Saturday, October 22, 2016

Southwest Ohio DNA Interest Group (SWOHDNA)

On 10-17-2016, we held our first Southwest Ohio DNA Interest Group meeting (SWOHDNA) at the MidPointe Library in West Chester. About 30 people attended. We have since received 8 more requests to join. A DNA Interest Group subpage has been added to the website. Just go to “Interest Groups” and click on “DNA Interest Group” listed below. Information related to genetic genealogy is posted there.

The group has also developed a “google groups” page (SWOHDNA) which currently has 62 members. To find it, search “goggle groups” and type in “SWOHDNA.” You can request to be a member of the group.

Because of numerous requests from out-of-town HCGS members, we are currently in the process of editing a video the first presentation for sharing on our website. In the first presentation, we discussed the three types of DNA available for genealogical use and the three main companies that process it: Ancestry DNA, 23andme and FTDNA. All three companies process autosomal DNA (atDNA). For this reason, we decided to focus on atDNA initially. We look at the video as a benefit for out-of-town members, as well as those who may not be available for an individual meeting.  Once processing is completed, the video will be posted on our website.

The next meeting is scheduled at the MidPointe Library in West Chester on Tuesday, November 29 from 7:00 – 8:45. We will discuss how to interpret DNA results and use them to identify family members. Reference populations, ethnicity results, triangulation and how to transfer results to Gedmatch will be among the topics discussed. If you have Ancestry results or want to order a kit for processing in the future, you may want to consider joining the group.

This group is not limited to members of HCGS. Participants come from all over southwest Ohio and northern Kentucky. To be put on the mailing list, send a request to

Submitted by Kathy Reed
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Thursday, October 20, 2016

Gold Star Mothers from World War I to the Present - November 12th

Are you familiar with this banner? I first saw it in a picture of my family from World War II. My father and his brothers went off to fight in the war one by one, and this banner in the front window told all passersby that three members of this family were serving. A gold star indicated that a family member had died.

Over time, mothers experiencing this unspeakable loss, came together to support each other. The organization became known as the American Gold Star Mothers, Inc. HCGS Librarian, Brian Powers, has met with members of this organization. Together, they have worked to identify some of the genealogical records that can help us better understand those local families whose children paid the ultimate price.
Click to enlarge

On November 12, the Genealogy and Local History Department will present two programs on Gold Star Mothers from World War I to the present.  On November 12, the Genealogy and Local History will hold two programs highlighting the contributions of Gold Star Mothers. There are two programs -- 11:00 am and 1:00 pm. The afternoon program, co-sponsored with HCGS, will discuss genealogical records that can be useful in researching those who made the ultimate sacrifice. We hope to see you then.

Submitted by Kathy Reed

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Saying Goodbye to Vietnam

HCGS asked me to share this with our group. Although this is not an HCGS program, Chris Smith assures me that Ken Williamson and native Cincinnatian has created an excellent photographic memoir of his time in Vietnam and what he learned in two return trips in 1998 and 2005. The program will take place at 11:00 am on Saturday, November 5th.

Submitted by Kathy Reed

Monday, September 26, 2016

Are you a Lisa Louise Cooke fan? Check out this FREE event!

Lisa Louise Cooke is coming to the Columbus Metropolitan Library on Saturday, October 8th. Read the flyer below to see how to make reservations for this FREE day-long event.

Submitted by Kathy Reed

Sunday, September 18, 2016

Plots, Twists, Character Development, Suspense, Action!

We all want to write engaging ancestral biographies. Getting started is often the most difficult part. The "Writer's Workshop--Memoir Writing" may provide the motivation you need. The workshop will tell you how to craft life stories into creative non-fiction.
Jeff Hillard will lead the workshop. Jeff is the Writer-in-Residence of the Library Foundation. This workshop is not sponsored by HCGS. We wish we had thought of it!
  • When: 24 September 2016 at 1 p.m.
  • Where: PLCH Main Library, Huenefeld Tower Room
  • For further information, see
Submitted by Liz Stratton

Thursday, September 8, 2016

"Next Stop: Cincinnati Public Library"

Looking for a way to celebrate the opening of Cincinnati's new streetcars? Get off at the stop near the main library for two presentations that feature the history of transportation in Cincinnati:

Saturday, September 10, 1 pm, "It's a Family Affair: Cincinnati's Early Streetcar Drivers, Conductors and Mechanics" will be presented by Patricia Van Skaik in the main library Atrium. This talk includes an HCGS board member's ancestor.

Sunday, September 11, 2 pm, "Moving Cincinnati: A History of Trolleys, Cable Cars, Inclines and Streetcars" will be presented by Rob J. Wimberg in the main library Atrium.
Transportation touched our ancestors lives in ways difficult to anticipate. My first cousin twice removed made the front page of the Cincinnati Enquirer when she was involved in an accident in 1923. Her death was one of many that spurred changes in Cincinnati's traffic safety laws. "Sepia Saturday 98: Chaos in the Streets" gives more details. This is not the same ancestor that Patricia features in her talk. To learn who is a descendant of a transportation worker, you'll have to attend on the 10th!