealogy institutes, and speaker at national conferences. Angela enjoys serving as a facilitator for the Boston University Genealogical Research Certificate program, and a trustee for the Board for Certification of Genealogists Education Fund, and on the board of the ProGen Study Program.



This Calendar is sponsored by Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter.

This page was last updated 08 Jan 2018 16:57.

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