Seeking Michigan Becomes Michiganology!

Seeking Michigan Becomes Michiganology!

Michiganology Picture2

If you have Michigan research to do, you may have heard about the new database website of the Archives of Michigan, Michiganology. It is found at michiganology.org. The .org is important. The .com website is an online store and you will find puzzles here, but no genealogically related records.

Michiganology’s mission, as stated on its website, is to foster curiosity, enjoyment, and inspiration rooted in Michigan stories.  Michiganology replaces Seeking Michigan as the place to go for your Michigan research needs. Seeking Michigan had about 1 million records available and Michiganology has more than 10 million and it has room to grow.

Before digging into what Michiganology has to offer, here’s a little of its back story. The overhaul of Seeking Michigan began a few years ago. The staff of the Archives of Michigan worked hard to develop a website that would grow with their digitization efforts. The staff wanted one place to house all the current and future information, developing a brand so to speak. Seeking Michigan parameters would not allow them to do this, so a new website was planned. Michigan government doesn’t have a designated department to help state entities develop such a website. The Archives of Michigan contracted with a company to help them through this process. Archivist Kris Rzepczynski and Digital Engagement Archivist Jill Arnold kept the MGC societies up to date on the progress of the new website. MGC members were encouraged to volunteer for the beta testing and many did. Jill Arnold worked tirelessly, and continues to work, to make Michiganology the best it can be.

Future projects in the works include the Michigan Naturalization Project. It is an indexing project of Family Search. If you would like to see these records at Michiganology, go grab a batch and index! Seven million records will be added to the Michiganology database upon completion of the naturalization indexing.

Family Search is onsite at the Archives of Michigan digitizing the Probate Records held by the Archives. This is another huge project, but when it is digitized, indexed and uploaded to Michiganology you will be thankful Michigan built a website big enough to house these important genealogical treasures.

Now, the fun part. What is Michiganology?

Michiganology is the online database portal of the Archives of Michigan. The records previously housed at Seeking Michigan are being transferred to Michiganology. This includes:

  • Death certificate images. If a death record is older than 75 years, the image of the certificate can be found.
  • Records of Service of Michigan Volunteers in the Civil War, 1861-1865. The 46-volume series is digitized and available for viewing.
  • Civil War Photographs- over 1500 photographs pertaining to Michigan civil war are searchable. Try searching for your Michigan Civil War soldier or unit to see what you can find.
  • Civil War Battle Flags-the flags of the various Michigan civil war units are searchable as well. A search for “Mechanics and Engineers” returns four copyrighted images. 
  • Main Street-collection of photographs and postcards from across Michigan.
  • and more being added.

Tip 1: Use the advanced search item for Death Records, Main Street Collection, and Map Collection. It can be found on the top right of the web page or after clicking the “Search” tab in the top toolbar. The red box below shows the advanced search feature. Other options include basic and custom. Trust me-advanced search is the way to go.

Screenshot - MichiganologyThe screenshot above is from Michiganology.org using the Advanced search function. The left side of the search area has a drop-down menu that allows one to narrow their search to death records, Main Streets or Map Collection. I performed a basic surname search of “Glover” and got over 400 items. You can refine your selection with the box on the left side of the page.

Table screenshot

Tip 2: Use the “Table” option under the Display menu. The red box above shows where it is located. The table view gives you more information. Table view shows “title/family name” and “description/given name” and “place”.  Other options “list” and “grid” will give you just the surname. Again, trust me and use the table display option.

Date screenshot

Tip 3: Entering the date can be tricky. For best results, use a date range. If you are looking for a death record that occurred on January 2, 1942. Enter a range starting with 01/01/1942 and ending with 01/03/1942.  I have had success using this method. The 1942 death records are some of the newest on the website and I even searched using 01/01/1942 to 12/31/1942 and used the county only search box. In my case, I used “Manistee” as the county. 

As with any new endeavor, especially a website of this magnitude, there will be glitches. The staff of the archives very receptive to our questions. They are not going to change the name of the website so let that one go!  For those interested, there is a “Feedback” option in the top left corner of the homepage. The screenshots above were taken on 7 January 2020 and as more records are added may change. 

Michiganology is a great resource for Michigan researchers and is only going to grow and get better. We’re looking forward to all that Michiganology has to offer. 

Written by Brenda Leyndyke, MGC President

Register now for the Fall Family History Event

Register now for the Fall Family History Event

2019 Michigan Genealogical Council’s Fall Family History Event, in partnership with the Archives of Michigan and the Library of Michigan, will be held Saturday, November 9, 2019 from 9 am to 4 pm, at the Michigan Library and Historical Center, 702 W. Kalamazoo, Lansing, MI.

Diahan Southard

Our speaker this year is Diahan Southard who will present four session on DNA. Ms. Southard has a degree in Microbiology, and she understands all things DNA.  She worked for Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation and is the founder of “Your DNA Guide.” (https://www.yourdnaguide.com/)

You will learn a lot about DNA with Ms. Southard. Her programs are understandable, fun, and upbeat. You will leave the session feeling that you really do understand DNA.

The four sessions, which will be explored in a future blog post, are:

  • Five Tips to Make Sense of Your DNA Testing
  • Me and My 1,000+ 4th Cousins
  • Organizing Your DNA Results
  • Connecting Your DNA Matches

Other sessions offered at the Fall Family History Event are on Beginning Genealogy, Michiganology, and Poor Houses in Michigan.

Registration options are by mail, or online. All registration information can be found on Michigan Genealogical Council’s website mimgc.org.  There are multiple options for registering.

  • Early bird registration closes at 11:59 pm, October 31, 2019. The cost is $50, a savings of $10.
  • Regular registration after October 31, and for walk in’s the day of, costs $60.
  • A downloadable syllabus is included with all registrations and emailed to registrants prior to the event. An optional printed syllabus is available for an additional $5.
  • Free admission for students up to age 23, with a valid student ID, presented at check in, is available. Students are charged the cost of lunch, if they wish to order one. Also, if they wish a printed syllabus, the cost is $5.

We hope to see you there.

DNA Is Focus of Fall Family History Event

DNA image

DNA is a hot topic in the world of genealogy. Many people have tested and are wondering what to do with all the DNA testing results. Michigan Genealogical Council (MGC) is here to help! Well, Diahan Southard, is here to help.

The 2019 MGC Fall Family History Event will be held on Saturday, November 9, from 9 am to 4 pm at the Michigan Library and Historical Center, 702 W. Kalamazoo St., Lansing, MI. MGC in partnership with the Archives of Michigan and the Library of Michigan will feature Diahan Southard.  Ms. Southard’s DNA interest began as a high school student. This interest led to her receive a degree in Microbiology from Brigham Young University. She started her career at Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation.  Ms. Southard is the founder of “Your DNA Guide” (https://yourdnaguide.com/). Her presentations offer a personalized, interactive experience to DNA interpretation. Ms. Southard has
spoken across the United States and internationally. You are sure to learn a lot about DNA with Ms. Southard’s fun, upbeat way of presentation. Her knowledge of the subject will amaze attendees.

Ms. Southard will present four DNA sessions at the event: 1) Five Tips to Make Sense of Your DNA Testing 2) Me and My 1,000+ 4th Cousins 3) Organizing Your DNA Results and 4) Connecting Your DNA Matches. In addition, two Beginning Genealogy classes will be offered. This would be a great time to invite those who want to learn more about conducting family history research. The event is rounded out by a session on Michiganology, the Archives of Michigan new online portal; and Michigan County
Poor Houses.

In addition to Diahan Southard, speakers will be Daniel Earl, Archives of Michigan’s Jill Arnold, and Library of Michigan’s Adam Oster.

Registration is available now.  Please visit the MGC website mimgc.org for session descriptions, speaker biographies, and registration options. Attendees may register online or via postal mail. Free registration is offered to students, with a valid student ID, presented at check in. Registering by October 31, 2019 at 11:59 pm will save you $10. Early bird registration is $50; regular registration is $60. An optional lunch is available for an additional cost. All registrants will receive by email a downloadable syllabus. If you prefer a paper copy, one is available for $5. All this information and more can be found on the registration forms.

If you have any questions, please email MGC President, Brenda Leyndyke, at President@mimgc.org

2019 Abrams Foundation Family History Seminar – Homestead Land Records & WW1 Records

Did your ancestors have Homestead land? Do you have a World War I veteran in your family tree? Do you have Illinois roots?

Tina Beaird will explore all of those enriching topics in 3 different programs during the Abrams Foundation Family History Seminar. In “Free Land: Homesteading on the Frontier,” Tina will discuss original homestead claims, the information found in these land records, and how to access them. In “Recreating the Great War: Finding Military Service Information for Your WWI Veteran,” Tina will offer ways to locate copies of peripheral federal military records in the absence of the burned service records and provide solutions for recreating some of the lost history by using local government documents, newspapers, base records and more. Finally, in “Illinois Digital Resources,” Tina will explore a number of Illinois websites for finding those Land of Lincoln ancestors, including CARLI and IDA, and how to find maps, newspapers, phone books, company magazines, yearbooks and more.

The Abrams Foundation Family History Seminar will be held in Lansing on July 12-13 and will feature Tina Beaird, MLIS. Brought to you by the Archives of Michigan and the Michigan Genealogical Council, the event’s information, program schedule, and registration page can all be found here: https://seekingmichigan.org/…/2019-abrams-foundation-family….

Tina’s 3 presentations are on Friday (Session F, 3:30-4:30p), July 12 and Saturday (Session G, 9:30-11a; Session K, 1-2p) July 13.

We look forward to seeing you here in Lansing in a few weeks!

Turn the PAGE!!

 

The Fall Seminar at the Library of Michigan/Archives of Michigan in Lansing was a resounding success!  It was a packed room for the opening and closing sessions that John Philip Colletta provided, with 174 in attendance, filling the Forum!  In the lower middle picture, there were still seats left but within minutes the lower right photo showed that the room began to fill quickly – if there was an empty seat, it was hard to find!

With four workshops, Dr. Colletta led us through case studies, stories of his ancestors or others he had researched, and he gave us much to think about and learn.  A classically fun moment was when John said “You paid $50 for today?  Here’s the Colletta tip for today …. TURN THE PAGE!”  We all roared, but he was right!  He gave example after example of ancestors found through persistence, using multiple record sources and being targeted on our goal – finding an illusive ancestor.

There were great responses to workshops by Kris Rzepczynski (Senior Archivist, Archives of Michigan), Randy Riley (State Librarian, Library of Michigan), Jessica Trotter (Capital Area District Libraries) and Dan Earl (Vice President of MGC) as attendees learned about Great Lakes migration, the ups/downs of the Library, traveling to do genealogical research, and using Internet Archive.  Lunch provided opportunities for networking across the state and learning from each others’ experiences and discoveries.

Dr. Colletta has a long history of book writing, research and speaking, with a display about his Discovering Your Roots: An Introduction to Genealogy” series promotion shared with attendees wanting more from John’s expertise and knowledge.  Watch for sales!20181103_104042

After a well-attended “lock in” on Friday night and a full day on Saturday, happy family historians were still sharing what research they wanted to do next – all the way to the parking lot!

Don’t forget – TURN THE PAGE!  Thanks to Dr. Colletta, Randy Riley, Kris Rzepczynski, Jessica Trotter and Dan Earl for a great day of learning.

Fall Seminar Provides Additional Speakers with John Philip Colletta

Michigan History Center

While John Philip Colletta, Ph.D. is the nationally-recognized speaker that is coming for the November 3, 2018 (9 a.m. to 4 p.m.) seminar at the Library of Michigan, there are other speakers ALSO offering great information for Michigan family historians.

Dr. Colletta is offering four sessions:

  • Finding the Town of Origin: U.S. Sources for Discovering an Ancestor’s Native Town Overseas
  • Lesser Used Federal Records: Sources of Rich Detail about Ancestors’ Lives
  • The County Courthouse: Your “Trunk in the Attic”
  • Breaking through Brick Walls: Use your HEAD

AND some other great Michigan-based researchers are presenting!  Here’s the schedule for the day:

SCHEDULE
9:15 am Introductions and Announcements

9:30 am – 10:45 am Finding the Town of Origin: U.S. Sources for Discovering an Ancestor’s Native Town Overseas (A1) by John Philip Colletta, Ph.D.

11:00 am – 12:15 pm (choose 1)

Lesser Used Federal Records: Sources of Rich Detail about Ancestors’ Lives (B1) by John Philip Colletta, Ph.D.

Genealogy Road Trip: No, Really, It’s Not All Online! (B2) by Jessica Trotter, Librarian at Capital Area District Libraries

Library of Michigan: Rise and Fall and Rise of a Family History/Local History Treasure (B3) by Randy Riley, State Librarian at the Library of Michigan

12:15 pm – 1:00 pm Enjoy your optional pre-ordered lunch from Grand Traverse Pie Company or bring a sack lunch.

1:00 pm – 2:15pm (choose 1)

The County Courthouse: Your “Trunk in the Attic (C1) by John Philip Colletta, Ph.D.

Researching Great Lakes Migration in the Archives of Michigan’s Abrams Genealogy Collection (C2) by Kris Rzepczynski, Senior Archivist at the Archives of Michigan

Going WAYBACK: Using the Internet Archive in Your Research (C3) by Daniel Earl, Vice- President of Michigan Genealogical Council

2:30 pm – 3:45 pm Breaking through Brick Walls: Use your HEAD! (D1) by John Philip Colletta, Ph.D.

Please register in advance (and you MUST register by October 31 for the boxed lunch) here!!

2018 Michigan Genealogical Council Fall Seminar

Featuring John Philip Colletta, Ph.D., the MGC Fall Seminar promises to be a rich and full learning opportunity!  Please join us on Saturday, November 3, 2018 from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Michigan Library & Historical Center, 702 W. Kalamazoo, Lansing, Michigan.

Colletta photoDr. Colletta, a popular genealogy lecturer for 30 years, has worked at the Library of Congress and taught National Archives programs for 20+ years.  He is on the faculty of the Institute of Genealogy & Historical Research (IGHR) and the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG).  He has published key resources and guides for genealogists:  They Came in Ships: A Guide to Finding Your Immigrant Ancestor’s Arrival Record; Finding Italian Roots: The Complete Guide for Americans; Only a Few Bones: A True Account of the Rolling Fork Tragedy and its Aftermath; and the Great Course “Discovering Your Roots”.  He has received many professional honors, including fellowship in the Utah Genealogical Association and distinguished service awards from the Dallas Genealogical Society and the National Society, Daughters of Colonial Founders and Patriots.  Fluent in French, German and Russian, Dr. Colletta’s website provides much more information, so check here for more – http://www.genealogyjohn.com.

You WILL want to register for the day of classes, Dr. Colletta’s lectures – and, if you want a boxed lunch, you MUST register before October 31st!  Register here .

Dr. Colletta’s lectures are:  Finding the Town of Origin: U.S. Sources for Discovering an Ancestor’s Native Town Overseas; Lesser Used Federal Records: Sources of RIch Detail About Ancestors’ Lives; The County Courthouse: Your “Trunk in the Attic”; and Breaking Through Brick Walls: Use your HEAD!  

Additional lectures are scheduled:  Jessica Trotter, Librarian at Capital Area District Libraries, is presenting Genealogy Road Trip: No, Really, It’s Not All Online!  Randy Riley, State Librarian at the Library of Michigan, shares about Library of Michigan: Rise and Fall and Rise of a Family History/Local History Treasure.  Kris Rzepczynski, Senior Archivist at the Archives of Michigan, is offering Researching Great Lakes Migration in the Archives of Michigan’s Abrams Genealogy Collection.  From Dan Earl, VP of the MGC, we’ll hear about Going WAYBACK: Using the Internet Archive in Your Research.

REGISTER NOW!!!

Register here .

 

Strengthening Our Societies Workshop – Recap, Video and Handouts are ONLINE!

While it was back in June that MGC hosted a well-attended workshop at the Pinckney Community Public Library, the recent MGC Newsletter has been shared and perhaps you haven’t seen it – but the content of the workshop and a video are available.  Your society will benefit from the knowledgeable ideas and content of this meeting!  While a panel spoke to specific questions, the video shares the detail of the discussion with an engaged audience of society members from across the state.  Societies are identified so that you can reach out to them for more information.

MembershipPanelThe newsletter can be found posted on the Michigan Genealogical Council’s website at https://mimgc.org/ where you can download the entire 22-page document with information about this June session and the questions that framed the discussion.  While there isn’t a video of the morning session (due to technical challenges), the afternoon’s session IS available at the “Member Societies log in” area – the video is posted as are the handouts from Jen Baldwin (from July21, 2017) on “Engaging Your Long-Distance Members” and Amy Johnson Crow (from July 9, 2016) on “How to Keep Your Volunteers Happy, Helpful and Engaged”.  Great resources for your society!

John Philip Colletta is coming November 3rd!

ColettaPromoThe Michigan Genealogical Council is pleased to announce that nationally known speaker and author John Philip Colletta, Ph.D. is the keynote presenter for the next Michigan Genealogical Council Fall Family History Event!!  Co-Hosted by the Archives of Michigan, at the Michigan History Center (702 W. Kalamazoo, Lansing), the event runs all day from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Dr. Colletta lectures nationally, teaches at local schools, and conducts programs for the Smithsonian Institution’s Resident Associate Program. He is a faculty member of the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (University of Georgia, Athens) and the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy.

Check our Facebook information page (https://www.facebook.com/events/422461818248460/?active_tab=discussion) and our on-going organization page (https://www.facebook.com/michiganmgc/ ) for more information and registration.

Abrams Foundation Seminar Success!

July 20 – the FIRST of two days of learning, networking and fun!  The crowd was big, engaged, enthusiastic and the two days of learning kept everyone moving!  Opening sessions on Friday included the “Breakout” game (yes, everyone got out before time was called) and a tour of the Archives of Michigan, including the opportunity to go into the vault.

Sessions on the first day included Kris Rzepczynski sharing about Michigan World War I research, Dan Earl on city directories, and James Jackson on “Putting It All Together”.  Here’s Kris presenting:

KrisMakingIntrosSwitching it up, the late afternoon sessions were Annakathryn Welch’s presentation on Coroner records, Tom Koselka on the records of Detroit & Wayne County, and Dr. James Sims discussing DNA research.

Then time to research (we ARE genealogists, after all, right??!):  After pizza and a lot of networking, the Library and Archives were locked down for the night and everyone was busy until 10 p.m. doing research.  Even Keynote Speaker and special guest David Allen Lambert, researching his Mason County ancestors, was finding what they needed!  A scene from the busy Reading Room of the Archives of Michigan – thank you to Kris Rzepczynski for this picture!

LockIn Pic

July 21:  The next morning included some great information, special people and recognition of a key woman – Barbara Brown was honored as we began the day.

BarbaraBrown Slide

And we had the great pleasure to welcome Barbara’s family members as we opened the day – shown here:  Kyle Abbott, Sophia Patzer, and Tiffany Patzer honoring their mother, grandmother and great-grandmother.Brown3Gen

And then what we all came for – David Allen Lambert and his presentations, filling the day with information about researching in New England records.  When David asked for a show of hands of audience members with New England ancestors, virtually the entire room had their hands up!  Here’s the crowd attending (thank you to Katherine Willson for this picture):

Audience2

David’s first presentation was on New England vital records.

DavidLambert

Then the group split up to learn from Archives staff – Kris Rzepczynski sharing about the Abrams Collection and Jill Arnold about the Michigan Naturalization indexing process (are you helping?!).  David Allen Lambert shared again on New England probate records, leading to the final sessions of the day.  President Katherine Willson discussed our ancestors’ “Voyage to America”, while Jill Arnold shared about resources at the Archives about occupational registrations and Jessica Trotter talked about records for our ancestors’ records when they were fighting tuberculosis and the facilities that worked to heal them.

At the end of the day, a group of happy genealogists, researchers and Archives of Michigan staff agreed that it was another success!  Congratulations to all – AND don’t forget that David Allen Lambert is looking for his Mason County ancestors, so keep your eyes out for records he may not know about!  We’re claiming him as a Michigander!!