Georgia genealogists have three opportunities to learn and grow as researchers in programs to be held in March and April of this year.
A new program in genealogical research was announced recently. The Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh, aka GRIPitt, is a week-long program similar to Samford University’s Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research, to be held annually each July at LaRoche College in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.
This summer, GRIPitt will offer four courses:
- Intermediate Genealogy: Tools for Digging Deeper with Paula Stewart-Warren
- Advanced Research Methods with Thomas W. Jones
- Beneath the Home Page: Problem Solving with Online Repositories with D. Joshua Taylor
- German Genealogical Research with John T. Humphrey
The course leaders are widely known genealogical researchers, lecturers, and authors, and are joined by other distinguished members of the genealogical community, including Clair Bettag, Rick Sayre, Pam Stone Eagleson, and Pamela Boyer Sayre. Elissa Scalise Powell, another well-known face, and Deborah Lichtner Deal serve as directors.
Although 2012 is GRIPitt’s first year, one course, Tom Jones’ Advanced Research Methods, filled within minutes of registration opening. The other three courses still have space, most likely not for long.
As time moves on and GRIPitt becomes more popular, I expect other courses will be added, possibly as counterpoints to IGHR’s offerings or in response to trends within the discipline. Whatever direction GRIPitt takes, the opportunity to tap into the minds of some of genealogy’s brightest stars is a welcome one.
The National Genealogical Society’s 2011 Family History Conference is looming large. I’ve been looking forward to this conference since hearing Jeffrey Haines speak about it at last August’s Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference. Helen F. M. Leary is speaking, and it may, quite frankly, be the last opportunity to attend a lecture given by this bastion of genealogy. Plus, many of the lectures are geared toward Southern researchers. And it’s in Charleston. What genealogist/historian doesn’t want to visit this lore-rich, historic city?
Continuing with the theme of interesting online items…
One of the ways in which genealogists learn their craft is by studying the work of others. There are many publications available to assist with this goal, including a number of reputable journals (see Recommended Books). While many genealogical journals are now available online to subscribers or through databases such as those maintained by the New England Historic Genealogical Society, their main method of distribution remains the printed medium (i.e. on paper). There are, however, two genealogical journals now published exclusively online. Both are open access, meaning there are no subscription fees to enjoy the content.
The first is Annals of Genealogical Research, edited by Robert S. Shaw. This journal is not peer reviewed, but it does serve as a place where serious research can be published. For instance, Dawn C. Stricklin’s recent article Reconstructed African-American Cemeteries: Colored Masonic Cemetery, Farmington, St. Francis Co., MO is as much a teaching article (how to reconstruct burials in a cemetery with unmarked graves) as it is a contribution to the fields of genealogy, history, and anthropology. Unfortunately, Annals is not published on a regular basis, possibly because of a lack of submissions, but possibly also because of a lack of awareness within the genealogical community about its existence. Setting up an editorial board and implementing a peer review system would probably go a long way towards pushing this much-needed outlet to the forefront in the minds of genealogical authors.
The Journal of Genetic Genealogy is peer reviewed, and is edited by Blaine T. Bettinger, better known as the Genetic Genealogist. This journal has been published nearly every spring and fall since 2005. As the title implies, the focus is on the application of genetics to the field of genealogy. The result is a fascinating body of multidisciplinary work. Recent issues include “Where Have all the Indians Gone? Native American Eastern Seaboard Dispersal, Genealogy and DNA in Relation to Sir Walter Raleigh’s Lost Colony of Roanoke” by Roberta Estes (Volume 5, Number 2, Fall 2009) and “On the Propagation of Mitochondrial Mutations” by Ian Long (Volume 5, Number 1, Spring 2009), as well as Special Sections dealing particularly with Y-DNA Projects and Cluster Analysis. This journal is a must-read for anyone interested in genetic genealogy and related academic disciplines.
Serious scholarship includes the study of the literature of one’s field. Genealogy is no exception. The advent of open access journals such as the two named can only serve to assist in this endeavour.
A recent search for information on processioning led to the discovery of GenealogyMagazine.com, an outgrowth of American Genealogy Magazine, which was published from 1987 to 1999. GenealogyMagazine.com now serves as an online repository for articles and databases taken in large part from the now defunct magazine.
This site is a virtual treasure trove for American genealogists. Databases include a plaintiff index to Pickens Dist., SC, Record Book 1 (1828 – 1841), Court of Common Pleas, as well as a host of similar information from Texas, Alabama, and other areas of the United States.
The online articles were originally published in American Genealogy Magazine and include genealogies (in one form or another) of the rich and famous, including several presidents, and how-to articles for those in need of guidance. The latter include such informative pieces as Intermarriage in the Cherokee Nation by James Pylant and Migration Patterns of Our Scottish Ancestors by Myra Vanderpool Gormley. Many of the authors whose articles are inluded in the online database are well-known and highly reputable genealogists and historians.
The Fairfax Genealogical Society (Fairfax Co., VA) is hosting their 7th Annual Fall Fair on 30 October 2010 at the Springfield Hilton in Springfield, VA. This day-long event features nationally-recognized genealogist Loretto Dennis Szucs, co-editor of The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy and author of They Became Americans: Finding Naturalization Records and Ethnic Origins, amongst others.
Topics for this day include: What’s New at Ancestry.com; Hidden Sources; Dead Men Do Tell Tales; and The Ancestry World Archives Project.
For more information, see the registration page.
On 2 October 2010, the Georgia Genealogical Society will host a four-session event, Expanding Your Genealogical Horizons: Using Easily Accessible Resources to Increase Your Success at the National Archives, Southeast Region in Morrow, GA.
Sessions include a three-person panel on “Hiring a Professional Genealogist”, something I would recommend all genealogists attend, professional and hobbyist alike. Other topics will be: Using GPS technology [etc.] to locate and mark historical sites and graves; PINES and WorldCat; and Heir Property.
Cost of the event is $25 for GGS members and $35 for non-members. The program runs from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. Lunch is not included.
For more information, see the Calendar of Events.
Put it on your calendars now: registration for the National Genealogical Society’s 2011 Family History Conference opens 1 December 2010. The conference will be held next year from 11 – 14 May in Charleston, SC. While information on specific lectures is not available to the public at the moment, the conference blog does offer some preliminary information on the various tracks being offered, including one called the “Military Track” which will offer a series of lectures on various conflicts from the “Revolutionary War [...] into the twentieth century.”
On 18 September 2010, the Old Buncombe County Genealogical Society will hold its annual Fall Genealogy Workshop at the Simpson Lecture Hall on the AB Tech Campus in Asheville, NC, from 9:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m. This year’s theme is Family History in Your Pajamas: Genealogy on the Internet. The cost is $20 per person, which includes lunch and a set of handouts. To guarantee lunch and handout availability, please register in advance.
For more information, see the workshop’s registration page.
Today was a long day. We left the hotel at 7:15 a.m. and didn’t return until after 8 p.m. Whew! Here’s an overview:
- The Five Civilized Tribes of the South and Their Genealogical Records by Russell P. Baker
- Planning ‘Reasonably Exhaustive’ Research by Thomas W. Jones
- “I’ll Fly Away”: Using Souther Church Records in Genealogical Research by Russell P. Baker
- African American Families: Using Manuscripts and Special Collections by J. Mark Lowe
- The Genealogical Proof Standard in Action by Elizabeth Shown Mills
- County Land Records by Christine Rose
Tom Jones and Christine Rose have many credentials which I have not added here, in part because their postnomials are as long as their names. But be aware that, like Mills and Lowe, they are Big Names in genealogy circles. I had never before had the honor of listening to lectures by Mr. Baker, but now that I know he’s on the lecture circuit, I will make a point of trying to attend another lecture in the future.
Also today was the APG luncheon, with guest speaker Elizabeth Shown Mills, and the War of 1812 reception, featuring Dr. George Schweitzer in full Minute Man regalia to raise awareness and funds for NARA’s War of 1812 pension digitization project. I could not find information on NARA’s site about this project, but to learn more about this records set see Genealogical Records of the War of 1812 by Stuart L. Butler