Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library, No. 163, September 30, 2017
From: Genealogy Gems (
Date: Sat, 30 Sep 2017 22:15:18 -0400

Genealogy Gems: News from the Fort Wayne Library
No. 163, September 30, 2017

In this issue:
*October--Family History Month and Archives Month
*What is "Our Military Heritage?”
*America’s Women in the Revolutionary Era 1760 – 1790
*Technology Tip of the Month--Scanning Continued – Hand-held Scanners
*Quick-Tip of the Month for Preservation--Why You Need More Than Backups to Preserve Records--From the Council of State Archivists
*History Tidbits: German Immigration in 1848
*DNA Interest Group
*Family History Month Has Arrived!
*Staying Informed about Genealogy Center Programming
*Area Calendar of Events
*Driving Directions to the Library
*Parking at the Library
*Genealogy Center Queries
*Publishing Note

October--Family History Month and Archives Month
by Curt B. Witcher
For quite some time, October has been designated “Family History Month;” and for a number of years, it has also been known as “Archives Month.” It is interesting and appropriate that the same month is designated for both. Nicely nestled in between the hustle-‘n’-bustle of the summer months and the holiday months, this is a perfect time to focus some of our attention and some of our discretionary time on our own family history pursuits, and all the things we can do to enhance our success in discovering our the stories of our ancestors.

Family History Month

First, let’s take a quick look at the family history side of things. The Genealogy Center has a very significant offering of presentations and activities for Family History Month 2017. There is at least one program scheduled every day of the month—some days more than one. Look to engage with The Genealogy Center this month. I do appreciate many do not live close enough to attend our programs in person, and many have lives filled with other obligations that attending in person is a challenge. To those, I offer a couple of simple suggestions. First, let us know if you’d like to have copies of the handouts emailed to you. Second, take a look around your local area. Is your local public library or local genealogical society offering programs this month on family history topics? Offer your support to those programs if they are. If they aren’t, suggest to them that they should.

While I believe our entire month of programs has so much to offer those who engage in family history pursuits, I would like to highlight a few activities. The first Saturday in the month (October 7th) is a co-sponsored program with the Allen County Genealogical Society: “A Day with CeCe Moore.” Many of us have evidenced the surge in interest surrounding genetic genealogy and the use of DNA to further our research efforts. CeCe Moore is a genetic genealogy expert and consultant. Her four presentations that Saturday will arm you with the information you need to incorporate this twenty-first century tool into your research. Pre-registration for this event has been very strong. Register for “A Day With CeCe Moore” at:

(You can also whet your appetite a couple of days before by attending our DNA and Genealogy Interest Group meeting on Thursday, October 5th at 6:30 p.m.)

Every October, we like to do at least one program that is a little bit “out of the box.” This year Friday the 13th affords us with the perfect day to offer, “Speakeasies, Juice Joints, and Blind Pigs: Prohibition History and YOU!” Learn about the history of Prohibition, how it affected Hoosier producers and establishments, and sample a few period appropriate cocktails made from better stuff than Bathtub Gin! Grab your fedora and feather boa, and dress the part to learn, have some giggle water, and be over the moon. This is an offsite event being held at HT2, 10212 Chestnut Plaza Drive, Fort Wayne, IN. There is a fee for this event, and registration is required.

October would not be complete without our “Midnight Madness Extended Research Hours.” We will be open extra hours on Friday, October 27, 2017. In addition to our regular hours of 9 a.m. to 6 p.m., we will also be open from 6 p.m. to midnight. It’s a great opportunity to give yourself a little genealogy treat. Three mini-sessions will be offer that evening in our Discovery Center to provide some tips for advancing your family history research. Make plans to enjoy a part of this evening, and let us know you are coming by emailing your reservation to Genealogy [at] Where else would you rather be on a Friday night than with likeminded individuals in one of the best family history research center in the country?

Archives Month

Turning our attention to the fact that October also being “Archives Month,” the Council of State Archivists did a particularly fine job this year in both advertising the month, and the fact that they have designated October 10th (1010) as Electronic Records Day. They have literature freely available at:

I want to focus particularly on their document entitled, “10 Reasons Why Electronic Records Need Special Attention.” Often, it is too easy to think of this issue as someone else’s problem--the  belief being that it’s organizations like libraries and archives that really need to deal with the issue of adequately preserving electronic records. However, as genealogists we are typically the historians *and* archivists for our families’ collections of records. As such, each of us needs to pay attention to this critical issue of electronic records preservation. I have inserted some comments in between their points.

1. Electronic records require ongoing attention and care to remain accessible, useable, and authentic.

And our electronic family history records are everywhere. We have images on our smart phones, iPads and other mobile devices. Often we have pieces of our image collections stored on various devices, even cloud storage, without any redundancy or even systematic process.

2. Electronic records can become unreadable very quickly. While records on paper are readable after thousands of years, digital files could be inaccessible in just a few years.

I am sure many have “floppy drives” of family history data. Has that data been migrated to newer, fresher media? What about those files in earlier versions of WordStar and MS Word?

3. Digitizing paper records is not simply scanning paper records and placing the files somewhere. Successful scanning projects are planned in detail and include ongoing management expenses to ensure the digital files are available in the future.

So we scan a lot of items. Do we include descriptions of what information is contained with our document scans? How are our choices of freeware and fee-ware standing the test of time? Can we still open all the documents and spreadsheet that contain our metadata?

4. There are no permanent electronic storage media. Hard drives, CDs, magnetic tape, or any other storage formats need to be tested and replaced on a regular schedule. Proactive management is required to avoid catastrophic loss of records.

How are you doing with this? There is no one-and-done with digital storage. Making a number of copies on a number of different media stored in a number of different places is the best posture to take. And then refreshing all that media on a regular basis. (Gosh, doesn’t paper look really good some days? Well, really, not so much. Remember that in many instances paper copies are simply no longer possible. And one paper copy in a physical location is vulnerable to fire, flood, theft, and other types of disasters.)

5. The lack of a “physical” presence can make it very easy to lose track of electronic records.  Care must be taken to ensure records are in controlled custody and do not get lost in masses of other data.

Oh my goodness! Repeating myself, how are you doing with that?

6.  Authenticity of electronic records can be questioned, as it is easy to create and share copies.  Extra security precautions are needed to ensure e-records are not altered inappropriately.

Do you have trustworthy individuals with whom you can share your family history data--individuals who won’t “clean-up” unpleasant facts or create stories not supported by facts and sound research techniques?

7. The best time to plan for electronic records preservation is at the time of creation.  Don’t wait until software is being replaced or a project is ending to think about digital preservation issues.

Be ever attentive to the issues surrounding electronic records will pay increasingly significant benefits.

8. Purchasing a records management or digital preservation system will not solve all your e-records problems. Attention is needed from staff, no matter what system you purchase.

The best hardware and great programs are only a part of the answer. What we as genealogists actually do is what really counts. Leaving important tasks for someone else to do, or for tomorrow, is at least dangerous and possibly catastrophic.

9. Electronic records create greater accessibility and ensure the rights of the public, if creators, managers, and users recognize their importance and contribute resources to their preservation.

Paying attention to the preservation of the electronic assets that preserve and present our family stories will ensure that those stories will continue to be passed on to descendants we will never meet, and our research will continue to benefit many.

10. While they may seem commonplace now, electronic records will form the backbone of the historical record for researchers of the future. Without proper preservation, a digital dark age will occur.  

I have spoken for nearly two decades on the possibility of a digital dark age looming in our future. If we each do our part with our pieces of our family stories, we will be taking responsibility for ensuring such a dark age does not happen. One way you can ensure against a digital dark age is to share a copy of you scanned, described, and organized data with The Genealogy Center.

What is "Our Military Heritage?"
by Allison DePrey Singleton
The United States won its independence through war with Great Britain. Unfortunately, much of the history of the United States has been marked by conflict since that time. By some estimates, the U.S. has been involved in a military conflict for 93% of its history since 1776, or 224 years out of 239. (See footnote #1). This figure includes insurrections, occupations, invasions, interventions, and expeditions involving the military since the nation’s founding. Given these numbers, it is not surprising that so many of our ancestors served in the military. In recognition of this service, The Genealogy Center has developed a website dedicated to Our Military Heritage (

The “Our Military Heritage” website is free and open to the public. The public may send additional materials either for donation to the library or for scanning and uploading to the website. This site serves to acknowledge our brave men and women throughout the years and allows their legacies to continue to be commemorated in a location where families can view the information for years to come.

The site is constantly growing. The Genealogy Center has digitized many materials and placed them online. Some records may either include your own family or add to your family’s story. For example, if your ancestor served in the Spanish-American War and you want to find more information about the experiences soldiers in that war endured, you can easily visit the “Our Military Heritage” page, select the Spanish-American link, and then choose one of the experiences to read. Our Military Heritage is a place where you can find information when you need it, both from primary and dependable secondary sources.

Knowing that the United States has been at war for much of its history, the categories on the home page tend to focus on the major wars and group smaller ones into their own categories. These categories include: Colonial Wars; Revolutionary War; Mexican-American War; Civil War; Indian Wars; Spanish-American War; Philippine-American War; World War I; World War II; Korean War; Vietnam War; Gulf War; Afghanistan & Iraqi Wars; Peacetime Service; Yearbooks & General Works; General Military Organizations; Military Burials; and Roll Call. Roll Call links to the service members found in any of the categories and helps to locate someone by name rather than by conflict. There is also a function to search the site.

Once you enter one of the categories, you will find that it is broken down into even smaller segments based on various information that has been added to the collection. Each category contains different information based upon what digital scans or materials have been added to the website. The different sub-categories include: unit histories & rosters; battles & wars; burials; general works; post-war activities & lineage societies; diaries; pension records; letters; photographs; discharge records; posters; monuments & memorials; videos; deaths & casualties; history; and original documents. 

While this database may prove beneficial to those researching these wars, it can always be improved by the inclusion of additional materials. The final category not listed above is “Share Materials.” We want to add your family’s contributions to the military to Our Military Heritage. Please consider adding your family’s service records, photographs, or other materials for future generations to research. We can add copies of these materials to our collection and return your original materials to you at no cost.

1. America Has Been At War 93% of the Time – 224 Out of 239 Years – Since 1776. (n.d.). Retrieved September 11, 2017, from
America’s Women in the Revolutionary Era 1760 – 1790
by Cynthia Theusch
As genealogists, we often wonder how we can find out more information about our female ancestors. A great reference source is America’s Women in the Revolutionary Era 1760-1790: A History through Bibliography by Eric G. Grundset with Briana L. Diaz and Hollis L. Gentry (Washington, D.C.: National Society Daughters of the American Revolution, 2011); call number 973.3 G925AM. This three-volume set is a major bibliographic work with references to books and articles on various topics, all pertaining to women and girls who either lived through or were involved in events from 1760 through 1790.

Volumes 1 and 2 consist of listings of articles and books based on a wide range of subjects. Volume 1 contains four parts, including General Studies; Women in the Family and in Society; Women, Culture, Education, and Creative Arts; and Women, Girls, and the War Effort during the American Revolution. Volume 2 consists two more parts. Part V is titled Women and Girls of the Regions and States of the United States, while Part VI comprises the index for Volumes 1 and 2.

Some of the sub-topics in Part I include Wives of the Signers of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution, and Mothers of Presidents. It also includes sources about individual women, such as Alice of Dunk’s Ferry (c. 1686-1802) Pennsylvania, and Catherine Cleveland (1754-1859). Chapter 5 is a bibliography about Native American women.

Volume 2 contains a listing of articles and books based on geographic locations. Arrangement is by region, such as New England and the Mid-Atlantic, as well as by each of the original thirteen states. These sources again range from general topics to information about specific individuals. Three examples include Widows in Pennsylvania; Women and the Wyoming Valley Massacre; and Women at Valley Forge.

Volume 3 is titled “Authors and Chronology.” Authors from volumes 1 and 2 are listed alphabetically with the title of the article. This feature allows users to find quickly references by specific authors, as well as works about specific time periods.

This 3-volume set is an excellent resource for finding the historical background of your female ancestors of the Revolutionary War era. It may not list specific ancestors, but the references, once consulted, will help you understand the world in which they lived.

Technology Tip of the Month--Scanning Continued – Hand-held Scanners
by Kay Spears
I will admit that my experience with a hand-held scanner is pretty limited, so this was a test. The one I used was a pretty basic piece of equipment - so there were almost no headaches - almost. Before I begin, a word of warning. From what I can see of hand-held devices, they are not really made for quality images. The one I used had two choices: JPG and PDF. The results of the scan were ok, but not of good quality. I would imagine a portable scanner would come in handy if I was someplace which didn't have copiers.

The scanner I used was a VuPoint Magic Wand II. It scans without being connected to a computer, but you do need to put in the microchip card for it to work. The microchip is sold separately and can hold up to 32GB. It also allows you to do a preview of the scan on a one-inch screen. Now, I don't know about your eyes, but my eyes have a problem with viewing something on a lit up one-inch screen. There is a zoom option, but I finally laughed at myself because I was holding the wand really close to my eyes and viewing the one-inch screen over the top of my glasses. I finally noticed a headache developing. So, I'm not really sure how beneficial that preview is. All I can say about the preview is that I know something was scanned.

This model also comes with a USB cord for connection to a computer. It scans in color or black and white and can scan up to 900dpi (at least that's what is printed on the package).

Here's what you do with this model. There are arrow keys on the scanner that allow you to change the settings. Then you tap the "scan" button, and an icon of a wand appears on the one-inch screen. The "scan" light also blinks. Then, just move the wand down whatever it is your scanning. I didn't see anything that let me know I was finished, so I clicked on the preview arrow - yes, the one-inch preview screen), and I was able to see my scan - sort of. I then connected it to my computer with the USB cord and was able to view my image in Photoshop. I was able to zoom in to 78% before the image started to pixelate. Notice I said 78% not 100%, which is another reason not to use the wand for quality scans.

And that's all there was to it, very easy, very simple.

Oh yes, one more thing: batteries not included.

Next month: Exploring Old Photographs

Quick-Tip of the Month for Preservation--Why You Need More Than Backups to Preserve Records--From the Council of State Archivists
While the following was written primarily with institutions and organizations in mind, there is significant applicability to how we preserve the digital or virtual pieces of our family history. It is worth at least a quick read and a pensive moment or two.

“Why worry about electronic records? That’s IT’s job.” “If we scan everything we can get rid of the paper and solve our records problem.” “We’re fine; we back everything up.”

Anyone in a modern workplace has likely heard comments like these. Misconceptions abound surrounding the long-term management and preservation of electronic records. While good backups play a role, much more is needed to ensure records remain accessible far into the future.

Backups serve to guarantee short-term continuity of an organization’s operations. They capture a snapshot of electronic records and other information at a certain moment in time, allowing quick restoration after data loss, system crashes, or natural or man-made disasters. They are typically run on cycles where the storage medium (tapes, hard drives, etc.) is reused after a set period of time.

Digital Preservation ensures the long-term accessibility, authenticity, integrity and trustworthiness of electronic records so that they can meet the long-term needs of operational mandates, audits, and future research.  Digital preservation seeks to manage records so that they will remain usable through many successive generations of technological advancement.

Good backups are a component of any digital preservation system, as are many other aspects of a well-managed IT [technology] environment. Those are just the infrastructure surrounding the actual records, however. Digital preservation relies on a system of management where electronic records are tracked, validated, protected and migrated over time. Preservation may involve a combination of software and hardware tools and manual processes, and deals with issues of software and hardware obsolescence, security and file integrity, and the access needs of many different user groups.

Does your organization have a digital preservation strategy to deal with your long-term electronic records? [Do *you* have a digital preservation strategy to deal with your long-term, personal electronic records?]

by Adam Barrone and Michael Hudson
The Oct. 10, 1912 issue of the Fort Wayne News carried a story from Wabash, Indiana, headlined:  Child Vomited a Frog.  A ten-year-old son of John Buchelt of Syracuse, Indiana, was the unfortunate subject of the incident.  After several hours of painful, violent illness and the administration of various home remedies, the boy was given olive oil and threw up a frog two inches in diameter.  The amphibian was likely ingested while swimming.

The Periodical Source Index (PERSI) cites numerous encounters with frogs.  Try a search for your favorite amphibian or ancestor here:
Here, we feature a few frogs found in PERSI:

Captain R. C. Gillette re frog medical experiment which boosted submarine sailor morale, 1960s
Polaris (U.S. Submarine Veterans of WWII), v.48n.1, Feb. 2004

Frederick Altenbach listed as frog catcher in city directory, 1860, Milwaukee, WI
History Now Milwaukee, Jul. 2010

Frogs used on French ships to test drinking water
Theakiki (Kankakee Valley Gen. Soc., IL), v.38n.2, May 2008

Liquor poured in creek, frogs jump, news item
Holston (VA) Pastfinder, v.12n.2, Dec. 1993

Mrs. N. P. Ferguson surgery, a 12-year-old lizard and five frogs removed from stomach, 1902
Webster County Gen'l Society (IA), v.22n.4, Oct. 2010

Reverend Cyril Jenkins obituary, married Kermit the Frog-Miss Piggy, 1916-2008, Wales; NY, NJ
NINNAU:  the North American Welsh Newspaper, Nov. 2008

Roy L. Walker recalls son Bill's taking a bullfrog to school, 1967, MO
Adair (MO) Historian, Sum. 2009

Silas C. Franz, Sup. Co., 360th Inf., letter to parents, doesn't like Frogs, 1919, TX
Oak Leaves (Matagorda Co. Gen. Soc., TX), v.30n.1, Feb. 2011

Tea, frog eggs, stag antlers, Agence France Presse report on Chinese folk medicine, c. 1975
Ex-CBI Roundup, v.30n.4, Apr. 1974

History Tidbits: German Immigration in 1848
by Allison DePrey Singleton
Imagine that you have conducted research that shows your ancestors emigrated from Germany to the United States in 1848. That information only gives you one piece of the puzzle, however. What was happening in Germany at that time to cause them to emigrate? Why did they choose the United States as their destination?  A look at German history for the period may answer these questions.

In the mid-1800s, Germany was not a united nation. Instead of the Germany we know today, there were multiple German states that had their own rulers and governments. An event known as the Hambach Festival could be considered the beginning of the modern country of Germany. The festival occurred as a result of growing civil unrest throughout the German states - unrest that was caused by heavy taxes, censorship, and a desire for a unified republican government. Many students, along with women, men, and children, participated in the festival, which numbered between 20,000 and 30,000 people. They called for political and civil rights, liberty, and a democratic government, inspired in part by the February Revolutions in France that resulted in the abdication of King of France. The festival was the first time the German states had united with a common pride in their heritage and created such things as the modern German flag. The colors in the flag represented the democratic movement to unify the country.

Within a month of the February Revolutions, the German states began experiencing their own revolutions, and in some cases, these came to be called the March Revolutions. Different states such as Austria, Baden, Rhineland, Saxony, and others each had uprisings. Many revolutionaries were killed and the uprisings failed. The men who participated and their families had to escape retribution from the rulers in these states. 

Afterward, a large influx of German political refugees poured into America. These men were typically educated, free-thinking, and liberal. They brought with them the ideals that had brought forth the revolutionary movements in the German states. The difference is that they had immigrated to a divided country on the brink of civil war. Most of the “Forty-Eighters” supported the North in the Civil War and were abolitionists. Many were also members of the Turner Movement, which began in the early 19th century and encouraged both athletics and politics. Its members were interested in physical education, public education, labor rights, and social, political, and cultural organizations for Germans. This devotion became doubly true when the Turners immigrated to America. They wanted to maintain their cultural memory while also assimilating in their new home. For this reason a plethora of German-language newspapers came into being in this period. The German identity entailed more than a country of origin. It was a cultural tie that took hold within the very core of the immigrants that they could not and would not forget…until The Great War. 

Although there was usually a political, financial, or economic reason for the immigration, each family’s story is unique. You could be the descendant of a Forty-Eighter. Study the history of your ancestor’s homeland and discover your own story. 

Sources and Further Reading:
Baron, F. (2012). Abraham Lincoln and the German immigrants: turners and forty-eighters. Lawrence, KS: Society for German-American Studies.
Brancaforte, C. L. (1990). The German forty-eighters in the United States. New York (N.Y.): P. Lang.
Efford, A. C. (2014). German immigrants, race, and citizenship in the civil war era. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.
Helbich, W. J. (2005). German-American immigration and ethnicity in comparative perspective. Madison, WI: Max Kade Inst. for German-American Studies.
Levine, B. C. (1992). The spirit of 1848: German immigrants, labor conflict, and the coming of the Civil War. Urbana: University of Illinois Press.
Walker, M. (1964). Germany and the emigration: 1816-1885. S.l.: Harvard U.P.
Wittke, C. F. (1970). Refugees of revolution; the German Forty-eighters in America. Westport, CT: Greenwood Press.
Women of Two Countries: German-American Women, Women's Rights and Nativism. (2012). Oxford: Berghahn.
Zucker, A. E. (1967). The forty-eighters: political refugees of the German Revolution of 1848. New York: Russel and Russel.

DNA and Genealogy Interest Group
Have you done a DNA test for genealogical purposes? Do you completely understand the results you received? Do you need advice in interpreting your results? Are you interested and wonder what the best test is for you? Come to the DNA & Genealogy Interest Group Meeting on the 1st Thursday of the month from 6:30 p.m. - 7:30 p.m. to share and learn from each other! The next meeting is Thursday, October 5, 2017. Come in and share!

Family History Month Has Arrived!
Celebrate Family History Month with The Genealogy Center by attending one - or more! - of these great events we have planned. We're talking about the “Periodical Source Index,” speakeasies, Family Search, and of course, DNA! Make plans today!

Sunday, October 1, 2017, 2:00 PM, Discovery Center
An Afternoon of Storytelling – Curt Witcher & Aaron Smith
Spend an afternoon enjoying a variety of stories. Hear firsthand the power of story and how we can help each other tell the stories of our lives. It may just inspire you to tell your stories!
Monday, October 2, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Beginning Genealogy in the 21st Century – Delia Cothrun Bourne
Learn the importance of organizing information you already know and learn how the data in records helps make a more complete picture of your family. Also explored in this session will be the most important online sources – free and subscription – available in The Genealogy Center.
Tuesday, October 3, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Pennsylvania Genealogy: Doing Research in the Keystone State – John Beatty
Pennsylvania is an important state for genealogical research. Many families entered through Philadelphia and lived in the outlying counties before migrating to other colonies and states. This introductory-level presentation explores the basic digital and published sources for Pennsylvania, including vital records, religious congregational records, land, military, tax, and probate records, and secondary sources.

Wednesday, October 4, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Top 10 Historical Records Collections on – Melissa Tennant
This presentation will highlight the Historical Records collections available on Advice on how to effectively use the largest genealogical website will benefit your efforts to find the most information about your ancestors.

Thursday, October 5, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
DNA Interest Group Meeting – Sara Allen
Have you done a DNA test for genealogical purposes? Do you completely understand the results you received? Do you need advice in interpreting your results? Are you interested and wonder what the best test is for you? Come to the DNA & Genealogy Interest Group Meeting to share and learn from each other!

Friday, October 6, 2017, 2:00 PM, Discovery Center
Repeating Recipes: Food and Family History – Allison DePrey Singleton
Food can be directly related to remembrance. An old family recipe can illicit memories of family gatherings, holidays, and/or a particular family member. This presentation will explore why family recipes are important to family history and how to preserve them for future generations. 

Saturday, October 7, 2017, 9:15 AM – 4:00 PM, Meeting Rooms A, B, C
A Day with CeCe Moore
See for more information and to register. This is among the must-attend events of the year!
Sunday, October 8, 2017, 1:00 PM, Discovery Center
Immigration Process before Entering the United States – Cynthia Theusch
Participants will learn what their ancestors experienced at Castle Garden, and later Ellis Island, before being allowed into the United States. This part of the immigration experience can shed new light on our ancestors’ lives.

Monday, October 9, 2017, 6:30 PM, Computer Classroom
GIMP - GNU Image Manipulation Program, part 1 – Kay Spears
Explore a FREE option to Adobe Photoshop. We will look at GIMP and the tools that may be used to change, restore, and touch up your old photographs. The second session will be on Monday, October 16, 2017. There will be hands-on time, so bring a USB drive containing your photos and be prepared to have some fun.

Tuesday, October 10, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
A Rare and Valuable Gem: PERSI – Melissa Tennant
This presentation will highlight where one can find the “Periodical Source Index” (PERSI), the most comprehensive subject index to genealogical periodicals. Discover the terrific indexing and images available at the site, how to get copies of articles cited in the periodical index, and the exciting things that are happening with PERSI at FindMyPast.

Wednesday, October 11, 2017, 7:00 PM, Meeting Room A
Resources for Researchers: Today and Tomorrow – Curt Witcher
Hear about new materials—print and virtual—in The Genealogy Center as well as shifting strategies for enhancing access to family and local history resources wherever they may be. The focus will be knowing about the resources available and how to access them.
Thursday, October 12, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Finding Pre-1850 Era Ancestors – Sara Allen
We know how challenging it can be to trace pre-1850 ancestors, due to the lack of data in the census and the scarcity of sources identifying women and children during this time frame. This session will explain cluster research and the use of sources such as tax records, different census records, and probate records to find these elusive ancestors. 

Friday, October 13, 2017, 7:00 PM – 9:00 PM, HT2, 10212 Chestnut Plaza Drive, Fort Wayne, IN 46814.
Speakeasies, Juice Joints, and Blind Pigs: Prohibition History and YOU! – Allison DePrey Singleton
How did Prohibition affect producers of alcohol, drinking establishments, and the Average Joe who wanted a cocktail?  Learn about the history of Prohibition, how it affected Hoosier producers and establishments, and sample a few period appropriate cocktails made from better stuff than Bathtub Gin!  Grab your fedora and feather boa, and dress the part to learn, have some giggle water, and be over the moon. There is a fee for this event, and registration is required.

Saturday, October 14, 2017, 9:30 AM – 4:00 PM, Discovery Center
Beginner’s Day – Delia Cothrun Bourne
9:30 AM – Beginning Your Family History Exploration
Join us as we discuss beginning steps and sources, such as census, vital records, and more!
11:00 AM – Beyond Starting Your Family History Exploration
Explore more useful sources from the court house, as well as military records and passenger lists. Learn the importance of documenting what you find and how to verify information.
1:30 PM – Introduction to Ancestry & Family Search
The largest subscription database and the largest free database! Discover the basics of using these two great sources for family history research!
3:00 PM – Other Online Sources
Now that you have been introduced to the big online sites, meet some of the other subscription sites The Genealogy Center offers, as well as our own free databases!
Sunday, October 15, 2017, 1:00 PM, Discovery Center
Genealogical Research in Colonial New England – John Beatty
The New England states hold some of the earliest and most complete records of any American region. Many Americans can trace their ancestors to the Mayflower or to other early immigrant ships. This presentation will feature the numerous records available, both in print and online, that will help you explore the history of this area.
Monday, October 16, 2016, 6:30 PM, Computer Classroom
GIMP - GNU Image Manipulation Program, part 2 – Kay Spears
Explore a FREE option to Adobe Photoshop. We will look at GIMP and the tools that may be used to change, restore, and touch up your old photographs. First session was on Monday, October 9, 2017. There will be hands-on time, so bring a USB drive containing your photos and be prepared to have some fun.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Migration Routes & Trails across America – Delia Cothrun Bourne
Learn the routes of your roots—where your ancestors traveled and how they got there! This presentation will discuss major migration trails and sources to learn more about them.

Wednesday, October 18, 2017, 7:00 PM, Meeting Room B
Computer Interest Group Meeting – Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana
Attend this meeting to discuss your technological discoveries and issues.
Thursday, October 19, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Explore the Life of a Parent or Grandparent – Sara Allen
This session will include a case study on how to research the life of a person who was alive in the early twentieth century, such as a parent or grandparent. We will use timelines and checklists, as well as delve into how to use online databases, print materials, and records in archives and court houses to complete the project. 
Friday, October 20, 2017, 2:30 PM, Discovery Center
Digitization in The Genealogy Center – Cynthia Theusch
Take a virtual tour of the equipment in The Genealogy Center that one may use to scan documents. Five different types of machines will be featured.

Saturday, October 21, 2017, Anytime from 10:00 AM – 5:00 PM, The Genealogy Center
Genealogy Scavenger Hunt: Family Fun in The Genealogy Center – Allison DePrey Singleton
Have you heard of The Genealogy Center but haven’t had the chance to check it out? This is your chance to introduce you and your family to what The Genealogy Center has to offer in a fun and unique way. The scavenger hunt will show you different aspects of the Center while teaching how to get started in family history research. You are welcome to complete the scavenger hunt anytime from 10:00 AM until 5:00 PM. There are prizes for completing the hunt. 
Saturday, October 21, 2017, 10:00 AM, Discovery Center
Finding Johnny Reb: Researching Your Confederate Soldier – Delia Cothrun Bourne
Locating information on a Confederate soldier can be difficult, but not impossible. Explore some of the standard and not so standard sources that are available to assist in your search.
Sunday, October 22, 2017, 2:00 PM, Meeting Room A
The Search for Nancy Hanks: A Historical Wild Goose Chase, Mitochondrial DNA, and the Maternal Ancestry of Nancy Hanks Lincoln - Richard Hileman
Abraham Lincoln was conspicuously silent about the family of his mother, Nancy Hanks. Her ancestry has been the subject of intense interest and has been hotly contested. In 1909, false names for her parents were carved into the granite of the Lincoln Birthplace Memorial. The most recent biographies of Lincoln still give mistaken accounts of her ancestry.  The Nancy Hanks Lincoln mtDNA Study and new historical evidence reveal the surprising truth Lincoln concealed about his mother's family and ancestry. Richard Hileman, a retired trial lawyer and avocational genealogist, will give this presentation sponsored by the Friends of the Allen County Public Library.

Monday, October 23, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Using Vital Records & Their Substitutes – Delia Cothrun Bourne
Vital records are the Holy Grail of genealogical sources.  However, birth and death records were not commonly recorded until the 20th Century, and even the availability of marriage records depends on the locale and culture. This presentation will explain what can be found in a vital record and what other sources may be used when the official record is missing.
Tuesday, October 24, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Evaluating Published Genealogies and Family Histories – John Beatty
When reading a family history, how do you know whether the information it contains is valid? This presentation will offer some critical tools for evaluating published genealogies and family histories, providing a framework for testing the information they contain against other sources.
Wednesday, October 25, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Using FamilySearch for Your Family History – Melissa Tennant
Learn the search techniques that can maximize your experience and discover the millions of records available on this free website.

Thursday, October 26, 2017, 9:00 AM – 12:00 Noon, Discovery Center and The Genealogy Center
Family History Morning for Homeschoolers – Allison DePrey Singleton
Many parents want their children to be interested in their families’ histories, but fostering that interest may be a challenge. The Genealogy Center can engage parents and children alike with a Family History Morning. It is a program with one classroom-style lesson and guided research time to explore the collection. Each child will receive a worksheet to complete, tailored to his or her age, experience, and grade level. 
9:00 AM – 9:10 AM – Arrival, Getting to the Discovery Center – 2nd Floor Main Library, The Genealogy Center
9:10 AM – 10:30 AM – Beginning Genealogy Program: Online and Printed Sources – Discovery Center
10:30 AM – 10:40 AM – Break
10:40 AM – 11:50 AM – Individual research with assistance from librarians
11:50 AM – 12:00 PM – Sharing coolest discoveries and prizes

Friday, October 27, 2017, 6:00 PM – 12:00 AM, The Genealogy Center and Discovery Center
Midnight Madness Extended Research Hours
Ever wished to be locked in the library at night with all of the goodies at your fingertips? Well, stay up late with The Genealogy Center Staff for extra research time and 30 minute learning sessions!
6:30 PM – Be Prepared! – Delia Cothrun Bourne
After years spent on your family history, have you considered what will become of your research after you can no longer continue? Get some simple ideas for organizing your material for a future donation.
7:30 PM – What’s in the Collection?  Tour and Introduction to The Genealogy Center Collection – Allison DePrey Singleton
Join us on a brief tour of The Genealogy Center where you will be introduced to our massive physical collection.  This tour will give you a better idea of where to look for that fantastic book you located in our catalog.  *Please be prepared to stand and walk for half an hour.
8:30 PM – Who Went Where and Did What: A Look at Directories – Curt Witcher
This presentation will highlight various directories in The Genealogy Center collection and the types of data one may find.

Saturday, October 28, 2017, 10:00 AM, Discovery Center
Why Should I Look at Revolutionary War Pension Records? – Melissa Tennant
Pension records are a valuable source for learning more about your Revolutionary War ancestor. Understand Revolutionary War pension records better by discovering how to access these files and what information is available in the documents.

Sunday, October 29, 2017, 1:00 PM, Discovery Center
DNA Results: What Does Your Ethnic Pie Chart Mean? – Sara Allen
Television commercials advertise that a DNA test can help determine your ethnicity, but what does your ethnic pie chart result really tell you? This session will explain how each of the major DNA testing companies calculates your ethnic estimate and how to interpret the results.
Monday, October 30, 2017, 6:30 PM, Discovery Center
Who, What, Where? How to Look at your Photographs, Analyze & Organize – Kay Spears
Discover how to examine photographs with an eye to identifying time period and location; annotate images with family stories and facts; and organize your digital treasures.
Tuesday, October 31, 2017, 2:30 PM, Discovery Center
Death Business: Searching Funeral Home Collections – Melissa Tennant
Utilizing the funeral home collections available at The Genealogy Center, this session will explore funeral home records as genealogical sources for discovering ancestors.

To register for these free events, call 260-421-1225 or email Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info .
For more information, see the brochure at

Staying Informed about Genealogy Center Programming
Do you want to know what we’ve got planned? Are you interested in one of our events, but forget? We are now offering email updates for The Genealogy Center’s programming schedule.  Don’t miss out!  Sign up at

Area Calendar of Events
Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana, Inc. (ACGSI) Monthly Program
October. 11, 2017- Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, Indiana, refreshments & networking begins at 6:30 p.m., program at 7 p.m. Curt Witcher will present "Resources for Researchers: Today and Tomorrow."

The George R. Mather Lecture Series
October 1, 2017 – The History Center, 302 East Berry Street, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 2 p.m.
Dr. Gary Erdos will present, “Lutherans on the Frontier: from Luther and Germany to a New World.”

Mary Penrose Wayne DAR Chapter Library Help Day for Prospective Members
October 4, 2017 – The Genealogy Center, Allen County Public Library, 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, Indiana, 10 - 4 p.m. Members of the Mary Penrose Wayne Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution will provide help to those interested in joining the D.A.R. who would like advice and assistance in their research. No appointment is necessary.

Miami Indian Heritage Days
October 7, 2017 – Chief Richardville House, 5705 Bluffton Road, Fort Wayne, 1 p.m. 4 p.m. “Wikiami Cattail Matting at the Longhouse with Miami Indian Alliance of Miami Indians.” Admission for each Saturday event is $7 for adults and $5 for students and seniors. History Center members and children ages 2 and under are free.

Tour of the Old City Jail
October 21, 2017 - Downtown Fright Night, Tour the Old City Jail, 5-9pm, $3 per person

Driving Directions to the Library
Wondering how to get to the library?  Our location is 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, Indiana, in the block bordered on the south by Washington Boulevard, the west by Ewing Street, the north by Wayne Street, and the east by the Library Plaza, formerly Webster Street.  We would enjoy having you visit the Genealogy Center.

To get directions from your exact location to 900 Library Plaza, Fort Wayne, Indiana, visit this link at MapQuest:

>From the South
Exit Interstate 69 at exit 302.  Drive east on Jefferson Boulevard into downtown. Turn left on Ewing Street. The Library is one block north, at Ewing Street and Washington Boulevard.

Using US 27:
US 27 turns into Lafayette Street. Drive north into downtown. Turn left at Washington Boulevard and go five blocks. The Library will be on the right.

>From the North
Exit Interstate 69 at exit 312.  Drive south on Coldwater Road, which merges into Clinton Street.  Continue south on Clinton to Washington Boulevard. Turn right on Washington and go three blocks. The Library will be on the right.

>From the West
Using US 30:
Drive into town on US 30.  US 30 turns into Goshen Ave. which dead-ends at West State Blvd.  Make an angled left turn onto West State Blvd.  Turn right on Wells Street.  Go south on Wells to Wayne Street.  Turn left on Wayne Street.  The Library will be in the second block on the right.

Using US 24:
After crossing under Interstate 69, follow the same directions as from the South.

>From the East
Follow US 30/then 930 into and through New Haven, under an overpass into downtown Fort Wayne.  You will be on Washington Blvd. when you get into downtown.  Library Plaza will be on the right.

Parking at the Library
At the Library, underground parking can be accessed from Wayne Street. Other library parking lots are at Washington and Webster, and Wayne and Webster. Hourly parking is $1 per hour with a $7 maximum. ACPL library card holders may use their cards to validate the parking ticket at the west end of the Great Hall of the Library. Out of county residents may purchase a subscription card with proof of identification and residence. The current fee for an Individual Subscription Card is $70.

Public lots are located at the corner of Ewing and Wayne Streets ($1 each for the first two half-hours, $1 per hour after, with a $4 per day maximum) and the corner of Jefferson Boulevard and Harrison Street ($3 per day).

Street (metered) parking on Ewing and Wayne Streets. On the street you plug the meters 8am – 5pm, weekdays only.  It is free to park on the street after 5pm and on the weekends.

Visitor center/Grand Wayne Center garage at Washington and Clinton Streets. This is the Hilton Hotel parking lot that also serves as a day parking garage.  For hourly parking, 7am – 11 pm, charges are .50 for the first 45 minutes, then $1.00 per hour.  There is a flat $2.00 fee between 5pm and 11pm.

Genealogy Center Queries
The Genealogy Center hopes you find this newsletter interesting.  Thank you for subscribing.  We cannot, however, answer personal research emails written to the e-zine address.  The department houses a Research Center that makes photocopies and conducts research for a fee. 

If you have a general question about our collection, or are interested in the Research Center, please telephone the library and speak to a librarian who will be glad to answer your general questions or send you a research center form.  Our telephone number is 260-421-1225.  If you’d like to email a general information question about the department, please email: Genealogy [at] ACPL.Info.

Publishing Note
This electronic newsletter is published by the Allen County Public Library's Genealogy Center, and is intended to enlighten readers about genealogical research methods as well as inform them about the vast resources of the Allen County Public Library.  We welcome the wide distribution of this newsletter and encourage readers to forward it to their friends and societies.  All precautions have been made to avoid errors.  However, the publisher does not assume any liability to any party for any loss or damage caused by errors or omissions, no matter the cause. 

To subscribe to “Genealogy Gems,” simply use your browser to go to the website: Scroll to the bottom, click on E-zine, and fill out the form. You will be notified with a confirmation email.

If you do not want to receive this e-zine, please follow the link at the very bottom of the issue of Genealogy Gems you just received or send an email to kspears [at] with "unsubscribe e-zine" in the subject line.

Curt B. Witcher and John D. Beatty, CG, co-editors

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