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Spotlight on Alexandria Library, Local History and Special Collections Branch with Leslie Anderson
Thursday, January 25
Spotlight on Alexandria Library, Local History and Special Collections Branch with Leslie Anderson  (FxGS Membership Meetings)
7:30 pm
Kilmer Middle School Lecture Room G-107 8100 Wolftrap Road, Vienna, VA
 
Snow Date: February 1
 
Lecture Description: Alexandria was established as a seaport town in 1749 when Virginia’s early purpose was tobacco cultivation. It was the seat of Fairfax County and later a part of the District of Columbia. The Alexandria Library provides the highest quality of professional library services to researchers whose interests range from casual inquiries into their family history to professional writers and doctoral candidates researching specialized topics in local history.
 
Though the collection is deep and rich with material related to Alexandria, the Commonwealth’s cities and counties, and the District of Columbia, the library holdings include items about selected Southern states and some things that might surprise you. So, before you make that “trip across the river” to the National Archives or the Library of Congress come see the Alexandria Library!
 
Presenter: Leslie Anderson, a native Virginian, is a Reference Librarian at Alexandria Library, Special Collections Branch. Her article, "Tabitha (Bugg) George Smith of Mecklenburg County, Virginia" won the National Genealogical Society's 2013 Family History Writing Contest. Ms. Anderson is the co-author of Alexandria and the editor of Virginia Slave Births Index, 1853-1865. She is a member of the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society, the National Genealogical Society, the Virginia Genealogical Society and several Pennsylvania societies. Ms. Anderson received her MS in Library Science from Case Western Reserve University and her BA in American Studies from Wesleyan University in Connecticut.


Private Lives, Public Records & The 'Free Negro' Dilemma in Virginia with Leslie Anderson
Saturday, January 27
Private Lives, Public Records & The 'Free Negro' Dilemma in Virginia with Leslie Anderson  (FxGS Education Class/Meeting)
10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall 2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA
 
Snow Date: February 3
 
Lecture Descriptions:
1) Private Lives, Public Records: Reconstructing A Civil War-Era Community – The research began with an Excel spreadsheet and evolved into a blog that will be launched later this year. The 1st US Colored Cavalry was formed at Fortress Monroe, Virginia. The 1,000-man regiment consisted of free men, freedmen, and contrabands from the US and Canada. This presentation demonstrates the use of pension records, lesser-known documents (available in print and online), maps, photographs, and GoogleEarth.
 
2) The 'Free Negro' Dilemma in Virginia: Under-utilized Records for Blacks and Whites – Description of the origins of the free black population in Virginia and its impact on Virginia law. Attendees will learn how to locate city and county documents created in response to legislation passed by state government, for example, Free Negro registers, petitions to be re-enslaved, special tax lists, and requisitions for military and public use.
 
Presenter: Leslie Anderson, a native Virginian, is a Reference Librarian at Alexandria Library, Special Collections Branch. Her article, "Tabitha (Bugg) George Smith of Mecklenburg County, Virginia" won the National Genealogical Society's 2013 Family History Writing Contest. Ms. Anderson is the co-author of Alexandria and the editor of Virginia Slave Births Index, 1853-1865. She is a member of the Afro-American Historical and Genealogical Society, the National Genealogical Society, the Virginia Genealogical Society and several Pennsylvania societies. Ms. Anderson received her MS in Library Science from Case Western Reserve University and her BA in American Studies from Wesleyan University in Connecticut.



Resources for Genealogical Research at the Library of Congress
Monday, February 5
Resources for Genealogical Research at the Library of Congress  (Other Events)
6:30 pm
Main Reading Room, LJ-100 of the Thomas Jefferson Building, Washington, D.C.
The "Research Orientation to the Library of Congress" session is designed as a basic introduction for researchers using the Library of Congress collections and resources.
 
The session includes an introduction to the Library's reading rooms and collections; guidelines on how to locate and request materials in a closed-stack library; suggestions on how to conduct research efficiently in the Library of Congress; instruction on how to use Library of Congress Subject Headings and other sources for searching accurately by subject. Also information on how to find published bibliographies and topical indexes in print and automated formats; information on using the Library's catalogs in card and online forms; procedures for finding citations to journal articles; and an overview of electronic resources, including subscription databases.
 


Family History Writing SIG
Monday, February 5
Family History Writing SIG  (FxGS SIG Events)
7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Tysons-Pimmit Regional Library, 7584 Leesburg Pike, Falls Church, VA
 
The members of the Family History Writers’ Special Interest Group would enjoy reading and reviewing your family narratives and help you to make them even better.
 
We are all at different levels of writing skills and experience, and we enjoy helping each other. Whether questions of grammar, comma usage, spelling variations or those fiendish footnotes, we welcome the opportunity to discuss and debate the issues.
 
Come to the meeting and see how historical context can be incorporated in family history narratives. See how two stories can be told at once, placing the protagonist in the center of the action, adding suspense, injecting drama, and using dialogue to move the story forward.
 
If you wish to be added to the members list and receive a copy of the draft manuscript by email, please send your name and email address to SIG co-leader Sean Furniss at Sean.Furniss@gmail.com.
 


Genetic Genealogy SIG
Wednesday, February 7
Genetic Genealogy SIG  (FxGS SIG Events)
7:00 pm
Kilmer Middle School, H108, 8100 Wolftrap Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Are you interested in DNA as a tool to help trace and identify your ancestors? Come to the Genetic Genealogy Special Interest Group to discuss and see presentations on this exciting part of genealogy.

For more information, contact SIG leader Jim Logan at jjlnv@comcast.net


Tuesday, February 13
Genealogy Roundtable  (Other Events)
7:00 pm
Bull Run Regional Library, 8051 Ashton Avenue, Manassas, VA
Come and discuss the challenges of your family research in a group environment, and get tips for new approaches. Moderated by RELIC's Don Wilson.
 
To register for the free program, contact RELIC @ (703) 792-4540 or relic2@pwcgov.org.


German SIG: My Trip To Germany with Diana Schnurrpusch
Wednesday, February 21
German SIG: My Trip To Germany with Diana Schnurrpusch  (FxGS SIG Events)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Pohick Regional Library, 6450 Sydenstricker Rd, Burke, VA 22015
Diana Schnurrpusch, GSIG Member, will recount her experiences from her Summer 2017 trip to Germany. This is a standing meeting of the German Special Interest Group. Contact SIG Leader Robert Dunfield at missingbranch@hotmail.com for more information.


Real-World Examples of the Frustrations of Endogamy with Lara Diamond
Thursday, February 22
Real-World Examples of the Frustrations of Endogamy with Lara Diamond  (FxGS Membership Meetings)
7:45 pm
Jewish Community Center of Northern Virginia, 8900 Little River Turnpike, Fairfax, VA
 
Please note the change of location and starting time.
 
Snow Date: There is no Snow Date for this presentation
 
Lecture Description: Those whose ancestors married within the same community get many more DNA matches than the general population which are predicted to be much closer than they are, making utilizing DNA testing challenging. See why endogamy makes genetic genealogy more difficult with real-world examples of why false positives happen, plus learn methods to find cousins, even with endogamy. 
 
Presenter: Lara Diamond has been researching her family for 25 years and has traced all branches of her family multiple generations back in Europe using Russian and Austria-Hungarian Empire records. Most of her research is in modern-day Ukraine, plus some Belarus and Poland. She recently assumed leadership of JewishGen’s Subcarpathian SIG and also runs several town-focused projects. She blogs at http://larasgenealogy.blogspot.com 


Photography for Genealogy with Gary Petranek
Saturday, February 24
Photography for Genealogy with Gary Petranek  (FxGS Education Class/Meeting)
10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall 2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA
 
Snow Date: March 3
 
Lecture Description: This presentation will focus on using photography in conjunction with your genealogy research. Topics covered will include photo quality, photo apps for phones and tablets, and tips on taking good tombstone photos. We will discuss how to upload photos to FamilySearch Family Tree and Ancestry Family Tree. We will take a look at tips for photo organization on a computer and how to share digital files with family members and other researchers. The class is aimed at genealogists of all skill levels.
 
Presenter: Gary Petranek serves as a co-director of the Washington, D.C. Family History Center. He retired from IBM after 41 years as a technical specialist, and has an extensive background in computers and information technology. Gary provides technical support for the FamilySearch/Maryland Archive digitization project of Probate and Estate Records. He hosts the DC Metro RootsMagic Users Group in Montgomery County and is an avid photographer.


Mid-Atlantic SIG:
Wednesday, February 28
Mid-Atlantic SIG: "The Kilbys of Culpepper County, VA" and "5th GGF: Where the heck was he and where  (FxGS SIG Events)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
City of Fairfax Regional Library, Conf. Rm. A/B, 10360 North Street, Fairfax, VA.
Join the Mid-Atlantic Special Interest Group! Tim Kilby will present, "The Kilbys of Culpepper County, VA" and Alexis Steen will present, "5th GGF: Where the heck was he and where did he go?" If you are interested in presenting at a future meeting or additional information on the Mid-Atlantic Special Interest Group, contact SIG Leader Don Coram at coram_mirmirani@verizon.net for more information.


Wednesday, February 28
Genealogy Roundtable  (Other Events)
2:00 pm
Bull Run Regional Library, 8051 Ashton Avenue, Manassas, VA
Come and discuss the challenges of your family research in a group environment, and get tips for new approaches. Moderated by RELIC's Don Wilson.
 
To register for the free program, contact RELIC @ (703) 792-4540 or relic2@pwcgov.org.



MVGS 3rd Annual Lock-In Conference
Saturday, March 3
MVGS 3rd Annual Lock-In Conference  (Other Events)
8:30 am
Mount Vernon Genealogical Society at Hollin Hall, rm 112, 1500 Shenandoah Road, Alexandria, VA.
The purpose of the lock-In is to gather a group of ancestry enthusiasts into one area for six hours, present them with twelve different presentations, from which they choose four to attend. Additional information, including session descriptions and registration, is available at https://mvgenealogy.org/.
 
Bring a sack lunch, along with a drink, and at noon the group will divide into United States regional areas, where everyone has the opportunity to discuss ancestor locations, research problems, and just get to know each other. Note there is no microwave or refrigerator available for lunch so attendees should pack accordingly.
 
MVGS delayed this years lock-in to later, making the assumption that the weather will be nice, BUT if mother nature decides to do something unseasonal, the backup date is 17 March.


Genetic Genealogy SIG
Wednesday, March 7
Genetic Genealogy SIG  (FxGS SIG Events)
7:00 pm
Kilmer Middle School, H108, 8100 Wolftrap Road, Vienna, VA 22027

Are you interested in DNA as a tool to help trace and identify your ancestors? Come to the Genetic Genealogy Special Interest Group to discuss and see presentations on this exciting part of genealogy.

For more information, contact SIG leader Jim Logan at jjlnv@comcast.net


German SIG: MAGS Database Overview
Tuesday, March 20
German SIG: MAGS Database Overview  (FxGS SIG Events)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Pohick Regional Library, 6450 Sydenstricker Rd, Burke, VA 22015
SIG leader Bob Dunfield will discuss the new MAGS database, which could be an important tool in your German research. This is a standing meeting of the German Special Interest Group. Contact SIG Leader Robert Dunfield at missingbranch@hotmail.com for more information.


Mid-Atlantic SIG:
Wednesday, March 21
Mid-Atlantic SIG: "Seeking Angeline's Maiden Name" and "Family Stories - Fact of Fiction"  (FxGS SIG Events)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
City of Fairfax Regional Library, Conf. Rm. A/B, 10360 North Street, Fairfax, VA.
Join the Mid-Atlantic Special Interest Group! Barbara Hopkins will present "Seeking Angeline's Maiden Name" and Janice Reilly will present "Family Stories - Fact of Fiction." If you are interested in presenting at a future meeting or additional information on the Mid-Atlantic Special Interest Group, contact SIG Leader Don Coram at coram_mirmirani@verizon.net for more information.


The Good, the bad, and the ugly truth about published family histories with Shannon Combs-Bennett
Friday, March 23
The Good, the bad, and the ugly truth about published family histories with Shannon Combs-Bennett  (FxGS Membership Meetings)
7:30 pm
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall 2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA
 
Please be sure to note the change of meeting date and meeting location.
 
Lecture Description: Just because it is published does not make it correct.  Many researchers cling to family histories as the honest truth on their family line. The discerning research will learn how to take those clues and then find the records they refer to. Learn how to vet the information contained in published family history books to make your research that much better.
 
Presenter: Shannon Combs-Bennett is an award-winning author and lecturer based out of Northern Virginia. She loves sharing her knowledge with other researchers on a variety of subjects from methodology to genetics. Shannon earned her PLCGS in December 2016 and is working towards her MSc in Genealogical, Heraldic and Paleographic Studies.


Create Genealogy Videos and Images with Adobe Spark & 10 Databases you need to know
Saturday, March 24
Create Genealogy Videos and Images with Adobe Spark & 10 Databases you need to know  (FxGS Education Class/Meeting)
10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall 2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA
 
Lecture Descriptions:
1) Create Genealogy Videos and Images for free with Adobe Spark – Do you have images you would like to share and annotate for your own use or maybe to share? If so you should know about this wonderful free web-based program that allows you to create high quality graphics and videos to share for free.
 
2) 10 Databases you need to know about – With the ease of access to a variety of Institutions researchers depend on computer research more and more. However, we sometimes get into a rut looking at the same places over and over again. Shannon will introduce you to 10 databases that are not frequently visited, but could really change the way you research.
 
Presenter: Shannon Combs-Bennett is an award-winning author and lecturer based out of Northern Virginia. She loves sharing her knowledge with other researchers on a variety of subjects from methodology to genetics. Shannon earned her PLCGS in December 2016 and is working towards her MSc in Genealogical, Heraldic and Paleographic Studies.
 


Fieldtrip: Bureau of Land Management (Eastern States Office)
Monday, March 26
Fieldtrip: Bureau of Land Management (Eastern States Office)  (FxGS Field Trips)
10:00 am
Bureau of Land Management (Eastern States Office), 20 M Street, S.E., Suite 950 Washington, DC 20003
The Bureau of Land Management (BLM) manages public lands and resources from National Conservation Lands to our nation’s cultural resources to fish and wildlife habitat. BLM has records back to 1812 documenting homesteading and westward migration. Our field trip will begin with a tour of the relocation into the new facility followed by an opportunity to explore maps and data, including online records.
 
Contact Sherrie Craun at fieldtrips@fxgs.org to be added to the attendee list. Please provide a telephone number in the event of last minute schedule changes.



Friday, April 6 through Saturday, April 7
2018 FxGS Spring Conference  (FxGS Spring Conference)
SAVE THE DATE!


German SIG: How to use NARA Record Group 85 for Genealogy Research
Monday, April 16
German SIG: How to use NARA Record Group 85 for Genealogy Research  (FxGS SIG Events)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Pohick Regional Library, 6450 Sydenstricker Rd, Burke, VA 22015
Dr. Krystyn Moon, Professor, Martha Washington University, will present "How to use NARA Record Group 85 for Genealogy Research." This is a standing meeting of the German Special Interest Group. Contact SIG Leader Robert Dunfield at missingbranch@hotmail.com for more information.


Finding Your Loved Ones: Searching Beyond Ancestry.com
Saturday, April 21
Finding Your Loved Ones: Searching Beyond Ancestry.com  (Other Events)
9:00 am to 3:00 pm
City of Fairfax Regional Library, Conf. Rm. A/B, 10360 North Street, Fairfax, VA.
The Fairfax County Cemetery Preservation Association will show you how to research your ancestors through cemetery records, the National Archives, and the Virginia Room. Registration required and opens on Saturday, March 24 at 8:00 a.m. For registration and additional information, visit http://librarycalendar.fairfaxcounty.gov/event/3586490.


Hitting Pay Dirt: Gold in the NARA Homestead and Land Case Files with Sharon MacInnes
Friday, April 27
Hitting Pay Dirt: Gold in the NARA Homestead and Land Case Files with Sharon MacInnes  (FxGS Membership Meetings)
7:30 pm
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall 2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA
 
Lecture Description: The Bureau of Land Management distributed the land of the 30 Federal Land States and has posted online the patents, or certificates of final title, for most of them. The patents finalize the first transfer of public domain land from the federal government to private individuals, including women and former slaves. These patents, however, are only the final document in an often years long process, and a Case File should exist in the National Archives for each of them. Case Files often contain incredible information about your ancestors: military service, specifics about “improvements” they made to the land before receiving final title, and often family information or immigration proof. Even the thinnest Case File at least locates a person in time and place and may include signatures on receipts. Two million abandoned claims that were filed but never completed also have Case Files. We’ll discuss how to access both the indexed and unindexed Case Files at the National Archives. They have never been microfilmed. These records precede the deeds in county courthouses.
 
Presenter: Sharon MacInnes is the CEO of Ancestor Tracks (http://ancestortracks.com), a business which is dedicated to publishing online free, downloadable 19th-century maps of every county of Pennsylvania to be used with census records and published county histories.


Reclaim The Records: Using Freedom of Information Laws for Genealogical and Archival Research
Saturday, April 28
Reclaim The Records: Using Freedom of Information Laws for Genealogical and Archival Research  (FxGS Education Class/Meeting)
10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall 2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA
 
Lecture Description:
     Are you tired of being told by archives, libraries, and government agencies that the genealogical records you want are "unavailable" to the public, are only available behind a paywall, or are only available to view if you can visit them onsite or during limited hours? We were too, so we figured out how to do something about it.
     We're Reclaim The Records, a new not-for-profit activist group of more than 3200 genealogists, researchers, historians, and journalists. We use state Freedom of Information (FOI) laws to obtain copies of previously inaccessible archival record sets. We use these laws to force the government to hand over copies of genealogical records to the public, often for the first time ever. Then we then freely publish all the records we win online, as open data without any copyrights, paywalls, or usage restrictions.
     Our work has enabled the first-ever public access to more than ten million archival records (and counting!), ranging from marriage records to voter lists to civil service lists to state licensing files. We started with a first-of-its-kind lawsuit in the Supreme Court of New York in 2015, followed it up with a second successful case against the New York City Clerk’s Office in 2016, filed a third case in Missouri against their Department of Health and Senior Services, and are now spreading our legal work to other cities and states. We crowdsource ideas for new projects, publish a free e-mail newsletter, and make snarky comments about government agencies’ intransigence on social media.
     This presentation will walk through the history and legal basics of FOI laws, and will teach researchers how to file their own requests for any genealogical or archival records they may want to see returned to the public domain.
 
Presenter:
Brooke Schreier Ganz is the founder and president of Reclaim The Records, and the first genealogist to successfully sue a government archive for the return of records to the public. A computer programmer, she is also the creator of LeafSeek, a free open source records management platform and multi-lingual search engine that won second place in the 2012 RootsTech Developer Challenge.
 
Her work has helped non-profit organizations like the Israel Genealogical Research Association (IGRA) and Gesher Galicia publish over 1.2 million unique genealogical records online for free use. She is also a volunteer for ArchiveTeam, an online preservationist group that pre-emptively crawls at-risk websites to save copies of the data for the Internet Archive’s Wayback Machine. She lives in the San Francisco Bay Area.



Fieldtrip: Mount Vernon Genealogical Society Research Center
Friday, May 11
Fieldtrip: Mount Vernon Genealogical Society Research Center  (FxGS Field Trips)
10:00 am to 2:00 pm
Mount Vernon Genealogical Society at Hollin Hall, rm 214, 1500 Shenandoah Road, Alexandria, VA.
The Mount Vernon Genealogical Research Center offers a large genealogical library which includes basic and extensive references with some books and journals only available at the Research Center. The field trip will begin with a tour of the facility to acquaint the attendees with the books, journals, maps, manuscripts, CDs, videos, website and computers at the Research Center followed by an opportunity to conduct research.

It is recommended that attendees familiarize themselves with the Research Center’s website https://mvgenealogy.org/cpage.php?pt=43 in advance of the trip. In addition, please provide information such as surnames related to research interest to Sherrie Craun, FxGS Field Trip Coordinator, by Monday, May 7, 2018.
 
Contact Sherrie Craun at fieldtrips@fxgs.org to be added to the attendee list. Please provide a telephone number in
the event of last minute schedule changes. Additional information about this field trip will be included in the March Newsletter.


Myths, Fairy Tales, and Stories Grandma Told with Chuck Mason
Friday, May 18
Myths, Fairy Tales, and Stories Grandma Told with Chuck Mason  (FxGS Membership Meetings)
7:30 pm
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall 2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA
 
Lecture Description: Family stories usually contain at least some true facts. But what do you do when almost nothing is true? This program demonstrates how a 25-year brick wall was broken down.
 
Presenter: Charles S. “Chuck” Mason, Jr., is a Certified Genealogist SM, specializing in Southern New Jersey and 19th and 20th Century Death Records. He is a graduate of NGS’s American Genealogy: Home Study Course, (1994), a graduate of the National Institute for Genealogical Research (NIGR) at the National Archives (1996 & 2001), the Institute of Genealogy and History at Samford University (2010).
 
Chuck teaches genealogy classes for the Fairfax County Adult and Community Education (ACE) program and is an instructor for the NGS course Beyond the Basics. He lectures at many of the genealogical societies in the Washington DC area, NIGR, and in Delaware, New Jersey and Pennsylvania; has published genealogy articles in journals, magazines and newsletters; and is co-host of a public television genealogy program in Fairfax County.


Using Identity Characteristics to Locate Your Ancestors with Angela Packer McGhie, CG
Saturday, May 19
Using Identity Characteristics to Locate Your Ancestors with Angela Packer McGhie, CG  (FxGS Education Class/Meeting)
10:00 am
Dunn Loring Volunteer Fire Station Hall 2148 Gallows Road, Vienna, VA
 
Lecture Description:
Sometimes you need to be able to identify an ancestor without his “name tag.” Characteristics such as occupation, birthplace, signature, age and family members can be helpful in locating individuals in records, as well as in distinguish individuals of the same name.
Comparing information found in one record to that of another record can help determine if they refer to the same individual. Many different characteristics of an individual can be used in this comparison. This technique can be especially useful to overcome indexing issues where you ancestor’s name may not be identifiable, or in situations where a name has been changed.
 
Presenter: Angela Packer McGhie, CG, is a professional genealogist, lecturer and instructor. She is a course coordinator and instructor at genealogy institutes, and speaker at national conferences. Angela enjoys serving as a facilitator for the Boston University Genealogical Research Certificate program, and a trustee for the Board for Certification of Genealogists Education Fund, and on the board of the ProGen Study Program.