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13 July 2019

More July Highlights: Going Deeper with FamilySearch, July 20

    Experienced genealogist Jane Knowles Lindsay leads a seminar, "FamilySearch: Beyond the Search Boxes." She will provide an in-depth look at the resources available through, including:
    • How to utilize the extensive catalog to discover material
    • Using the WIKI to aid in your research
    • Discovering ways to utilize the unindexed historical records
    • Finding assistance for your research questions on the Help tab

    The class is held Saturday, July 20, from 1 to 4 p.m. at the Oakland Family History Library.

    To register and for more details, go to EventBrite.
    All our events can be found listed on the CGS Facebook page
    or on our website:
    or at (search for California Genealogical Society)

    Copyright © 2019 by California Genealogical Society

    11 July 2019

    Our Library Collections: Tennessee

    King Mule (no relation) and his Queen,
    Mule Day, Columbia, TN,1949 from
    the Fodor's travel book.
    One in a series by CGS member Chris Pattillo highlighting some of our holdings at the Library in Oakland. For a fuller listing of books, journals, and more, consult the CGS Library catalog in WorldCat.

    Tennessee is another state packed with my ancestors so I am very happy to find that we not only have copies of Ansearchin’ News, the journal of the Memphis Genealogical Society, starting in 1957 right through the current issue – we even have an empty box labeled 2019-2021 waiting on the shelf. This is the first time I’ve seen an empty box ready to receive future publications. The most current edition is sixty-two pages and packed with well-written and illustrated articles.  

    A couple of books caught my eye because they are somewhat unusual. The first is a Fodor’s travel book published in 2006. We don’t have many travel books in our collection but of course, they are very handy for providing maps and background information needed when researching on site. It includes a chapter on the history and culture of Tennessee and separate chapters that cover each of the areas within the state.

    The other somewhat unusual book is Tennessee Divorces 1797–1858 by Gale W. Bamman and Debbie W. Spero. This seems like an odd topic to decide to devote an entire book to but for some I am confident you will find this to be a great reference.

    One of the somewhat unusual books in our
    Tennessee collection
    I also found Bible Records and Marriage Bonds compiled by Jeannette Tillotson Acklen, President of the Nashville Chapter, Colonial Dames of America, published 1933. This book mentions my third and fourth great grandfathers in the wills of Isaac and Mary Lincoln, Abraham Lincoln’s grandparents. It also contains several Drakes in the index that I need to follow up on later.

    I know I am biased but I really think our Tennessee collection has several exceptional and unusual books. For example, Nineteenth Century Tennessee Adoptions, Legitimations, and Name Changes by Alan N. Miller. This is not the sort of book that I’ve seen for many other states–I guess people from Tennessee are just exceptional.

    We have Genealogical Abstracts from Tennessee Newspapers 1803-1812 by Sherida K. Eddlemon – a Heritage Books publication, 1989. The index lists several entries for Drake so I will have to come back to this book as well.
    Fodor's travel guide for Tennessee has
    lots of helpful information
    Finally, we have History of Tennessee, Containing Historical and Biographical Sketches of Thirty East Tennessee Counties, published in 1887. This book focuses on the places where my Stover-Drake-Ward ancestors are from …. And I’ve never looked at it before. Keep in mind that I’ve traveled to Tennessee twice and have looked at practically every book I came across but I have never seen any of the books mentioned in this blog post. It just goes to show that our library is a tremendous resource. If you have any doubts about my claim you should come down and see for yourself.

    Copyright © 2019 by California Genealogical Society

    10 July 2019

    July Highlight: Stephen Morse on One-Step Pages, July 27

    Steve Morse, creator of One-Step Pages
    A rare opportunity to learn from Stephen Morse, creator of the One-Step Website, an outstanding online search aid which has been recognized with multiple awards from the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies, the National Genealogical Society, and the Association of Professional Genealogists, among others.

    Over the course of the afternoon, Steve will give two presentations:

    One-Step Webpages: A Potpourri of Genealogical Search Tools
    The One-Step website started out as an aid for finding passengers in the Ellis Island database.  Shortly afterwards it was expanded to help with searching in the 1930 census.  Over the years it has continued to evolve and today includes about 300 web-based tools divided into 16 separate categories ranging from genealogical searches to astronomical calculations to last-minute bidding on eBay.  This presentation will describe the range of tools available and give the highlights of each one.

    Case Study: Genealogy of Renee Kaufman
    This lecture presents a case study using the One-Step Webpages as well as other websites to develop a family history. It illustrates how, with a minimal amount of initial information, an entire genealogy can be obtained. It also shows how to obtain records in spite of name misspellings, and how to avoid accepting wrong information.

    The class is held Saturday, July 27, from 1:00 PM to 4:00 PM at the CGS Library.

    Tickets are going fast; register at EventBrite to reserve your spot! 

    All our events can be found listed on the CGS Facebook page
    or on our website:
    or at (search for California Genealogical Society)

    Copyright © 2019 by California Genealogical Society

    09 July 2019

    Seeking Immortality: Your Family Photos Wanted!

    Now that you have done all that work of researching and finding your elusive ancestors, give them immortality! As part of our website update we are planning to create a collage of historic photos of CGS members’ ancestors for the home page. Graphic design artist Lois Elling has volunteered to design the collage and is now eager to receive your photos. This is just one of the many new features being planned by the website update team.

    We are particularly interested in showing the diversity of our members, so if you have photos that display the cultural or ethnic backgrounds of your family, please consider submitting them. Some pictures are more interesting than others as far as unusual hairstyle, props, costume, etc. Photos of individuals or couples will work better than photos of a large group. Photos may be in color or black and white – all will appear in sepia in the collage. 

    Please select and send your digital photos to Lois at: [email protected] and cc: Chris Pattillo: [email protected]. Files should be JPG 72 dpi or higher. We encourage you to provide proof of copyright or to submit photos taken prior to 1924 which are free from copyright law. Names will not be shown. Photos may be cropped to fit the overall layout requirements. We cannot guarantee that all photos will be used. Please submit your photos no later than July 31.

    Support the website upgrade: We have already received two generous donations, from Arlene Miles and from an anonymous donor, to help pay for the website update. If you would like to support this work please consider making a donation either through the DONATE tab on our website, or by check to California Genealogical Society & Library, 2201 Broadway, Suite LL2, Oakland, CA  94612-3031. Any amount is greatly appreciated.

    Copyright © 2019 by California Genealogical Society

    08 July 2019

    Update: Members Invited to Bring Lunch to Meeting this Saturday

    UPDATE: Due to a miscommunication, our previous notice of the Membership Meeting this coming Saturday, July 13, indicated the noon meal would be a potluck. Instead, we invite you to bring your own lunch and enjoy socializing before the meeting begins at 1 p.m. We apologize for any confusion!

    BYO Lunch!

    Hope to see many of you there! Please RSVP at:

    Copyright © 2019 by California Genealogical Society