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25 February 2011

Anatomy of the Sanborn Maps Workshop with Melinda Kashuba

One of the things the California Genealogical Society does really well is events. Our classes, workshops and seminars are usually well-attended and more-than-meet expectations. Melinda Kashuba‘s Sanborn Maps workshop last December was a home run.

Events Coordinator Tim Cox and his team do a fantastic job at handling every aspect from scheduling, through execution. Online registration tools are now an integral part of the operation and make the collection of statistics a snap.

Tim sent these numbers:
  • Total registered: 29
  • Cancellations: 2
  • No show: 1 (non-member)
  • Non-members registered: 2 (1 was a no-show and the other one joined)
  • Total in attendance: 26
  • Total evaluations returned: 15

Tim also uses online tools to send an evaluation form to participants. It makes it easy for them to send feedback. The results:
  • Length of workshop (2 hours) was appropriate.
  • Number of attendees (24) was a nice size for most. Two responded that it was too crowded to get to the maps for the hands-on experience.
  • The workshop met everyone's expectation! "There was enough information to demonstrate the maps' uses and advantages, but not so much that one is overwhelmed."
  • It was unanimous that we should invite Melinda back for a repeat workshop or have her teach on another topic.
Thing that could be improved: moving the maps to the hallway for the interactive exercises for easier access.

Here's a sampling of some of the comments:
It was great to be able to examine the large Sanborn firemaps she'd posted on the wall in detail. I have a much better understanding on where to look for such maps, as well. – Dan Ford.
She had a nice mixture of listening to lecture and actively using our knowledge that required some physical movement. She was able to tie it altogether to make a very understandable and usable lecture. – Cheryl Schmidt.

The informal atmosphere made it easy to ask questions of the instructor. The presenter was well informed and the hand-outs were helpful for reference. – Ed Souza.
The topic was interesting and the speaker enthusiastic. I particularly enjoyed the exercise of looking at the maps. Learned lots. – Chris Pattillo.

Melinda is very knowledgeable and well organized. I thought she did a great job of presenting the information. – Marcia Holstrom.

Thanks, Tim, for the report and photographs of another well-run event.

Update 10/25/2011 – Craig Siulinski posted a summary of Melinda's workshop on his Genealogy Jamming blog: The Value of Insurance Maps. Check it out! —kmd.

Photographs courtesy of Tim Cox, Oakland, California, 12/11/2010.

Copyright © 2011 by Kathryn M. Doyle, California Genealogical Society and Library