Seattle Genealogical Society Tip of the Week Free German Seminar

  Yet another online seminar! This one is free,  sponsored by the Sacramento German Genealogy Society, and featuring four German genealogy gurus from the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. Remember Fritz Juengling from the SGS 2020 Spring Seminar? He’ll be there.

This event is Saturday, October 24, 2020. Here are the four sessions on the schedule as well as the link to register. 

  • Resources on FamilySearch for German Research – with Fritz Juengling
  • Germany: Historical Genealogy – with Daniel Jones
  • Württemberg Family Books – with Charlotte Champenois
  • Using Historical Newspapers to Learn More about your German Ancestors – with Baerbel Johnson
  • Click here

FGS 2020 Conference

FGS 2020 Conference

2020 FGS Conference Header

The 2020 FGS Family History Conference is Going Virtual


You won’t want to miss the final FGS Conference virtual-style! We have a variety of learning sessions to meet every genealogist’s needs. We have so many topics—including DNA, Ethnicity & Nationality, Methodology & Skill-building and so much more! And of course, we have your favorite speakers that you love learning from!

How does it work?

First, join us on September 2 for Live! sessions that include CeCe Moore, Thomas W. Jones, Ari Wilkins, Judy G. Russell, and Lisa Louise Cooke. We’ll also have special presentations and hear the latest from Ancestry and FamilySearch. Participate in a live chat with genealogists from around the world!

You will also have the opportunity to select the right-sized package for your viewing pleasure from our On-Demand content that contains over 80 sessions, PLUS you will receive more than 30 sponsored sessions and a collection of 15 society management sessions for FREE. And, just in case you miss the Live! Session, you will have the opportunity to view it together with the On-Demand content, which will be available starting September 15 and will be available for your viewing until March 15, 2021.


To celebrate the history of FGS—in recognition of this last Family History Conference—and to add a little fun, a commemorative goody bag is available with the maximum registration package. For more information on the contents of each registration package, see the Registration Page.

You will also be able to visit our Virtual Exhibit Hall starting September 15.

We hope that you will enjoy blazing new trails with us in this virtual experience!

Registration is now open for the Federation of Genealogical Societies’ Virtual Family History Conference!
The virtual event will begin with FGS “Live!” on September 2, 2020, starting at 11:00 a.m. (EDT) and concluding at 7:00 p.m. (EDT). In addition to the Live! event, all conference registrations will include a collection of 16 society management sessions assembled by FGS and more than 30 sponsored sessions. The registration packages allow you to further select either 10, 20 or 45 sessions from the On-Demand content from leading genealogists (more than 80 sessions from which to choose). All registration packages include online access to our digital conference syllabus. A special commemorative goody bag is included with the 45-session package. If you had already registered for the FGS conference in Kansas City, your registration will convert to the 20-session conference package. For more information, visit our conference website.
The FGS Live! event will feature lectures from some of the most popular genealogy speakers:
  David E. Rencher, “FGS: Celebrating the Past and the Future” Judy G. Russell, “Quarantined! Genealogy, The Law & Public Health” Ari Wilkins, “Scaling the 1870 Brick Wall in African American Research” Thomas W. Jones, “Building a Respectable Genealogy, One Documented Biography at a Time” CeCe Moore, “Strategies of “The Genetic Detective”” Lisa Louise Cooke, “The 2020 Genealogist’s Google Search Methodology”  
The Live! event will also include special presentations from our two Platinum sponsors: Ancestry’s “Journey to “Roots Less Traveled”” Ron Tanner of FamilySearch, “What’s New at FamilySearch”  
An online chat will take place during the Live! event and there will be a Q&A session following each session.
The following two-hour workshops will also be held on September 3-4:
  Angie Bush, “Using the “What are the Odds” (WATO) Tool” on 9/3/2020 Cari Taplin, “Using Google’s My Maps as a Planning & Analysis Tool” on 9/3/2020 Angie Bush, “Latest Developments in Company Tools for DNA” on 9/4/2020 Pam Vestal, “What the Heck Does That Say” on 9/4/2020  
For a full description of the registration packages, a list of the available On-Demand content, a list of all of the free sessions, and much more information, visit our conference website.
Keep updated on the FGS 2020 Conference! Visit our webpage:
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Seattle Genealogical Society News


Each quarter,the Seattle Genealogical Society recognizes one volunteer as our volunteer of the quarter. Our Volunteer for Spring 2020 Quarter is Cecellia Rogers.

Cecellia joined SGS soon after moving to the Seattle area almost 3 years ago. She’s an active member and regularly attends the Fall and Spring Seminars, Second Saturday presentations, and the DNA Special Interest Group. Cecellia began volunteering to reinstate the raffle at our Fall 2018 Seminar and has done an exemplary job ever since. Last fall, she joined the Nominations Committee to help propose the slate of candidates for our incoming 2020-2021 Board of Directors. 

Cecellia enjoys the contacts she has developed at SGS. Joining and participating in the Seattle Genealogical Society made moving across the country to start a new life much easier. Sharing an interest in genealogy is a good starting place. Cecellia also likes to feel useful and to contribute to the success of the organization. 

Speaking of genealogy – Cecellia is currently fascinated by genetic genealogy. She continues adding to the family trees started 50 years ago by her paternal aunt and maternal first cousin. Her aunt discovered they were NOT related to Will Rogers as they previously thought. Cecelia is now searching for a connection to Thomas Rogers of the Mayflower. If that were not enough, she is finishing the year-long ProGen study group and hopes to apply for BCG certification within the next year. Jill Morelli’s Certification Discussion Group was a real boost in that direction.

Besides genealogy, Cecillia has been very active in community theater – acting, directing, backstage – but she has not yet found a theater group home in the Seattle area.  She is creative and knits, crochets, and makes jewelry. You may have seen her necklaces and earrings on the raffle table. Cecellia also enjoys jigsaw puzzles, especially electronic ones, with no pieces to lose.

Cecellia grew up in Western New York, outside Buffalo. She attended school in Syracuse, NY and Bloomington, IN. She has lived in Phoenix, Maryland, and now Seattle.  She has two children – one here in Washington and the other in Washington, DC. The one in Seattle shares her two children with their Gram, which is Cecellia. She is grateful for the community SGS offers. And we are grateful she found us.
Due to COVID-19 virus concerns, the Seattle Genealogical Society (SGS) Library will remain closed at least through the 4th of July Holiday 2020. SGS will continue to adhere to state, county and city guidelines as to opening our doors in the future. If it is determined by governing entities that it is safe to allow libraries to open, we will inform you under what conditions your visit will be allowed. We anticipate that initially social distancing and masks will be required of all patrons.    SGS ELECTION RESULTS
The Seattle Genealogical Society’s 2020 Election was closed April 30, 2020. The Election Committee made its report of the tallies and write-in votes. This report was reviewed by the SGS Board May 11, 2020. Congratulations to the new officers and directors on the SGS Board: 

  • President – James Secan
  • Vice-President – Karen Rathe (write-in ballots)
  • Treasurer – Karen Knudson
  • Secretary – Amandalei Bennett
  • Director of Education – Heidi Mair
  • Director of Operations – Rob Sexton
  • Director of Volunteers – Cecellia Rogers (Board action)
  • Director of Technology – David Rimmer
  • Director of Library –  Sue Jensen
  • Director of Membership –  Christine Schomaker 

The position of Director of Volunteers was filled by Board action when Cecellia Rogers volunteered to fill this empty position after the election had finished. Jill Morelli will serve as Past President and Mahina Oshie is the representative from the Seattle Public Library. This Board will serve from June 2020 through May 2021. In addition, the proposed changes to the Bylaws passed.

The positions of Director of Publications and Director of Communications had no candidates so the Board is looking for volunteers. If you would like to serve in either of these positions, please contact Amandalei Bennett at

A special thanks to our Nominating Committee: Walter Clinton, Cecellia Rogers, and Judy Lysiak; and our Election Committee: Bruce Finlayson, Lisa Oberg, and Kim Waggie. We also thank Jill Morelli for serving as SGS President for the past three years and Janice Lovelace for serving on the Board as Director of Education these past two years.      SGS MEMBERSHIP MEETING NOTICE
  Please note the next membership meeting of the Seattle Genealogical Society has been scheduled for Saturday, June 13, 2020  from 12:30 pm – 1:00 pm PDT.  This will be a real time, online meeting via Zoom. The room opens at noon and the meeting starts at 12:30 pm. The new SGS officers will be introduced.

Bring a genealogical discovery to share. Below is the Zoom meeting link.

Join the Zoom Meeting
  The Second Saturday Series presentation “Do You Trello and Kanban?” will be presented by Lori Lee Sauber from 1:00 pm – 2:00 pm, directly following the SGS Membership meeting. What exactly is Trello and Kanban? Here’s your chance to find out. 
SGS members, it’s time to renew for 2020-21. Use the quick and convenient “Renew Membership” button at the SGS website. You can print out an invoice and mail it to SGS with a check. Or, you can pay your dues right then and there with a credit or debit card.

Yes, you must first log in to your SGS member account; the renewal button will be just a click away. Start here: Members Home

Remember, you can always email for help. 

Are you an eNews! reader who hasn’t joined SGS yet? Our membership year runs from June 1, 2020 through May 31, 2021. Now is a great time to become a member and obtain a full year of discounted class and event registration fees, free research requests, and access to exclusive SGS publications and databases. Annual dues are $40.00 for an individual, $50.00 for a dual membership (two people at the same mailing address). Click here: Join SGS
SGS CALENDAR OF EVENTS*** In consideration of COVID-19 social distancing recommendations, the SGS Library is closed until at least July 5, 2020 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! 

Saturday, May 16, 2020
Time: 9:00 am -1:00 pm PDT  ONLINE

Online seminar : “Spring 2020 SGS Seminar with Fritz Juengling: Old European Records Research”   Meeting live, online via Zoom.  Registration required. Register by 9:00 pm, May 14, 2020. 

Mr Juengling is the German, Dutch and Scandinavian Research Specialist at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City. This will be an online, virtual seminar.

Saturday, June 6, 2020
Time: 1:00 pm -3:00 pm PDT  ONLINE

Digging Deeper : “How I Discovered My Female Ancestor”  with Jill Morelli and Mahina Oshie

Follow this link to join

This workshop is part of the Seattle Genealogical Society’s lecture and workshop series: Women’s Suffrage in your Family History. We thank the Washington State Historical Society for their grant in support of our project. For more information, see

Stories Behind the Stars

I would like to make you aware of a project that may be of great interest to your organization and many of your members.

I am the director of a non-profit initiative known as Stories Behind the Stars, under the auspices of The Greatest Generations Foundation.

The ambitious goal of this project is to collect short profiles of all of the 400,000+ US World War II fallen in one online database. There will be a smartphone app that will allow anyone visiting a war memorial or cemetery to scan the name of the fallen and get a link to automatically take them to his/her story. This will work at Arlington National Cemetery, Honolulu’s National Memorial Cemetery of the Pacific, the Normandy American Cemetery and Memorial, even memorials in Washington state. It will make visits to the final resting places of our World War II fallen a much richer experience. Whereas now, a visitor just sees names and dates, when this project is finished, a visit to any WWII memorial or gravesite will come with that person’s story.

As a genealogy organization, you are aware that resources online now make genealogical research easier than ever. I learned this first hand over the past three years. I have had a lifelong interest in history, and particularly enjoyed reading memoirs. After the 2016 75th anniversary of the attack on Pearl Harbor, a lot of news coverage was given to the remaining World War II veterans. It bothered me that little attention was given to any of the 400,000+ fallen who did not come home. WWII memoirs all mentioned how much these fallen meant to a victory they did not enjoy. I decided to do something about this.

I began a daily personal passion project to start writing about these mostly forgotten heroes. Each day I wrote a profile of one of the fallen on the 100th anniversary of his/her birthday. I recorded these stories in a  blog at I shared it with various World War II groups on Facebook. Others started joining me to write these stories and there are now more than 1,200 of these short profiles, including more than a dozen from Washington (see that have been read more than one million times. The newspaper in the town where I grew up, the Pueblo Chieftain, did a story about my efforts that was picked up by many papers around the country (see The project was slated to end this September with the 75th anniversary of the end of World War II. However, at the encouragement of others, I decided to expand this project so that the stories of all of the 400,000+ US World War II fallen can be told.

The 400,000+ number is very daunting, but it is much more manageable for western states. In the case of Washington, WWII losses were probably around 6,000. I already have access to a database that has 5,000+ Washington related names. I just need help finding people who want to write profiles of the Washington fallen. has generously agreed to provide free access to their research tools (,, and to anyone helping me with this project.

I created the website to promote and manage this project. Though it just barely started, I already have volunteers helping from a dozen states.

The reason I am contacting WSGS is that I am sure you know of many, many Washington residents who would be interested in helping with this project. I need volunteers to research and write the stories of these ~6,000 Washington World War II fallen. It takes less than 45 minutes to research and write the average story. I have created a YouTube page (see with short training videos showing how to do the research.

Can you share information about my project with your members? At this time of social distancing, I think this project would be a wonderful use of time for those with their skills.

Feel free to call or email me to move this discussion further.


Don Milne

Stories Behind the Stars Founder and Director

Eastside Genealogical Society September Workshop


Maureen Taylor, the nationally known “Photo Detective”,

is coming to Bellevue on September 15, 2018.


 “Finding Family History in Your Picture Mysteries”


Her Three Presentations:


  • 10 Easy Steps to Identify & Date Those Pictures in the Shoeboxes
  • Google Images and Beyond
  • Genealogical Clues in Family Photos


This event will be held on September 15, 2018 at the Vasa Park Ballroom, 3560 W Lake Sammamish Road SE, Bellevue, WA  98008.  Doors open at 9 am with presentations from 9:30 am to 2 pm.


Private consultations with her are available afterwards.


This event is part of the Eastside Genealogical Society’s 40th Anniversary celebration. Thus, members, who register before September 1st, will have free admission.


Boxed lunches are available for $15, if ordered by September 1st.


Non-EGS Members and everyone after September 1st will be charged $25.


For more details about the presentations and lunch, see our website    (Also, there are links to the digital files for the Color Poster and the Registration Flyer.) Of course, you can register for the event using our website.


Come and bring your friends for a fun day!