Monthly Archives: January 2015

Reminder Re-Post – DuPage County Genealogical Society (DCGS) Annual Conference To Take Place on Saturday, March 14, 2015 At NIU Conference Center In Naperville, IL; New Location Than In Past Years

Hi Everyone!,

I just wanted to do a re-post on the upcoming DuPage County Genealogical Society Annual Conference that will take place on March 14, 2015 in Naperville, IL at the NIU Conference Center.

My previous post on this conference was made on September 29, 2014.  How time does fly!  We are now only about 6 weeks from the actual event.

Take a look at what follows from my original post about the annual conference.  The society does produce a great annual conference full of informative speakers and topics.  So if you put my original post on the back-burner because the conference was far out into the future, take another look at it because we are almost there for the program to occur.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

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Hi Everyone!

Feature Presentation Clip ArtIt is never too early to be aware of upcoming genealogy programs!

I want to remind everyone of the upcoming 40th Annual Conference that will be held by the Du Page County Genealogical Society.  You can visit the main web site of the society to find out more about them and what is available at their site at:

DuPage County Genealogical Society (DCGS) Web Site

Their conference will take place on Saturday, March 14, 2015 at the NIU Conference Center in Naperville, IL from 7:30 AM until about 4 PM.  (Please note that this is a new location for the society’s annual conference; previous conferences have recently been held in St. Charles, IL.  This is a change in venue for the 2015 conference.)  At 7:30 AM, you can register as a walk-in if you have not previously registered, have some morning refreshments that you can buy and take a look at the materials available for purchase from the vendors that are also participating at the conference.  The Opening Comments will take place at 8:30 AM.  The actual genealogy presentations will start at 9:00 AM.  The last series of genealogical presentations will start at 3 PM.

The Annual Conference Theme is “Connecting Past to Present Through Educating, Preserving and Publishing”.

Please note that the society is noting in their brochure that there will be a limit of 250 people who will be able to register.  So if you are interested you might want to take action by registering in advance while there are openings rather than taking a chance as a walk-in on the day of the event and be turned away because capacity has been reached.

I have previously mentioned this upcoming annual conference at our own program.

I encourage everyone to visit the Du Page County Genealogical Society Annual DCGS LogoConference Information directly at the following link:

At their site in the above links you will find out all the details about the upcoming program such as:

  • Information about the NIU Conference Center and driving directions to the facility.
  • Registration Fees (Walk-Ins are welcome assuming the 250 limit on capacity has not been reached.  Supplied lunch cannot be guaranteed but there are plenty of places in the local vicinity to have a lunch on your own.)
  • Program Titles, Times and Speakers.
  • Speaker Biographies
  • Information on Previous Annual Conferences

I am a big proponent for attending these one day, all day local conferences.  You will be exposed to multiple genealogy presentations that you can choose to attend throughout the day.

There are 4 segments of programs that occur.  One is at 9:00 AM, one at 10:30 AM, one at 1:30 PM and one at 3 PM.  Within all the time segments you will be able to pick from 4 programs that will be occurring.   You will be attending one of the segments that is of interest to you.  So you will actually be able to hear 4 unique programs among the 16 that will be offered.

The speakers that will be offering their unique presentations are:

  • Thomas MacEntee
  • Stephen P. Morse (Creator of “One-Step” Website)
  • Marsha Peterson-Maass
  • Katherine R. Willson

These speakers are some of the best of the best that you can encounter as you expand your genealogical knowledge.  To date at our own library we have had 1 of the speakers present an individual program at our own monthly genealogy program.  Marsha Peterson-Maass has previously presented one program at our library and will soon present another program on November 11, 2014.

I attended this conference in February 2012 and in February 2014 as a walk-in.  It is one of the best conferences that you can attend in the local area.  If you have never attended such an all-inclusive one day conference, then this is the one to experience.  The location is close, the facility is great, the organization is superb, the programs are outstanding, the speakers are top-rated, the vendors have great material and other societies are represented!

You will have a great genealogical learning experience in one day that will expand your genealogical knowledge and assist you further in your own research efforts.

Take a closer look at the Du Page County Genealogical Society Annual Conference Information by clicking on the link I provided above.  All of the information about the conference can be found here.

Our library provides one program per month.  Here is your chance to hear 4 presentations by top-rated speakers in one day.

I don’t think you will be disappointed.

This may seem like it is a long time away.  But we all know how time flies.  Mark your calendar now for this date so it does not slip by.  You will not be sorry!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

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“What’s New At Ancestry.com January 2015” YouTube Video; You Can View The Video In This Blog Post

Hi Everyone!

ancestry-logoI just did a quick look at YouTube and saw that there is now a January 2015 video posted from Ancestry.com that is titled “What’s New At Ancestry.com January 2015”.

The video is an approximate 30 minute production hosted by Crista Cowan of Ancestry.com who provides the viewers with updates on what new things users of Ancestry.com should be aware of.

Crista also mentions that in addition to the monthly YouTube video she creates describing “new” things at Ancestry.com for a particular month the reader should always check the blog from Ancestry.com that you can access at:

Ancestry.com Blog

Topics covered in this video by Crista are:

  • Upcoming Conferences – Roots Tech 2015 and Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) (Combined Conferences), February 12 to 14, 2015, Salt Lake City, UT; National Genealogical Society (NGS) Annual Conference, May 13-16, 2015 at St. Charles, Missouri; Southern California Genealogy Jamboree, June 4-7, 2015, Burbank, CA, www.genealogyjamboree.com.
  • New Product – FindAGrave Mobile App for Android.
  • Updated Product – Ancestry.com Mobile App for iOS that now has a simplified merge records function.  You can also now edit records in the merge process.
  • Updated Service – The Barefoot Genealogist (Crista Cowan)  program that is part of Ancestry.com will only be airing once per week instead of twice per week.  Program will be “live” on Tuesdays and once completed will be available at the Ancestry.com YouTube Channel for viewing.  A live viewing can be seen of Crista at 1 PM (eastern) on Tuesday via LiveStream at http://livestream.com.
  • New Database – West Yorkshire, England, Select Tax Records, 1704-1932.  Contains about 3.9 million records.  Indexed and searchable with images.
  • New Database – Oregon Biographical and Other Index Card File, 1700s to 1900s.  Contains about 185,000 records.  This is a collection of indexes to other resources where Oregon biographical may exist on particular individuals.  Searchable via index with images to cards that might contain detailed information as well as a direction to other resource on the individual.
  • New Database – Jamaica Civil Births Registration, 1878-1930.  Contains 4.5 million records.  Indexed and searchable.  Index only record information.  I did not see that actual images of the original records are available.
  • New Database – Iowa State Census, 1905.  Contains 1.4 million records.  Indexed and searchable.  Index only record information.  I did not see that actual images of the original records are available.
  • New Database – Norway Select Census, 1875.  Contains 330,000 records.  Indexed and searchable.  Database was unavailable when I was writing this.  Not sure if original images are available to see or if the text index data is only present.  Data is in Norwegian.
  • New Database – Messina, Civil Registration, Italy.  Contains 920,000 records.  Not indexed.  Records are only browseable.  Can select from a list of Italian towns in the Messina area.  Then you can select the kind of record for that town to browse.  Records are in Italian.
  • Research Reminders #1 – Read the complete database descriptions for the newly added material to know what is contained and what is NOT contained.  Don’t just search!
  • Research Reminder #2 – Understand the records you are looking at when you are searching a newly added database.  Knowing what is there will help you create better search terms for better results.  Just create a “test” input search to see the results.
  • Crista spent a good time on this video noting that it is important to consider “browsing” records rather than always searching indexed databases.  Browsing databases are those that have not yet been indexed.  You cannot search these but the data as images is available for you to look through.  The data is generally subdivided into manageable viewing components.  Think of it as viewing a microfilm online.  Look at an individual database via the “Card Catalog” and look to see if it has a “Browse Box” that allows you to look at the data but not be able yet to search it.  The “browse box” implies the data is not yet indexed for direct searching.

You can view this video directly here:

Crista does an excellent job of sharing what is new at Ancestry.com that can make your use of the product even more effective and beneficial with your family history research.  She shows you via her computer screen what to look for at the Ancestry.com site.

I also did a search on YouTube looking for similarly titled videos and did discover that there are many “What’s New At Ancestry.com” videos on YouTube going back at least until April of 2012.  These series of videos are a great tool to use to review going back in time so you keep current with all that is being offered and added to Ancestry.com.

Here is a simple link to my search in YouTube that will give you this nice list of these videos posted to YouTube that you can do some catching up on to know about all of the new things at Ancestry.com:

“What’s New At Ancestry.com” YouTube Videos

The host does a very good job verbally describing the new additions as well as showing you the new things at Ancestry via screencasting.  That allows you to see her computer screen as she points out the various “new” things you may see at Ancestry.com and where they are located.

Because so many of us use Ancestry.com, either via a personal subscription or by using the Ancestry product at our local libraries, these YouTube videos are quite informative to keep users up to date with new features that take root on Ancestry.com.  The host provides even more depth to the importance of the change and even why it was done.

I think you will enjoy the most recent video above as well as looking at the link above for even more of these videos.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

McHenry County Illinois Genealogical Society Will Be Holding All-Day Conference On Saturday, July 11, 2015 At McHenry County College In Crystal Lake, IL; Discounts Available For Early Registration

Hi Everyone!

McHenry County Illinois Genealogical Society LogoI just received a notice from the McHenry County Illinois Genealogical Society (MCIGS) that they will be offering an all-day genealogy conference on Saturday, July 11, 2015, at the McHenry County College in Crystal Lake, IL.

The conference is titled “MCIGS 2015 Summer Conference”.

There will be 4 separate sessions throughout the day three of which will provide a choice of 4 programs to pick from while one other sessions will provide a choice of 3 programs to choose from.

Debbie Parker Wayne, CG, CGL and Thomas MacEntee (from Geneabloggers and High-Definition Genealogy) are two nationally known genealogy experts who will be providing presentations.  There will be 5 other speakers also presenting programs.

Vendors will also be present for you to check out all kinds of genealogical material to purchase to help you in your own research.

Pre-program registration is encouraged.  Discounts are given if you are an existing McHenry County Illinois Genealogical Society member.  Discounts are also given if registration is done prior to April 1, 2015.

Here is the fee schedule:

  • MCIGS Members registering before April 1, 2015 – $40
  • Non-members registering before April 1, 2015 – $50
  • All registration between April 2, 2015 through June 15, 2015  – $60
  • Registration after June 15, 2015 and Walk-Ins – $70

Lunch will be included for all registered prior to June 15, 2015.  Lunch cannot be guaranteed for those registering after June 15, 2015 or for walk-ins.

Here is a link to the portion of the MCIGS website that contains all of the information you need for the conference, especially the individual programs being offered as well as the biographical information for the speakers and registration information.  You can reach the society information for this event at:

McHenry County Illinois Genealogical Society July 11, 2015 “MCIGS 2015 Summer Conference”

Please also pay a visit to the main website for the society to find out more about the society and the services they offer to members and non-members at:

McHenry County Illinois Genealogical Society

Mark your calendars for this upcoming program.  I have already added it to the Google Calendar that is part of this blog.  It sure looks like there are great speakers offering a wide variety of programs that will help novice researchers through expert researchers.  Be sure you go to the conference link noted above for a full detailed listing of the programs available to choose from.

Time flies on our calendars!  The details are all here with this society for this annual conference.  They put on a great program with fantastic speakers plus they are not that far away in Crystal Lake.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Northwest Suburban Genealogy Society (NWSGS) Next Program Scheduled For Saturday Morning, February 7, 2015 At 10:00 AM; “Evernote For Genealogy” Live Webinar By Thomas MacEntee

Hi Everyone,

Northwest Suburban Genealogy Society logo.newjpg (New 2014-25)-150I just received a program notice from the Northwest Suburban  Genealogy Society (formerly known as the Northwest Suburban Council of Genealogists) indicating that their next genealogy program is scheduled for Saturday morning, February 7, 2015 at 10:00 AM.

The society will be meeting on Saturday, February 7, 2015 at 10:00 AM at the Arlington Heights Senior Center, 1801 W. Central Road in Arlington Heights, IL.

There is no prior registration needed.  There is no fee to attend.

The society offers an early informal gathering at 9:00 AM that would allow you to exchange information and ask questions with others present at the time before the formal program starts.  A demonstration of Flip-Pal will be given at 9:15 AM.  Flip-Pal is a mobile scanner that copies photos and documents without requiring a computer.

Please be sure to view the link below that will get you to the program description material supplied to me by the society. 

Feature Presentation Clip ArtThe speaker for the morning program will be Thomas MacEntee.    The speaker will present a program titled “Evernote for Genealogy.  The program will be a live Webinar.

Please take a look at the full PDF announcement of the program by going to:

Northwest Suburban Genealogy Society (NWSGS) February 7, 2015 Program Notice

You will find more details about the program location, the program contents and some information about Thomas MacEntee, the speaker for the morning from the above link to the program information.

You can always visit the website of the Northwest Suburban Genealogy Society to see what they are all about at:

Northwest Suburban Genealogy Society

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

New Poll On Right Sidebar Of The Blog; Simple Question Being Posed; “Have You Ever Taken A Formal Online Genealogy Course For Which You Paid To Participate?”; “Yes” Or “No”?

Hi Everyone!

Well, here goes another Poll that is now on the right sidebar of the blog right at the top of the blog homepage.

I am just asking for a simple response to a very basic question.

“Have You  Ever Taken A Formal Online Genealogy Course For Which You Paid To Participate?”  Yes or No

As an example, these would be courses as those offered by the National Genealogical Society or Pharos Tutors Genealogy Online Courses or the Virtual Institute of Genealogical Research or other for fee genealogy online centers.

There is a nice link on Cyndi’s List that identifies many of the online courses that researchers can take.  Some are for free to anyone, some are free as being a member of a group and some are for a fee.  You can see these links for educational online genealogy courses at:

Cyndi’s List For Online Genealogy Courses; Some “Free”, Some For A “Fee”

I just want to know if anyone has taken any online genealogy courses for which they paid to participate.

Simple, direct and to the point!

Take a look at the new Poll.  Consider providing a reply.

Let’s see how active this poll can be.

The more the merrier!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Poll On The Right Sidebar Has Been Closed For “Have You Ordered A Microfilm Reel Using The Online Ordering Process Through FamilySearch.org (Mormon Website)?”; Results Indicated

Hi Everyone!

It is amazing that about  2 1/2 months has passed on the life of the poll I had on the right sidebar of the blog since November 3, 2014.  It is time to move on!  I think a new poll question is in order!

The poll had asked the question “Have You Ordered A Microfilm Reel Using The Online Ordering Process Through FamilySearch.org (Mormon Website)”?

The results of the poll showed the following from the 47 total respondents that took the brief time to provide their “Yes” or “No” response to the question.  The numbers show that 19 responses (40.43%) noted they have ordered films through the online order process with FamilySearch   while 28 responses (59.57%) indicated they have not ordered any films through the online process with FamilySearch.

I am actually surprised at the rather high number of “Yes” responses indicating individuals have ordered microfilms through the online process with FamilySearch for their research.  I was actually thinking that maybe even fewer individuals might have ordered films than what the results show.  Microfilms are still very important and if you realize data is not available online but is available on films, then you order the film to move your research forward.

Do not exclude using microfilms if data is available only that way.

I am always looking for a larger response than even that which I just saw!  So come on down ——  affix your opinion as a “Yes” or “No” when so asked to the varied polls on different topics in the world of genealogy and family history research.  Your answers count.

I plan on putting up a new poll rapidly.  Come back for that one to see the new question being asked.

A big thank you to all of those that took the time to respond to this just recently closed poll.  Take a look at the results of that poll to satisfy your own curiosity.

Don’t forget to visit my Poll Archives as part of this blog.  Look for the link at the top of the homepage of the blog where it simply says “Poll Archives”.  In here you will find the statistical results of the 19 previously active polls in addition to the poll that is generally “active”.  If you were not aware of this Archive, you may want to visit to see what all the previous polls were about.

Here is a direct link to the Poll Archives at my blog:

Poll Archives At Tony’s Genealogy Blog At The Schaumburg Township District Library (STDL)

Get ready for another poll ……………………..SOON!

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library

Elgin Genealogical Society (EGS) Announces 2015 First Tuesday Morning Programs And Third Thursday Evening Programs; Programs Will Take Place At The Gail Borden Public Library In Elgin, IL

Hi Everyone!

EGS LogoI recently received a 2015 Program List from the Elgin Genealogical Society (EGS) that highlights both the morning programs they will be offering during the year as well as the evening programs.

The daytime programs occur on the first Tuesday morning of each month starting at 9:30 AM.  The evening programs occur on the third Thursday evening of the month starting at 7 PM.

These programs are held at the Gail Borden Public Library,   270 N. Grove Ave., Elgin, IL.   It is always best to check the society website or call the Gail Borden Public Library at 847-742-2411 to check if schedule changes have occurred.

Here is a link to a PDF file that identifies these programs as well as what speaker is presenting it:

2015 Elgin Genealogical Society Genealogy Programs

Take a look at the schedule to see if there are programs of interest to you.  Consider attending.  Even better, considering becoming a member of the society, especially if any of your ancestral research has any connection to the Elgin area.

Don’t forget to visit the Elgin Genealogical Society website to learn more about the society and what they offer to visitors at their site as well as to registered members of the society.  You can find them at:

Elgin Genealogical Society

Please note that these EGS programs have also been included in the Google Calendar that is part of this blog.  Just look for the “page” at the top of this home page that says “Calendar of Local Genealogy Events”.

I want to make our readers are well aware of not only our own library genealogy programs but also those that are occurring in the nearby area.

Check out the society at the above link and see what programs are of interest to you to attend.

Tony Kierna
Genealogy Coordinator
Schaumburg Township District Library