Monday, November 26, 2007

Preview of December Issue of IGS Quarterly

The December 2007 issue of Indiana Genealogist, the Indiana Genealogical Society's quarterly publication, contains several topics of interest, including:

--IN-GENious!: Lineage Societies: The SAR
by Robert D. Howell, Sr.
--The True Story of Arthur Andrews, A Soldier of The Revolution
by F.W. (Bill) Farnsworth
--Introduction to DePauw University’s United Methodist Archives
by Wesley W. Wilson
--Hoosier Soldiers in 29th Infantry Division, WWI, Part II
by Thomas P. Jones, Major General, AUS, Ret.
--Case Study: The Travels of John Jansen
by Ron Darrah
--Researching Your Family History at the Indiana State Library: An Overview
by Autumn C. Gonzalez

Indiana Genealogist is distributed to members of the Indiana Genealogical Society as a benefit of membership.

Thursday, November 22, 2007

IGS Director Wanted for Indianapolis Area

The Indiana Genealogical Society is looking for someone to take over as the Central District Director. District Directors act as liaisons, relaying information on the activities, news and concerns of individuals and organizations in their area, including Indiana County Genealogists. The Central District Director represents the interests of those in Boone, Clinton, Hamilton, Hendricks, Johnson, Marion, Morgan and Tipton counties.

District Directors are 3-year positions subject to re-election. The term of Central District Director will expire in April 2009. District Directors are part of the IGS board and as such, are responsible for submitting written reports on their area's activities and attending quarterly IGS board meetings, which are usually held at the Plainfield-Guilford Township Public Library in Hendricks County (the fall board meeting is usually held at the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne.) Mileage to and from board meetings is subject to reimbursement at the IRS-approved rate of $0.14 per mile.

If you are interested, or would like more information, please contact IGS President Michael Maben

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Nominate Your Peers for IGS Awards

Each April at the IGS annual conference, the Indiana Genealogical Society recognizes and honors individuals who have contributed to the furthering of genealogy research in Indiana. The nominees do not have to be IGS members. This is a great opportunity to let the public know about deserving people whose projects or publications have helped researchers in your area.

If you would like to nominate someone, please visit the Awards section of the IGS website for a nomination form and more information on the awards available. Nominations must be received by January 15, 2008, and the winners will be recognized at the IGS annual conference on April 5, 2008 in Evansville, Indiana.

Monday, November 19, 2007

Registration Open for IGS Conference in Evansville

Registration is now open for the Indiana Genealogical Society's annual conference, which will be held Saturday, April 5, 2008 at The Centre in Evansville, Indiana. Nationally-known lecturer J. Mark Lowe will be the featured speaker, with topics that will include World War I records, Kentucky research and Internet research.

Willard Library will be open from 9 am to 8 pm on Friday, April 4, 2008 for conference attendees who arrive early and want to get in some extra research beforehand. IGS will also hold a society management workshop during the day on Friday, April 4, 2008 (details will be announced later).

The Executive Inn, Evansville is near The Centre and is offering rooms for $69 a night (plus tax). Reservations must be made before March 5, 2008, and a credit card or advance deposit is required. To make reservations, visit their website, or phone (877) 424-0888.

Registration for the conference is $25 for IGS members, or $30 for non-members. To register online, or for a printable registration form, visit the Conference section of the IGS website.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

DNA Subject of South Bend Meeting

The South Bend Area Genealogical Society will meet November 26 at 7 pm at the First Christian Church of South Bend (1101 E. Jefferson Blvd., South Bend IN). Kristin Lewis of the University of Notre Dame will present a program on the DNA Genographic Project.

DeKalb County Society to Appraise Antiques

The DeKalb County Indiana Genealogy Society will meet December 10 at 6:15 pm at the Eckhart Public Library in Auburn, Indiana. Roger Lash will present a program, "Trash or Treasure," where he will appraise antiques and other treasured items that people bring in.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Wabash County To Discuss 4-H Genealogy Project

The Wabash County Genealogical Society will meet on Monday, November 19 at 6 pm at the Grandstaff/Hentgen Funeral Home (1241 Manchester Ave., Wabash IN). Elizabeth Collins will discuss her 4-H Genealogy Project and the Wabash County 4-H's study of genealogy. The public is invited to attend.

Brown County Society To Celebrate 20 Years

The Brown County Genealogical Society will celebrate its 20th anniversary with a dinner celebration on Tuesday, December 11 at 5 pm at the Parkview Nazarene Church in Nashville, Indiana. The society's founder, Gladys Tratebas, will be honored.

The society holds its meetings on the second Tuesday of every month at the Brown County Public Library in Nashville, Indiana. The public is welcome to attend.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Beginning Genealogy Workshop at Indiana History Center

The Indiana Historical Society will offer a workshop, "My Grandma Swam with Snakes: How to Begin Genealogy Research," on December 8 from 10 am to noon at the Indiana History Center (450 W. Ohio St., Indianapolis IN). Jeff Harris, director of Local History Services for the Indiana Historical Society, will give an overview of the reference tools needed to begin family history research, including censuses, vital records (birth, death and marriage), court records, naturalization records, and church and cemetery records.

Registration for the workshop is $8 for IHS members, $10 for non-members. To register, phone (317) 232-1882 or (800) 447-1830, or visit

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Lake County Library News

News from the Indiana Room at the Lake County library:

The Lake County Public Library wants to help you bring your family together. Looking into the past has never been easier or more fun, because the library has assembled a premiere collection of historical and genealogical resources to help you find your elusive ancestors. After all, only a genealogist regards a step backwards as progress!

Using our trio of databases makes searching for birth, marriage, and death records a snap. We have all the country’s rich census data in our Ancestry Library Edition (we bought the subscription so you won’t have to) and Heritage Quest computer databases. Our ProQuest Obituaries database will make finding obituaries and death notices from many prominent newspapers quick and easy.

Like books? The depth and breadth of our collection is impressive. Look at our books of passenger ship lists, and perhaps you will find a relative’s name among those who braved the seas to come to America. Use our naturalization records to learn what country your ancestors departed from and their ethnic background. Are you eligible to join the Daughters of the American Revolution? Use our resources to find out.

Perhaps one of your ancestors is lurking in our roster of Civil War soldiers and received a soldier’s pension. Try to find a picture of your ancestors or their business in our county history books. Which of your ancestors came to Indiana first, and what did they do for a living? Our atlases and gazetteers can help you pinpoint places of interest. In a Gary city directory, you may learn your great-uncle was a carpenter, merchant, or a steel mill worker. You will discover, like William Shakespeare, “There is history in all men’s lives.”

Internet enthusiasts can visit the Genealogy and Indiana Roots link on our website to learn more about all our exciting genealogical resources. While you are there, be sure to visit our “Region Roots ~ Northwest Indiana Genealogy” blog for a quick dip into everything genealogy. Check back with “Region Roots” often to learn more about upcoming genealogy programs and our monthly genealogy class.

Yes, we are offering a genealogy class! The genealogy searching class meets on the first Tuesday of each month from 10 am-noon. This class introduces you to the wealth of information available in our trio of genealogy databases. Seating is limited, so be sure to pre-register—phone (219) 769-3541 ext. 334.

Does all of this sound a little overwhelming? Our new Indiana Librarian, Susan Killin, will be available to guide you as you get started using all our resources. Call (219) 769-3541 ext. 336 and make a genealogy appointment with Susan.

Warning…genealogy is addictive! One anonymous genealogist put it this way… “Genealogy begins as an interest, becomes a hobby, continues as an avocation, takes over as an obsession, and in its last stages, is an incurable disease.”

National Archives to Digitize Civil War Pension Files

The National Archives and the Genealogical Society of Utah recently announced an agreement to digitize and index the National Archives' collection of 1.28 million pension files for Union veterans of the Civil War and their widows. The partnership will begin with a pilot project, whereby the first 3,000+ of the pension files will be digitized and indexed.

These pension files are currently only available at the National Archives in Washington, D.C.; when completed, the digital files and index will be made available at all National Archives branches. The National Archives will also have the option of designating a third party to host the files online, such as or a subscription-based website.

The pension files contain a treasure trove of information for genealogists because the claimant had to include supporting documents with their application. These supporting documents can include birth, marriage and death records.

Currently, the only other way to see the pension files (besides in person in Washington, D.C.) is to request a photocopy of the file. In October, the National Archives raised the fee they charge for copying these pension files to $75 for the first 100 pages.

The full press release of the partnership agreement is available at

Monday, November 12, 2007

1891 Plat Map for Lake County Published

The Northwest Indiana Genealogical Society has published 1891 Plat Map for Lake County, Indiana. It is 605 pages, with comb binding, and contains the plat maps for 10 of the 11 townships that existed in 1891, plus a 5,000 entry every-name index (which also includes the legal descriptions of the land). The maps make it easy to see where your ancestors owned land and who their neighbors were, and it can also be used as an 1890 census substitute.

The book costs $75 + $5.75 shipping & handling. Make checks payable to Northwest Indiana Genealogical Society and mail to: Northwest Indiana Genealogical Society, P.O. Box 595, Griffith IN 46319.

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Indianapolis Library To Reopen

The central branch of the Indianapolis-Marion County Public Library is set to reopen on December 9. The library, which is located at 40 E. St. Clair St. in downtown Indianapolis, has undergone a lengthy construction project, which began in 2002. It operated out of an interim location until this September, when it closed in preparation for the move back into the expanded building.

When it reopens, the library will include an Indianapolis Special Collections Room, full of archival materials about Indianapolis and Marion County. The library also has a collection of Indiana newspapers on microfilm.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Candidates Wanted for Northern Indiana Districts

The Indiana Genealogical Society is now accepting nominations for candidates for its District Director positions for the Northwest, North Central, and Northeast districts. The election will be held in April 2008.
  • The Northwest District consists of: Benton, Jasper, Lake, La Porte, Newton, Porter, Pulaski, Starke, Tippecanoe, Warren and White counties.
  • The North Central District consists of: Carroll, Cass, Elkhart, Fulton, Howard, Kosciusko, Marshall, Miami, St. Joseph and Wabash counties.
  • The Northeast District consists of: Adams, Allen, Blackford, Dekalb, Grant, Huntington, Jay, Lagrange, Noble, Steuben, Wells and Whitley counties.
District Directors must be members of IGS in good standing, a resident of the district they represent, and attend quarterly board meetings. It is a 3-year term. They act as a liaison for the individuals and organizations in their district (including any Indiana County Genealogists), communicating with them in person (by attending meetings, workshops, etc.) and/or through mail/e-mail/phone, providing information about IGS activities and also seeking information from them about their meetings, publications, ongoing projects, etc. Mileage to and from board meetings is subject to reimbursement at the IRS-approved rate of $0.14 per mile.

Nominations should be given by January 15, 2008 to the Nomination & Election committee chair:

Jinsie Bingham
104 Bloomington St.
Greencastle, IN 46135-1731
Phone (765) 653-3565

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Library Staff Scholarship Clarification

The Indiana Genealogical Society's Library Staff Educational Scholarship includes a $500 credit for the library employee to use to attend any conference, seminar or class that is related to genealogy. This credit is to be used towards the registration fees, and can also be applied towards food or travel expenses.

Full information on the requirements, including an application form, is available at

The deadline to submit an application is December 31, 2007.

Warren County Library Set To Reopen After Fire

The Williamsport-Washington Township Public Library is scheduled to reopen in about 2 weeks. A fire on the night of October 8, 2006 caused over $2 million in damage and destroyed most of the library’s collection, including its genealogy and local history books. The fire (which was ruled to be arson) caused the library to relocate to an American Legion building during the rebuilding process. The library rebuilt at its original location, which is across the street from the Warren County courthouse.

Access has also been restored to the Warren County, Indiana Historical Records Database, which is a joint effort of the library and the Warren County Historical Society.

Counties in Southwest Indiana Switch Time Zones

Five counties in southwestern Indiana that were previously part of the Central time zone have switched to the Eastern time zone. The counties involved are Daviess, Dubois, Knox, Martin and Pike. The switch took effect at 2 am this morning, when Daylight Savings Time ended.

Twelve counties in the southwest and northwestern parts of the state remain in the Central time zone. They are: Gibson, Perry, Posey, Spencer, Vanderburgh and Warrick (in the Evansville area) and Jasper, Lake, LaPorte, Newton, Porter and Starke (in the Chicago area). The other 80 counties in Indiana are in the Eastern time zone.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Library in Kosciusko County Adds Website

The North Webster Community Public Library (301 N. Main St., P.O. Box 8, North Webster IN 46555) now has a website. You can visit them online at