Happy Thanksgiving From WSGS Board

Valorie, Diane, Ginny, Kathy, Roxanne, Charles. Missing – Frank

We give thanks each and every day for our families, past and present. This is a special time to spend time with our families, whether in person or in our hearts, whether connected through DNA or friendship. As you’re gathered together during this holiday season, make time to take a few photos. Listen and share familial stories of days gone by. Preserve those photos and write down those stories. As genealogists, we know our ancestral searches are more than births, marriages and deaths. Preserve today’s memories for the future.

The WSGS Board wishes you a special Thanksgiving.

Kathy, Valorie, Roxanne, Frank, Ginny, Charles & Diane

Let’s Talk About: Facebook

Whether or not you use, or even like Facebook, it’s here to stay. Mega-millions of posts every prove that people like you and me are using Facebook for a wide variety of reasons. Like I said, love it or hate it, it’s here to stay so why not use it to your advantage?

Katherine Willson recognized the genealogy potential of Facebook many years ago. She began compiling a list of genealogy and family history groups that have a Facebook presence. As of 2021, it would take 436 pages to download that list of some nearly 17,000 listings. 

Nearly every genealogical and/or historical society in Washington boasts a Facebook page! Wouldn’t you guess that every state has a page or two (or more) of such listings? Don’t you think you might could learn something from them???

To access Katherine Willson’s list, click to 


As of 2021, Willson turned over management and updating of her list to CyndisList. So do check that out, too, for the most recent updates……. all categorized. 

Nominations Sought for WSGS Vice President & Treasurer

The nomination period for the WSGS Vice President and Treasurer positions is open through December 5, 2022. Elections will be conducted online in mid-December. The successful candidates will serve from January 1, 2023 through December 31, 2024.

Both positions serve on the WSGS Board of Directors. The Vice President assists the President and steps in for the President in their absence. The Treasurer maintains and reports all financial dealings. More information is available in the WSGS Bylaws.

The successful candidates must be members of WSGS.

A strong organization is only as strong as its leaders. We encourage you to consider volunteering your time and talent to steer WSGS into a value-added organization. To nominate yourself or someone else or if you want more information, contact Info@wasgs.org. Please type “Nominations” in the subject line.

Washington, the Beautiful — Share Your Photos

We want to showcase your scenic photos on the Blog

Photo contributed by Donna Potter Phillips, Spokane, WA

Have you noticed the Blog banner changes every time you visit? The photos are submitted by readers like you — and Donna Potter Phillips of Spokane (& weekly contributor to the Blog). We’re always looking for scenic photos of our beautiful state for the rotating photo gallery on the blog banner.

Guidelines for the photos are few:
•Landscapes, landmarks, and scenery photos are preferred. If, however, you have a perfect photo that includes people, please obtain their permission to post the photo.
•Photo must have been taken in Washington State (this is the Washington State Genealogical Society blog, after all!).
•Photo will be cropped to 1100 x 250 pixels, so keep that in mind. If in doubt, send it to us & we’ll figure it out.
•You may submit as many photos as you want.
•Final decisions on suitable photos will be made by the awesome WSGS Blog Team.
•There’s no prize if your photo is chosen – just the satisfaction that your photo is being showcased on a blog viewed by hundreds of enthusiastic genealogists.
•There’s no firm deadline to submit photos, just keep ‘em coming. We want to rotate lots of photos to keep the blog fresh.

To submit your photo, please email the image (jpg only, please); what, where, when, and by whom the photo was taken to WSGSBlog@wasgs.org.

Got questions? Email the blog team at WSGSBlog@wasgs.org.Posted in WSGS Programs

Let’s Talk About: Black Sheep!

Looking for the shady characters in your own family tree? Whether they were bootleggers or brothel owners, black sheet are some of the most interesting ancestors you’ll ever trace. Our “10 Things to Know” will help you figure out why…..and where to turn to her your own family’s black sheep.

1. The black sheep of the family is the one who went against the grain negatively. Look at the enumerators comments in the census and elsewhere.  (I have one example: “makes her living by lying on her back.”)

2. Black sheep often have deep paper trails….. newspaper records, court records and even prison records. 

3. Black sheep often surface in family stories…which might or might not be true.

4. Black sheep ancestors often adopted a new name…like escaping the law or a jilted lover.

5. Black sheep are often mentioned in other people’s histories….. if they lived in the same town where your black sheep ancestor roamed, they might have included those stories.

6. Black sheep were more prevalent in the American west which was big and wild and no papers were ever asked for identification.

7. Black sheep had reason to travel…to get away from something. Check out passports, passenger lists and out-of-town newspapers.

8. Black sheep do have mothers….. check census and newspaper records.

9. Black sheep were often tracked by the government…. 1880 census of Defective, Dependent and Deliquent individuals who were imprisoned in prisons or aslymns.

10. Black sheep are often not mentioned by other family members.

*** Thanks to the Ancestry newsletter for this information. 

MyHeritage AI Time Machine

Ever wondered what you might have looked like if you were born in your ancestors’ time? What about how you might look as a Viking? Or an ancient Greek warrior, or a 19th-century lord or lady? Now you can find out! I couldn’t be more excited to announce the release of AI Time Machine™, a groundbreaking and fun new feature that enables you to transform everyday personal photos into hyper-realistic images of yourself as a historical figure.

Imagine the most incredible costume you’ve ever seen. Every detail is perfect, and it looks and feels authentic. What you get with AI Time Machine™ is even better: stunning, seamless images of yourself or a loved one as an ancient Greek warrior, an Egyptian pharaoh, a Victorian lady, or an astronaut in space. There are dozens of iconic historical figures to choose from. You have to see it to believe it!

Check out this video to see how it works.

The feature is very easy to use: simply upload a few photos to get started. The feature will be free to use for a limited time only, so don’t wait — try it now!

Introducing AI Time Machine™

At MyHeritage, our commitment to developing new tools that help users further their family history research is stronger than ever. We also love creating fun features like AI Time Machine™ that increase public interest in history in general and family history in particular, and introduce new audiences to the fascinating world of genealogy.

Please share this exciting feature with friends and followers. Feel free to use the image above, or even better — share your favorite AI Time Machine™ images! You can even use them as highly original profile photos. I can’t wait to see you as your historical figure of choice 🙂

Eastern Washington Genealogical Society December Meeting

Sure hope you will join in the fun!

Saturday, December 3


12:30 pm to 3:00 pm

Hybrid Meeting at Shadle Park Public Library, Spokane Washington

Bring some of your favorite cookies (or desserts) to eat and to share!

Bring an unwrapped toy for the “Toys for Tots” and

“Gold Star Mothers” Toy Drive!

Bring a couple dollars for the Christmas Raffles!

…And most important of all…bring yourself in an ugly sweater!  

You could win a fabulous prize, so be UGLY!!!

Tacoma Pierce County Genealogical Society DNA Special Interest Group

Tacoma Pierce County Genealogical Society DNA Special Interest Group Meeting

Tuesday, November 22 at 7:00 pm via Zoom

Please join us as we begin our discussion of the book Genetic Genealogy in Practice by Blaine Bettinger and Debbie Parker Wayne. This month we will cover the first two chapters. 

The book is available from the publishers, The National Genealogical Society at:

 If you are not a member of TPCGS and wish to attend, please email info@tpcgs.org for the Zoom link.

Tacoma Pierce County Genealogical Society Book Club Meeting

Tacoma Pierce County Genealogical Society Book Club Meeting

Saturday, November 19 at 3:00 pm via Zoom

Please join us as we discuss a genealogical murder mystery.

To the Grave is the second book in the Jefferson Tayte series by Steve Robinson.
Amazon link: https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/1477818537/

Worldcat link: https://www.worldcat.org/title/863194220

We will also discuss the direction in which we would like this group to go and choose future books. If we like this book, we may decide to continue with the next book in the series.

If you are not a member of TPCGS and wish to attend, please email info@tpcgs.org for the Zoom link.