Presentation Topics

Genealogy Programs:

How DNA Can Help Your Genealogy

DNA testing has become a popular topic at genealogy meetings. Why should we take a DNA test? How can DNA testing help us with our genealogical research? If you have brick walls, DNA testing may give you clues to unlock these secrets. This program should answer some of your questions and make you think about a few more.

Write Your Family History: Easy Steps to Organize and Share Your Heritage

The presentation discusses a process and format that helps make your research efforts more efficient and makes the results easier to read and digest and share. Your information will “come alive” for everyone. Please note that this presentation is not a How-To on publishing a book or organizing your file cabinet. It instead will discuss how to organize the information extracted from your documents and family oral history. The first part of my presentation will review a simple method of organizing research into readable documents so everyone can understand.  It will also cover some sources of information that are non-traditional that can add some rare treasures to your history. The last part of the presentation will discuss my more advance format that can add many interesting pages and make your history a must read for most of your family.

How to start your genealogy research

Before you spend countless hours doing unproductive research, learn about a proven process that will guide your search for your family history. Steve will draw upon his experience to describe his method that will make your efforts more successful. Internet resources and traditional archival research efforts are both covered.

Using the Internet for Your Genealogy Research

Steve will discuss most of the major online resources and methods to find many more resources. Unlock some of the secrets to be found at websites, such as FamilySearch, Ellis Island, Find a Grave, Ancestry, Heritage Quest, and much more. Discuss the use of message boards and online family trees to help solve brick wall problems and discover some European resources.

Beyond the Basics: Hints to solve your brick walls

The program reviews various advanced search techniques that he has used to overcome challenges finding those difficult documents. Learn techniques to solve your brick walls. Overcome problems with the spelling of surnames; learn to search in the correct location and review cases that will help unlock the early U.S. census records.

Mining Census Records

Census records are constantly being used by genealogy researchers to add ancestors to their family trees.

  1. This session will look beyond the first couple of columns and review the wealth of information that can be found in the US census records. It will discuss ways that you can garner each morsel of information from records from 1850 to 1940.
  2. A second area discussed will be ways of finding those missing census records. To have a more complete understanding of your family history, all census records should be found. This presentation will discuss methods to find the census records that were indexed incorrectly and now are “missing” when using normal search methods
  3. The presentation will also discuss ways to deal with the lack of information in the census records for 1790 through 1840 and give you ways that may help you identify which records belong to your family.

Researching Your Chicago Ancestors

Do you have Chicago Ancestors? This program reviews what sources are available and where they can be found. Databases discussed will include vital records, church records, state records, federal records, employment records, histories of the neighborhoods and much more. The sources that are reviewed will include online websites, genealogy collections held at the major libraries, collections at local libraries and collections compiled by area genealogical societies.

Find your roots in Naturalization Records

Find your immigrant ancestors naturalization papers and to see the beginning of your roots in America. This program starts with the history of the naturalization process and a review of the requirements.  Steve discusses where your ancestors were naturalized which is the key to finding their documents. Traditional and online sources are discussed.

 

Locating Grandma’s Birthplace & Ancestors (two programs)

This program is designed to be two one hour sessions. I will use the two programs to discuss in detail how I found the Polish records for my grandmother’s ancestors. The examples will cover many European countries and not only Poland. The first part will focus on how to find the location of the birthplaces of your ancestors. It will discuss which records to search and some tips on how best to search US records for clues. The second part will focus on how to find the vital records for your ancestors in the “old country.” I will also discuss tips I used to translate them.  I will also share some resources that go beyond the traditional documents that have enabled me to gather documents, pictures, and information that has enriched my understanding and knowledge of my heritage. The presentation will be applicable for researchers of most European backgrounds and not just those of my ancestry.

 Finding Grandma’s Ancestors (one program)

This presentation will give a brief description of how I found the name and location of my grandmother’s birthplace but will focus on how to find the vital records for your ancestors in the “old country.” I will discuss in detail how I found the Polish records for my grandmother’s ancestors and tips I used to translate them. The examples will cover many European countries and not only Poland.  I will also share some resources that go beyond the traditional documents that has enabled me to gather documents, pictures, and information that has enriched my understanding and knowledge of my heritage. The presentation will be applicable for researchers of most European backgrounds and not just those of my ancestry.

European Immigration to America from 1800 to 1939 – When, Where, Why and How

When did your ancestors immigrate, where did they leave, why did they leave, how did they get here? These are questions we all hope to find the answers. This presentation studies the history of Europe and gives some insights to possible answers to the questions about your ancestors’ immigration. The material will hopefully clear up your confusion of where and why your ancestors left.

Polish Genealogy Programs:

Polish Immigration – When, Where, Why and How

When did your Polish ancestors immigrate, where did they leave, why did they leave, how did they get here? These are questions we all hope to find the answers. This presentation studies the history of Poland and gives some insights to possible answers to the questions about your ancestors’ immigration. All three Polish partitions are covered and the material will hopefully clear-up your confusion why your Polish ancestors listed that they were born in other countries on early U.S. documents.

 Polish Genealogy – Four Steps to Success

Where do you start your research of your Polish Ancestors? Finding your Polish ancestors is a challenge. This presentation simplifies the confusing elements of Polish research: border changes that confuse us on where our ancestors were born. Logical steps are given on how to search for Polish documents, where to find Polish documents, and translating Polish documents. This material will jump-start your research and help you enjoy your Polish Heritage.

 Finding Grandma’s Polish Birthplace & Ancestors (two programs)

This program is designed to be two 1 hour sessions. I will use the two programs to discuss in detail how I found the Polish records for my grandmother’s ancestors. All of the examples will be of my Polish ancestors. The first part will focus on how to find the location of the birthplaces of your ancestors. It will discuss which records to search and some tips on how best to search U.S. records for clues. The second part will focus on how to find the vital records for your ancestors in the “old country.” I will also discuss tips I used to translate them.  I will also share some resources that go beyond the traditional documents that have enabled me to gather documents, pictures, and information that has enriched my understanding and knowledge of my heritage.

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