Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Using Ante-Bellum Plantation Records and Slave Records

Among the many treasures found at the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County is a complete collection of the Ante-Bellum Plantation Records on microfilm. These unique records can be invaluable for researching ancestors who may have lived in slavery before 1865. These same records can be used to research plantation owners and their families. 

We are fortunate to have both Joyce Coleman, a genealogist at the National Underground Railroad Freedom Center and Jean Cooper, a Genealogical Resources Specialist at the University of Virginia, assist us in the use of these invaluable records. The weather is going to improve. I hope to see you there.

Submitted by Kathy Reed

Monday, January 27, 2014

DNA and Genealogy

Sharon Watson, Stephanie Winchester, Lois Fair, and Ken Watson 
View from the Huenefeld Room at the Cincinnati Public Library, Main Branch
Photo credit:  Bill Reed

Saturday, January 25th, was the day set aside for our Genealogy and DNA Seminar. Lots of planning and technology went into this event co-sponsored by the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County. Unfortunately, we experienced a four-inch snowfall during the night before along with freezing temperatures. 

A few brave attendees drove in all the way from Piqua. They are part of the Miami Valley Chapter of OGS. However, Cincinnatians were advised not to travel unless it was necessary, and many took that advice.

Photo Credit: Patricia Van Skaik
Liz Varga and Kathy Reed
Photo Credit: John Tholking

The seminar was in three sessions. The first two dealt with the genealogical aspects of DNA and was presented by Kathy Reed. Her daughter, Liz Varga, presented the third session. She is a Certified Genetic Counselor and was able to speak to the Health Results that have been a part of the 23andme analysis.

Since the event there have been emails wondering if the the event will be repeated due to the inclement weather. If that ends up being a possibility, we will let you know.

Special thanks is due to Jenny Davis (Digital Resource Director), John Tholking, and Gail Burkholz for their untiring efforts to enable us to post talks such as these on our website. In addition, none of this would be possible without our library partners, including Patricia Van Skaik and Chris Smith.

Submitted by Kathy Reed

Sunday, January 19, 2014

New Hamilton County Records on Family Search

If you haven't heard through facebook or twitter, we have exciting news! Thanks to the long-term efforts of Board Member Jim Dempsey and a team of volunteers from LDS, over half a million digitized Hamilton Co. records have been added to Familysearch.org

Just to give you a taste of the kinds of records that have been added, skim through this partial list on Naturalization records:

Need Probate Records? Look over this sample.

Finally, there are new additions to Hamilton County Vital Records on the site.

More details about the records, indexes and additions to our website will be discussed in the next edition of The Tracer. I can't think of anything better to do on these cold winter days than try to find some gems about my Hamilton County ancestors in this extensive collection. Thanks, Jim, for all of your efforts.

Submitted by Kathy Reed

Monday, January 6, 2014

January DNA Seminar at the Library

Mark your calendars, grab your winter coat and gloves and plan on attending our DNA Seminar at the Main Library on Saturday, January 25th from 10:00 AM to 1:00 PM. This event in three one-hour sessions should answer many of the questions you may have about using DNA to enhance your genealogy. We are very lucky to have a Certified Genetic Counselor, Elizabeth Varga, from Nationwide Children's in Columbus. She will help us understand the health results that were part of the 23andMe service. (Note: The FDA has ordered 23andMe to stop providing health results to its customers at this time. Kits purchased after November 22nd are still being processed for genealogical purposes and the raw data produced that can be transferred to other sites).

Invite your friends and come to what is sure to be a great day. Light refreshments will be served. Contact Kathy Reed at khreed@cinci.rr.com if you have any questions.

For those of you with a special interest in this topic, check out the year-end review of some of the major changes in this field that took place in 2013. 
2013 Dynamic Dozen Top Genetic Genealogy Happenings

Submitted by Kathy Reed

Friday, January 3, 2014

January issue of The Gazette now available

The January issue of The Gazette, our quarterly newsletter, is now available online. 

 Highlights in this issue:
  • Calendar of Upcoming Events
  • Jan. 25 program, "Using DNA to Enhance Your Genealogy", with Kathy Reed and Elizabeth Varga
  • Land Records series of upcoming programs
  • RSVP form and details for Annual Seminar with Michael Lacopo, a nationally known expert
  • Preserve the Pensions (War of 1812) matching funds initiative
  • HCGS President's message
  • Library news from PLCH

Please note that The Gazette is only published online on our website. If you have any questions, please contact us.

Posted by Jenny Davis