Conferences

Recent Updates to the Calendar of Genealogy Events

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

California, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Maryland, Missouri, New Jersey, North Carolina, and Ohio

Colorado, Connecticut, Missouri, and Ohio

Some of the above changes may have been deletions of past 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.

Registration Opens Feb. 1 for International German Genealogy ‘Connections’ Conference in July

The following announcement was written by the International German Genealogy Partnership:

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn.—Registration opens Feb. 1 for the 2017 International Germanic Genealogy Conference, set for July 28-30 in Minneapolis, Minn.

Early, discounted registration runs through March: $225 for individuals belonging to organizations that are members of the International German Genealogy Partnership (formerly German-American Genealogical Partnership), and $250 for all others. Regular registration begins April 1 at the standard rate, $299.

Register by completing and mailing a print form or by completing the online form available at the Partnership website www.IGGPartner.org, set to go live in late January. Print forms can be downloaded from the website and are also available through local genealogy societies that are members of the Partnership.

National Genealogical Society Issues Call for Proposals for the 2018 Family History Conference in Grand Rapids, Michigan

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

ARLINGTON, VA, 3 JANUARY 2017—The National Genealogical Society (NGS) will open the call for proposals for the 2018 Family History Conference, Paths to Your Past, on 3 January 2017. The conference will be held in Grand Rapids, Michigan, from 2–5 May 2018.

In the nineteenth century, the Great Lakes were major, strategic waterways that aided Americans moving West and immigrants coming from overseas through Canada to settle and develop the Midwest. Cheap land, mining, and the timber industry made the area attractive. The combination of water power from the rivers and rapids, together with access to grain and lumber, encouraged manufacturing and industry, including breweries, furniture, and cereal.

Among the topics being considered by NGS are presentations on migration paths to the Midwest, including waterways, trails, and railroads; records and repositories for Michigan, the surrounding states, and Canada; records generated by France, Great Britain, and later by the newly established United States as they fought for control of the Old Northwest Territory; land grants, deeds, and maps; and laws and court records.

Incoming North Carolina Governor Vows Repeal of Controversial LGBT Law, Thereby Avoiding Controversy over the National Genealogical Society’s Annual Conference

Good news: the incoming North Carolina Governor has vowed to repeal the state’s controversial LGBT law. Details may be found at: https://goo.gl/ovEaqX.

UPDATE: A later story with developing details may now be found at https://goo.gl/RJbgT0.

One would hope that state politics would not interfere with planned genealogy conferences. Sadly, that is what happened when the State of North Carolina passed the so-called HB2 legislation that blatantly discriminated against the rights of LGBTQ citizens and visitors to the state. (LGBTQ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (and/or questioning) individuals/identities.)

Many companies and non-profits immediately canceled planned conferences, sporting events, and even business expansions in North Carolina because of the chilling effect of the state’s HB2 or the “bathroom bill.” Even the U.S. Justice Department officials are on record as stating the law violates the U.S. Civil Rights Act and Title IX – a finding that could jeopardize billions in federal education funding. You can read more about that issue at http://goo.gl/qdPS3U.

Controversy within the genealogy community arose because of the previously-planned annual conference of the National Genealogical Society (NGS) that was already planned for 10-13 May 2017 in Raleigh, North Carolina. The NGS managers found themselves about equi-distant between a rock and a hard spot. For background information, see my earlier article, North Carolina’s Anti-LGBTQ Law Will Cost the State more than $395 Million and Even Affects Genealogy Conferences, at https://goo.gl/oDivBp.

Who Do You Think You Are? Live! Tickets are Now On Sale

The 11th Who Do You Think You Are? Live show will be held 6 – 8 April 2017 at the NEC in Birmingham, England. This is the largest family history show in the UK and one of the largest in the world.

An early bird rate is currently available until Tuesday 22nd November 2016, allowing you to obtain 2 tickets for the price of £20 if you use the code ANC20 when purchasing. The code is courtesy of Ancestry.co.uk. Also, if you travel to WDYTYA? Live on Virgin Trains, you can deduct 25% from the cost of the train ticket.

To buy show tickets visit: http://www.whodoyouthinkyouarelive.com/ticket-information. Details about discounted train tickets may be found at https://www.virgintrains.co.uk/nec.

To learn more about the Who Do You Think You Are? Live show, watch the YouTube video from last year’s show below and then go to http://www.whodoyouthinkyouarelive.com.

2017 International Germanic Genealogy ‘Connections’ Conference Features All-Star Lineup of Speakers

The following announcement was written by the folks organizing the International Germanic Genealogy Conference:

MINNEAPOLIS, Minn.—An all-star lineup of speakers, including well-known international figures, is slated for the 2017 International Germanic Genealogy Conference, set for July 28-30 in Minneapolis, Minn.

Among 39 confirmed presenters are figures including Roger Minert, Ernest Thode, Dirk Weissleder of Germany, Baerbel Johnson, Fritz Juengling, Michael Lacopo, James Beidler, Paula Stuart-Warren, Teresa Steinkamp McMillin, Jill Morelli and Stephen Morse. Other international presenters include Ursula Krause, Werner Esser and Timo Kracke, all of Germany, and Benjamin Hollister of Australia.

The conference — “CONNECTIONS: International. Cultural. Personal.” — will offer 70 presentations over three full days.

Recent Updates to the Calendar of Genealogy Events

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

Ireland, Arkansas, California, Connecticut, Illinois, Maryland, Mississippi, Missouri, New York, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Utah

Some of the above changes may have been deletions of past 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.

National Archives Virtual Genealogy Fair

poster-sThe (U.S.) National Archives and Records Administration is hosting a two-day, virtual Genealogy Fair via webcast on October 26 & 27, 2016 (Wednesday & Thursday). Viewers have the opportunity to participate with the presenters and other family historians during the live event on YouTube. All of the session videos and handouts will be available online free of charge. You can watch the sessions and download the materials at your convenience. Registration is not required.

The sessions include:

North Carolina’s Anti-LGBTQ Law Will Cost the State more than $395 Million and Even Affects Genealogy Conferences

Normally, this would not be a genealogy-related story and I would ignore it. However, it became a genealogy story because the National Genealogical Society is planning to hold its annual conference in Raleigh, North Carolina, on May 10 to 13, 2017. Information about that conference is available on the NGS web site at: http://conference.ngsgenealogy.org.

Many companies and non-profits are canceling planned conferences, sporting events, and even business expansions in North Carolina because of the chilling effect of the state’s recently-passed HB2 or the “bathroom bill.” The bill discriminates against LGBTQ citizens and visitors to the state. (LGBTQ stands for lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, and queer (and/or questioning) individuals/identities.)

Registration for RootsTech2017 is now Open

This morning, the organizers of RootsTech opened the online registration for next February’s conference in Salt Lake City, Utah, to be held February 8–11. If you are interested in genealogy, and especially if you are interested in the use of technology to help in your genealogy research efforts, you will want to attend this event. The digital age has transformed the way people look at family history and RootsTech focuses on the use of the new ideas.

exhibit-rootstech

In just a few short years, RootsTech has become the biggest conference in the genealogy world. Next February’s event promises to be the same and probably will be bigger than ever.

Bring your walking shoes! You will need them for this huge event. (Handicap access is also provided.)

You can register for RootsTech2017 now at http://www.rootstech.org.

Take a Genealogy Cruise to Alaska with HB Genealogy Cruises

hbgenealogycruisesGenealogy cruises are very popular and for good reasons. They are educational, they are fun, and they also provide a great experience for family members who are not interested in genealogy. Unlike a genealogy conference in a major city’s conference center, I have never heard a complaint about a cruise from non-interested family members who accompany a family member on one of these family history conferences on the seas.

For more information about the benefits of genealogy cruises, see my earlier article, Genealogy Cruises versus Convention Centers, at http://goo.gl/9d0acs.

HB Genealogy Cruises, sponsored by Heritage Books, has been in the cruise business for several years under the guidance of Craig Scott. The company is now offering its 4th Annual Genealogy Conference & Cruise, this time from Seattle, Washington, to British Columbia, to several ports in Alaska, and back again. The cruise will take place on September 17 — 24, 2017, roughly one year from now. I will suggest now is the time to start planning!

Hotel Reservations Now Open for the FGS 2017 Conference in Pittsburgh

This may seem early. After all, the 2016 FGS conference was held just last week. However, hotel reservations often sell out early so the wise genealogist probably wants to make a reservation NOW for the 2017 FGS conference. I made my reservation today.

The following announcement was written by the Federation of Genealogical Societies:

Book your room now for #FGS2017

9/7/2016 – Austin, TX.

FGS is pleased to announce that hotel reservations are now open for the 2017 Conference to be held in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

1-2017Logo-Charcoal

Two Pittsburgh hotels are now taking reservations for the FGS 2017 conference – “Building Bridges to the Past.” The conference will be held August 30-September 2 at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.

FGS 2016 Conference in Springfield, Illinois is a Success

I returned home late last night from the annual conference of the Federation of Genealogical Societies, co-sponsored by the local host, the Illinois State Genealogical Society. I have to say this was one of the better FGS conferences I have attended (and I have been to most of them for in the past 28 years). It wasn’t the biggest ever held but it was one of the better organized and better planned FGS events.

FGS_2016_Springfield_IL

I already wrote about the opening session in my earlier article at http://goo.gl/JkC9hF. That was followed by three days of presentations covering a wide variety of topics, an active exhibits hall, various luncheons, the conference banquet on Friday evening, and several workshops. Indeed, the Friday banquet perhaps was the best ever at an FGS conference. Games were played, including a mix of trivia questions and something that resembled a scavenger hunt (all held within the banquet hall). Thousands of dollars in prizes were awarded!

A Report from the FGS 2016 Opening Session

The opening session of the Federation of Genealogical Societies took place this morning in Springfield, Illinois in a crowded room containing hundreds of conference attendees. I took notes on the iPad but my typing ability is not fast enough to capture everything. Here is a bit of what I did record.

This shows some of the crowd at the opening session

This shows some of the crowd at the opening session

FGS President Josh Taylor offered opening remarks and a number of announcements. One announcement that was well received was that MyHeritage has become the Platinum Sponsor of FGS conferences for the next three years. This is a major financial commitment by vendor to financially support the genealogy community.

Paula Stuart-Warren made several award presentations, including:

FGS 2016 Awards Presented at the FGS 2016 National Conference

The following announcement was written by the Federation of Genealogical Societies:

September 1, 2016

Federation of Genealogical Societies Presented Awards to Deserving Individuals and Organizations in the Genealogical Community at FGS 2016 Annual Conference

September 1, 2016 – Austin, TX. The Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) presented awards to fellow genealogists and organizations who provide excellent work, assist other genealogists, and aid in the preservation of records at this morning’s Keynote Session at the FGS 2016 National Conference, “Time Travel: Centuries of Memories,” in Springfield, Illinois.

Loretto (“Lou”) Szucs from Illinois was presented with the Rabbi Malcolm H. Stern Humanitarian Award for being a constant supporter and visionary for the genealogical community.

Judy Russell from New Jersey, also known as “The Legal Genealogist,” was presented with the Directors Award for her role as a leader within the genealogical community in helping to raise awareness and funds for the Preserve the Pensions project.

FamilySearch Celebrates the Federation of Genealogical Societies’ 40-year Anniversary​

The following announcement was written by the folks at FamilySearch:

Salt Lake City, UT and Springfield, IL, (31 August 2016)—As the Federation of Genealogical Societies’ (FGS) annual conference opens today in Springfield, Illinois, the nonprofit organization is also celebrating its 40th anniversary. FamilySearch International thanks and recognizes FGS for its significant contribution to the family history community and celebrates the success of its major joint projects over the decades and the ways those projects help people seeking their ancestors.

Federation of Genealogical Societies Announces Upcoming National Conferences for 2019 and 2020

The following announcement was written by the folks at the Federation of Genealogical Societies:

Upcoming FGS National Genealogy and Family History Conferences To Be Held August 21-24, 2019 in Washington, D.C. and September 2-5, 2020 in Kansas City, Missouri

August 16, 2016 – Austin, TX. The Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) announces the FGS 2019 National Conference will be held August 21-24 in Washington, D.C., and the FGS 2020 National Conference will be held September 2-5 in Kansas City, Missouri.

Upcoming Conferences DC and KC Graphic

“We are extremely excited for all our upcoming conferences and look forward to visiting Washington, D.C., and Kansas City in future years,” says FGS President D. Joshua Taylor. “From 2016 to 2020, our conference venues are steeped in both history and research resources and make perfect settings for genealogists and family historians.”

Auckland Family History Expo in Pictures

I must admit that I had fun this past weekend. I had an opportunity to visit and to speak to the Auckland (New Zealand) Family History Expo. I found a very enthusiastic group of genealogists at this event.

Sponsored by the Auckland Council Libraries in cooperation with the New Zealand Society of Genealogists, this turned out to be a major genealogy conference. Approximately 500 people attended the Expo on Saturday and 350 were there on Sunday. Those are large numbers in a country with a smaller population! Many of the presentation rooms were full to maximum capacity and the exhibits hall was crowded almost all the time when there were no presentations in progress.

Registration Continues for British Institute

The following announcement was written by the folks who are organizing the 2016 British Institute:

ISBGFH

Looking to find your ancestors across the pond? Registration continues for the 2016 British Institute, which will be held 10–14 October 2016 at the Plaza Hotel in Salt Lake City, Utah. Don’t miss out on this amazing opportunity to learn about British Isles research from experts!

Courses with seating available include:

Southern California Genealogy Jamboree Call for Presentations

The following announcement was written by the folks at the Southern California Genealogy Jamboree:

2017-Jamboree

Call for Presentations to the 48th Annual Southern California Genealogy Jamboree Conference (Friday through Sunday, June 8 – 11, 2017 at the Los Angeles Marriott Burbank Airport Hotel, Burbank, California), the 5th Annual SCGS Genetic Genealogy Conference (Thursday, June 8, 2017), workshops throughout both conferences, AND, the 2017 Jamboree Extension Series Webinar program. Presentations will be accepted through the online portal July 15, 2016 – August 21, 2016.