Almost 20 years ago, when I 1st began to explore my roots, I sent off for information about several State, and Regional, Genealogy Organizations with focuses on New England, Indiana, and Kentucky.
As much as I wanted to join I somehow never found the extra money to begin memberships and, besides, I wasn't exactly making much progress in my research anyway. ;-D
The years went by, and, slowly, I began to find bits and pieces to my Family History, and discovering mysteries galore.
Events of the last year, including helping an Uncle get a DNA Test, and finding documents, and info, on Ancestry, added to the mysteries, and recently, as I began to make connections with fellow researchers in the GeneaBlogosphere, on Facebook, and on Twitter, it occurred to me that now was the perfect time to join some Societies, if I was ever going to do so.
In the last month I've joined 3 organizations, and made plans to attend my 1st Genealogy Jamboree, in late June:
For 20 years, or so, the Indiana Genealogical Society has been on a mission...
"Fostering an interest in all peoples who contributed in any way to the establishment and perpetuation of the state of Indiana.
- Searching for the reasons and forces behind the migration of early settlers into the state of Indiana.
- Preserving and safeguarding manuscripts, books, cemeteries, and memorabilia relating to the early settlers into the state of Indiana..."
The website has much to offer, including databases, and a Members Only Section.
The Society also has a Blog, begun in 2007.
There are other sites related to Indiana that I've been collecting, and plan to check out, but joining this group is a good start to learning about the state.
The Kentucky Genealogical Society was born in 1973, and its purpose is "to foster the science of genealogy through educational and research programs, and promoting projects to preserve, produce, and disseminate knowledge of genealogical or historical value."
The Society considers one of its most important roles to be "the preservation of Kentucky's records, further development of genealogical lineage aspects of these records and published data to assist those with ancestral ties to this area."
The website has much to offer, including databases, Projects, and a Members Pages Section.
There are other sites related to Kentucky that I've been collecting, and plan to check out, but joining this group is a good start to learning about the state.
While my most recent ancestors have ties to these 2 statesand, in 1 case, to Texas, and further back there are ties to other states, including Pennsylvania, my journey must begin in Ca. because my Mom, and her Mom, and siblings, "Got Their Kicks on Route 66" ending up in Ca. beginning in the late 1940's. ;-D
In the late 40's, and early 50's, they were laborers, in Northern and Southern Ca, and even possibly Oregon, and Washington, as well.
With this in mind I joined another Society.
The Southern California Genealogical Society and Family Research Library is based in Burbank, Ca., and was born in 1964.
It is the largest volunteer-managed genealogical society west of the Mississippi, and "exists to foster interest in family history and genealogy, preserve genealogical materials, and provide instruction in accepted and effective research techniques."
Through its programs, members are offered many benefits including "the opportunity to list queries, survey indexes, join special interest groups and provide support for other members and their activities."
Last week I paid my 1st visit to the Research Library, a place with "over 35,000 volumes including 6,000 family histories, and research resources including manuscripts, microforms, maps, periodicals and electronic data resources", and so much more, for use by its members and the general public.
The Southern California Genealogical Society, it's Library, and Website, is a goldmine and not just for Ca. information.
I was given a thorough introductory tour of the facility, similar to this one on YouTube, learning that it has computer access to various Pay Sites, Microfilm and Microfiche material, and readers, and a very helpful staff of knowledgeable volunteers old enough to be my Parents or Grandparents, in many cases. ;-D
As a new member I received, in the mail, a wonderfully informative Beginner's Guide to Genealogical Research and, at the Library, I picked up a bunch of free flyers with links to add to my Blogroll, and spent $10 on a 2001 book, by Nancy Ellen Carlberg, a professional genealogist for 31 years, and an amateur researcher for 45 years, called Overcoming Dead Ends, published by her popular small press in Anaheim, Ca..
For 40 years the Society has played host to a highly respected, and heavily attended, Genealogy Jamboree.
As the Southern California Genealogy Jamboree Website describes the 2009 Event:
"This year's Jamboree will offer an unprecedented 55 speakers and nearly 100 lectures, a full exhibit hall, and lots of special events and activities," according to Paula Hinkel, Jamboree co-chair. "Jamboree has earned the reputation for being fun, well organized, with exceptional speakers and vendors. This year will be all that and more."
The exhibit hall will host software and online database companies, vendors, societies, heritage and lineage groups, authors, and book sellers. Some exhibitors feature services including photo restoration, book repair, and production of beautiful pedigree charts and maps."
I will be attending all 3 days to kick off my 11 day summer vacation, and I know of several other Genealogy Bloggers who will be there. ;-D
Over the 3 days I will be attending 11 Classes/Seminars inbetween checking out the Exhibitors.
Where joining these groups, and attending the jamboree, will lead me in my research, I do not know, but I look forward to the adventure. ;-D