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!!

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!!

Got DNA? Join Us to Learn More!

I Have a DNA Test Result – What Comes Next?

Dr. Sims sheds light on finding living relatives. Living relatives can be a treasure trove of information, including photos, diaries, bibles and even DNA. Yet identifying and locating living relatives can be a challenge, as the techniques used and records available for 20th and 21st century research are often quite different. Learn how to utilize both online and paper record sources to find those long lost cousins.
Dr. James Sims’ presentation (Session H) is Friday, July 20, 3:30 – 4:30 pm

Dr. Sims is a trained professional scientist; Dr. James Sims has more than 20 years of experience as an amateur genealogist working mostly in the Southern and Mid-Atlantic States from the British colonial period to the 20th century. He has more than 15 years of experience in genetic genealogy, and currently serves as the volunteer administrator of the Symes DNA project, which is associated with the Family Tree DNA testing company.

The Abrams Foundation Family History Seminar will be held in Lansing on July 20-21 and will feature David Allen Lambert of the New England Historic Genealogical Society. 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: http://seekingmichigan.org/…/2018-abrams-foundation-family-…

We look forward to seeing you in Lansing!

Great Learning at Summer Seminar!

Audience

Societies from across Michigan gathered at the Pinckney Community Library on June 16th for great discussion, sharing and “what works” information from a variety of society leaders.  “Strengthening Our Societies” was fun, successful and educational!

The morning began with a panel discussing how to obtain volunteers and encourage their engagement in various projects and board positions.  Panel members Tom Koselka, Barb Curtindale, and Brenda Glover Leyndyke (Vice President Dan Earl introduced them, below) as well as a variety of leaders in the audience discussed membership surveys, development of a policy/procedures manual (to help new volunteers), personal 1:1 outreach and building relationships that foster engagement.

DanEarl&Panel

Key learnings or “take aways” from the morning session included:  working within schools to generate the next generation’s interest, building rapport with local library staff, and having one-on-one discussions with potential volunteers/board members to encourage their participation.  A number of societies spoke to the benefits of encouraging membership by putting key resources being the “membership wall” on websites so that there is an obvious membership benefit.

The afternoon session increased the size of the panel, adding President Katherine Willson and Janet Romas.  This session offered ideas for promoting the society.MembershipPanel

Suggestions to societies included questioning what marketing is done to promote the society.  How would someone know that you exist?  Where would they find out about you and where you meet?  Do they even know that attending your meetings is FREE?  Are you reaching out to be a more diverse society – if you look around the room at an average meeting, are most of those attending older, white adults?  What about other ethnic groups, teens, etc.?  Promotion of the society in the local paper with a story of interest perhaps about pioneer families or special projects that need help can generate locals into attending a future meeting.  Do you have an email that is monitored so the public can reach out?  Do you mentor new members, so that they are comfortable with their contact with the society?  Do you have job descriptions for the roles that you are needing to fill?  If you are recruiting, what are you asking them to do?  Have you tried livestreaming a meeting?

To improve member engagement, survey them for what programs they want.  How could you increase diversity in your membership by choosing presentations from African-American presenters or an ethnic group specialist?  Perhaps society members would offer one hour of free consultation to “mentor” a new member with their genealogy?  It could be part of a membership promotional offering to get new people to join!  Does your society ask people to sign in as they come in the door, collecting their emails?  USE those emails to market your programs (MailChimp is free!) and monitor the response.

So much was shared, learning and the networking was great!  If you missed it, President Katherine and VP Dan will be sharing notes from the sessions, so watch for that information.

Exciting Events Planned this Summer & Fall!

Seminar ImageThere are three events that you will want to let your membership know about and MGC is pleased to help you get the word out.
First, Michigan Genealogical Council will be holding a one-day workshop, Saturday, June 16th at the Pinckney Community Public Library, 125 Putnam Street, Pickney, MI 48169.  The Livingston County Genealogical Society will be the hosts for this one-day event that will feature help with finding volunteers and board members, growing society membership and outreach opportunities.  More information will be coming soon.
Next, the 2018 Abrams Foundation Family History Seminar will be held on July 20th and 21st at the Michigan History Center, Lansing, Michigan.  Registration is available at SeekingMichigan.org  The July Delegate meeting will be held in the morning of July 20th.
The keynote speaker will be David Allen Lambert, Chief Genealogist at the New England Historic Genealogical Society. Lambert will be speaking on Researching New England Vital Records and Researching Colonial New England Probate Records.

Other presenters include Kris Rzepczynski, Daniel Earl, James Jackson, Annakathryn Welch, Thomas Koselka, Jill Arnold, Dr. James Sims, Katherine Willson and Jessica Trotter.  A complete list of sessions is available at Seeking Michigan.

In addition to the Saturday sessions there will be the first Barbara J. Brown Family History Day featuring educational programs and family fun activities throughout the Michigan History Center; held concurrently with the Abrams Foundation Family History Seminar, including an oral history recording booth and genealogical trivia.  The Library of Michigan and the Archives of Michigan will also be holding a lock in Friday, July 20th.

 For more information and registration, please visit SeekingMichigan.org

And finally, MGC is happy to announce the speaker for the MGC Fall Seminar, held on November 3, 2018 – our speaker will be John Philip Colletta!    For his biography, please see his website at http://www.genealogyjohn.com/html/about.htm.  More information will be provided when it becomes available.

Please share the above information with your society members.  Please save the dates – we’ll hope to see you there.  Information about these events is also posted on the Michigan Genealogical Council’s Facebook page:   https://www.facebook.com/michiganmgc/