Saturday, February 20, 2016

Registration now open for Microsoft Word Workshop

Whether you want to write your family history story for publication in a national magazine, a local genealogy society newsletter, publish a book, or just for yourself, you will need to use a word processing program. Microsoft Word is a popular word processor with powerful and robust capabilities that can help you create beautiful documents.

Pima County Genealogy Society is presenting a Microsoft Word workshop. This workshop will give attendees a solid foundation of the features a genealogist would use most often. Using MS Word 2013, Sherri Hessick will teach participants:
  • Basic document formatting skills
  • How to create and use Styles and Templates
  • How to design and work with tables
  • How to insert and place pictures and text boxes into your document
  • How to add headers and footers
  • How to add endnotes and footnotes
  • How to generate a Table of Contents and Index
  • How to markup and track document changes
All of the features taught at the workshop can be done in earlier versions of MS Word as well as in LibreOffice 5.0.

The workshop will be especially useful for anyone planning to attend the special 2-part Writing workshop or to enter the 2016 Write-On! competition (details to be announced shortly).

The cost for attending the workshop is $10 for PCGS members and $15 for non-members. Advance registration is required and must be received no later than April 16, 2016.

The workshop will be held on Saturday, April 30, 2016, from 9:30am to 12 noon at the Banner-University Medical Center.

Visit the Pima County Genealogy Society website for details and to register.

Sunday, February 7, 2016

Genealogy Webinars for 2016

Last October, we published an article about Bringing Genealogy Education into Your Home. At that time, we gave you a list of organizations that offer free genealogy webinars. Well, it's a new year and there are new webinars coming down the pike.

Family History Library Webinars
The Family History Library in Salt Lake City has published their February and March class line-up, including their free webinars. They consistently offer high quality classes for beginning and intermediate skill levels. Visit the Family History Library Classes and Webinars wiki page for the schedule and links to upcoming webinars and handouts. Jump down to section 2 Past Webinars for links to the recording of past webinars and handouts. The webinars are grouped by country of topic in both the Upcoming webinars and the Past webinars:
  • US/Canada
  • British Isles (England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales)
  • International (Czech Republic, Germany, Poland, South Africa, Switzerland)
  • Scandinavian (Denmark, Norway)
  • Latin America
Most of the Latin America webinars are taught in Spanish, but a few are taught in English. The past Spanish language classes are listed here; the past English language classes are listed here.

Migration Routes Across America will be broadcast on February 11 at 10am Mountain Time. This is an intermediate level webinar. You do not register for these webinars; you must go to section 1.2 Webinar Information on the Family History Library Classes and Webinars wiki page to click the link to attend a webinar.

Legacy Family Tree Webinars
Legacy Family Tree Webinars is in its seventh year of providing quality genealogy webinars by professional and well-known genealogists such as Thomas MacEntee, Cyndi Ingle, Judy G. Russell, Warren Bittner, Tom Jones, and so many more! Each month you may watch five or six webinars: every Wednesday afternoon, once a month on Friday evening, and even a couple of Saturdays this year. The live webinars are free, but pre-registration is required and attendance is limited to 1,000 viewers so it is best to log in at least 15-20 minutes early. During the live broadcast, you are able to enter questions and comments in the chat box. The questions will either be answered by the moderator (usually Geoff Rasmussen), sometimes shared to all viewers, or will be asked during the Q&A session. At the end of the presentation, Geoff Rasmussen will demonstrate Legacy Family Tree software in a way that is relevant to the topic just discussed—this is called the After Party.

Recordings of these webinars are available to view for free for about a week following the live webinar. After that, you must be a paid subscriber to view the recordings. The advantages to attending the live broadcast are 1) you may download the chatlog which contain a lot of comments, links, and answers to questions not necessarily asked in the recording and 2) there are drawings to give away an ebook, quick guide, and/or some other items relevant to the day's topic for which you must be "present" to participate. Visit their website to see the schedule for this year and to register for webinars you may wish to attend live. If you want to watch a specific webinar, but am unable to attend live, it is still a good idea to register for it. Registrants will receive an email reminder before the webinar and a "Sorry you missed..." email afterwards, which lets you know that the recording is online and available to view for a few days.

The webinars scheduled for February are:
  • The Scots-Irish in America by Peggy Clemens Lauritzen on February 10
  • Getting Started with Microsoft Word by Thomas MacEntee on February 17
  • Problem Solving with FANs by Beth Foulk on February 19
  • A Guided Tour of Cyndi's List 2.0 by Cyndi Ingle on February 24

Illinois State Genealogical Society (ISGS) Webinars
Since 2012, ISGS webinars have been broadcast live the 2nd Tuesday of each month at 8pm Central Time. The 2016 upcoming webinars are described on the Upcoming Webinars webpage. The live broadcast is offered free to everyone, but you must pre-register. Recordings are available to ISGS members indefinitely. Visit their website for information about their organization and the genealogy education opportunities.

This month's webinar is Reconstructing Black Community Life Through Benevolent Societies by Angela Walton-Raji and will be broadcast on February 9.

Southern California Genealogical Society (SCGS) Webinars
SCGS webinars are offered twice monthly (the first Saturday and third Wednesday). The live broadcasts are free and open to the public; the recordings are available only to SCGS members. You must register to participate in the live broadcast. Visit their 2016 Webinar Series webpage for the schedule for this year, to register, and for instructions for joining the webinar. Diahan Southard was the guest speaker for the last webinar: Making YDNA and mtDNA Part of Your Family History broadcast on January 20. The two classes scheduled for February are:
  • Scanning and Photo Retouching for Beginners by Tom Underhill on February 6
  • The Family Historian's Publishing Primer by Nicka J. Smith on February 17

Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG) Webinars
The BCG offers occasional free webinars "as part of an ongoing series that supports our mission to provide education for family historians." (President Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, CG).  You must register in order to attend their webinars and attendance is limited. To receive email notification of upcoming webinars, visit their blog and scroll down to the Email Notification area, enter your email address where indicated, and click the Subscribe button.

BCG offers recordings of past webinars on their BCG Webinars webpage; some are free, most are available for purchase.

The next free webinar is The Importance of Context in Record Analysis by Barbara Vines Little, CG, FNGS, FVGS scheduled for February 16 at 8pm EST. You may read the details about this webinar and register by visiting their blog post BCG Webinar: Little on Context in Record Analysis.

Genealogy education has never been so easily and freely accessible as it is today. Take advantage of the many free learning opportunities available to you.

Announcing Local Seminars, Conferences, and Educational Opportunities

February and March have always been busy months for genealogists in Southern Arizona. The Pima County Genealogy Society received notification of two conferences and one seminar coming up. All of these events require registration and have a registration deadline.

The Mesa FamilySearch Library is offering two mini-Family History conferences in response to our "need for more training." Below is the announcement:
The Mesa AZ FamilySearch Library is pleased to announce two Family History Conferences coming up in February and March, 2016.  The first conference will be held on Saturday, February 20, at the Red Mountain Institute building on the Maricopa Community College Red Mountain campus.  This facility is located near the 202 and McKellips Road, at 7126 E McKellips Road, Mesa.  The second conference will be held on Saturday, March 12, at the Peoria North LDS Stake Center on 22034 North 83rd Avenue in Peoria.  Both conferences will offer classes from morning through late afternoon.  Lunches may be purchased.  Register online now for the February 20th conference at  Registration for the March 12th conference will be available in mid-February.  Please join us.

The following is a press release from the West Valley Genealogical Society about their upcoming seminar:

The West Valley Genealogical Society & Library will hold their annual seminar on February 27, 2016: 9:00 AM-3:30 PM at Lakeview United Methodist Church,10298 W. Thunderbird  Blvd, Sun City.  Rick and Pam Sayre will be the featured speakers.  They are both Certified Genealogists and Lecturers and are Fellows of Utah Genealogical Association. This dynamic duo will present their exclusive "Maps, Wonderful Maps" in an interactive session covering everything you need to know about using maps for family research.  An additional topic, "The Serial Set, American State Papers, and Territorial Papers" explores the foundation publications of the United States government and how to use these documents in an effective research plan.  With “Our National Treasure: The Library of Congress” we’ll learn how to research the vast holdings of our government….all without leaving home!  This is an all-inclusive seminar with breakfast, lunch, grand door prizes, and fabulous raffle baskets. The Society will also hold their Annual Duplicate Book Sale offering valuable, gently used, genealogy titles covering a wide range of topics…payment by cash or check. Please join us.  This premier event promises to have something for everyone from the novice to advanced researcher!  See click Events or Store to register by February 18, 2016.

In addition, the West Valley Genealogical Society announced the following educational opportunities:

The West Valley Genealogical Society, 12222 N. 111 Ave, Youngtown, is offering the following educational opportunities.  Registration is required: see click Store or Events/Classes for more details. PH; 623-9334945.

March 4, 2016: Family History Research in Salt Lake City, 10:00 AM - 12 Noon. This class covers everything you need to know about preparing for a research trip to the Family History Library.  In addition to covering an overview of the facility and its vast resources, you'll learn: what items to take and best practices for setting research objectives. If you don't have immediate plans to travel to the Family History Library, you're still welcome to attend this informative class in order to prepare for a future family research trip.

March 9, 16, 23, 30, 2016: Research Techniques II, 1:00 - 3:00 PM. This four session class is open to everyone, however, it is designed to build on your existing research skills.  An experienced genealogist will guide you through in-depth research using multiple resources such as land, church, immigration and naturalization records.  Also covers military and probate records and much more.

March 15, 2016: What to do with Your Genealogy Research, 1:00 - 3:00 PM.  This class centers on gathering and organizing your personal genealogical collection such as family heirlooms and books.  Also covers the importance of designating assignment to your heirs and why you should write your own obituary!   Learn how to find your way through estate auctions and to understand the heirloom appraisal process.

Friday, February 5, 2016

Access Fold3 Black History Records Free

Fold3 is making the records in its Black History collection available for free during the month of February. The Black History collection gives you access to more than a million documents, records, and photos in these collections:
  • Slavery
  • Civil War
  • Reconstruction & Jim Crow Laws
  • World War I and II
  • The Civil Rights Movement
Visit their blog post  Black History Month 2016 - Access the Black History Records for more details and links to the free collections. These collections are free for the entire month of February.

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Get a Taste of RootsTech from Home

It seems like the whole world of genealogists are at RootsTech 2016 in Salt Lake City right now. Except us. We're missing out on all the fun. But wait. We can still be part of the fun, and do it from our own homes, and it won't cost us a penny.

As in years past, RootsTech 2016 will stream several sessions live on the home page. And after the conference, recording of those sessions will be posted on the website for a limited time.

Below is the streaming schedule (all times are in MST):

Class Title
8:30 -10:00 a.m.
Thursday General Session
Steve Rockwood
Paula Madison
Bruce Feiler

11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
7 Unique Technologies for Genealogy Discoveries
Mike Mansfield

1:30 - 2:30 p.m.
Best Websites and Apps for Local History
Amy Crow

3:00 - 4:00 p.m.
What’s New in Family Tree in 2016
Ron Tanner

4:30 - 5:30 p.m.
Virtual Family Reunions
Joseph Richardson
8:30 - 10:00 a.m.
Friday General Session
Josh and Naomi Davis (Love Taza)
David Isay

10:30 - 11:30 a.m.
RootsTech Innovator Showdown Finals

1:30 - 2:30 p.m.
Proven Methodology for Using Google for Genealogy
Lisa Louise Cooke

3:00 - 4:00 p.m.
Finding Elusive Records on
Robert Kehrer

4:30 - 5:30 p.m.
My Ancestors Are from Britain—What Do I Do Next?
Myko Clelland
8:30  - 10:00 a.m.
Saturday General Session
Michael Leavitt

11:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m..
Photos—Emerging Technologies in Photography
Jens Nielsen

1:30 - 2:30 p.m.
Become a Master Searcher on Ancestry
Anne Mitchell

3:00 - 4:00 p.m.
Homespun and Calico: Researching our Foremothers
Peggy Lauritzen

4:30 - 5:30 p.m.
Using the Genealogical Proof Standard for Success
James Ison

Just go to the RootsTech home page at and watch on your computer, laptop, or tablet. The stream will automatically refresh at the befinning of each session. If it does not, you will need to refresh by clicking the Refresh button on your browser.

So, grab your favorite beverage, prop your feet up, and join the fun at RootsTech. You can even wear your pajamas and bunny slippers.