Heritage Quest Research Library Classes

Thursday, August 15th, 1-3 p.m.

Meyer’s Orts- und Verkehrs- Lexicon

Join us as we welcome our member, Sue Foster, as a new instructor.
Sue will speak on 2 subjects:
1) Meyer’s Orts- und Verkehrs- Lexicon includes all place names as they were designated during the time of the German Empire (1871-1918). She will discuss the online version, importance in locating the place where vital records were recorded and the locations of the microfilmed/digitized records of the Family History Library based on this Gazeteer.  She will also discuss
2) a FREE German website, which translates to English, and its 2 divided sections: a] information, history, links to regional family history groups and repositories, and b] family trees submitted by researchers.

$20.00 members / $25.00 non-members

Wednesday, August 28th, 1-3p.m. 
  Janet Camarata’s topic for this month is:   Discover County Histories and the Family Stories They Tell

The town, county, and regional histories are important sources for genealogists for 18th and 19th-century research. Discover settlement patterns of a given area, origins of the early settlers, geography, religion, economics, education, the social conditions and major events of the times, and if lucky, a biographical sketch of your ancestor. Learn what’s been written, where to find them and how to assess their value.
$20.00 members / $25.00 non-members
  All of our classes are held in the Library classroom. To reserve a spot for either class, please call: 253-863-1806 or stop by HQRL and we will add you to the list of attendees.  If you find you cannot attend the reserved spot, please let us know so that we can make room for others.

German Interest Group of The Eastside Genealogical Society

The German Interest Group of The Eastside Genealogical Society (EGS) meeting

When: Friday, September 6, 2019, from 12:30 to 2:30 pm

(Doors open at 12:15 pm for networking)

Where:  Primary Room of the Latter-day Saints Church

             10675 NE 20th St, Bellevue, WA 98004.

Topic: Genealogical Benefits of Facebook – Facebook can provide expertise, knowledge, and genealogical assistance on many facets to support your research. We will explore those benefits and demonstrate how to find the right pages or groups for your specific area of interest, and how to effectively access and search within groups, pages and your saved posts. Many of the examples address researching Germans from Russia.

Presenter: Marilyn Mullins Schunke – As a graduate of University of Washington’s Genealogy & Family History Certificate Program, Marilyn volunteered at Heritage Quest Research Library as a Board member, Education Coordinator and Volunteer Librarian. Technology is her forte and she presented Windows 10 and Digital Organization classes. She is a member of several local, state and national genealogy organizations. Marilyn will be presenting this same program at Concordia University’s Center for Volga German Studies in November.

Visitors are always welcome at our meetings. For more information about our Group, kindly visit our website at https://egsgermangroup.wordpress.com/  .


THE GENEALOGICAL FORUM’s Thursday Evening E-News Edition July 25, 2019
Curious about the status of your GFO Membership? We’d love to have you as a GFO Member!
gfo.org | 503-963-1932 | info@gfo.org Be sure to check the complete GFO CALENDAR.
Also, don’t miss the current issue of The Forum Insider
Beginners’ Boot Camp is back!
On Tuesday, August 20, join Laurel Smith for a full day of beginning genealogy from 9:00 a.m. – 5:00 p.m. in the GFO Library. There will be sessions about the census, vital records, discussions about genealogy software and database use, organizing your research, using Ancestry.com, and more — all geared toward beginners — but basic computer skills are a prerequisite. All communications are done via email, and you must be able to download and print the class notes. Bring a sack lunch, snacks, and a beverage so you can keep going as the class does. GFO members may attend for free, non-members $20.
Register Here
September Half-Day Seminar Registration Now Open!
Newspapers can provide information about births, deaths, marriages, moves, business, naturalizations, court cases, and more. The GFO provides access to several newspaper subscription sites, plus additional databases. Join GFO’s Janice Sellers for a half-day workshop to get an overview of what is available and techniques to help improve your chances of finding information about your relatives. Janice is a professional genealogist who specializes in forensic, Jewish, Black, and newspaper research. The session will be held in the GFO Library, Sunday, September 8, from 9:30 a.m. – Noon. For more detailed information, download the flyer. Registration is $25.00 for GFO members, $30.00 for non-members. Register before August 12 and save $5.00!
Register Here
Where Are You? We Took a Look
To all of you E-News readers who are members of the GFO, thank you for your support! We were curious where all our members live. Google Maps made it easy see at a glance. We enjoyed seeing the results and thought you might too. The big picture: you’re all over the U.S.!
Naturally, at lot more of you live in the Portland area. We zoomed in and found a pretty even distribution around the metro area.
Freebie Reminder!
Don’t forget, the GFO Library is free to everyone on the First Monday of each month. That’s next Monday, August 5. Plus, we’re now open late until 8pm that day. Please tell your friends.
The Virtual Genealogical Association is announcing open registration for its upcoming 2019 Virtual Genealogy Conference being held online Friday, November 1 – Sunday November 3. The cost is $59 USD for VGA members and $79 USD for non-members. You also have an option to join the VGA for $20 USD/year to get member benefits along with the discounted conference registration.
▪ Registrants will have access to the recordings and handouts for all sessions until May 3, 2020. Watch any time, any place, on any device. ▪ Socialize and network with fellow attendees during the conference via a private Facebook group. ▪ Conference is held via GoToWebinar. All registrants will receive an emailed link. ▪ Closed captioning via Rev.com will be added to recordings of all sessions and will be made available to registrants within 7 days of the live broadcast. ▪ Full refund if cancellation request is received before October 18; no refund after October 18, 2019. There are a number of well-known speakers this year, including Judy G. Russell, Blaine Bettinger, Nicka Smith, and many others – refer to the conference schedule for more details. This is a great way to attend a genealogy conference without any expensive travel!
Surplus Book: Own History Printed When President Lincoln Was Still Alive
Here’s your chance to own some rare history: a first edition book that lists President Abraham Lincoln, and former presidents Millard Fillmore, Franklin Pierce and James Buchanan as still alive. The United States Register, or Blue Book for 1864, was printed one year before Lincoln’s assassination.
It includes lists of federal officials, military leaders, the U.S. Census of 1860 in city populations, and many more statistics of the era.
You’ll find lists of the sitting members of Congress feature large gaps. Every southern state is shown without any representatives or senators at all. They were part of the Confederacy and this was the height of the Civil War. In the census pages, you’ll find Oregon included once, but not Portland. It lists Eugene City having a population of 2,500. This was five years after Oregon’s statehood.
This surplus book shows wear. It’s spine is damaged and frayed. Yet none of the pages are loose and all are crisp and clear. A few library stamps are found inside, but no other markings. Also, an originally enclosed map is missing. Due to its rarity, the price is higher than many of our surplus books, but not exorbitant, due to the condition of its cover. We’re selling this book on eBay with a starting price of $99. If you’re interested, click here to bid before the auction expires in one week.
Survey Results: The Impact of Storms
The survey results are in, and the results are pretty evenly split as to whether respondents’ ancestors were affected by a hurricane, cyclone, or tornado:
Yes 39.4% No 27.3% Don’t know 33.3% Here are a few of the stories we received:
▪ My great-great-grandparents married in Boston, then moved to Le Mars, Iowa, in 1882. On June 14, 1885, a tornado struck the town and their house was moved “5 feet off the foundation.” It was said to be the main reason that they moved to Los Angeles in 1889, where I was born many years later! ▪ A cyclone on 21 Sep 1894 ripped through Cylinder, Iowa, killing my great-great-grandmother’s brother Alex, plus his wife and one child. Alex had actually purchased tornado insurance two years before. Court documents show total losses at $1210. One young son, Owen, survived. My great-great-grandmother, Bridget, then took in Owen and became his guardian, 20 years after she gave birth to her last child. Bridget had to file court reports adding up everything she spent on Owen each year until he became an adult. ▪ No, but the relatives back in Wisconsin thought the whole family had died in the Galveston Hurricane.
New Survey: Surviving the Cold
Among the replies to last week’s survey were several that encouraged us to ask about other disasters—and so we will. This week, we’re asking about disasters related to the cold—snow, ice, and hail.
Take the Survey Now
This week at GFO …
Saturday, August 3rd
German Ancestry Group 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.
DNA – presenter Heidi Mathis
– How is ethnicity determined from DNA
– How reliable are ethnicity results (“Recall vs Precision”)
– Brief History of Population Dynamics in “Germany”
– How well do these tests work for German-Americans
– Best Tests for German-Americans
– Case Studies
For more information or questions about this group, please contact the facilitators, Mike Fernandez and Tia Cobb at German@gfo.org.
Sunday, August 4th
Library Work Party 9:00 a.m. – Noon
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.
Monday, August 5th
Free First Monday 9:30 a.m. – 8:00 p.m.
GFO Library open to non-members for free, come early–stay late.
Tuesday, August 6th
Italian Ancestry Group 10:00 a.m. – Noon
This month’s topic: How to find your immigrant ancestor’s ship!
Your immigrant ancestor’s ship and the passenger list it created usher in a new wealth of information from which to uncover more great puzzle pieces about your Italian family heritage. In this lecture, we’ll focus on the Great Migration of paesani from Italy 1880 – 1924, when 4 million Italians immigrated to the United States, leaving us the 5th largest ethnic group in America.
We’ll review a brief history of Italian migration and relevant U.S. immigration laws, dissect components of the U. S. passenger list to help you better understand the magnificent clues awaiting you, and learn valuable tools for locating and searching them.
Instructor: Nancy Bronte Matheny, MLIS, MBA.
If you have questions or want more information, email italian@gfo.org.
Wednesday, August 7th
Open Late to 8:00 p.m.

Free Class at NWGC

Sign up for one of the best bargains of the summer! A FREE Beginning Genealogy day with Janet Camarata on August 14th at the Northwest Genealogy Conference in Arlington. Sign up here.

During Janet’s jam-packed workshop (1:00 – 4:30 p.m.), she’ll cover:

Janet Conor Camarata
  • Are you a Genealogist or Family Historian?
  • The Basics of the Genealogical Hunt
  • Organizing Strategies for Genealogy Success
  • Locating Genealogy Records Online and Off-line
  • Techniques and Tools to Transform your Approach to Research
  • Resources and References for Improved Research Results
  • Tips to avoid Genealogy Traps, Confusion, and Overload
  • The Next Steps as a Genealogist

Don’t consider yourself a beginner? Good for you, but I can attest that I learn (or relearn!) something in every workshop I attend. So, sign up for this great opportunity whether you’re a beginner or intermediate or advanced researcher!

Seattle Genealogical Society Tip of the Week


On our Seattle Genealogical Society Networking Group Facebook page, a member posted this question, “I’m wondering if there’s a safe process for bringing out what’s written on the back of old photograph cardboard stock that the photo was mounted on. Looks like maybe pencil”.  

Several members replied they have had luck scanning the back of the photograph at the highest resolution possible and then using a photo editing application to adjust the contrast and brightness, etc. Possibly with this technique, you will be able to make out what was written on the back of that precious old photograph. 

Seattle Genealogical Society News


  We admit we didn’t get very many submissions so we would like to extend the deadline for submission of your family history story to August 21, 2019. Here are the “rules”:
  1. 500 to 5000 words.
  2. Stories, poems etc. are all acceptable, but should be your original work. If the piece has been published before, the approval of that organization to re-publish by SGS is necessary (your responsibility to get). Items submitted in the previous SGS FHWC and not selected for publication can be reworked and resubmitted. The author retains the copyright in all cases.
  3. You do not need to be a member to submit. Board members of SGS are not allowed to submit, but former Board members are.
  4. Cite the facts, but since these are usually personal stories, there are few needed.
  5. Decision of the judges is final.
  6. Monetary prizes will be awarded to the top three submissions. Others may be selected for publication.   Submit to publications@seattlegenealogicalsociety.org by end of the day on August 21, 2019.
   LOG IN AT THE NEW SGS WEBSITE! Have you checked out our new website yet? Lots to see, including a detailed listing of upcoming programs and interest group meetings for the next several months. Go to https://seagensoc.org

SGS Members – Log in at the new website to access exclusive SGS publications and databases, enter your family research names in the new SGS Surname Registry, and, if you haven’t already, renew your membership for 2019-20. 

Go to Members Home and log in to your account. If you have not logged in before, follow the instructions there under “Login Problems?”. You will need to get your login name and then set your password.

After logging in, you will see an expiration notice if you have not yet renewed. Go to Member Profile and click the green “Renew Membership” button. A dues invoice will be created that you may pay right away with your credit/debit card, or print out and mail with a check to SGS.

Not a member yet? Join us during our 96th year in support of the SGS Library and family history research in our community. Click Join SGS Now.
SGS SURNAME REGISTRY Have you ever wanted to collaborate with other SGS members? Have you wondered if another member has a similar research area?

Our new website has a great feature: SGS Member Surname Registry. The registry is viewable by both members and non-members, but only SGS members may add to the list.

Find the registry by selecting Research and Databases from the menuon the left side of the Home Page (https://seagensoc.org). From the list of databases, select #3. SGS Member Surname Registry. A new page will open with the surnames currently added to our growing database. You can view more details for any entry by selecting the “eye” icon, or you can message the member by selecting the email “envelope” icon. You will be routed to the Surname Inquiry Emailer. Follow the instructions to write a message on the secure website system. (We cannot guarantee that you will receive a response.)

SGS Members – When a researcher finds a matching name in the registry, they may send an email to you through the secure website system. They will not have access to your name and contact information unless you reply to their email. To add your research names to the registry go to Members Home and log in. Then open your Member Profile and go to the “Surnames” tab. Click on the “plus” icon to create a surname record. Create a separate record for each surname.    
  “2019 Northwest Genealogy Conference”, 
Stillaguamish Valley Genealogy Society, 
Byrnes Performing Arts Center, 
18821 Crown Ridge Blvd,
Arlington, WA 
August 14-17, 2019 

As they do every year, the Stillaguamish Valley Genealogy Society kicks off their summer genealogy conference by offering free Beginning Genealogy classes on Wednesday, August 14th, from 1:00 pm – 4:30 pm.  

For complete details on the offerings of this multi-day, premier conference, visit their website: 

CGSI Genealogical & Cultural Conference, 
Lincoln, NE
October 15-19, 2019 

The Czechoslovak Genealogical Society International (CGSI) is the leader in genealogy and family history in the geographical areas now known as the Czech and Slovak Republics. Their 2019 conference is the premier event to learn about techniques for genealogical research in those areas. 

For additional information and registration, visit the website: 
Unless otherwise indicated all programs will be at the SGS Library, 6200 Sand Point Way NE, Seattle. Check the SGS Web Site for additions, changes, and corrections. Programs may be canceled or postponed because of inclement weather. In observance of Labor Day, our library will be closed August 31 –  September 2nd.
Thursday, August 15, 6:00 pm – 7:45 pm, “DNA Learning Series”, at Mountlake Terrace Sno-Isle Library,  
Seattle and Sno-Isle Genealogical Societies are co-sponsoring the “DNA Learning Series”. Class 5 of the 7 class series is “Using GEDmatch and 3rd Party Tools”. 

Pre-registration and class assignments are required. To register send an email to sgsdnasig@gmail.com
Sunday, August 25, 10:00 am – 11:30 am, “SGS Tour of Washelli Cemetery: From Pioneers to Patriots”, special event with tour guides Lisa Oberg & Amber Brock. Tour Washelli Cemetery, 11111 Aurora Ave N, Seattle, WA 98133. Join us for a walk through Washelli Cemetery as we explore the history of this hallowed ground and the stories behind the stones including Seattle’s white founders, Medal of Honor winners, and others less well-known. Good walking shoes are recommended as the ground is uneven in areas. Limited to 15 participants.  Sign Up for Cemetery Tour
Sunday, Sept 8, 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm, DNA Workshop, chair person Cary Bright, Q&A first hour, while focus second hour in on Genome Mate Pro

Saturday, Sept 14, 10:15 am – 12:15 pm, Family Tree Maker (FTM) Users Group, co-leaders Reiley Kidd and Jesse Ramey, FTM is the genealogy software long associated with Ancestry.com

Saturday, Sept 14, 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm, Second Saturday Speaker Series – “Tracing People Through Time and Space Using Timelines” presented by Mary Kathryn Kozy, Come learn how timelines can help answer your family history research questions! 

Tuesday, Sept 17, 11:00 am – 1:00 pm, Family History Writers’ Group,  contact Gail Stevens for more info at  stevens_gail@hotmail.com 
Thursday, Sept 19, 6:00 pm – 7:45 pm, “DNA Learning Series”,at Mountlake Terrace Sno-Isle Library,  
Seattle and Sno-Isle Genealogical Societies are co-sponsoring the “DNA Learning Series”. Class 6 of the 7 class series is “Getting the Most Out of Ancestry DNA & My Heritage”. 

Pre-registration and class assignments are required. To register send an email to sgsdnasig@gmail.com

Saturday, Sept 21, 10:15 am – 12:15 pm, Irish Interest Group, with Jean Roth 

Saturday, Sept 21, 1:00 pm – 3:00 pm, German Interest Group,  with Jean Roth

New Blog Banner Photos Posted

Picnic Point on Puget Sound near Edmonds, Washington. Photo by Sue Schack Jensen, Seattle.

Have you noticed the Blog banner changes every time you visit? The photos are submitted by readers like you — and Sue Schack Jensen, Library Director at the Seattle Genealogical Society. Sue recently sent us three beautiful scenic photos of Picnic Point on the Puget Sound near Edmonds.

We’re always looking for scenic photos of our beautiful state for the rotating photo gallery on the blog banner. It’s easy — just send a Washington State jpg image to wsgsblog@wasgs.org with a description of the photo. The blog masters will take care of the rest!

Whatcom Genealogical Society News

Whatcom Genealogical Society meets September to December, and February to June — no meetings in January, July, and August.  The next meeting will be September 9, 2019, 2 pm, at the Elks Lodge, 710 Samish Way, Bellingham, WA.
Whatcom Genealogical Society has replaced their Wednesday Library research volunteers with a new e-mail address where you can arrange for one-on-one help with your genealogy research.  Please e-mail   researchWGS@gmail.com, and the person who responds to you will arrange for you to get the help that you need.

Sharon NeemWGS Publicity Chair_________________________________________________________

Northwest Genealogy Conference Update

The Northwest Genealogy Conference is pleased to announce that Janet Camarata has graciously stepped up to replace Thomas MacEntee on Wednesday August 14th for the FREE Beginning Genealogy Class to be held at the beautiful (air conditioned) Byrnes Performing Arts Center in Arlington. You can register at nwgc.org and get the details of the other exciting classes being offered …online registration closes Aug 13 – don’t miss this fun event!