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GGG - German Genealogy Group

          Please check the schedule for meeting dates and speakers

The German Genealogy Group meetings are held on the first Thursday of the month from September through June. Orientation begins at 7:00PM. Meetings begin at 7:30 PM.

The meetings are open, and YOU are invited to attend! Please feel free to drop by and check us out.

Bethpage Public Library
47 Powell Avenue
Bethpage, NY 11714

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Upcoming Meetings




March 7, 2024, 7:30 PM - REMOTE ONLY ZOOM presentation for GGG Members only
Alien Files (A-Files) Boot Camp.
Alec Ferretti

Learn about the single most insightful file series pertaining to 20th century immigrants to the United States. Held partially at the National Archives and partially by US Citizenship & Immigration Services, A-Files (short for Alien Files), exist for tens of millions of immigrants, spanning from immigrants who arrived last week to people born in the mid 19th century! You may find handwritten letters, photographs, birth certificates from abroad, arrest records, and countless other documents!

This talk will explain who will have an A-File, how to locate them, and what information it might contain!

Alec Ferretti is a New-York-City-based professional genealogist, who has worked for the Wells Fargo Family & Business History Center, researching family histories for high net worth clients. 
Alec specializes in the genealogy of 20th century immigrants to the United States.  He is a regular lecturer at genealogical societies and conferences. He serves as the President of the New York Genealogy & Technology Group, serves actively on the Board of Directors of the Association of Professional Genealogists, and on the Board of Reclaim the Records, a nonprofit dedicated to wrangling public records from obstinate government agencies.


April 4, 2024, 7:30 PM - HYBRID meeting at Bethpage, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Your Immigrant Ancestor’s Experience: An Ocean of Possibilities.
Sarah Gutmann

Description to come.


June 6, 2024, 7:30 PM - HYBRID meeting at Bethpage, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Kleindeutschland: Little Germany in New York City.
Richard Haberstroh

Description to come.


Past Meetings


February 1, 2024, 7:30 PM - REMOTE ONLY ZOOM presentation for GGG Members only
Residential Registration in Germany.
Roger P. Minert, Ph.D.

This new (2018) presentation is based on a kind of record that is essentially unknown among Germanic researchers. From the sixteenth century on, local authorities in Germany monitored the comings and goings of strangers and foreigners, keeping ever more detailed records of newcomers-primarily for the safety of local residents. The personal details contained in such records make them a valuable resource for family history research. This presentation exhibits the form and content of residential registration and traces the historical development up to the late nineteenth century; by then, in most states every man, woman, and child was registered whether local or from elsewhere. 

Roger P. Minert received his doctoral degree from The Ohio State University in German language history and second language acquisition theory. He taught German language and history for ten years, and then became a professional family history researcher. Accredited by the Family History Library for research in Germany and Austria, he worked for twelve years as a private genealogical researcher. From 2003 to 2019, he served as a professor of family history at Brigham Young University. The author of more than 200 publications, he directs the research program German Immigrants in American Church Records [GIACRJ;the series now consists of 40 volumes. In 2019, Minert was recognized for his years of service to the Palatines to America Society and also received the "Shirley Riemer Lifetime Achievement Award" from the International German Genealogy Partnership. In 2020, he was named a fellow of the Utah Genealogical Association. From his home in Provo, Utah he continues to write articles on Germanic genealogy, compile new GIACR volumes, and participate in conferences nation-wide.


January 4, 2024, 7:30 PM - REMOTE ONLY ZOOM presentation for GGG Members only
Finding My German Second Great Grandfather: Part 2
Mary Eberle

This 2-part case study shows how DNA evidence combined with traditional genealogical evidence can solve family mysteries.  

Part 1 of this case study discussed the initial steps I took to find my 2nd great grandfather, who’s the father of my Canadian-born 1st great grandmother.  Part 1 discussed target testing my family members.  This led to a group of DNA matches who share a common ancestral couple (CAC).  They might be relevant to solving my mystery.  The CAC came from Germany, lived in Toronto, and died in Michigan.  Further DNA analysis narrowed our connection to the wife:  Josephine Weisser (JW).  But she was a brick wall.  More distant DNA matches revealed a more distant CAC in Aichhalden, Baden-Württemberg, Germany:  Josef Weisser b. 1732 and his wife.  Is this where Josephine is from?

Part 2 will cover the following.
•    Looking at JW’s vital records, which includes deciphering German handwriting and town names to try to connect JW to the Old World Weissers
•    Connecting with a very helpful German “cousin” on familysearch.org
•    Using WATO tool from DNA Painter to see where we fit into JW’s tree
•    Finding my 2nd great grandfather:  a German man who migrated from Germany to Canada—and spent time in New York.

December 7, 2023, 7:30 PM - HYBRID meeting at Bethpage, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Traditional German Christmas Stories.
Claire Gebben

History, illustrations, and excerpts of time-honored German Christmas stories bring out shared German traditions and the spirit of the holiday. Tales recounted for centuries, including
“Christmas Eve,” “The Elves and the Shoemaker” and others, bring the German Christmas experience to life.

Claire Gebben is a public speaker and teacher on writing family history, German genealogy, and 19th-century history. She is the author of The Last of the Blacksmiths, a novel based on the true
story of her great-great grandfather, a 19th-century German immigrant blacksmith to Cleveland, Ohio. The book was named a Notable Book by Cleveland State University’s Michael Schwartz
Library and Book of the Month (April, 2015) with the German American Heritage Foundation. Her memoir How We Survive Here: Families Across Time recounts the discovery of 19th-century
letters in an attic in Germany written by her ancestors, which propels her on a transatlantic quest to trace and write about their lives. The memoir was honored as a Finalist in the 2019 Indie Next
Generation Book Awards. Her articles on German genealogy and history appear in German Life magazine, Your Genealogy Today, Seattle Genealogical Society Newsletter, and elsewhere. More
at http://clairegebben.com


November 2, 2023, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
German World War II SS-Records: An Unlikely and Indispensable German Genealogy Tool.
Dr. Michael D. Lacopo
A record group borne out of more sinister reasons in 1931 by Adolf Hitler’s government survives today as a collection of hundreds of thousands of pre-1800 family trees and
Ahnentafels of German SS-soldiers and their prospective spouses, oftentimes filling in gaps left behind by German civil and church record destruction since World War II.

Dr. Michael D. Lacopo was born and raised in northern Indiana surrounded by extended family always willing to tell tall tales. Intrigued by his maternal family’s claim to be
kinfolk of Abraham Lincoln, and his paternal family’s stories of murder and mayhem, he took to genealogical research in 1980 to substantiate these family stories


October 5, 2023, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Cause of Death: Dissecting Coroner’s Records for Genealogical Research
Lisa Alzo
Coroner’s records are often untapped resources that contain essential information for genealogists. In this session, learn how to determine if your ancestor appeared in a Coroner’s report, where to
find Coroner’s records, what details they include to further your genealogy research, and much more!

Lisa A. Alzo, M.F.A., is a freelance writer, instructor, and internationally recognized lecturer,  specializing in Eastern European research and writing your family history She is the author of
eleven books and hundreds of magazine articles.Lisa works as an online educator and writing coach through her website Research, Write, onnect, <https://www.researchwriteconnect.com>.
and developed the Eastern European Research Certificate Program for the International Institute for Genealogical Studies. Visit <https://www.lisaalzo.com> for more information.


September 7, 2023, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Mapping your Family History
Alex Calzareth
Create maps with your own data on Google MyMaps.
This presentation will teach you how to create a custom map, import location data associated with
family history events or source records and then customize the appearance of that data on the
map. Custom maps can be used in many ways, including visually conveying family migration
patterns, showing the location of regional cemeteries, or which towns hold certain vital records.
Resulting maps can also be imported into Google Earth.
   
Alex Calzareth is a genealogist focusing on Southwest Germany, the Czech Republic and
Southern Italy who began researching his family roots twenty-five years ago. He is a board
member for Reclaim The Records and the Jewish Genealogy Society of Long Island, serving as
JGSLI’s webmaster. Alex is also the JewishGen Research Director for Germany. He lives in New
York City and works as a CPA


June 1, 2023, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
A DNA Case Study: Finding My German 2nd Great Grandfather – Part 1
Mary Eberle
This Part 1 talk describes how genealogical records with inconsistent dates and parents suggested my 2nd great grandfather (2GGF) wasn’t biologically correct.  Family members, who are one generation closer to my 2GGF, were DNA tested.  My 2GGF is their great grandfather.  A genetic network of shared DNA matches that might lead to my 2GGF was identified.  That genetic network’s most recent common ancestors were found:  a German immigrant couple living in Toronto.

Part 2 will discuss how my presumed 2GGF was then identified. 

Mary Eberle, JD, founded DNA Hunters in 2015 after careers as a biotech patent attorney and scientist.  She is passionate about empowering people to harness DNA's power to solve family mysteries.  Mary has used DNA to break through brick walls in her family tree.  Her clients include adoptees and others with unknown parents or grandparents.  DNAHunters.com


May 16, 2023, 7:30 PM - Special REMOTE Zoom presentation for GGG Members ONLY
Demonstration of Online Repository Assistant
John Cardinal

John Cardinal will demonstrate how to use ORA, an automated assistant for use with online repositories including Ancestry, FamilySearch, and others.
ORA combines a Windows program with a web browser extension to extract data and streamline your use of popular online services. It works with most popular genealogy programs and many on-line genealogy related websites.The extension is compatible with Chrome, Edge, Firefox and Opera. ORA is sold as a subscription service, $24 USD per year. 

John is also the founder of Family History Hosting, and is a well-known software provider in the genealogy field. His companion programs for The Master Genealogist (TMG) from Wholly Genes Software, including Second Site and TMG Utility are extremely popular and viewed as must-haves by TMG users. John has 10 years experience designing and implementing genealogy software, and more than 30 years experience developing software, and he has put that experience to work to make Family History Hosting the best web site hosting service option for genealogists and family historian.


May 4, 2023, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Introduction to Family Tree Maker
Mark Olsen
Join us for a live Q and A discussion to answer all your questions about Family Tree Maker, the latest version, updates, features and more. This is an interactive session. We will discuss the recently released 24.1 update and answer any questions you may have. We will also discuss Family Tree Maker partner products - Charting Companion and Family Book Creator - both are amazing plug-ins that can help you create incredible charts, graphs, and books. This class is for all levels of genealogists whether you are just getting started or very experienced.

Mark Olsen is the Family Tree Maker Ambassador to historical and genealogical societies around the world working to support their members as they use Family Tree Maker. Mark is a graduate of Brigham Young University and holds a bachelor's degree in Family History with a Spanish records emphasis.


April 6, 2023, 7:30 PM - REMOTE Zoom presentation for GGG Members ONLY
Using
Ortssippenbücher to Research Your Family History   
Robin McDonough, research librarian, St. Louis County Library

Ortssippenbücher contain genealogical information about families within a specific town, village, or parish. Information can cover many generations of a family going back to the beginning of written records. Discover the areas of Germany where these books are available and learn how to use this resource yourself through a case study.

Robin has been a reference staff member in the History & Genealogy Department at the St. Louis County Public Library for 6 years. She has been working on her own family history for over 15 years, including several German lines. Robin is a former history teacher and has a Master of Science degree in education.


March 2, 2023, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting at Bethpage Public Library, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Get With The Times: German Newspaper Research
Teresa Steinkamp McMillan

Germany does not have large subscription-based websites for accessing newspapers for genealogical research. In spite of that fact, there are thousands of digitized German newspapers available online. Many of them are free. Learn where they are and how to access them.

Teresa Steinkamp McMillin, Certified Genealogist®, author of the Guide to Hanover Military Records, 1514-1866 on Microfilm at the Family History Library, is the owner of Lind Street Research, a company dedicated to helping people discover their German ancestry. She is a popular speaker for national, regional, and local genealogical societies. Recently she created and recorded two courses for Ancestry Academy at Ancestry.com. She has taught at the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR). Reading German gothic script found in German records prior to the mid-1900s is second nature to her. Researching ancestors in Chicago and other areas of the Midwest is another of Teresa’s specialty areas. She is a multi-year attendee of the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) and the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG). Teresa is a member of the National Genealogical Society, the Association of Professional Genealogists, as well as many German and local genealogical societies. Teresa chairs the committee for the Board for Certification of Genealogists monthly webinar series. She is the webmaster for the Northwest Suburban Genealogy Society in Arlington Heights, Illinois and is a genealogy volunteer at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library.


February 2, 2023, 7:30 PM -  REMOTE ONLY Zoom presentation for GGG Members ONLY
Guild Records: an unused record in Family History
Fritz Juengling


Quite often, family history researchers stick to the usual record types when researching their family history; birth/baptismal, marriage, and death records. Of course, these are useful sources for genealogical information but there are other records that can fill gaps or simply provide more information. One of these underused records is guild records.

What is a guild and what might you find when using guild records?
A guild is an association of professionals with similar economic interests based on a certain craft or trade. It is devoted to the protection of guild member’s rights, training of new members, and furthering their political, economic, and trade interests. A guild is similar to a modern labor union. Some of the common trades that had their own guild included tanner, metalworker, tailor, and shoemaker and others. Guilds were very powerful and often had considerable influence in local government affairs.

 Fritz Juengling, Ph.D., AG, earned a BA in Secondary Education and a BA in International Studies German Emphasis, graduating with Honors from Western Oregon University. He attended the University of Minnesota where he received his Master’s and Ph.D. in Germanic Philology with minors in both English and Linguistics.
The highly specialized field of Germanic Philology combines languages, linguistics, paleography and history.  In completing the programs Fritz demonstrated competence in English, German, Medieval Latin, Dutch and Norwegian; and took courses in fourteen other languages, Latin and Greek philology, and both Latin and Middle English paleography.
Fritz has taught all levels of German, including Medieval German literature, and Old English (Anglo-Saxon) at the college level; German, English, and Latin at the high school level. He is an accredited genealogist for Germany through The International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists. He is a European Research Specialist, specializing in German, Dutch, and Scandinavian research, at the Family History Library.


January 5, 2023, 7:30 PM - 
HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Breathe Life into your Genealogy with the Power StoryBreathe Life into your Genealogy with the Power Story
Bill Cole


Have you shared your genealogical research findings’ excitement and observed glazed-over eyes? Unfortunately, that happens more than we care to admit. Even though our research contains facts and dates, its real value is passing along the stories of our ancestors’ lives! That is precisely why storytelling is such an important genealogical skill. It is vital to engage your audience.
To get others interested in the field or specifically in your genealogy, this presentation introduces an easy-to-use five-part checklist. It helps you uncover, craft, and deliver powerful stories that impact and delight others as you breathe life into your genealogy with the power of story.

 Bill is a member of the Mayflower Society, New England Historic Genealogical Society, National Genealogy Society, California Genealogical Society, Downey Historical Society, Santa Clara County Historical and Genealogical Society, Surry County Genealogical Society, and the Sacramento German Genealogical Society where he served six years as vice president. He also co-chaired the International German Genealogy Conferences held in Minneapolis in 2017 and in Sacramento in 2019. In business, Bill Cole is an internationally respected trainer, keynote speaker and executive coach. His presentations have taken him to North, Central, and South America, Australia, Singapore, Hong Kong, Japan, and England.

December 1, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Christmas Markets: Their History and Traditions
Claire Gebben


Join Claire Gebben on Thursday, December 1 at 7:30 PM ET for a presentation on Christmas Markets: Their History and Traditions. Christmas markets date back to medieval times, when German territories covered a wide swath of the continent. Some of Germany’s existing Christmas markets trace their origins as far back as the 15th and 16th centuries. Dresden’s market first opened for one day on Christmas Eve in 1434. Meanwhile, the oldest evidence of Nuremberg’s Christmas market dates it to 1628, though some suspect it stretches back at least to 1530. In Germany, meanwhile, the number of Christmas markets has also been on the rise for the last 50 years—tripling from about 950 markets in the 1970s to about 3,000 in 2019.

Claire Gebben lives and writes in the Pacific Northwest. Her debut historical novel The Last of the Blacksmiths (Coffeetown Press, 2014) is based on the true story of her German immigrant ancestor who pursues the American dream. Since the novel’s publication, she’s been invited to to speak at various venues on the untold stories of 19th-century immigration history, on creating legacies using family genealogies, and on research and writing. For a complete list of talk topics, click here. An adventurer at heart, she enjoys traveling, genealogy, bicycling, hiking, and even on occasion blacksmithing. Her author blog explores genealogy and immigration, German and Scottish history, Ohio history, research and travels, and tips for writing about family history.

November 3, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of German Military Records
Teresa Steinkamp McMillin, CG
®

Military records for Germany are an underutilized resource. Because there was no unified Germany prior to 1871, one must search for records under prior jurisdictions. Many records have not survived. This talk will walk through the steps of finding the records that do exist. It will highlight military records available for the former Kingdom of Hanover, which claims a rich collection.

Teresa Steinkamp McMillin, Certified Genealogist®, author of the Guide to Hanover Military Records, 1514-1866 on Microfilm at the Family History Library, is the owner of Lind Street Research, a company dedicated to helping people discover their German ancestry. She is a popular speaker for national, regional, and local genealogical societies. Recently she created and recorded two courses for Ancestry Academy at Ancestry.com. She has taught at the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR). Reading German gothic script found in German records prior to the mid-1900s is second nature to her. Researching ancestors in Chicago and other areas of the Midwest is another of Teresa’s specialty areas. She is a multi-year attendee of the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) and the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG). Teresa is a member of the National Genealogical Society, the Association of Professional Genealogists, as well as many German and local genealogical societies. Teresa chairs the committee for the Board for Certification of Genealogists monthly webinar series. She is the webmaster for the Northwest Suburban Genealogy Society in Arlington Heights, Illinois and is a genealogy volunteer at the Arlington Heights Memorial Library.

October 20, 2022, 7:30 PM - Special REMOTE Zoom presentation for GGG Members ONLY
Explore the Rhineland-Palatinate
Claire Gebben


Explore the Rhineland-PalatinateThe wine-making Rheinland-Pfalz, or Rhineland-Palatinate, in southwest Germany is rich in history, museums, local festivals, and wine tours. This presentation offers an overview of the region, why so many left over the centuries, and sights to see today. An exploration of the region’s more intriguing aspects for travelers, genealogists, foodies, and anyone who enjoys learning about other cultures, places, and times.

 Claire Gebben lives and writes in the Pacific Northwest. Her debut historical novel The Last of the Blacksmiths (Coffeetown Press, 2014) is based on the true story of her German immigrant ancestor who pursues the American dream. Since the novel’s publication, she’s been invited to to speak at various venues on the untold stories of 19th-century immigration history, on creating legacies using family genealogies, and on research and writing. For a complete list of talk topics, click here. An adventurer at heart, she enjoys traveling, genealogy, bicycling, hiking, and even on occasion blacksmithing. Her author blog explores genealogy and immigration, German and Scottish history, Ohio history, research and travels, and tips for writing about family history.


October 6, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
The Home Archivist: Preserving Family Records Like A Pro!
Melissa Barker


Learn from a professional archivist how to preserve, protect, and archive family records, photographs, and artifacts. Best practices for organization, purchasing archival materials and practical records preservation that any home archivist can achieve! Learn how to process your collection of genealogical records from start to finish. Learn the steps archivists use to process small and large records collections at the archives and how you can use these steps to get a handle on your family records collections!

Melissa Barker is a Certified Archives Manager and Public Historian currently working at the Houston County, Tennessee Archives. She is affectionately known as The Archive Lady to the genealogy community. She lectures, teaches, and writes about the genealogy research process, researching in archives and records preservation. She conducts virtual presentations across the United States and Canada for various genealogy groups and societies. She writes a popular blog entitled A Genealogist in the Archives and is a well-known genealogy and history book reviewer. She has been a Professional Genealogist for the past 17 years with expertise in Tennessee records. She has been researching her own family history for the past 32 years.


September 1, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Beyond the Bauer (Farmer): Your Farm Ancestor’s Place in the Social Structure
Gail Blankenau


It has been estimated that in 1800, about 62% of German workers were engaged in agriculture. But in the Germanic states, there were different social scales and terms for farmers with farms of various sizes and pursuits. We will explore the social hierarchies to which your farm ancestors belonged and discuss terminology that can help you understand their farming experience.

Gail Blankenau is a nationally known German genealogy speaker. She has spoken at two International German Genealogy Conferences. Gail Blankenau is an experienced genealogist, speaker and author. Her publications include articles in the New England Historical and Genealogical Register and The Genealogist. She is also a contributor to Family Chronicle and Internet Genealogy magazines. Based in Nebraska, she specializes in Nebraska records, Midwestern roots, German genealogy, land records, 19th-Century photographs and tracing lineages. More than half her ancestors came from New England, but she has roots in almost every state east of the Mississippi.


June 2, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
GGG Members Richard Haberstroh and Jim Pelzer will take German research questions from members in advance of the meeting and will provide some guidance at the meeting.
Submit your question to GGhelp@germangenealogygroup.com before May 26, 2022.


May 19, 2022, 7:30 PM - Special REMOTE Zoom presentation for GGG Members ONLY
DNA Segmentology
Jim Barlett


Segmentology is about DNA segments. We will answer the questions: What is a DNA segment? What are the three ways to measure a segment? How can we “see” our DNA segments? What is the difference between our DNA segments and shared DNA segments with a Match (they are different)? Where do our DNA segments come from? Roughly how many segments do we get from a given Ancestor? How can we group our Matches based on shared DNA segments? How can we group our Matches based on Shared Matches? How will these groups help us find Common Ancestors? How can we look through Brick Walls and/or find bio-Ancestors? What is a Chromosome Map and what does it look like? How can a Chromosome Map, DNA Painter, Clusters, and spreadsheets all tell the same story? All this and more – bring your questions…

Jim Bartlett has been an active genealogist since 1974.   He has been the Administrator of the BARTLETT-DNA Project at FTDNA (over 400 participants) since 2002 and has established 23 different lines using matching Y-DNA. He has tested at all the major companies and uploaded to GEDmatch, DNA.Land and NIH All-of-Us. He has been using autosomal DNA since 2010 and currently has over 8,000 Matches with Common Ancestors from most of his ancestry. He has mapped over 99% of his DNA to his parents, with 90% to more distant ancestors. He blogs about autosomal DNA at www.segmentology.org – in plain English for genealogists. He is an avid fan of these powerful, new DNA tools that will expand your genealogy, and enjoys teaching them to other genealogists. The DNA test is easy to take, fairly simple to use, and relatively inexpensive. No biology required.


May 5, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Your Guide to the 1950 Census
Lisa Louise Cooke, www.GenealogyGems.com


The census is the backbone of genealogical research. Here in the United States it gives us a cohesive look at our ancestors every 10 years between 1790 and 1940. And now there is a new census! The 1950 census is an exciting one because it may include your great grandparents, grandparents, parents and perhaps even you! It will provide opportunities to confirm some of what we already know and clues for new research.
The 1950 census was released by the National Archives on 1 April 2022. Now is the perfect time to familiarize ourselves with it and start preparing. In this session you will learn:
• the interesting and little known stories behind the 1950 census,
• what it can reveal about your family, (and who you will NOT find!)
• the important documents associated with it that you can access right now!

Lisa Louise Cooke is the author of several books including The Genealogist’s Google Toolbox, 3rd edition. She produces and hosts the popular Genealogy Gems Podcast, and the free weekly YouTube show Elevenses with Lisa at the Genealogy Gems YouTube channel. She offers a Premium Membership service at her website ( https://lisalouisecooke.com ) featuring exclusive on-demand genealogy education. And she writes a regular column for Family Tree Magazine and produces the Family Tree Magazine Podcast.

Lisa found her passion for family history at her grandmother’s knee at the age of 8. She is now the owner of Genealogy Gems, a genealogy and family history multi-media company founded in 2007. She is Producer and Host of the Genealogy Gems Podcast, the popular online genealogy audio show available at www.GenealogyGems.com, on your smartphone’s native podcast app, and through the Genealogy Gems app available through app stores. Her podcast brings genealogy news, research strategies, expert interviews and inspiration to genealogists in 75 countries around the world, and has been downloaded nearly 4 million times. She also produces the weekly genealogy YouTube live show Elevenses with Lisa at the Genealogy Gems YouTube channel.

Lisa’s offerings are not limited to online.  She is a sought-after international genealogy speaker. Whether in person or online, Lisa strives to dig through the myriad of genealogy news, questions and resources to deliver the gems that can unlock each genealogist’s own family history treasure trove!


April 7, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Is this the End? Taking Your German Brick Walls Down Piece by Piece
Luana Darby, MLIS, Accredited Genealogist®, Professional Genealogist and Consultant

What do you need to look for once you have reached your brick wall? What is available and how do you find it? Learn how to think like a German and understand how to assess the needs of your German research to get the most out of it, from both sides of the ocean. You will understand how a typical German lived and made decisions. A case study will show you step by step how to overcome a typical brick wall.

Genealogy and the recording of family history has always been a passion for Luana. She began organizing photos, documents, and information on her grandmother’s family in 1977, researched for others since 1985, and working as a professional genealogist since 1995. She specializes in Palatine German, US and Canadian, and western European research. She frequently travels to research in archives in Germany, Poland and France.

Luana has a bachelor’s degree in Family History from Brigham Young University and a master’s degree in Library and Information Science from San Jose State University. She is an Accredited Genealogist® and lecturer at local and national conferences and institutes.

Luana is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists and the National Genealogical Society. She has served as president and director at numerous genealogical organizations. She is an online family history instructor at BYU-Idaho and works on the research team of Relative Race, BYU TV’s reality competition show. 
March 10, 2022, 7:30 PM Special REMOTE Zoom presentation for GGG Members ONLY
But I Don’t Know German: Deciphering Death Notices in German Newspaper
Scott Holl

German-language newspapers are a valuable source of obituaries and other genealogical Information, and you do not have to be an expert in the German language to use these resources. This presentation will offer tips for locating and deciphering obituaries in German-language newspapers.

Scott Holl is archivist at Eden Theological Seminary in St. Louis, Missouri and retired manager of the History & Genealogy Department at St. Louis County Library. A native of Central Kansas, he received a B.A. in German from Fort Hays State University in Hays, Kansas, an M.A. in Theology from the Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, and a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from Dominican University, River Forest, Illinois. Scott has lectured at conferences of the National Genealogical Society and Federation of Genealogical Society, the St. Louis Genealogical Society, and other local and regional genealogical organizations. Scott's special interests include German genealogy and 19th-century German-American Protestantism.


March 3, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
New York State Historic Newspapers Online
Jean King, GGG Member

Newspapers can be a treasure trove for finding information about your ancestors that cannot be obtained through vital records or other commonly used genealogical documents. As more and more newspapers are digitized, they become accessible online. Learn about the variety of historic New York State newspapers that are available online. Both free and subscription websites will be covered.

Jean King is a public librarian and former newspaper editor and reporter. She has been a board member for the German Genealogy Group for several years and is currently the co-editor of the GGG newsletter. She is also on the board of the Genealogy Federation of Long Island and a member of the New York Genealogical and Biographical Society.



February 3, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
What'll Happen To My Genealogy Stuff? (When I'm Gone) 
Mark Waldron, GGG Member

What will become of all of your genealogy research results when you are no longer around? Who’s going to want it?  Mark will share a few of the things he's done. It might give you a couple of ideas.

Mark Waldron has been a GGG member since its inception in 1996. He helps to manage the GGG web site, works on various genealogy databases and is currently the GGG Treasurer and Membership Chair. He has been working on his own genealogy for over twenty seven years. He is a member of the Huntington Historical Society Genealogy Workshop, the New York Genealogical & Biographical Society, the New England Historic Genealogical Society, and several other genealogy organizations. He is an officer and board member of the Genealogy Federation of Long Island. He has given genealogy related presentations at several public libraries and local genealogy societies.


January 6, 2022, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members

 Searching for Germanic Roots: How to use American sources to locate the place of origin of your immigrant ancestor

James E. Pelzer, JD - GGG Member

How to use American sources to locate the places of origin of your immigrant ancestors.
December 2, 2021, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
Beyond The Nutcracker: German Christmas Traditions
Claire Gebben, Author of How We Survive Here (2018); The Last of the Blacksmiths (2014); http://clairegebben.com
A surprising number of our Christmas traditions -- songs, food, customs -- have German origins. The beloved story of Clara and her nutcracker prince, enjoyed in story and ballet year after year, is but one example. When Germans crossed the Atlantic they brought with them much of the Christmas magic we know today. Many traditions -- the Christmas tree, the song "Silent Night" -- came to stay, but others were lost. Have you heard about Rugklas and Knecht Ruprecht, devilish counterparts to St. Nicholas? Tasted treats from the Bunter Teller? And just what is the Christmas pickle all about? This presentation explores German and German American Christmas lore and customs passed down through generations, accompanied by a handout with recipes, links to music, history and more.

Claire Gebben is the author of the award-winning memoir How We Survive Here: Families Across Time (2018) about the discovery of old letters in an attic in Germany written by her ancestors, letters that propel her on a transatlantic quest to learn the truth and write about their lives. Her historical novel The Last of the Blacksmiths (2014) is based on the true story of German Michael Harm, who immigrates to America in 1857 to apprentice as a blacksmith and pursue the American dream. Ms. Gebben gives presentations on genealogy, history, and writing at numerous venues. Her articles on German genealogy and history appear in the Seattle Genealogical Society Newsletter, Northwest Prime Time, German Life magazine and elsewhere. More at http://clairegebben.com .

November 11, 2021, 7:30 PM - REMOTE Zoom presentation for GGG Members ONLY
The U. S. Civil War
Michael L. Strauss, AG

Special Veterans Day discussion regarding the U. S. Civil War.

Michael L. Strauss, AG®, is a professional Accredited Genealogist (ICAPGen), and a nationally recognized speaker. A native of Pennsylvania and a resident of Utah, he has been employed as a Forensic Investigator for more than 25 years. Strauss has a BA in History and is a United States Coast Guard veteran. He is a qualified expert witness in the courts in New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. Strauss is a faculty member at SLIG, GRIP, and IGHR where he is the Military Course Coordinator.

November 4, 2021, 7:30 PM - HYBRID in-person meeting, with remote Zoom broadcast for GGG Members
The History of Camp Upton and Other Local Areas
Timothy M. Green, Ph.D., CWB
There is no handout for this meeting.

This talk by Brookhaven National Laboratory’s Cultural Resource Manager, Tim Green, will cover the history of Camp Upton from a forested site in the middle of Suffolk County to becoming the 52nd largest city in the U.S. in just a matter of months in 1917. The Camp served to train soldiers of the 77th “Liberty” Division as part of the American Expeditionary Force. Between the wars Camp Upton was dismantled and became the Upton National Forest only to be re-activated in 1940 as an Induction Camp, then a Recovery Hospital in 1944. The WW II Camp also housed a German POW camp. The final stage of Camp Upton was its transfer to the Atomic Energy Commission, becoming Brookhaven National Laboratory.

October 7, 2021, 7:30 PM - REMOTE Zoom presentation for GGG Members ONLY
Choosing the Right Family Tree Software
Chuck Weinstein

Chuck Weinstein will discuss what you should consider in choosing a software to track your family research and the features and benefits available in some of the popular packages for Windows and Mac. He will also cover the pros and cons of various programs that need to be considered before making a decision.
September 2, 2021, 7:30 PM - REMOTE Zoom broadcast for GGG Members ONLY
Finding the Living
Alec Ferretti, MA, MLS

While genealogists usually focus on researching those who are long deceased, there is often a need to use modern records to locate living relatives. This talk will discuss the types of sources that are available regarding people who lived in the late 20th and early 21st century, many of which will be familiar, and many of which will not! 


June 3, 2021, 7:30 PM - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY
Death and Burial Practices in World War I and World War II 
Rick Sayre, CG, CGL, FUGA

Much of this webinar focuses on the process of collecting, identifying, and burying the dead, and the resulting records, including their genealogical significance. In World War I (1917–1918) there were 53,402 battle deaths, while in World War II (1941–1945) battle deaths rose to 291,557. There are 124,905 American war dead interred overseas. This webinar also addresses how the United States honors and memorializes those killed in battle, including the role of the American Battle Monuments Commission, the American Gold Star Mothers program, and the operation of the Army’s Grave Registration Service.


May 6, 2021, 7:30 PM - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY
Genealogical Proof for the Everyday Genealogist 
Annette Burke Lyttle, Heritage Detective, LLC

How do we know if the facts we've uncovered about our ancestors are correct? How do we avoid attaching somebody else's ancestors to our family tree? The Genealogical Proof Standard (GPS) is our guide to producing reliable research results. This introduction to the Genealogical Proof Standard will get your research moving in the right direction and help you avoid errors
and frustration.


April 1, 2021, 7:30 PM - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY
So, You’ve Found Your German Town of Origin, Now What?
Teresa Steinkamp McMillin


So, You’ve Found Your German Town of Origin, Now What?Finding your ancestor’s town of origin can be exciting, indeed. Once this piece of information is found, you might be left wondering how you go about getting records from the other side of the ocean. This lecture focuses on getting records from German towns. Highlights include:
   o Verifying that you have a town that truly exists and where it is located
   o Strategies for identifying misspelled town names
   o Finding the historical governmental jurisdictions for that town
   o Finding the records for that town
   o Useful aids for reading these records will be discussed
   o Tips on hiring a professional in Germany, should that be necessary



April 15, 2021, 7:00-8:30 PM - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY
German Town of Origin Workshop
Teresa Steinkamp McMillin


This workshop will use real examples to demonstrate the skills detailed in the webinar “So, You’ve Found Your German Town of Origin, Now What?” Teresa will take selected German towns submitted in advance and demonstrate how to find church records for that location. Town names may be misspelled or other issues may need to be overcome to first identify the correct town. Once done, you must identify the town where the church of the target denomination is located. After determining that, you need to find where the church records are today. This workshop will guide you through this process.



March 4, 2021 7:30 PM - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY
Organizing Your DNA Results
Diahan Southard

Now that you have pages of matches and gobs of new information, how do you keep track of it all? We will spend time going over how to create and track correspondence, organization tools within each testing company, as well as strategies for tracking the genealogy information of your matches, including surnames, locations and genetic relationships. You are bound to walk out of this lecture with a game plan that you can implement right away.


February 4, 2021, 7:30 PM - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY
Show & Tell
Members are encouraged to show favorite finds, artifacts, family heirlooms, clothing, and/or stories to share with fellow members. Enthusiasm is catching and new ideas often spawn more successful approaches to our research.
Members must sign up ahead of time


January 7, 2021, 7:30 PM - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY
 "German-Americans in World War I--Fighting Against the Fatherland"
  Michael L Strauss, AG


The entry of the United States into World War I in April 1917 found tens of thousands of German-Americans taking the oath of allegiance seeking to prove their loyalty in their newly adopted country. This took into account persons who were either naturalized or recent immigrants who sought permanent residence. These men knew well they would fight their former countryman and still sought to earn the respect of the army and the United States. 

December 3, 2020 - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY
 "Quarantined! – Genealogy, the Law and Public Health"
  Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL

From the Plague to tuberculosis, the law worked to protect the public from epidemics.
Learn how public health records can add to any family’s history.



Sep 5, 2019
 "The Changing World of German Genealogy"
Presenter - Richard Haberstroh, A.G.

The goal of the talk is to help keep those working on German genealogy from across the pond up-to-date with advances in the field. The talk will focus on how digitization and the Internet have changed and continue to change, accessibility to German genealogical records over the last decade, usually (but not always) for the better. This will be discussed in the context of both civil and religious records, and will include reviews of the nature and location of these records. Many examples of useful Internet sites for German genealogy will displayed and explained.



Oct 3, 2019
  "Introduction to German Parish Records"
  Presenter - Gail Blankenau

Gail Shaffer Blankenau will introduce you to the gold mine of German genealogy--German church books, both in the United States and in the Germanic states. She discusses proven strategies to identify your ancestor's home church and how to approach the records when you find them—even if you don't speak German.


Nov 7, 2019
  "Through the Golden Door: Immigration After the Civil War" 
    Presenter - Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL

America's doors were open to all before the Civil War, with few restrictions. Afterwards, the laws began tightening, with exclusions, quotas, even required visas. How did the immigration laws affect your ancestors who immigrated after the Civil War? What hoops did they have to jump through to enter America's “golden door” -- and what records might we find as a result?



Dec 6, 2019
  Christmas Celebration
 
Come and enjoy our Christmas Celebration. Share in the good cheer, good food and good company.
If you can, please bring something to share: cake, cookies, cheese, crackers, cider, or whatever you feel would be enjoyed by all.

Jan 2, 2020
 "Show and Tell"
 Presenters: GGG members

Members are encouraged to bring along favorite finds, artifacts, family heirlooms, clothing, and/or stories to share with fellow members. Enthusiasm is catching and new ideas often spawn more successful approaches to our research. 

Feb 6, 2020
 "Using DNA to Solve Family Mysteries"
  Presenter: Susan Jaycox

Whether you are an adoptee or your DNA matches are full of people you can't identify, there are strategies for solving the question of who they are and where they belong in your family tree. DNA testing companies are continually introducing tools and reformatting your test results to respond to how genealogists are using the results of their DNA tests. We will explore these tools and other independent DNA research sites that can be utilized to solve the question of how a unknown family member matches you.


Mar 5, 2020
"Street Names and Numbers: Grid Changes, Renaming, and More".
  Presenter: Thomas MacEntee

Have you ever wondered if there was more to an ancestor’s home address or workplace address?
Did you know that in the early 20th century many US cities reconfigured their “grid” resulting in new addresses?
Do you know why certain streets simply seem to “disappear”?
There’s more to street naming than you realize learn how to drill-down to street information to improve your genealogy research.


Apr 2, 2020
 “The German Settlements of 19th Century Long Island” CANCELLED
   Presenter - Paul D. van Wie, Ph.D.

The topic The German Settlements of Nineteenth Century Long Island is based on a book Dr. van Wie authored. A number of the German immigrants were Freethinkers or Intellectuals with no particular religion. On Long Island, the Germans tended to congregate in Elmont, Franklin Square, New Hyde Park, Glen Cove, Hicksville, Jerusalem (Wantagh), Huntington, Stadt Wurttemberg (Massapequa Park), and Stadt Breslau (Lindenhurst.)  In those places you would find German language churches (with the exception of Stadt Wurttemberg.) Many would be “all in one” church, school, social halls, orphanage, rectory, convent and cemetery. The German language faded out after World War I.



May 7, 2020
 “Choosing the Right Family Tree Software” CANCELLED
  Presenter - Chuck Weinstein

Chuck Weinstein has been researching his family history since 1992. An early adopter of computer technology, he has worked hard to find the perfect software for genealogy. (Hint: He hasn’t found it yet.)  In this talk, he will discuss how to determine what you want and need from a software and discuss the features and benefits of several products for both Windows and Mac.



September 3. 2020

 "Novel NYC Research" - This Remote Lecture will be for Members Only, who will receive an invitation.

   Alec Ferretti

 
This lecture will discuss lesser used sources of genealogical information about 19th and 20th New York City residents. By moving beyond records that are database searchable, it is possible to learn about our ancestors from documents such as medical examiner records, education records, burial permits, voter records, and many more!



October 1, 2020 - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY

 "Genealogy Records Found in New Jersey"
  Chris Tracy


Did your ancestor ever live, work or visit New Jersey? New Jersey has a rich history and record collection for genealogy research. If it happened in NJ- from birth to death and just about anything in between - NJ most likely has it documented. Find your ancestor’s New Jersey story in these commonly used genealogy records and resources.



November 5, 2020 - REMOTE MEETING for GGG Members ONLY
 "German Names and Their Interpretation"
  Richard Haberstroh

This webinar will cover various aspects of German family and given names, and even town names. It will deal with some general background on German personal names, the meanings and structure of surnames, and finish off with tips on how to interpret proper names, including those of towns, in German genealogical documents. The talk will be a blend of history, theory, and practical pointers to aid those diving into historical records.




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