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07/21/2017 – 07/22/2017
Michigan Historical Center
Seminar attendees will have the opportunity to pick from a variety of outstanding speakers and family history topics over the two-day event. For more information on schedule, programs, and speaker bios, please click the “+” on the corresponding boxes below.
The Archives of Michigan will be open for research from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m on Friday and 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Saturday. Online registration for this seminar will be closing on Wednesday, July 17 at 11:59 PM. On-site registration will be available both Friday, July 21 and Saturday, July 22, but a boxed lunch is not guaranteed.
|Date / Time||Session|
|Friday, July 21, 2017|
|1:00 – 1:45 PM||A. Break into the Past: A Game for Genealogists
Inspired by the escape room phenomenon, this game has players solve a puzzle using a series of clues, including genealogical resources.
|B. Archives of Michigan Tour
Join the Archives of Michigan staff for a behind the scenes tour of the collections, including original manuscript records and the Abrams Foundation Historical Collection.
|2:00 – 3:00 PM||C. Naturalization Records Online! The Archives of Michigan & FamilySearch
Kris Rzepczynski, Archives of Michigan
The Archives of Michigan and FamilySearch are partnering to digitize hundreds of thousands of Michigan naturalization records. The index will be completed by the genealogical community and ultimately made available at both FamilySearch and Seeking Michigan, while the images themselves will be available exclusively at www.seekingmichigan.org. Come hear about the current status and future plans of the project!
|D. Living on Cloud 9: Genealogy Beyond the Binder
Daniel Earl, MS
We live in a fast-paced, digital, on-the-go world. Genealogy is no different. Imagine being able to bring all of your research files with you on every trip. Using cloud-based storage allows the genealogical researcher to access all of their files anywhere any time. This course will compare several different cloud-based storage servers as well as look at different ways to organized digital files in order to minimize space and find documents faster.
|E. Read All About It! Newspapers at the Library of Michigan
Janice Murphy, Library of Michigan
The Library of Michigan has one of the largest microfilm collections of Michigan newspapers in the state. Come and learn how to effectively identify and access these holdings.
|3:15 – 4:15 PM||F. The Good, the Bad, the Deviant: Researching Correctional Records
Jill Arnold, Archives of Michigan
You may have a family story, newspaper article, or census record – something that indicates you ancestor may have spent time in prison. This program will help researchers navigate those records held by the Archives of Michigan to uncover information about past misdeeds, including how to get started, and using prison records to find even more genealogy resources.
|G. Who You Gonna Call? WIKIs in Family History
Thomas Koselka, Michigan Genealogical Council
It’s 3 am, and you think you just found your third great grandfather. There are no additional records available online. You need to thin out four Edward O’Donnell’s in the same town in Canada. Where you gonna look? While not searchable by name a Wiki can help find what is available by locality and record type. This presentation covers two underused Family History Wikis that just may hold the answer. FamilySearch and Ancestry.
|H. Tracing Your Ancestors Through Military Records
Shirley Hodges, Eaton County Genealogical Society
This lecture gives an in-depth look at military records and how they can help us to learn about our ancestor. In addition to a discussion on the types of material that can be found in the records will be material about the types of records available to the researcher. By learning the best strategies for researching these records the researcher will be able to learn more about their ancestor in both war and peace time.
|Saturday, July 22, 2017|
|9:30 – 10:45 AM||I. The Empire State and the Big Apple: Online Resources for New York Genealogists
Jen Baldwin, Findmypast
Those with family connections to New York are lucky; there are copious online resources to investigate. We will discuss everything from the “must utilize,” to the “hidden gems” across this historically vital territory.
|11:00 AM – 12:00 PM||J. Where Art Thou, PERSI?
Melissa Tennant, Allen County Public Library
This presentation will talk about where one can find PERSI, the Periodical Source Index, the differences between the sites, how to get copies of articles cited in the periodical index and the dramatic things that are happening with PERSI at FindMyPast.
|K. Locating Living Relatives (Reverse Genealogy): Where, Why & How
Katherine Willson, Researcher & lecturer
Let’s step away from researching our deceased ancestors and attempt to locate living relatives who might be in possession of Great-Great-Grandma’s family Bible, photos of Civil War ancestors, or letters written from the home country. We’ll discuss online sites that allow us to look for potential living relatives at no cost and methods for contacting them without sounding like a scammer or a phisher! Handouts provided.
|L. Off the Beaten Path: Small Local History Collections and Genealogy Research
Jessica Trotter, Researcher & blogger
Small historical and genealogical society archives are often hidden gems with materials unique to their community. They can provide sources to help break down brickwalls and context and history to flesh out the story in your research.
|1:00 – 2:00 PM||M. One Place Studies: Examining the Intricate Details of Your Ancestor’s Community
Jen Baldwin, Findmypast
Many of us are entirely focused on names; so it may be time to consider the place instead. A One Place Study (OPS) can give you a more complete view of your family, their day-to-day life, and open opportunities for new areas of research and discovery.
|2:30 – 3:30 PM||N. Cradle to the Grave: Using Church Records in Genealogy Research
Matthew LaFlash, Researcher
Often pre-dating civil records, church records can be an incredibly useful resource for genealogical research, if you can just find them. This program will discuss the many records that may be created through a lifetime of church membership, how to use these records to further your research, and most importantly, how to locate them.
|O. Census Records: More Than Just People and Places
Jessica Harden, Archives of Michigan
Census records are a foundational tool for genealogy research because they help us determine where our ancestors lived over time. Depending on the type of census and year, though, they can offer much more information, including clues to immigrant ancestors’ pasts, as well as socioeconomic statistics. This program will also delve into special censuses like state censuses, agricultural censuses, slave schedules, veterans’ censuses, and more.
|P. Getting Around the Brick Wall
James Jackson, Professional researcher
We all reach the end of the trail on some of our branches. As Churchill said, “Never, never, never give up!” By trying variant spellings, little used sources, and having just a little luck, you may break through that wall. How about really analyzing the sources you already have? There may be hidden clues there. Don’t forget boundary changes through the years – are you really looking in the right place?
One of the Archivists frequently helping researchers in the Reading Room at the Archives of Michigan, Jill delivers educational programs to both adults and children, and also develops content and features for Seeking Michigan (seekingmichigan.org), the online platform of the Archives. Jill earned a Master of Science in Information with a specialization of Library & Information Science as well as Archives & Records Management from the University of Michigan.
Jen Baldwin has been working in the realm of professional genealogy since 2010. She is currently the Data Acquisition Manager, North America for Findmypast. Jen lectures, writes, and consults on a variety of genealogy and social media related topics, and was part of the research team for Genealogy Roadshow, season two. Her research focus generally tends towards the Western United States – especially the Gold Rush era – and fraternal societies. She is the author of course materials for the National Institute of Genealogical Studies and numerous Legacy QuickGuides. She is a proud volunteer for the Federation of Genealogical Societies, serving as a Board Member and Education Chair, and the Larimer County Genealogical Society (CO). Additionally, she is the host of #genchat on Twitter, a popular crowd-sourcing and conversation venue which occurs every two weeks.
Daniel’s interest in genealogy was sparked at age 10 when he visited the grave of his great-grandfather with his own father. He has a Master’s degree in Psychology, serves as the President of the Hungarian Genealogical Society of Michigan and is the Continuing Education Chair for the Michigan Genealogical Council. Daniel has taught groups from 2 to 200 with his trademark humor and unique insights for people of all levels of genealogical experience.
An Archivist at the Archives of Michigan, Jessica currently works with records from the Office of the Great Seal, assists researchers at the reference desk, gives presentations about Archives of Michigan resources, and contributes to digitization projects at Seeking Michigan (seekingmichigan.org). She earned a Master of Library and Information Science and Archives Administration graduate certificate from Wayne State University.
Actively doing genealogical research since 1967, Shirley has taught genealogy classes and seminars – both for the novice and advanced genealogist – in the U. S. and Canada since 1994. Her interest in sharing her love of genealogical research and her sense of humor has delighted audiences. Shirley served as President of the Genealogical Speakers Guild from 2006-2010, was the 2012 recipient of the Mary Lucy Kellogg award, and became a columnist for The Global Gazette in June 2006.
Interested in genealogy and local history since the mid-1970’s, Jim has served as President of the Detroit Society for Genealogical Research, Oakland County Genealogical Society, and Calhoun County Genealogical Society. He has been the index editor of the DSGR Magazine since 1994 and is the current Commander of Camp 22 (Marshall, MI) Sons of Union Veterans.
Thomas Koselka has been researching his family history for over twenty-five years. Tom is President of the Detroit Society for Genealogical Research and President of the Michigan Genealogical Council (2012-2017). Tom is also Past-President of the Dearborn Genealogical Society and serves as a board member, mentor, and advisor to several genealogical societies. He is retired from Dearborn Music and lives in Westland with his wife, Valerie.
Always curious, Matt has grown up looking at family photographs, listening to the stories that they would inspire, and asking questions. Now with almost 20 years of genealogy experience, Matt is the Publicity Chair for the Indiana Genealogical Society and also volunteers with the Georgia Genealogical Society.
Janice is a native of Sault Ste. Marie and has worked in the Monroe County Library System, the State Library of Iowa, and the Library of Michigan. She has been a government documents coordinator, as well as a reference librarian, responding to a wide variety of questions over the years. She holds a bachelor’s degree from Lake Superior State University and a master’s degree in library science from the University of Michigan. Her adventures in genealogy include Irish, Canadian and Italian roots.
A Senior Archivist at the Archives of Michigan, where he specializes in family history and Michigan research, Kris previously worked for a number of years at the Library of Michigan as the Michigan/Genealogy Coordinator. Kris is also a past Vice-President of Membership for the Federation of Genealogical Societies and a Past-President of the Mid-Michigan Genealogical Society.
Melissa C. Tennant supervised the History & Genealogy Collection for the Hillsborough County (FL) Public Library prior to joining the staff of The Genealogy Center at the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne (IN). Now the Assistant Manager of Public Services there, she co-coordinates the programs and seminars held by The Center, supervises preservation and digital projects, and administers the Center’s website. She is a former Director for the Federation of Genealogical Societies.
Jessica holds a BA in History from Michigan State University and MS in Information, Archives and Records Management Specialization from the University of Michigan—but, through some strange twist of fate, she currently serves as the Head of Public Services at the Downtown Lansing Library of the Capital Area District Libraries (CADL). Jessica also teaches introductory Genealogy classes for CADL and maintains a research related blog called Genie Roadtrip (genieroadtrip.wordpress.com).
Katherine is a nationally-known public speaker on the topics of genealogy, military life & art. She is the Vice-President of the Michigan Genealogical Council and the Ford Genealogy Club, a Director for the Washtenaw County Genealogical Society, the Corresponding Secretary for the Detroit Society for Genealogical Research, and currently serves on the Membership Committee of the Federation of Genealogical Societies.