Wednesday: January 17, 2018 at the Lake Miona Recreation Center at 1:30 p.m.
Mark Olsen: Family Tree Maker Community Ambassador
"Learn the latest features of FTM 2017"
No Seats Available
January 24, 2018 at the Savannah Center at 1:30 p.m.
Maureen Taylor: The Photo Detective
"Discovering Genealogical Clues in 19th-Century Photographs"
No Seats Available
Upcoming Special Events
Our 18th Annual All-Day Seminar
February 28, 2018
Registration is now open to VGS members.
Complete Details HERE...
If you have a question, contact the Seminar Registrar HERE...
Family History Expo
March 28, 2018
VGS Western Caribbean Cruise
February 2 - 9, 2019
December Live Webinar
On December 4th, 190 members had the opportunity to view the "Introduction to DNA" webinar presented by Blaine Bettinger PhD, JD, the Genetic Genealogist. Blaine is going to be one of our speakers on the 2019 VGS genealogy cruise, so those who attended got a very good introduction to his informative presentations.
We learned about Y-DNA, mtDNA and autosomal DNA in an easy to understand format. His handout contains many of the images that he use to illustrate the points he was making. The handout is available for download in the "Members Only" "Online Webinars" section of our website as is the actual video. The video will be available for viewing for three months.
November Meeting Update
November 15, 2017 General Meeting
David McDonald gave an excellent informative presentation to the VGS Membership meeting on November 15. He spoke on the topic of “Religious Records and Their Genealogical Use”.
He began with about a 45 minute presentation on the history of religions in the United States. This was very interesting, even for those of us who did not think it would be! He is very knowledgeable about this history and made it not only informative, but entertaining. This created a solid foundation on which he then explored the topic of religious records and their use.
He then went into an exploration of the various religious documents. The standard “vital documents” generated by governing bodies and often used by genealogists as “building blocks” can only provide so much information. Many governing bodies did not keep vital records until the 19th or even early 20th centuries. Church records are important back up resources. They often provide records on births/baptisms, marriages, and deaths/burials. Understanding how the various religions thrived in the various parts of the United States provides an excellent resource as to where why people may have migrated, where records might be, and how to search for them.
If you missed the presentation, the handout has been posted in "Members Only."
VGS Receives the NGS Gold Star Award
Comments from our members attending the Conference can be read HERE
“Admission to meetings of The Villages Genealogy Society is limited to
VGS members and paid guests.”
Census Naturalization status codes: "Al" for alien, "Pa" for "first papers," and "Na" for naturalized.
Surnames began in Europe about the 11th century. They developed as trade increased. The four basic groups of surnames are the patronymic (based on the father's name), landscape features or place names, action or nicknames, and occupational or office names.
Meaningful genealogy requires thought. Develop a research plan and set goals. Why am I doing genealogy? How far back do I want to go? For example, go back 4 generations, or go back to the immigrant ancestor, or even to just do my father's male line, etc.
Vital Records include birth, marriage, divorce and death records.
Newspapers are wonderful hometown records. In addition to looking for obituaries, be sure to look for articles about special events... births, baptisms/christenings, weddings and pre-nuptial events (bridal showers, etc.), birthdays (parties), anniversaries, etc.