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12 July 2010

Monday Report: 2010 Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research

Jeffrey Vaillant continues his series from the Samford Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR).

Lloyd de Witt Bockstruck began the morning by stating the “simple” Four Steps of Genealogical Research:
  1. What do you want to find or to prove?
  2. What kind of record would contain that information?
  3. Where does that record exist?
  4. How do I gain access to it?
This four step process strikes me as a good guideline for the week. The first presentation was on Tax Records. Lloyd provided a bibliography of tax record sources that have been complied for many (but not all) states. He addressed remembering to know what the law required for taxing. And in the colonial period there were rent rolls rather than tax rolls in places like Virginia (paid to Lord Fairfax), Maryland (paid to Lord Baltimore), Pennsylvania (paid to William Penn) and North Carolina (paid to Lord Granville).

Next Lloyd discussed the Pitfalls of Genealogy with a list of some twenty-eight examples! Some we all know about: surnames and forenames, Sr. versus Jr., as well as abbreviations and titles. Some people get tripped up on the sanctity of the printed word or the failure to become acquainted with local history. Ever hear the term “semi-posthumous child”? I certainly had not. Want to guess what it means? I will answer in a couple of days.

Claire Bettag, CG, CGL, presented the afternoon lecture on Federal Land Records at the National Archives. If you have heard Claire, then you will know it is impossible to nap after lunch when she is presenting. She ripped through her ten pages of prepared materials leaving behind many items for follow up. Upon my return I'll be visiting NARA in San Bruno to follow up on several sources she cited.

Lloyd finished the afternoon with A Genealogical Bibliography divided into subjects of Atlases/Gazetteers, Bibliographies, Biography, Dictionaries, Handbooks, Indexes, Law, Paleography, Passenger Lists, Periodicals, Manuscripts, and Ethnic Guides.

There are optional evening presentations offered. Monday night was excellent. Ruth Ann (Abels) Hager spoke on History through Genealogy—the Best of Both Worlds. She presented what would be called a case study on Dred and Harriet Scott: Their Family History. Yes, this is the Dred Scott of the U.S. Supreme Court decision. One might think that about all has been written and discovered about the family. Well, one would be wrong. Ruth has uncovered new materials and explained how using genealogical methodology led to the discoveries and their information. Her book was published this year and is now in my collection.
– Jeffrey Vaillant

Read the entire series:
Part 1 — Getting to IGHR: A Tale of Two Days
Part 2 — Monday Report
Part 3 — Tuesday Report
Part 4 — Wednesday Report
Part 5 — Thursday Report
Part 6 — Friday Report

Copyright © 2010 by Kathryn M. Doyle, California Genealogical Society and Library