Program Notes from Our July 13, 2010 Program

Hi Everyone!

I want to thank Kristin Newton McCallum, our guest speaker for the evening, for dazzling us by showing us so much more of the functionality of Heritage Quest.  Heritage Quest is a mainstay genealogy data base product that is offered by many public libraries as a great resource of genealogical information.

WOW!  I did not even realize it that there are so many better ways to use the product to find information in the product.  I only wish that Heritage Quest would provide some better up front information to allow users to get the most out of using the product.

I also want to thank all of those that actually came out to see our program.  We had a total of 74 participants attend the program.  Literally, our room was about as full as we could have.  The attendance for this program ranks right up there at the top of the most attended.  Our record so far has been 76.  Our room limitations are just about at that level.  Those that attended can attest to the fact that it really was crowded in the room.

I got so into the presentation by Kristin that I literally forgot to take some pictures of our guest speaker as well as some pictures of our large crowd.  I apologize for those reading this post that there are no accompanying pictures to share.  I think that the next time I will keep my camera bag strapped around my neck for easy access and as a reminder to take some pictures!!

Kristin had a very good handout and has indicated that I can post the links that exist for this handout.  Anyone who may have missed the program now has the ability to fill in the blanks on the topic of using Heritage Quest through accessing the links for the handout.

Kristin has also been kind enough to provide a link to her actual PowerPoint presentation she used for her program.  It may be of some help  to those who saw the program and may act as a refresher.  For those that were unable to attend but are looking at the presentation for the first time, you may discover that some slides are intuitive enough but others may not be as clear without having heard Kristin expound on what the slide was attempting to show.

You can access the PowerPoint presentation of the material for the program directly at the following link:

The links provided by Kristin for the handouts can be found at:

Handout #1 –

Handout #2 –

Handout #3 –

Kristin also had a 4th handout that was specific to searching PERSI.  The text for this handout follows in Italics:


Searching PERSI in Heritage Quest

 What is PERSI (Periodical Source Index)?

 PERSI is an index of all the genealogical newsletters and magazines held by the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne Indiana.  It is estimated that ACPL owns 80% of all national genealogical periodicals published in the United States.

 What Kind of Information Might I Find in Genealogical Society Periodicals?

  • Transcribed or Abstracted Records
  • Indexes to Vital Records
  • Indexes to Historical Books
  • Census Indexes
  • Genealogical Queries
  • Family Histories
  • Pedigree Charts
  • Graduation Lists
  • Marriage and Obituary Abstracts
  • Transcribed Directories
  • Abstracted Diaries
  • Biographical Sketches
  • Naturalization Lists
  • Transcribed Bible Records
  • Transcribed Probate Court Records
  • Scrapbook Transcriptions


  How is PERSI Searchable?

By Country
By State
By County
By Locale
By Subject (Record Type)
By Article Title (Keyword Search)
By Periodical Title

 What Will I Find in PERSI?

 Article Titles
Name of Publication
Date of Publication
Issue and Volume Numbers
Where Available

 What Won’t I Find in PERSI?

  •  Full Text Articles – PERSI gives citations only.  To read the article, visit a holding library or request the article through Interlibrary Loan.
  • Abstracts or Summaries – Beyond the title and indexing there is no further description about the contents of the article.
  • In-Depth Indexing – Indexing does not include every place or name mentioned in an article. 

 People Searches in PERSI

Use this search to look for articles about a family.  This search function will have limited use, though, because unless your family is the main focus of the article, their names won’t be indexed.  Remember, PERSI does not have an everyname index to genealogy periodicals.  If your ancestor was simply in an article listing individuals buried in a certain cemetery, for example, their name is not going to show up in the index. 

 * Place Searches in PERSI 
Genealogists will find this the most useful search in PERSI.  Use a place search to locate genealogical records covering a town, county, state, or country.  Limit your search by record type for best results.  For example, you can search to see if Vital Records were ever published in a periodical covering McHenry County.  Once you have the citation for this article, you can request the article via Interlibrary Loan to see if your ancestor is mentioned.

 “How To” Searches in PERSI
Find an article citation about how to research a certain topic.

 Periodical Search in PERSI

  • Browse Periodical Citations by Year and Issue
  • View All Articles From a Periodical by Date
  • Locate a Periodical’s Publisher and Subscribing Institutions

 *Note: The list of subscribing institutions provided in Periodical Search is only a small selection of libraries. For a more complete listing of library holdings, see


Thank you Kristin for allowing me share this helpful series of handout information via our blog.

Take a look at the links above to some of the handout material and to the Italic text above of the PERSI material provided by Kristin.  With this information, head on back to Heritage Quest and give all of the individual data bases contained within Heritage Quest another try.

Remember that Heritage Quest is more than just access to searching the Census records with their accompanying images.  With Kristin’s aids don’t forget to take a deeper look at the following additional databases contained within Heritage Quest:

  • Books
  • PERSI (Periodical Source Index)
  • Revolutionary War Pension and Bounty Land Records
  • Freedman’s Bank Records (1865-1874) Founded to Serve African Americans
  • U.S. Serial Set for Searching Memorials, Petitions, and Private Relief Actions of the U.S. Congress

I hope that everyone came away with some additional enthusiasm to go back and revisit a great electronic resource easily available from home for our registered cardholders of the Schaumburg Township District Library.

For those of you who have not had their library card issued by us but issued instead from your own home library, make sure you inquire as to whether Heritage Quest is available to you from home through your own library.

I sure hope everyone had  as great a time as I did at this program. 

Great program, great speaker, great turnout, great handouts, great tips.

I am definitely going back to revisit Heritage Quest!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

One response to “Program Notes from Our July 13, 2010 Program

  1. Kristen McCallum


    Thanks for the glowing review! I had a great time and will definitely be back to see some of your upcoming programs. It’s great to see a library taking such an active role in promoting and supporting genealogical research. See you next time!

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