Conferences

Recent Updates to the Calendar of Genealogy Events

The following pages have recently been updated in the Calendar of Genealogy Events:

Colorado, Indiana, Mississippi, New Jersey, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and Virginia

Some of the above changes may have been deletions of previous events.

All information in the Calendar of Events is contributed by YOU and by other genealogists. You can directly add information to the Calendar about your local genealogy event.

Who Do You Think You Are? Live! in Birmingham, England – Day #3

The third and final day of the Who Do You Think You Are? Live! event finished a few hours ago in Birmingham, England. It must have been a great show because I know I am bushed!

The crowd at the Guild of One-Name Studies stand

This final day was similar to the first two days (see my earlier reports here and here for details). The biggest single difference is that the crowd was even bigger today than either of the two previous days. No surprises there as more people can attend on a Saturday than can be there on a weekday.

Mark Your Calendar: the next Who Do You Think You Are? Live! show will be held in Birmingham, England, on April 7 through 9, 2016

After a successful Who Do You Think You Are? Live! this week, the conference organizers have announced that the next several Who Do You Think You Are? Live! shows will be held in the same location as this year’s event: in the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in Birmingham, England. The next one will be held April 7 through 9, 2016.

Who Do You Think You Are? Live! in Birmingham, England – Day #2

The Who Do You Think You Are? Live! event continued for a second day today at the National Exhibition Centre (NEC) in Birmingham, England. In fact, it was very much like the first day of the event with one major exception. In fact, I have to take back one statement I wrote yesterday and re-state it a bit differently.

Yesterday, in my report of Day #1, I wrote, “The total attendance undoubtedly was lower than the past few years when the event was held in London …” However, the attendance today (Friday) was much higher than that of Thursday. Attendance today may or may not have reached the levels seen in previous years in London but, whatever the number, the hall was crowded most of the time. Several of the commercial vendors reported late this afternoon they were quite happy with sales made to this larger crowd.

Here is a small sample of today’s larger crowds filling the rather wide aisles in the exhibits hall.

Who Do You Think You Are? Live! in Birmingham, England – Day #1

The newly-relocated Who Do You Think You Are? Live! conference opened at 9:30 this morning in the National Exhibition Centre (NEC), in Birmingham, England. I think every one of the several thousand people who attended would agree that the first day’s events were successful.

The Who Do You Think You Are? Live! annual events have always been held in London in the past although a “special edition” was held in Glasgow, Scotland last year as a second event of 2014. (You can read my reports from last year’s Glasgow event by starting at http://goo.gl/kEPcei.)

This year’s Who Do You Think You Are? Live! Event was moved to a very modern convention center in Birmingham, England. The 2015 event is being held this week in an industrial area well outside the city but very close to the airport and a train station and also easily accessible by motorways. In short, it is an excellent location for attendees who must travel some distance to attend. While I traveled a considerable distance from Orlando, Florida, to Birmingham, I was not even close to having traveled the furthest to attend. I met a number of attendees at today’s event who were from Australia, California, Texas, Germany, and a number of other places.

The National Exhibition Centre, or NEC., is an ideal place for a conference with several thousand attendees. I believe there are 20 exhibition halls inside the cavernous NEC facility. Yes, twenty! All the several thousand genealogists and the vendors combined did not fill one hall. There was room for 19 more conferences of similar or even larger size to be held simultaneously!

International Conference on Jewish Genealogy Early Registration Discount Extended

The following announcement was written by the organizers of the 2015 IAJGS 35th International Conference on Jewish Genealogy:

Happy Passover from the 2015 IAJGS 35th International Conference on Jewish Genealogy. For the ease of those who are vacationing over the holiday, we have decided to extend the Early Registration Discount fee through Wednesday May 6, 2015. Visit www.iajgs2015.org to register now! And since we promised a drawing for prizes those registered by April 15th your chances of winning are now double! Be patient if we are slower in answering e-mails, Israel is on vacation until April 12. Ortra our Conference Organizer, like most non-essential businesses in Israel, is closed for all but emergencies. I and most of our volunteers will be answering questions as rapidly as we can.

Our Preliminary Program now is now listed in the Program & Schedule section of the website in the “Program” tab at www.iajgs2015.org. You’ll see why we are boasting that this will be “A Conference Like No Other”. The schedule will become interactive after Passover.

National Genealogy Conference in Canada has been CANCELED

A National Genealogy Conference had been scheduled to be held in Halifax on July 17 through 19. A very brief announcement at http://www.visiontravel.ca/heidiwilker now says the event has been canceled. The reason for the cancelation was not given although I suspect a low number of pre-registrations may have had something to do with it.

Join the Guild of One-Name Studies at the WDYTYA Live show Birmingham

The following announcement was written by the Guild of One-Name Studies:

Join the Guild of One-Name Studies at the Who Do You Think You Are? – Live Birmingham show (16th to 18th April 2015), thereby saving £1 on the normal rate for April joiners and receive a special “show time only” goody bag. A special show offer of £22 will cover full membership to the Guild of One-Name Studies for a period of 19 months up to 1 November 2016. The current rate for anyone taking out an extended Guild membership in April 2015 is £23. New Guild members joining at the show will receive a goody bag comprising a “Special Guild 8Gb USB drive” (priced £9.00 at the show) which has the Guilds Members handbook, The Art of One-Name Studies “Seven Pillars of Wisdom” book (hard copy usually £7.00), the 2014 Guild Register and all 132 back issues of the Guild Journal of One-Name Studies pre-loaded, a Guild Lanyard and a Guild pen, along with their normal Guild joining pack.

Who Do You Think You Are? Live Next Week in Birmingham, England

This article is primarily for newsletter readers who live in the UK or for anyone else who can be in Birmingham next week.

If you are interested in family history and if you can be in Birmingham next week, you will want to visit the Who Do You Think You Are? Live conference being held in the Birmingham NEC from April 16 to 18. Now in it’s nineth year, the show’s visitors will again have access to leading genealogical experts, informative workshops, more than 120 specialist exhibitors, archives and museums, major online resources and the largest gathering of family history societies. One thing that is different this year is the location: the show has moved from London to Birmingham.

One thing that is unique to all the Who Do You Think You Are? Live events is the number of television personalities that appear in person. After all, the conference is closely affiliated with the popular television programme so several of the personalities who have appeared in the UK version of Who Do You Think You Are? television programme may be seen at the show. Actress Tamzin Outhwaite, comedian Alistair McGowan and presenter Reggie Yates will all be in attendance at next week’s show in Birmingham.

NGS Releases Mobile Conference App for 2015 Family History Conference

The following announcement was written by the folks at the National Genealogical Society:

ARLINGTON, VA, 6 APRIL 2015—The National Genealogical Society (NGS) announces the release of the Mobile Conference App for the NGS 2015 Family History Conference, which will be held 13‒16 May 2015 in St. Charles, Missouri. To download the free NGS Conference App, go to Mobile App.

The NGS Conference App is available for iOS, Android, Blackberry, Windows Phone, and web-enabled devices. Search your app store for NGS Family History Conferences.

NGS 2016 Family History Conference Call for Papers Closes 1 April 2015

The following announcement was written by the (U.S.) National Genealogical Society:

ARLINGTON, VA, 26 MARCH 2015—Time is running out to submit lecture proposals for the NGS 2016 Family History Conference. Speakers and sponsoring organizations must submit their proposals by 1 April 2015. The conference, entitled Exploring the Centuries: Footprints in Time, will be held 4–7 May 2016 in Fort Lauderdale, Florida.

The ethnic makeup of Florida is, and always has been, diverse. Native Americans—including Miccosukees, Choctaw, Creek, Timucua, and Calusa—lived throughout the area, which became known as La Florida after the arrival of Ponce de León in 1513. The Spanish were followed by other groups such as the French, British, Irish, German, and Greeks. The importation of African slaves also affected society in Florida as did the formation of the Seminole alliance. All of these people have left many footprints in time and a rich repository of records to trace our ancestry.

RootsTech 2015 Breaks all Attendance Records

The fifth annual RootsTech 2015 conference held last month in Salt lake City appears to have been the largest genealogy conference ever held with 23,918 attendees. Here is the announcement from FamilySearch:

The fifth annual RootsTech 2015 conference, hosted by FamilySearch, is officially in the record books as registering 23,918 attendees over three days, an 83% increase over 2014. And it’s not done yet as the world’s largest family history conference. There are already plans to deliver over 1,000 local family discovery day events throughout the remainder of 2015. It’s another indicator that family history continues to be a strong and growing interest not only in the United States, but internationally as well. Attendees to RootsTech 2015 came from far and wide, hailing from 49 states (West Virginia was the holdout) and 37 countries.

The popular conference’s formula for success included attracting well-known keynote speakers, such as former First Lady Laura Bush, Donny Osmond, Tan Le, and A. J. Jacobs, who shared inspiring family stories, and offering a rich combination of more than 500 classes, exhibits, demonstrations, and fun entertainment designed to appeal to multiple generations of family members and broad family history interests. Select sessions from RootsTech 2015 can be viewed for free at RootsTech.org.

National Genealogical Society Announces Live Streaming Broadcast — 2015 Family History Conference (St. Charles, Missouri 13–16 May 2015)

The following announcement was written by the (U.S.) National Genealogical Society:

Arlington, VA, 9 March 2015 —The National Genealogical Society (NGS) announces the live streaming of ten lectures from its 2015 Family History Conference, which will be held 13‒16 May 2015, in St. Charles, Missouri. NGS members and others across the United States and overseas, who are unable to attend the conference in person, are invited to sign up for these live streaming lectures. Details of the live streaming program can be found on the NGS Conference website at http://conference.ngsgenealogy.org/attend/live-streaming/.

NGS has selected some of the most popular topics and nationally known speakers for the two featured tracks. Registrants for live streaming can sign up for either track or the bundled package that includes both tracks.

Global Family Reunion Launches Crowdfunding Campaign to Unite World and Fight Alzheimer’s

The following announcement was written by the folks who are sponsoring the Global Family Reunion:

The Global Family Reunion has just launched a crowdfunding campaign with two not-so-minor goals: Unite the world and battle Alzheimer’s.

The Global Family Reunion will take place June 6, 2015, and aims to be the biggest, most inclusive and most entertaining family reunion in history. Everyone is invited. It will include presentations by celebrities, genealogists, and famous scientists, music, comedy, games, interactive exhibits and food. The main event will be held on the grounds of the world’s fair in New York, but there will be simultaneous parties around the world.

Genealogy Cruises versus Convention Centers

Several genealogy cruises take place every year. Cruising genealogists get to enjoy courses, software demonstrations, “how to” presentations describing the latest genealogy techniques, good food, gorgeous scenery, and adventurous shore excursions. What could be better?

Occasionally we hear claims that interest in genealogy is declining. These claims are based on the fact that attendance at some genealogy conferences is less than that of a few years ago. Yet everywhere else we look, we see proof of the opposite. The combined RootsTech and Federation of Genealogical Societies conferences attracted about 22,500 people this year. While it is held in the “genealogy Mecca” of Salt Lake City, that’s not bad for a mid-winter event! Who Do You Think You Are? Live! held in England every year typically attracts close to 15,000 attendees. The accompanying Who Do You Think You Are? television series about genealogy is popular in several countries around the world. Genealogy Roadshow and Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr. are U.S. television shows that also attract millions of viewers.

Thousands of genealogy web sites also attest to the current level of interest. The number of genealogy programs available for mobile computing devices is increasing faster than ever before, and the latest growth is in cloud-based genealogy programs. Several of the software producers are reporting record sales. Finally, genealogy “theme cruises” attract more and more people every year.

I’d say that genealogy is alive and more popular than ever!

NERGC Early Bird Registration Expires Saturday 28 February 2015

The following announcement was written by the organizers of the New England Regional Genealogical Conference:

NERGC 2015 Navigating the Past: Sailing into the Future

Nearly 1,000 genealogists from around New England and beyond are making plans to attend the largest biennial genealogical conference in the northeast.

Save $30 with early bird registration.

Join the New England Genealogical Consortium, Inc in their 13th biennial conference which is being held April 15-18, 2015 at the Rhode Island Convention Center, Providence, Rhode Island.

Who Do You Think You Are? Live 2015 in Birmingham, England

One of the largest family history events held every year is the Who Do You Think You Are? Live! show, often abbreviated as WDYTYAL. It is normally held in London but the 2015 event is moving to Birmingham and will be held from April 16 to 18. I plan to be there and expect more than ten thousand other genealogists will be there as well.

Inspired by the very popular Who Do You Think You Are? TV series, the show will offer expert advice to help you uncover more information about your ancestors. While the focus obviously is on UK ancestry, genealogy records and advice can be found for many other countries as well. For instance, the Families In British India Society (FIBIS) always has a large and active exhibit. In the past, I have also seen exhibits from genealogy organizations devoted to German, Polish, Italian, and other ethnic origins.

International Congress of Genealogical and Heraldic Sciences to be held in Scotland

The 32nd International Congress of Genealogical and Heraldic Sciences will be held in Glasgow, Scotland, from Wednesday 10 August until Saturday 13 August 2016.

This appears to be the most prestigious congress in the field, organised under the auspices of the Academie Internationale de Genealogie and the Academie Internationale d’Héraldique. It is a biennial event, dedicated to topics of heraldic and genealogical interest, and bringing together scholars and other interested persons from around the world.

Midwest Family History Expo Call for Papers

The following announcement was written by the folks who produce the Midwest Family History Expo:

Now accepting proposals for presenting at our 4th annual Midwest Family History Expo to be held at the Holiday Inn in Kearney, Nebraska September 18-19, 2015.

Submission emphasis should focus on principles, strategies, and sources used in family history and genealogical research.

Desired topics include:

My Pictures from the RootsTech and FGS Conferences

RootsTech2015 and FGS conferencesI just uploaded a photo album of many of my photographs from the RootsTech 2015 and FGS combined conferences held in Salt Lake City last week. To get an idea of what it was like at the conferences, look at: http://eogn.com/images/newsletter/albums/RootsTech2015.

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