Seattle Genealogical Society News


The SGS Board has reviewed the status of the SGS library facility in the context of the State and King County plans for reopening the community. We decided to link our plans for reopening the library to the State plan; the library will not be reopened for use by our members and guests until King County has moved to Phase 4 of the State plan. We are as anxious to reopen the library as our membership, but we believe that the safety of our membership is paramount, and the guidance provided by the State plan makes it clear that it is not safe for us to reopen the library until Phase 4. We will keep you posted on the library’s status via eNews! notices.  

Throughout our nearly 100-year history, the Seattle Genealogical Society has  compiled many databases and indexes from unique sources that you will not find anywhere else. Although the library is closed for now, we continue to provide research lookups in these databases, as well as in books and online archives. Research Requests are your lifeline to all SGS library resources.

For example, you might request a specific lookup in the King County Court Cases Index 1881-1980 (KC3I), Seattle area Veterans of Foreign Wars Membership Cards, SGS Bulletin and Journal 1952-2020, Seattle Obituaries, Seattle City Directories 1890-1990, or any of the books and periodicals listed in the  SGS Library Catalog.

Research requests may be submitted by anyone for a non-refundable fee of $7.50 per name, or by SGS Members at no charge. For more information, and to make a Research Request, click here: 
SGS Research Services

Very sad news. We just received notice that SGS member Walter Clinton, 68, of Seattle, passed away on Sunday, May 17, 2020. He was a much-appreciated volunteer here at SGS, serving most recently as Chair of the Nominating Committee for our 2020 election. Our condolences to his family.
  You may read Walter’s full obituary or share your memories of him here:

  The Seattle Genealogical Society (SGS) held its June Membership Meeting on June 13, 2020 with over 50 members tuning in on Zoom for a virtual meeting.  James Secan, the new President of the Society, welcomed the new Board, presented Marilyn Rose with a plaque in recognition of her Past President’s status, and reviewed both past, present, and future activities for the Society.

Minutes and attachments, such as financial statements, are located on the SGS website for members. Lori Lee Sauber gave an informative presentation on Trello and Kanban.

On Sunday, July 12th starting at 1:00 PM, Karen Knudson, leader of the Scandinavian SIG, will be hosting their first online virtual meeting via Zoom. Anyone interested in Scandinavian research is invited to join in. You will find the link for this Zoom meeting on the Calendar of Events section of the  SGS website: 

As part of the SGS commemoration of Women’s Suffrage, we are sharing women’s stories of 100 and more years ago. This month, we share The Boughten Dress.

Singer began mass-producing domestic electric sewing machines in 1910 and transformed many women’s lives. Imagine hand-sewing clothing for 12 children! The Boughten Dress, written by Jan Johnson illustrates the significance of the sewing machine in her grandmother’s and mother’s lives. They lived in desperate poverty during the Great Depression in northern Minnesota, close to the Canadian border. Jan inherited her grandmother’s machine and her love of sewing. She cherishes her memories and has carried on the tradition of sewing for her family.

You can view this story and others on the SGS website – Women’s Suffrage in Your Family History:

SGS CALENDAR OF EVENTS*** In consideration of COVID-19 social distancing recommendations, the SGS Library is closed until further notice and all SGS in-person events have been canceled, postponed, or replaced with an online event.
Stay home – stay healthy – but stay engaged by attending one of our live, online events!