THE GENEALOGICAL FORUM’s Thursday Evening E-News Edition May 16, 2019
Curious about the status of your GFO Membership? We’d love to have you as a GFO Member! | 503-963-1932 | Be sure to check the complete GFO CALENDAR.
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Thank You For Offering Your Genealogy Books & More!
You warmed our hearts here at GFO with your offers of help for the genealogy library in Paradise, California, which burned to the ground last year. Thank you to those who reached out. One GFO member has even offered to drive more materials to Paradise when she goes to visit family the end of June—so please keep those donations coming.
To help with the process, we have developed a list of books that are being donated. Here is a link to them. We would like to try to avoid duplicate books. Many of the books on the list are part of incomplete runs of sets published by societies in Oregon and Washington. Some of the reference books are older editions that have been updated. Perhaps you have something that is newer or better than what we are donating—or something that will add more volumes to a series. We were sadly lacking materials that focus on California, but Douglas County Genealogy Society came to the rescue. The books they have offered are on the list in red. We hope some of the societies located in California will pitch in to help too. Any questions may be directed to
Two Guest Speakers Saturday at African American Ancestry Group
At noon this Saturday, May 18, the GFO will host a remote video presentation with two guests speaking from different locations. The focus will introduce us to Sons and Daughters of the United States Middle Passage. The Middle Passage was the stage of the triangular trade route in which millions of Africans were forcibly transported to the New World as part of the Atlantic slave trade. Evelyn Aniton McDowell, Ph.D., CPA, CGMA, is an Associate Professor of Accounting at Rider University in Lawrenceville, New Jersey. She is the founder and president of Sons and Daughters of the United States Middle Passage, a heritage society for descendants of Africans who were enslaved or indentured in colonial America and in the United States of America. Through genealogical research, she has found more than 35 enslaved ancestors. LaBrenda Garrett-Nelson, JD, LLM, CG®, CGL(SM), is the Registrar General of SDUSMP, responsible for reviewing the sufficiency of applications. She is also a trustee of the Board for Certification of Genealogists and a frequent speaker at national conferences and Institutes. In 2016 she published a guide for researching African Americans in her home county of Laurens, South Carolina. We hope you’ll join us. All our special interest group meetings are free and open to the public. More information? Email us @
GFO’s Connie Lenzen Receives National Award!
Big congratulations to our own Connie Lenzen! Last week, the National Genealogical Society named her as this year’s NGS Fellow. Fellowship in the National Genealogical Society recognizes outstanding work in genealogy or the related fields of history, biography, or heraldry, in addition to outstanding service to the National Genealogical Society. Connie is a highly-regarded, contributing author to national and local genealogical publications. She won the NGS Quarterly’s 1995 Award of Excellence and is a two-time winner of the International Society of Family History Writers and Editors Award. From 2005 to 2008, she served as president of the Board for Certification of Genealogists. She joined the NGS Board of Directors in 2004. That year, the Society was facing financial insolvency, and its future was in question. With her fellow board members, Connie worked tirelessly to ensure its survival. She served on the board for six years, 2004–2010. As chair of the Education Committee, she managed and edited the revised Home Study Course, 2005 revision. By the time she retired from the Board, NGS was again on firm ground. Its membership was strong, and its educational programs were flourishing. Connie is a professional, certified genealogist and has been a member of the GFO for 45 years. We couldn’t be more proud of you, Connie! Congratulations!
PMUG College: Learn Reunion Genealogy Software
The Portland Mac Users Group returns to the GFO on Wednesday, May 22, with a lesson many GFO members could use.

Learn Reunion, the genealogy software written specifically for Macintosh computers.
The class covers:
* Basics of Reunion interface
* Options for printing
* Attaching media files to your family
* Sharing information between Mac and iOS To register: Call 503-228-1779 or email Bring your Mac to participate with instruction. If you would like additional information about this class, please email us at PMUG College is free to GFO and PMUG members, $10 to non-members.
Still time to sign up for June 10th Beginners’ Boot Camp!
Just a reminder that there are only 12 seats left for our upcoming Beginners’ Boot Camp on June 10. It’s a great way to get started in your family tree research. GFO members get in free! Seats are limited so sign up online now. Registration closes June 6. Join Laurel Smith at the GFO for a day of beginning genealogy. There will be sessions about the census, vital records, immigration and naturalization, discussions about genealogy software and database use, organizing your research and more — all geared toward beginners. Bring a sack lunch so the discussion can continue while we eat.
Register Now
George Brown, GFO Friend: March 17, 1923–March 31, 2019
We at the GFO have lost a good friend. George Thomas Brown was a longtime member of the Genealogical Forum of Oregon. George was inspired to deeply investigate the world of French-Canadian genealogy. His research was amazing—solving 200-year-old mysteries. He would wear his beret and red sash with gusto and pride when making presentations. In 2016, George Thomas Brown generously donated his entire French-Canada collection, 137 boxes of books, to the GFO. It took many months to classify and label everything. These amazing materials made the GFO a primary research facility for French Canada resources. Read more about George’s long, memorable life.
Only 1 Day Left to Save $30 on Family Tree Maker Upgrade!
Judging by the turnout we had at GFO for the Family Tree Maker Roadshow, lots of folks have this software. So we thought we’d better pass on this message about the upgrade: Only one day left to preorder the upgrade for $29.99 (save $30.) You must have FTM 2017 to order this discounted upgrade. Sale was posted May 14, so is scheduled to end May 17. Don’t delay! Check your email or use this link.
Survey Results: DNA #1: Autosomal Testing
Of 102 responses, 93.1% of you report having taken an autosomal DNA test. Of those, 75 report having tested at AncestryDNA, followed by Family Tree DNA (48), 23andme (34), My Heritage (12), and Living DNA (7).
New Survey: DNA #2
Which DNA tests have you or close relatives had done?
Y-DNA is passed from father to son.
mtDNA is passed from mother to a child of either gender. Click to take this week’s survey:
Take the Survey
This week at GFO …

Saturday, May 18th

Genealogy Problem Solvers 9:30 – 11:30 a.m.

GPS is a monthly support group where we help each other find information about a family line. We will learn to do a reasonably exhaustive search and develop research plans. The focus will shift depending on the needs of the group. Several experienced researchers have volunteered to help. Beginners and intermediate researchers are encouraged to submit problems to work on. For more information contact Katie Daly at

African American Ancestry Group 12:00 – 2:00 p.m.

We will have a remote presentation with two guests from the Sons and Daughters of the United States Middle Passage, the lineage society whose membership is available only to those whose ancestors were forcibly brought to this country during the slave trade. Our speakers will be Evelyn McDowell, Ph.D., the society’s president, and LaBrenda Garrett-Nelson, a board member and also a Certified Genealogist(TM). For more information, contact us at

Sunday, May 19th

Library Work Party 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.

Of course there’s another work party at the GFO library today for those of you who can come! There’s lots to do, and we’d love to have your help. Doors open at 9 and work usually wraps up around noon. Some people come for just an hour or so; others work the full time. You are welcome to do either. Any time you can share is valuable. Hope to see you there.

Family Tree Maker User’s Group 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.

Paula is providing the group a show and tell of the separate program “Charting Companion” that works with FTM. It is for users of Windows but may give Mac users some ideas of alternate possibilities.
With any remaining time, we’ll be looking at: media categories and notes in chapter 6, basic viewing of the mapping function from chapter 7, and finding duplicate people covered in chapter 14. Join other users who want to work through the 2017 Companion Guide to Family Tree Maker.

Bring your laptop. Come 30 minutes earlier if you’ve never been or have skipped sessions. You might need an update of the “fake” practice tree we are using. Facilitated by Joyce

French Canada Group 3:30 – 5:00 p.m.

Sharing stories of our history. Come and join this group to learn more about French Canadian ancestry and Acadia. The group leader is Bob LaMarche.

Wednesday, May 22nd

PMUG College 6:00 – 8:00 p.m.

Portland Mac Users Group College: Reunion genealogy software on the Mac.
* Basics of the Reunion interface
* Options for printing
* Attaching media files to y our family
* Sharing information between Mac and iOS

Free for GFO and PMUG members. For more info, see: