Saturday, January 31, 2015

David Rencher is a 12!

David Rencher, chief genealogical officer at FamilySearch and our headliner at the WSGS Conference on June 27, 2015, is cheering for a Seahawks victory at Super Bowl XLIX on Sunday. Yes, David’s a Seahawks fan!

Look for more interesting tidbits about David in the coming weeks and months. Then come see him yourself at the WSGS Conference, June 27, in Ellensburg — mark your calendar now!

Seattle Genealogical Society Seminars

The HeritageQuest database, which is available remotely via The Seattle Public Library’s website, will see several upgrades in the first quarter 2015.
Following are a few important changes noted by ProQuest, the database vendor:

  • Complete 1790-1940 U.S. Federal Census with images and every-name indexes for all years
  • Additional census records such as Mortality and Non-Population Schedules, Indian Census Rolls, and more
  • Expanded collection of genealogy and local history books and city directories with an all-new user interface, thumbnail images and hit highlighting
  • Complete Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land record collection (NARA M804)
This database can be accessed by anyone with a Seattle Public Library card via the Internet, and does not require a trip to the library.

Current SGS needs and openings:

Are you Irish (or do you wish you were), and can you walk a mile? 
SGS’s official participation in Seattle’s Irish Week Festivities is one of our best community outreach activities and helps us obtain financial grants for our Society.  SGS is participating in the annual St. Patrick's Day parade on March 14, and we need a few people to march in the parade, carry the SGS banner alongside an antique car, and pass out membership brochures.  The parade begins at 12 noon and starts at 4th and Jefferson and travels north on 4th. After passing the reviewing stand at Westlake - walkers can board the monorail (for free) to the Seattle Center for closing ceremonies at 2:00 pm. 
SGS will also have a booth at the Seattle Center for the Irish Week festivities.  We need volunteers to man our SGS Information booth for two-hour shifts on Saturday March 14 from 12 Noon to 6 PM and Sunday March 15 10 AM – 6 PM.  This is a lot of fun.
If you can help – please contact Jean A. Roth at (206) 782-2629 or
Strong backs needed: Several times a year, we need help moving boxes of books or other similar items, and many of our members can no longer do this kind of physical work.  Commitment: 1-3 hours, two or three times a year.  Email Reiley Kidd,  
Seeking one or more leaders for Beginner's classes: Twice a year, SGS offers a series of classes for people new to genealogical research.  We need several people to share this responsibility.  The curriculum and lesson plans are available, and we can coach you to get you started.  Commitment: several 1-2 hour sessions (evenings or weekends), twice a year. Email Jean Roth,
WANTED: Volunteers willing to give SGS two hours to help with registration of attendees at 2015 spring seminar, Saturday, 9 May. Will check attendees' names against registration/paid list and hand out already-prepared information packets. Will register walk-up attendees and take and record their registration fees. Seminar at Greenwood Senior Center. Work begins at 8:30 a.m. on day of seminar.  Email Betty Ravenholt,

WANTED: Volunteers willing to give SGS two to three hours to help with preparing registration packets for spring seminar attendees. Work involves collating already printed pages and putting them into envelopes, preparing name labels, etc. Work to be done at SGS library at a date during week prior to May 9 seminar.  Email Betty Ravenholt,

WANTED: Volunteers willing to give SGS approximately two hours to put out snacks/water and hand out lunches at SGS spring seminar on 9 May. Preparatory work of organizing snacks and lunch boxes will take about one hour and begins at 8:30. Handing out lunches will take about one hour and begins about 12:00. Seminar at Greenwood Senior Center.  Email Betty Ravenholt,
WANTED: Volunteers willing to give SGS approximately one hour to help pack up, clean up, and straighten up at the end of the spring seminar event. Work begins about 4:30 p.m. on 9 May. Greenwood Senior Center.  Email Betty Ravenholt,


Saturday, January 31, 10:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., Wedgewood Presbyterian Church
DNA INTEREST GROUP, Cary Bright and Herb McDaniel, leaders.
Come learn about DNA testing and how you can tear down some of your brick walls with the right DNA test.  We will have a quick overview at 9:30 a.m. to review DNA for beginners.  Our usual meeting (10:00 a.m.) will review all new discoveries and include two presentations by group members about their own DNA testing results.

Saturday, January 31, 1:30 – 4:00 p.m., SGS Library
Program: Using Postcard Images: An Unusual Picture Source For Family Histories.
Old postcards are a valuable but often little-used resource for images to add to your genealogies.  They include early photographs and art work of places and people important to your narrative.
Leader: Jean A. Roth

Sunday, February 1 – SGS Library will be CLOSED today, because of the Super Bowl.
The program originally scheduled for this date has been moved to Feb. 8 – see below.

Saturday, February 7 10:15 a.m. -12:15 p.m., Canadian Interest Group; David Robert, leader.
Bring your Canadian brick walls for some expert help.

Sunday, February 8, 1:30 p.m.,
NEW DATE! "House Histories--Wherever You Live" will be presented on Sunday, 8 February at 1:30 pm at the SGS Library. Jill Morelli, licensed architect and genealogist will present an approach to doing your house history, wherever you live. While each county's land records are filed differently, Jill will outline a procedure which works in most urban jurisdictions. Document retrieval, online and on site, and the architecture and neighborhood assessment will be covered.

Tuesday, February 10, 10 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
Program: Finding and Interpreting Family Bible Records, Ida Skarson McCormick, leader.
Is something puzzling you about the content of a family Bible record?  Please send image before class to

Saturday, February 14.
CANCELLATION NOTICE: Computer Interest Group, Ida Skarson McCormick, leader, originally scheduled for this day has been cancelled.

Saturday, February 14, 1:00 – 4:00 p.m.  SGS OPEN HOUSE
It's Valentine's Day!  We'd "love" to have you join us for sweet treats.  Researchers will be available to help you with your family history.

Tuesday, February 17, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m., Brick Wall Solving Session.
Join SGS members for a problem-solving session.  This is an open forum format.  Jean A. Roth, leader.

Saturday, February 21, All day Irish Genealogy Workshop 9 AM – 5 PM in Greenwood sponsored by the Irish Heritage Club and the SGS Irish Interest Group.
Contact Jean A. Roth for details:

Sunday, February 22, 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m., Irish Interest Group, Jean A. Roth, leader.
Open session on Irish research.  Come and share your successes and brick walls.

Sunday, February 22, 1:30 – 3:30 p.m., German Interest Group, Jean A. Roth, leader.
Open session on German research.  Come and share your successes and brick walls.

The next two programs begin our 2015 series of lectures on the Ethnic Heritage in the Northwest:

Saturday, February 28, 10:15 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.  Program: Embracing Your Ethnic Heritage, Jean A. Roth, leader.  Our ancestors had a rich ethnic heritage – a story that needs to be told.

Saturday, February 28, 1:00 – 3:00 p.m.  Program: Coming to America – Castle Gardens and Ellis Island, Jean A. Roth, leader.
Many of our ancestors came through the Port of New York and entered through Castle Gardens or Ellis Island.  This program will describe entering the U.S. in the 19th and 20thcenturies.


Friday, January 30, 2015

WSGS Launches New Grant Program

Has your Society talked about doing a special project, but been stymied by lack of funds? Do you need a special piece of equipment like a projector or printer for your library? Well…….

The Washington State Genealogical Society is excited to announce the creation of the “WSGS Innovative Grant Program.”
The grants, up to $100, are designed to support the inventive and creative efforts of WSGS-member societies and organizations. We know that $100 doesn't seem like a lot of money, but we also know that local societies can do a lot with very little, so we’re hoping the Innovative Grant Program will be what you need to jump-start a project that has been dreamed about for some time. Up to five grants will be awarded in 2015.
While no means comprehensive, here are some examples of projects that might be considered:

·         Purchase of furniture, equipment, books, magazines or other publications/ subscriptions for an existing or new society library;

·         Locating, inventorying, restoring and/or preserving a local cemetery;

·         Hosting a special event, presentation, or workshop;

·         Purchasing genealogical-related software, scanner, projector, peripherals or other equipment or technology;

·         Developing a project serving special populations, e.g. senior citizens, children/teens, tribal members, ethnic organizations, etc.;

·         Restoring and/or preservation of photos or original documents;

·         Identifying and unifying old photos, Bibles, quilts, letters or other significant memorabilia with family members, museums, or other good homes;

·         Creation of a website, blog or other communication tool;

·         Publication of local history or narratives;

·         Other innovative projects that support and enhances your genealogical society.

The deadline for the Innovative Grant application is April 1, 2015. The simple application is only ONE page and available online here. Additional guidance on the program is here.

For more information, contact Roxanne Lowe, Recognition Chair, at

Eastern Washington Gen Society News Flash

EWGS Website Databases
currently available as of January 2015

The following databases are available on the E.W.G.S. website (  You do not need to log in as a member to access these.  They are FREE! This information is for Spokane and surrounding areas.

Unpublished Bible Records This work contains 145 pages of unpublished Bible Records from 82 Bibles. They were collected by members and friends of NeWGS and EWGS. Transcribing was done by Lethene Dennis Parks, Geri Marvin Williamson and Donna Potter Phillips. There are 6 separate files. The first File 1 contains pages 1-24 and the Index for the entire series.



  ** This contains a huge amount of data.  There are numerous files available but this series is not yet complete.






These files were microfilmed in the 1970's and the originals destroyed. Book “A” was a catalog of papers concerning each court case, insanity, minors, estates of deceased persons, and adoptions. Only those concerning deceased persons were abstracted by Lorena Wildman in 1973. These listings are supported by case packets filled with all applicable papers for each case. The cases cover the years 1880-1903. Pages noted refer to the Memorandum of Files “A”. The originals of these files are now housed at the Eastern Regional Branch of the Washington State Archives. The index was originally published in the EWGS Bulletin v. 23, pp. 113-122, 1986.

The Spokane County Brand Books were indexed by EWGS member, Beverly Hixson Rowley, in 1989 at the Spokane County Courthouse. The 2 volumes are now housed at the Eastern Regional Branch of the Washington State Archives. The index was originally published in the EWGS Bulletin, v. 26, pp. 9-17 and 60-64, 1989, and v. 27, pp. 131-135, 1990.


This file contains 1985 births, marriages and dissolutions


This data base contains alphabetical listings for early Spokane School Districts. The information includes township and range as well as how the districts were consolidated or transferred. A map of the districts will soon be posted in the Genealogy section of the Spokane Public Library downtown. Many thanks to Barbara Brazington for her work in creating the map.

Thursday, January 29, 2015

Kittitas County Gen Society News Flash

The next Kittitas County Genealogical Society Meeting will be on Monday Feb 2 2015 at 413 N. Main St,Ellensburg WA, with refreshmentsm, beginning about 7:30 pm.

Craig A. Hughes, a faculty member at CWU, will present "Both Sides of Billiongraves" as our program for Monday, Feb. 2. He describes himself as having an interest in the power of electronic tools in family history.  

(You may remember him as the man who directed the Sparrow Singers 1Dec 2014 as they sang at our dinner when Lee Bates was temporarily unable to appear with the choir.) is like - cemetery graves,
with special emphasis on showing the exact geographical spot in the cemetery; so we see who is buried near whom.

Currently the website has 12 million grave records and that number is doubling about every year or 2. Findagrave. com has 121 million records but is not growing as fast anymore.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Eastside Genealogical Society News Flash

The Eastside Genealogical Society will meet on Thursday, February 12, 2015 in the Bellevue Regional Library, Room 1, 1111 – 110th Ave NE, Bellevue  98004 at 7pm, with doors opening at 6:30 pm for networking. 
How DNA Can Help Your Family Tree Research
Dr. Maurice Gleeson, via YouTube videos, will explain the 3 different types of DNA testing and share interesting case studies which will help you understand how to use DNA testing to advance your research and break down some brick walls.  Dr Gleeson is a medical doctor in London, England and runs several DNA projects. 

Also see our website for FREE genealogical help and other Special Interest Group meetings --  .  Visitors are always welcome at all meetings.

Thank you,
Dorothy Pretare
EGS Publicity Chairperson

"Freedom Webinar Series" from Legacy Family Tree

Legacy Family Tree "Freedom Webinar Series"
by Patricia Bayonne-Johnson
(Vice-President of the Eastern Washington Genealogical Society)

To celebrate the 150 anniversary of the end of slavery, Legacy Family Tree has announced a series of four FREE webinars:

·         Researching Ancestors in the Era of Freedom by Angela Walton-Raji, Friday, February 20, 2015

·       United States Colored Troops Civil War Widows' Pension Applications: Tell the Story by Bernice  Alexander Bennett, Friday, April 24, 2015

·         Mending Broken Ties: Reconstructing Family Trees Sawed by Slavery by Melvin J. Collier, Friday, July 31, 2015

·         Maps Tell Some of the Story for African Ancestored Genealogist by Angela Walton-Raji, September 25, 2015

FREE access is available through the end of January for three webinars from 2014:

·         When Freedom Came - Documenting the Family's Freedom Story by Angela Walton-Raji
·         Your Civil War Ancestors: Beginning Your Research by Michael Hait
·         Best Internet Resources for African American Genealogy by Angela Walton-Raji

For registration and details, copy and paste the link into your browser: 

Whatcom Gen Society News Flash

Hello Everyone,
In November the Whatcom Genealogical Society voted in the following new officers:
President Barbara Lynch -- 

Vice President Susan Nahas

Secretary to be appointed

Treasurer Carol Signett

Submitted by Sharon Neem, publicity chair.

Personal P.S.  I've known Barbara Lynch for at least 40 years........ she and I were members of the G.R.O.U.P. in Spokane, a sub-group of the Eastern Washington Gen Society where we each published (in paper form) surname booklet/databases. She is experienced and I'm sure she'll do a good job for WCGS.  Donna Potter Phillips

P.O. Box 1493
Bellingham, WA 98227-1493
"Searching the Fourth Corner for Roots and Branches"

Darrell Hill Named Outstanding Volunteer

Since 2003, the Washington State Genealogical Society has recognized more than 400 outstanding volunteers, nominated by their local society or genealogical organization for their service and dedication. These volunteers are the backbone of their local society, giving their time and expertise, to the organization and the field of genealogy. In the coming months, you will be introduced to each of the 2014 award recipients and learn why they received the 2014 WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award.

 Today we're introducing Darrell Hill of The Dalles, Oregon, who was nominated by the Columbia Gorge Genealogical Society (CGGS).  He was recognized for his leader­ship, knowledge, and volunteer efforts toward the goals and operation of the CCGS.

Since joining the CGGS in the early 1990s, Mr. Hill has distinguished himself in his untiring support of the society, which serves counties along the Columbia River in both Oregon and Washington.  He has served as President, as well as a board member for many years. Most recently, he served as membership committee chair from 2011 until 2013. 

Mr. Hill has contributed many hours to specials projects. In 2012, he helped inventory and catalog The Discovery Center Library collection which focused on local history and genealogy.

Mr. Hill’s life has been devoted to public service.  As a law enforcement officer, he served as Chief of Police for the city of The Dalles, then as the Sheriff of Wasco County, Oregon. He also served his community as a member and President of The Dalles Chamber of Commerce. 

Mr. Hill’s service to the CGGS and the local Columbia Gorge communities proved he richly deserved to be a recipient of a WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award.

For more information on the WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award program, visit the Recognition page of the WSGS website or contact Roxanne Lowe, Recognition Chair, at

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Deciphering Old Photos

I am writing to inquire about information you may have in deciphering
old photos. Is there a person or persons that may refer to themselves as
Photo Detectives and can identify from old photos the era and or
information. I am looking for such individuals to help me in my research
or may be willing to conduct a presentation on this subject. I also am
the president of the Sno-Isle Genealogical Society in Lynnwood,
Washington. If there are individuals that do this I would greatly
appreciate hearing from you or someone in your organization. I do hope
you help us. Thanks for your attention.

Gary Ottman
President of Sno-Isle Genealogical Society.

Thursday, January 22, 2015

West Valley Genealogical Society Seminar John Philip Colletta

Press Release:
There is still time to register for the February 21, 2015 Annual Seminar hosted by the West Valley Genealogical Society, Youngtown, AZ.  Professional lecturer and author, Dr. John Philip Colletta, will be the featured speaker at this exciting event.  Dr. Colletta is a nationally renown expert genealogist who appears frequently on podcasts as well as on radio and television.  He has taught at the National Archives and was previously employed at the Library of Congress.  Currently a faculty member of Samford University, he also teaches in Boston University’s Certificate in Family History Program and at Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy.    Among his many publications, Dr. Colletta authored They Came in Ships: A Guide to Finding Your Immigrant Ancestor’s Arrival Record.  This very popular, and much in demand, speaker will present around a theme of Our Ancestors from Overseas: Discovering and Recording Their Stories  by incorporating four related lectures beginning with Passenger Arrival Records and Naturalization Records from Colonial Times to Early Twentieth Century.  We’ll also learn about Lesser-Used Federal Records: a Source of Rich Detail About our Ancestors’ Lives.  Sharing his writing expertise, he will lecture on methods of compiling our documented research with Our Immigrant Ancestors:  Pulling Together Each One’s Unique Personal Story.  Please join us for this all inclusive seminar; it’s sure to help the novice as well as the advanced researcher!   Seminar will be held at Lakeview United Methodist Church, 10298 West Thunderbird Blvd. Sun City, AZ.  Registration and expanded description of topics at:, click events/activities/seminar or call 623-933-4945.
Carole Roath, Publicity
West Valley Genealogical Society

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

Oregon Burial Site Guide Book for just Shipping Cost

                                        Press release - Oregon Burial Site Guide

We are loosing our warehouse space the end of July. So the boss said to offer the Oregon Burial Site Guide, Compiled by Dean Byrd, Stanley Clarke, & Janice M. Healy free. We will send a hard back copy to everyone for the cost of shipping and handling. Prepaid $20 post marked not later than 1 July 2015. Those of you with Nonprofit status please add your tax ID number. Any questions contact me. This book
sold for $125 each.

This book is about where the cemeteries of Oregon are located. Not lists of who is buried in them. Those are only listed for the small sites on private property with 12 or less burials.

The book is 8.5"  X 11" X 2" 1,200 plus pages and weighs in at about 8 lbs in the shipping carton. Fully alphabetical by county and site, each county is indexed, Black and White photo's for a general idea of
what monuments are in each county,  with a state wide index in the back. This is a must for those researching Oregon using death certificates. We tried to pick up all the also known as names to the
sites. There are about 2500 burial sites in the 36 counties of Oregon. This material is updated and corrected, not like the material from the old ODOT book that has been put up on the web. So no this is
not on the web.

Make checks out to:

Stoney Way LLC
PO Box 5414
Aloha, OR 97006-0414

Janice M Healy
Stoney Way LLC

Dee Hill Named 2014 Outstanding Volunteer

Since 2003, the Washington State Genealogical Society has recognized more than 400 outstanding volunteers, nominated by their local society or genealogical organization for their service and dedication. These volunteers are the backbone of their local society, giving their time and expertise, to the organization and the field of genealogy. In the coming months, you will be introduced to each of the 2014 award recipients and learn why they received the 2014 WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award.

Today we're introducing Darleena “Dee” Hill of The Dalles, Oregon, who was nominated by the Columbia Gorge Genealogical Society (CGGS).  She was recognized for her leader­ship, knowledge, and volunteer efforts toward the goals and operation of the CCGS.

Ms. Hill distinguished herself in her dedicated volunteerism to the CGGS, which serves counties along the Columbia River in both Oregon and Washington.  Ms. Hill has served as the society’s Secretary/Treasurer. She also applied her administrative and accounting abilities to conduct audits and file the state-mandated reports required for non-profit organizations. Ms. Hill also managed the CGGS’s publications sales program, which involved maintaining the inventory of master documents, getting the documents reproduced, and completing the necessary shipping and billing. Ms. Hill has served as a board member for many years and made a significant contribution to the management of the CGGS.

A member of the CGGS for more than 20 years, Ms. Hill distinguished herself in her untiring support of the society, and proved that she richly deserved to be a recipient of a WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award.

For more information on the WSGS Outstanding Volunteer Award program, visit the Recognition page of the WSGS website or contact Roxanne Lowe, Recognition Chair, at

E-Book Release Pressing On: Two Family Owned Newspapers

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Whitman County Genealogical Society March Seminar

Whitman County Genealogical Society
is hosting a seminar featuring
Janet Camarata and Winona Laird from Genealogy Training Center.

Topics include:
Extra! Extra! I Found It In the Newspaper!”
Winona teaches how to access a variety of historical newspapers to see your ancestors as part of a larger community. Newspaper records include announcements, obituaries, anniversaries, legal notices, letters to the editor, social columns filled with personal news of the daily experiences and lives of your family and their neighbors.
Winona has been doing genealogy for over 60 years. When she retired she became a Professional Genealogist. She is a member of Association of Professional Genealogists, National Genealogical Society, and Federation of Genealogy Societies.
Timelines, Chronologies, and Collateral Lines”
Janet will show how to use a variety of methods to better understand the lives of our ancestors. One method is the use of timelines and/or chronologies to summarize a person's life, demonstrate how lives interconnect, point out problems and areas for further research, and help in writing a memoir, family history or obituary.
Janet is currently President of South King County Genealogical Society (SKCGS). She is a seminar presenter and trainer in genealogy societies across Washington and her specialties are Teaching and Lecturing on genealogy.

Date: Saturday, March 28, 2015
Time: 09:00 am-12:30 pm
Lunch: 12:30 pm-1:00 pm
Place: Holiday Inn Express meeting room, 1190 SE Bishop Blvd. Pullman WA
(near the intersection of SE Klemgard St.)
Cost: Pre-Registration, by March 20: $30.00 and includes a taco bar lunch catered by Taco Del Mar
Registration, after March 20 or at the door: $35.00 without lunch
Morning refreshments will be provided.
If you have any questions or need more information contact President,
Sue Kreikemeier at: or 509-635-1303



Name: ___________________________________

Email: ______________________________________ or Phone: _________________

Make checks payable to W.C.G.S and send to: WCGS, P.O. Box 393, Pullman, WA 99163
For planning purposes, please have pre-registrations in by March 20.