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Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter

A Weekly Summary of Events and
Topics of Interest to Online Genealogists

Vol. 7 No. 18 – May 6, 2002

This newsletter was sponsored by,
a leader in providing print and electronic
research information to genealogists.

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- Hardware Failure Strikes Newsletter Author
- 1066 & The Norman Conquest on CD-ROM
- The Bondwoman’s Narrative
- An Old Genealogy Scam Reappears
- FamilySearch Chinese Language Catalog To Go Online
- Scottish Archive Network
- Monticello's Theories of Relativity
- StarOffice/ Update
- Our Ancestors’ Personal Hygiene
- Upcoming Events

- Hardware Failure Strikes Newsletter Author

This newsletter is being sent a day late because of a hardware failure. One of my computers at home suffered a power supply failure in the middle of the night. Apparently it also scrambled some of the data on the hard drive. I do not yet know if the motherboard was damaged or not; I hope to test that later this week.

Luckily, I had a full backup of the hard drive that was less than 24 hours old, so I didn’t lose much. My computers make backups automatically every night, starting just after midnight. That’s easy to do with Windows 2000, and I think it is as easy in Windows XP. Other versions of Windows will easily make backups although the middle-of-the-night scheduling may require a third-party product.

The problem I faced was that it took quite a bit of time to obtain a replacement computer, load the necessary version of Windows on it, and then restore the data. I happened to have a spare computer on hand, so I was able to do this in less than a day. Had I needed to purchase a new computer, the recovery could have taken a lot longer.

OK, so here is a question for you: What happens to your data if your computer loses a power supply and scrambles your disk drive? Do you lose all the many hours’ of work you expended in recording your family tree? How about your Quicken checkbook or your income tax records? Perhaps you have important letters that you have written that you need to preserve.

My advice is simple: make backups. Now.

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- 1066 & The Norman Conquest on CD-ROM

On October 14, 1066, Harold Godwinson, last King of the English, died on Senlac Ridge outside Hastings while defending his kingdom against an invading army led by William the Bastard, Duke of Normandy. When he died on the battlefield, the English army melted away. With no clear replacement to lead the English defense against the invaders, the way was clear for the beginning of the Norman Conquest.

The Norman Conquest was the most pivotal event in English history. The Norman Conquest then influenced the English monarchy, government, society, language, and outlook for centuries.

Now a new e-book on CD-ROM provides an excellent insight into this pivotal point in history. According to the brochure for "1066 & The Norman Conquest," the CD-ROM disk will allow you to:

  • Read about the reasons for the Norman invasion and conquest of England.
  • Meet those involved in the claims to the throne.
  • Study the armies who fought in 1066 and discover how the battles were won.
  • Find out how the English resisted the Normans for 34 years and read about those who led them.
  • Understand the changes the Norman Conquest wrought in English society and the English language.

The CD-ROM also includes the novel Woden's Wolf, a story of one man's resistance to the Normans.

I used the CD-ROM for a bit this week and found it to be very user-friendly. All of the files on the CD-ROM are in HTML and PDF formats; that is, you can view them with a Web browser and with Adobe Acrobat reader, a free program. The CD-ROM disk should work equally well on Windows and Macintosh. I even tried it on a Linux system and had success there as well. The format of this e-book allows you to jump back and forth from one topic to another, somewhat similar to surfing the Web. The CD is filled with stories and anecdotes.

Written by Geoff Boxell, this CD-ROM was made with the help and co-operation of Regia Anglorum and Ða Engliscan Gesiðas. It includes numerous graphics, drawings, and photographs. In addition, it contains animations, sound, and video clips. This educational CD-ROM is designed to fit the requirements of the English National Curriculum, Stage 3, Unit 1, as set by the Department for Education and Employment, London. It can also be used as a base for General Certificate of Secondary Education studies. It will also appeal to history buffs worldwide.

The "1066 & The Norman Conquest" CD-ROM sells for $15.00 U.S. funds, £10.00 in the U.K., and $20 in Australian and New Zealand dollars. All prices include shipping and handling. You can order it from Wendlewulf Productions, 60 Oliver Street, Kihi kihi, 2430, New Zealand or via e-mail from Jan Gow at Beehive Books:

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- The Bondwoman’s Narrative

Last fall I wrote about a book that was soon to be published, called The Bondwoman’s Narrative. I can now report that the book indeed did reach print: I obtained a copy this week and am still reading it. The Bondwoman’s Narrative is an interesting story by itself but becomes truly fascinating when you understand the author’s background and qualifications.

Some years ago, when Professor Henry Louis Gates Jr., chair of Harvard University’s African-American Studies Department, found a listing in an auction catalog for an unpublished, clothbound manuscript thought to date from the 1850s: "The Bondwoman's Narrative, by Hannah Crafts, a Fugitive Slave, Recently Escaped from North Carolina." Gates realized that, if genuine, this would be the first novel known to have been written by a black woman in America, as well as the only one by a fugitive slave. He bought the manuscript and began to analyze it.

The Bondwoman's Narrative by Hannah Crafts is billed as a fictional novel although Professor Gates makes a strong case for it being an autobiographical work by a self-educated black woman. Gates used genealogy research techniques to locate the author in old censuses and tax records. Hannah Crafts writes about a black woman’s early life as the slave in the household of John Wheeler. Indeed, a Mr. John Hill Wheeler is found in numerous state and Federal records. John Hill Wheeler of those records appears to be the same person that Hannah Crafts is describing in her novel.

The real John Hill Wheeler was a slave owner who lived in North Carolina and later in Washington, D.C. He held numerous state and Federal offices and served for a while as ambassador to Nicaragua. John Hill Wheeler was a prolific writer, and many of his works have survived. His description of his life and locations fits the description of the supposedly fictional John Wheeler mentioned in the novel. As a writer, one would assume that he kept a library of books that might be accessible to his household slaves. As such, one can imagine that a slave could become educated while living in Mr. Wheeler’s household.

The real John Wheeler had a slave named Jane Johnson. His diary describes a trip to Philadelphia in 1855. Slave Jane Johnson and her two sons accompanied Wheeler on that trip and then escaped while in the city. The novel by Hannah Crafts describes a very similar escape by the author, so it would appear that the escaped slave, Jane Johnson, wrote this novel under the pseudonym of Hannah Crafts.

Hannah Crafts writes about slavery as only a person under bondage could write. She describes her life and the lives of those around her in the Wheeler household. Such a description is rare, perhaps unprecedented. The Bondwoman's Narrative by Hannah Crafts is believed to be one of the few narratives written by a slave that describes the life she lived. Other such slave narratives were usually edited by white abolitionists before being published. Hannah Crafts’ narrative therefore has great historical importance if its origins can be proved: this manuscript supposedly was written by a black woman, unedited, unaffected, and unaided by anyone else. As such, it provides an insight into slave life that is unavailable elsewhere.

The Bondwoman’s Narrative by Hannah Crafts is a fascinating glimpse of American life as lived by those under bondage. It is a difficult book to put down.

The Bondwoman’s Narrative, a novel by Hannah Crafts and edited by Henry Louis Gates, Jr., is published by Warner Books. It retails for $24.95. You can find it at many bookstores. If it is not in stock, it can be ordered if you specify ISBN 0-446-53008-5. I also found it online from Barnes & Noble at a discounted price of $17.46 at:

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- FamilySearch Chinese Language Catalog To Go Online

Almost all the online genealogy databases available today use the European alphabets. As a result, anyone researching their family tree in Asian, Arabian, or other countries that do not use the European alphabets cannot yet use the latest tools enjoyed by other genealogists. However, that will change soon for Chinese records.

The following is a press release from Cybersia Capital Corporation:

Cybersia Offers Free Access to World's Largest Chinese Genealogy Catalogue

SINGAPORE, April 30 -- Cybersia Capital Corp., the world's premier provider of Chinese ancestry and genealogy information, today announced that it will make the FamilySearch™ Chinese Language Catalog freely available online through its subsidiary Chineseroots Pte Ltd. at

The catalogue, which references one of the world's largest collections of Chinese family histories, is owned by the Genealogical Society of Utah (GSU), a nonprofit institution funded by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. The online catalogue will help users to identify records they would like to search in the GSU's collection of thousands of Chinese genealogies and local histories preserved on microfilm and available through a worldwide network of family history centers.  Locations of these centers are available at

"GSU has been dedicated to the accumulation and preservation of genealogical information around the world for over a hundred years and is the world's leading genealogy-based institution. We are therefore very pleased to be working with the GSU to bring this Chinese family history catalogue online, helping to bring important family-related information to the Church's members and our users alike -- millions of overseas and mainland Chinese -- aiding research and promoting the passion of family history preservation," said Cybersia's CEO, Steve Simpson.

"With the rapid development and growth of the Chinese Internet space, together with the significant growth of the genealogy industry worldwide, we are accelerating our endeavors to provide online family history records to the global Chinese. Prior to this online release, the only public access to the GSU catalogue was in the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah, USA. The new Internet access to the Chinese Language Catalogue through the website is a great step forward for Chinese genealogy," added Mr. Simpson.

Note that the announcement states that Cyberasia announced that it will make the FamilySearch™ Chinese Language Catalog available online in the future. The catalog is not available today. Chad Milliner and I exchanged e-mails on this topic this week, and Chad wrote, "It is my understanding that this new catalog will not display all of the library's Chinese holdings because the library has not yet retrospectively converted the cards in its legacy card catalog that were typed in the various Asian languages. These cards have, however, been microfilmed, and are available to Family History Centers in that format. Also, the library has cataloged some of the Chinese records in Romanized format, and I don't think Chinese Roots will get those records since they are already available on the FHLC online."

I hope to write more about this when the Chinese records become available online.

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- An Old Genealogy Scam Reappears

There is a Web site that sends out unsolicited e-mails offering to give you access to the world’s largest genealogy database for only $44.95. At first, that might sound like a good deal. However, the e-mails don’t mention the source of this "world's largest" genealogy database. It is the Internet and is free to everyone -- except for the gullible folks who fall for these e-mails.

What the e-mails do not tell you is that your money only buys you access to a list of links. These links on the Web site present the other sites inside HTML frames, making it look like the other sites are a part of original site’s "service." They do this without telling you that the contents are not created by them, but actually are the intellectual property of the originators. was one source of these misleading e-mails. The site was in business for a year or so and gained notoriety within the genealogy community. Their Web site disappeared recently, apparently being shut down by the Internet service provider that hosted the online "service" after complaints by many users. However, a new Web site has recently appeared, operating a site that looks like but under a different name. It appears that the owner of the new Web site is the same person who owned the earlier one. The new Web site is

The new Web site proclaims that you can "Search Over 23 Billion Genealogy Records Right From This Website." That claim is absolutely correct. Of course, you can search the same 23 billion records without going to that Web site and without paying $44.95. If you read the fine print at, you will note that it says, "We do not offer access to a database of records but we do offer the ability to search billions of online records spanned across the Internet." The reality is that you can find all those links, and more, elsewhere on the Web. I suspect that most of them are available on Cyndi’s List at Of course, Cyndi’s List is free of charge.

There are a couple of "watchdog sites" that watch for Web sites like and The International Blacksheep Society of Genealogists maintains a "Genealogy Hall of Shame" at: The Watchdog Committee maintains the "Genealogical Web Site Watchdog" at: You might also want to check Cyndi’s List at: If you ever have a question about an online genealogy "service," I’d suggest that you check these sites before spending any money.

You can also check some of my past articles about genealogy scams, both online and off, at: and at

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- Scottish Archive Network

The Scottish Archive Network (SCAN) now has a complete index to all the registers of Scottish wills, which is available free of charge on their Web site. Digital images of the wills are being made available for purchase. The digitization project is underway now and is due for completion in early 2003.

I spent a bit of time on the new Web site and found it easy to use. There are two search options: a simple one that searches only by first and last names, and an advanced search option that allows you to search by first and last names as well as by description (title or occupation or place, beginning date and ending date). For instance, I did a simple search on the last name of McAlister and found many entries for that name. Here are the first few:






Mate of the Princess Royal Fishery Cutter, residing in Rothesay


Rothesay Sheriff Court






Inspector of Poor of the Parish of Rothesay


Rothesay Sheriff Court






Seaman sometime in Laigh Bogany thereafter in Rothesay


Rothesay Sheriff Court






Farmer in Kilpatrick, Arran


Rothesay Sheriff Court






Clerk residing in Victoria Street Rothesay


Rothesay Sheriff Court






sometime general merchant in Singapore, presently residing in No.14 Montgomerie Street, Ardrossan


Ayr Sheriff Court Testamentary Deeds


When the full images become available online, you should be able to click on the above names, enter a credit card number, and then view the images of the original document listed. Even in today’s format, the information shown above can be valuable as it tells you where you can find original documents on microfilm.

The Scottish Wills team has a permanent staff of three archivists from the National Archives of Scotland (NAS), and two conservators, with 11 volunteers from the Genealogical Society of Utah (GSU).

You can find the Scottish Archive Network Web site at:

[Return to Table of Contents]

- Monticello's Theories of Relativity

A debate has raged for two centuries about the possibility that Thomas Jefferson fathered one or more children by his slave, Sally Hemings. The evidence increased when DNA samples from several of Hemings’ documented descendants was compared with that of descendants of Field Jefferson, a paternal uncle of Thomas Jefferson. The tests proved that Hemings' child was fathered either by Jefferson or by one of his close male relatives. However, such a test could not prove or disprove descent from the former president.

Now an article in the Washington Post says that a 24-page report presented by a committee of the Monticello Association -- a group representing more than 700 lineal descendants of Jefferson and his wife, Martha -- recommends that Hemings' offspring be denied membership in the Association and that the claims that Thomas Jefferson fathered children by Sally Hemings be discounted. You can read the entire article at:

My thanks to Walt Newcomb for letting me know about the Washington Post article.

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- StarOffice/ Update

I am a big fan of an office productivity suite known as StarOffice, produced by Sun Microsystems. This program is a direct competitor to Microsoft Office; it contains programs that are the equivalent of Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and more. StarOffice can even read and write files used by Word, Excel and PowerPoint. Best of all is its price; instead of $479 per copy or more that Microsoft charges for Office, StarOffice has been free. I have written about StarOffice several times, you can read my comments at, and at

Now StarOffice has branched into two programs. The name StarOffice is retained by Sun Microsystems, and the program will soon become commercial. That is, Sun Microsystems will soon begin charging for support of the program. The second program is is a non-profit group of programmers that has just released its version of the program. The program’s name is the same as that of the organization: The new program is based on the same code as StarOffice. In other words, the two programs are almost identical right now but will become different in the future as the two groups independently add new features to their productivity suites. will remain free of charge. 1.0 includes a word processor, spreadsheet, presentation graphics and other applications. It is the result of 18 months of collaboration between Sun developers and more than 10,000 volunteer developers, a venture that began when Sun donated the StarOffice code to the open-source or "free software" community. is an excellent set of programs, nearly as powerful as the $479 offering from Microsoft. I find it easy to use as well. OpenOffice 1.0 is available now for Microsoft Windows, Linux and Solaris. A Macintosh version is promised to be available later this year.

You can read an excellent review of at,3658,s=708&a=26349,00.asp and download the free software at:

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- Our Ancestors’ Personal Hygiene

When thinking about the lives of our ancestors, many of us consider them to be the "good old days" when life was less complicated, people were not in a hurry, and modern technology had not yet appeared. However, we should also remember that times were hard, people worked long hours for small wages, health care was terrible, and today’s conveniences were not yet invented.

Take toilet paper, for instance. Did you know that TP wasn’t available until 1890? And that it didn’t become popular until many years later?

These facts and more are now available at the new "Privy to the Past" exhibit at the Neville Museum in Green Bay, Wisconsin. You can read all about it on ABC News’ Web site at: The site even has a section entitled, "Great Moments in Toilet Paper History."

One "fact" that fascinated me was that, even as late as 1935, advancement in bathroom technology was still pretty slow. Advertising that year for Northern Tissue boasted that its toilet paper was "Splinter-Free!" I hate to think what it was like prior to 1935.

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- Upcoming Events

The Upcoming Events section of this newsletter is published once per month, usually in the first newsletter of each month. Each event will be listed very briefly: title, date(s), location, and sponsoring organization, all followed by either an e-mail address or a Web page that you can use to find more information. Since detailed information is available via e-mail or the Web, I will not list the details in this newsletter. If you do contact any of these organizations, please tell them where you heard about the event.

Here are the listings, arranged by date. A listing in bold text indicates a new listing that has been added since the last time this list was published:

The Kentucky Genealogical Society’s General Meeting will be held on May 9, 2002 at the Kentucky History Center, Frankfort. Dr. Brent Kennedy from Tennessee will discuss "The Melungeon Roots." For further information, contact

The Georgia Genealogical Society will be sponsoring the Ulster Historical Society in an all-day workshop May 11th. For details, check the society's Web site at

The U.S. National Genealogical Society's "2002 Conference in the States" will be held May 15 through 18 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Well over 100 presentations will be made. Details are available at:

The CHAPMAN Family Association annual convention will be held in Salt Lake City on 17-19 May 2002. Events include an introduction and tour of Family History Library, classes, research, tours, and Mormon Tabernacle Choir Performance. All Chapmans are welcome. For details visit website at

The Humble (Texas) Area Genealogical Society's Annual Seminar will be May 18, 2002 in Kingwood, Texas. Trevia Wooster Beverly is the guest speaker. Topics will include: The Bathtub Count ("regular census plus ones we don't use often"); The Bexar and Nacogdoches Archives and the R.B. Blake Papers (Early Texas collections.... but these people all came from someplace else); The Black and White of It (Newspaper research); Women and their Records: Kings Daughters & Casket Girls, Maides to Make Wives, America's Witches, Soiled Doves and Those Harvey Girls. More information can be found at:

The A.I.G.S. annual Computer Event will be held at the World Vision Conference Centre in Burwood, Victoria, Australia on Saturday 18th May. This year it will be called "Making Connections - Family History in the Computer Age" The event will have displays and demonstrations on all aspects of Family History and Computers. Included will be Internet demonstrations and a wide range of Family History programs for you to try out. For more information, please contact:

The Wingfield Family Society will have its 16th annual meeting in New Orleans, LA on May 24-26, 2002. Attendees are expected from the U. S., Canada and England. For more information interested persons should look at:

The Harper Reunion will be held on May 25, 2002 in Douglas, Georgia at the American Legion Hall. This reunion is for the descendants of Leonard Harper although any other Harpers will be welcomed. Information is available from:

To celebrate their 25th anniversary, the Quebec Family History Society will be hosting the largest ever conference on family history in Quebec on May 31, June 1 and June 2, 2002 at Montreal's McGill University. All presentations will be in English and full details are available on the QFHS web site:

The 18th Annual all-day Family History Seminar, Roots XVIII, of The Huntington (New York) Historical Society will be held Saturday, June 1, 2002. National, international and local speakers will present 16 lectures. The exhibit hall will feature genealogical vendors and representatives from various ethnic genealogical organizations. For information, send an e-mail to:

The German Research Association meeting on June 1, 2002 in San Diego, CA will featured Edward R. Brandt, Ph.D., co-author of Germanic Genealogy: A Guide to Worldwide Sources and Migration Patterns and an upcoming guide to research in East and West Prussia. Topics of his presentation include: "Tracing your Germanic Ancestors around the World: Where Did They Come From? Where Did They Go?" and "New Perspectives on Researching Germanic Peoples East of the Oder-Neisse with Primary Emphasis on East and West Prussia." Further information can be obtained from:

The first "Family Tree Day" at the Oxfordshire (England) Record Office will be held 8 June 2002. Hosted by the staff of the record office in conjunction with the Oxfordshire Family History Society, the day will have numerous attractions including computer demonstrations. The society’s computerised search services and newly computerised birth brief index will also be available for consultation. The biggest feature of "Family History Day" will be the opportunity for family historians to consult prime records of relevance to their research with an expert at their elbow. Further information about "Family Tree Day" and about the Oxfordshire Family History Society can be obtained from the society’s website at:

The Virginia Genealogical Society will sponsor the 2002 running of the Virginia Institute of Genealogical Research, 9-13 June 2002 in Richmond. The four-day, four-night institute for Virginia researchers will be held in Richmond. For full details, contact the Virginia Genealogical Society at:

The Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research will be held June 9-14, 2002. This week-long course is one of the best in genealogy. Details are available at:

The Wing Family of America, Inc. will be hosting its Centennial Reunion 1902 - 2002 "Seeing Our Past - Facing Our Future" at East Sandwich, Massachusetts from June 13 - 16, 2002. Planned Highlights include: 1640's Dinner - One Plate, One Spoon. Guest Appearances by Wing "Ancestors," Clam Bake, Auction, Quilting Project, Special Souvenirs. For more information see the WFA website at

Honoring the Legacy of Our Fathers" is the theme of the 2nd Annual West Coast Summit on African American Genealogy, hosted by the African American Genealogy Society of Sacramento, California. The Summit will be held June 14-15, 2002 at the Sacramento Convention Center and will bring together all of the major black genealogical associations in the West. Groups from San Diego, Los Angeles, Orange County, Oakland, Seattle and Sacramento will meet to share information on a variety of topics including: "People of Color in the Bible," "Using Color Clues in African American Genealogy Research," "Louisiana Conveyance Records," "Freedmen Enrollment in the Five Civilized Tribes," and several others. The keynote speaker will be Reginald Washington, African American Genealogy Subject Area Specialist, National Archives, Washington, D.C., who will give his presentation on "The Southern Claims Commission." Full details are available at:

Enhance Your Genealogy Research at East Tennessee Historical Society Conference on June 14-15, 2002 in Knoxville, Tennessee. 15 Guest Speakers and Midnight Research Hours will be featured at the Knoxville gathering. Nationally noted genealogist and lecturer, Dr. George K. Schweitzer, will be the keynote lecturer, discussing research of German ancestry. A special feature of this year's conference will be the "Midnight at the McClung Historical Collection," research event. Full details are available at the society's web site at

The Wayne County (Pennsylvania) Historical Society will host Genealogy Fair 2002 on June 15 in Hawley, PA. Fifteen regional historical and genealogical societies will combine forces for this all-day event. This year's theme is "Cherchez la Femme: Female Troubles in Genealogy." In addition to a theme-based morning panel and afternoon workshop, there will be a beginners' workshop. For more information, contact:

The 2002 Trick Family Reunion will be held June 15, 2002 in Anderson, Indiana. Copies of the "Trick Family Tapestry" will be available on CD-ROM. A computer will be available with a digital camera and a scanner. This reunion is for the descendants of John Frederick Trick, born 1791, and Johann H Trick, born April 14, 1793. They emigrated in 1832 from Dornstadt, Wurtenburg (Germany) to Preble and Darke Counties, Ohio. For additional information, contact:

Ethan Allen Days will be held June 15, & 16, 2002 in Sunderland, Vermont. The roar of revolutionary cannons and the crack of musket fire will echo along the Ethan Allen Highway and through the historic Battenkill River Valley where Allen mustered his band of Green Mountain Boys! Sponsored by the Manchester & the Mountains Regional Chamber of Commerce, the weekend will feature battle reenactments, period music, food, camp tours, artisans, and fun for the entire family as Ethan Allen Days returns for its tenth anniversary celebration. This year Ethan Allen Days is also a part of "The Northern Campaign 2002"; sponsored by the Living History Association, this is a series of events celebrating the 225th anniversary of the invasion of the Champlain and Hudson Valleys in 1777. Details may be found at:

The 5th Biennial Sisson Gathering, for genealogists and family members interested in the Sisson Family, will take place June 20 to 22 in Kansas City, Missouri. You can find all the details at:

A family reunion is planned for June 21, 22 and 23rd in Conway, Arkansas for the following families: Descendants of Augustus, Henry, Charles, Hannah and Caroline Hartje, Jonathan and Eliza Bartlett, Mattie, Jessie, Jenny and Henry Duke, Jacob Thomas and Margaret Brevard, John F. Thomas and Elizabeth Ethridge, James Trice Hall Sr., and Apphia Slaydon. Details may be obtained from:

The first "Fergus/Related Families Gathering" at Cookeville, Putnam County, Tennessee will be held June 21-23, 2002. The "Gathering" is hosted by the descendants of Francis Fergus, born 1752. He immigrated from Co. Tyrone, Ireland, to Bucks Co, PA by 1775. There are living descendants from 8 of his 9 children. Copies of the "The Fergus Family History" book will be available for reference and may be ordered prior to or at the reunion. Information about the "Fergus/Related Families Reunion" can be obtained from the Francis Fergus Descendants' website at:

The 2002 Annual Schwanger Family Association Reunion will be held on Saturday, 22 June 2002, in Lewisburg, Pennsylvania. This is for all families named Schwanger, Swanger Or Swoner. Details may be obtained from

The 2002 National Conference of Palatines to America will be held in Springfield, Illinois on June 27 through 29. Palatines to America is a national genealogical society of those seeking the origin and family history of their German-speaking ancestors. The opening presentation will be by Dr. George Schweitzer on "Was Your Ancestor A Wine Drinking, A Beer Drinking or A Schnapps Drinking German?" During the conference he will present other subjects, including "Rivers to Trails to Roads to Canals to Trains." Other presentations during this conference will include: Dr. David Koss of Illinois College will speak on "You Don’t Have to be English to Have Royal Blood," Dr. John Colletta of the National Archives and Smithsonian Institution will give presentations on "Only a Few Bones: Case Studies in Pulling Sources Together to Reconstruct Real-life Events" and "Discovering Real Stories of Your Immigrant Ancestors," and Robert Frizzell of Northwest Missouri State University will present "Migration Chains to Illinois." For additional information or registration materials, send an e-mail to:

The Heinrich FREY, FRYE, FRY Family Association will hold its Bi-annual National Family Reunion in Pacifica, California, on June 28-30, 2002. Many events are planned, including: Meet and Greet, sightseeing day trips, all-day seminars with buffet lunch, evening buffet dinner with speaker, and a Sunday Worship Service. Information may be found at:

The British Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research Trip will be held June 30 - July 22, 2002. This study tour offers a unique opportunity to research your roots in the major repositories in London and in the record offices of York and Yorkshire. The Samford University British Study Tour is designed for a small group of curious, inquiring, active researchers. It features flexibility, practical experience, and guidance. Details are available at:

The Genealogical Society Of Hispanic America’s Genealogical Conference will be held July 5-7, 2002 in Pueblo, Colorado. This year’s theme is "We Are All Related." A special attraction at this year’s event is the Molecular Genealogy Research Project- DNA Research Project. Bring a 4-generation pedigree chart and participate in the blood draw. Once the database is completed, the Project will be able to map out the origin of families and populations. For details, visit the conference website:

The FREY family reunion is planned for Saturday, July 6th, at Petties Lake, Sellersville, Pennsylvania for the descendants of Jacob and Barbara (Schnepf) FREY, 1830 immigrants from Alsace Lorraine, France, to Schuylkill County. Events include discussion of family descendants and photos, genealogy reports, and family activities. For information contact:

The Friends of Genealogy (FOG) at the Newberry Library will present "The Children Are Coming!" on Thursday, July 11, at 6 p.m. at the Newberry Library in Chicago. In 1853, a process began in New York whereby the overcrowded orphanages and foundling homes were to be relieved of their pressures by the "placing out" of children who were considered orphans. By 1929, an estimated 200,000 to 250,000 children were relocated from large eastern cities to families in other parts of the nation or territories. In researching one’s own family during this 75-year period, one may have discovered an "adopted" son or daughter or a non-apparent family member listed as a boarder, servant or apprentice. The history of the Orphan Train may have a clue to a genealogist’s "brick wall." For more information, call (312) 255-3510.

The Fourth National Stidham Family Reunion, sponsored by the Timen Stiddem Society, will be held July 11-14, 2002, in Fort Wayne, Indiana. Special guest speaker at the annual membership meeting on Friday July 12th will be Curt Witcher, manager of the Historical Genealogy Department at the Allen County Public Library and current President of the National Genealogical Society. For complete details of the weekend's activities, including a printable reunion registration form, go to the Timen Stiddem Society web site at:

The German Interest Group - Wisconsin is hosting "Workshop on German States" on 13 July 2002 in Whitewater, Wisconsin. German states to be presented are: Rhineland, Pomerania, Mecklenburg, Prussia, Posen, Wuerttemberg, Hanover, Schleswig-Holstein, East and West Prussia, and German Bohemia. Additional general German genealogical topics will also be offered. For more information and registration see:

The British Isles Family History Society - U.S.A. presents their 15th annual Genealogical Seminar aboard the Queen Mary, in Long Beach, California on 18-19-20 July 2002. Speakers will be Kyle Betit, Jan Gow, Else Churchill, Linda Jonas, Barbara Renick, Judith Eccles Wight, Dr. I. D. E. Thomas and Dr. Ivan Johnson. For more information please see:

The "Hooked on Genealogy Tours" has been taking annual tours to Salt Lake City and the UK since 1992. This year's tour leaves Auckland, New Zealand on Wed 17 July. Tour members will attend the British Isles Family History Society USA's Annual Conference on the Queen Mary. This will be followed by a trip to Salt Lake City. For more details, look at:

The sixth annual family reunion for the Wisner/Wezenaar descendants and families will be held July 19, 20, and 21, 2002 in Marinette, Wisconsin. Planned events include a cemetery tour, big picnic, fish fry dinner, family bloodline charts, genealogy reports and more. For information, contact:

The Brion/Carson 77th annual reunion will be held July 21, 2002 at the Little Pine State Park in Waterville, Pa. For more information please contact:

The Cleveland County Genealogical Society of Norman, Oklahoma will host their 17th annual Seminar on July 27, 2002. Michael John Neill will be the featured speaker. His topics are: "Tried and Tested Tidbits," "Organization of Information," "Illinois Research" and "I Found It: Now What do I do?" Details are available at:

The Boone Society, Inc. Family Reunion will be held in Wilsonville, Oregon, on July 31- August 3rd. Two full days will be devoted to touring this historic and stunningly beautiful area! Included on the agenda are the Columbia River Gorge, Mt. Hood, Barlow Road (part of the famous Oregon Trail), Multnomah Falls, the Oregon Coast, and Salem, the state capitol. Of course many Boone sites will be visited and observed. For additional information, look at:

Mid-Wales Event: The Fourth Annual Local and Family History Fair is to be held on Saturday 3 August 2002 from 10am to 4pm at The Pavilion Conference Centre, Spa Road, Llandrindod Wells, Powys. It will be hosted by Powys Family History Society. Exhibitors invited include local and family history societies from Wales and the Border; Gwent and Powys Archives Offices, Brecon Military Museum; Capel; The Radnor Society; and trade stands etc. Richard & Marjorie Moore are in attendance again with their genealogical 'Help Desk'. For further details please see:

The 28th Annual Seminar of the Kentucky Genealogical Society is set for Saturday, 3 August 2002, in Frankfort, Kentucky. The seminar speaker is Christine Rose, from San Jose, CA. Her four one-hour sessions are: - 1/Estates: A Goldmine!; 2/Avoid the Crooked Past! Genealogical Problem Solving; 3/Too Young for the Revolution; too Old for the Civil War - Military Records Between the Wars; 4/Using Little Known and Neglected Sources; A Potpourri. Information is available from:

The 2002 Bi-Annual reunion for the Jacob Mica Truman Family will be held in the Salt Lake City area on the 3rd of August. Details of the event can be found by clicking on "Reunion 2002" at the following web page:

The Federation of Genealogical Societies and the California State Genealogical Alliance invite you to attend the 2002 FGS Conference, to be held in Ontario, California on August 7 through 10, 2002. This is one of the larger conferences held in the U.S. Details are available at:

The 115th Annual Mapes Family Reunion will be held on August 10, 2002 in Phillipsport, NY. Phillipsport is between Wurtsboro and Ellenville on Route 209. Copies of the 3-volume Mapes genealogy will be available at special Reunion prices, and laptop computers will be available with the complete current Mapes Family database for genealogical research. For additional information, contact:

The annual John Teeter Beam reunion is scheduled for August 18, 2002 at New Prospect Baptist Church near Shelby, North Carolina. This is the location where John Teeter Beam formed a church. More information is available at:

The annual reunion of the Tarvin Family Association will be held September 12-14, 2002, in Indianapolis, Indiana. Nearly all Tarvins in the U.S. descend from Richard Tarvin, immigrant from England to Maryland in about 1708. Further reunion details are on the Tarvin Family Association web site at

The 7th K/Cavanagh C/Kavanaugh World Rally will be assembling in Ferns, County Wexford, Ireland, on September 20, 2002. Anyone with a direct or indirect connection is invited. There will be field trips, workshops, and the inauguration of the new clann chief. Details are available at

The Yellowstone Genealogy Forum celebrates its 25th anniversary year by hosting the Montana State Genealogical Society Conference in Billings, Montana on September 20-21, 2002. John Colletta is the featured speaker. For information, contact

The British Isles Family History Society of Greater Ottawa will hold its Eighth Annual Fall Conference on September 20-22, 2002 at the National Archives of Canada in Ottawa, Ontario. This year's theme is "Emigration/Immigration -- Focusing on your UK ancestors". The keynote speaker will be Tom Devine, Institute Director, Research Institute of Irish and Scottish Studies, and Research Professor in Scottish History, University of Aberdeen. Further information will be posted on

The Howes Family Reunion is scheduled for September 21, 2002 at the Fairgrounds in Cummington, MA. The theme for this reunion is "Maple in Massachusetts". The society was founded in 1987 and currently holds a reunion every three years. Many of the members, but not all, are descendants of Thomas Howes, who came to Plymouth Colony in 1637. For more information about this Reunion, please contact President Adelia Bardwell, PO Box 83, 159 Haydenville Rd., Whately, MA 01093

The Lee County (Florida) Genealogical Society will sponsor an Ancestor Tracking Seminar on September 27, 2002 in Ft. Myers. The keynote speaker will be George G. Morgan, who will present "All About Census Records" and "Developing Your Ancestor's Profile" (an interactive session involving participants). For more information, contact:

The Grand Traverse Area Genealogical Society (GTAGS) is having a seminar on September 28, 2002 in Traverse City, Michigan. The theme of the seminar is "Immigration to Michigan." The speakers for the seminar are Jana Sloan Broglin: "Migration and Settlement of the Old Northwest Territory"; Shirley Hodges: "Ethnic Migration to Michigan" and "Little Known Facts About the Census", and Brenda Moore: "French-Canadian Research." Additional information about the seminar is available on the GTAGS website at:

The Genealogical Council of Oregon's Seminar "Find it in the Past, Record it for the Future" will be held in Salem, Oregon. On October 4-6, 2002. Lectures will be by nationally known speakers including keynote speaker: Cyndi Howells. For information, contact:

"Ask the Experts: Chicago Resources" will be held on Thursday, October 10, at 6 p.m. at the Newberry Library in Chicago. Panelists will include speakers from the Circuit Court Archives, the Illinois Regional Archives Depository (IRAD), the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), and the Newberry Library. For more information, call (312) 255-3510.

The Tefft Family Association (descendents of John Tefft [Tift] of Rhode Island and his brother William Teffe of Boston) will hold its 4th reunion and annual meeting at South Kingstown, Rhode Island, October 12-14, 2002. For further information, contact:

Sharon DeBartolo Carmack will be all-day speaker for the Sonoma County Genealogical Society on 22 March 2003, in Santa Rosa, California. Details can be found at:

If you would like to see your event listed in future newsletters, send an e-mail to: You must include either a Web page that gives details or an e-mail address for the organization or for someone within the organization who is willing to supply the meeting details upon request. Please limit your listings to events where you expect 100 or more people to attend.

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About the author: Dick Eastman is the forum manager of the three Genealogy Forums on CompuServe. He also is the author of "YOUR ROOTS: Total Genealogy Planning On Your Computer" published by Ziff-Davis Press. He can be reached at: Due to the volume of e-mail received, he is unable to answer every e-mail message received.

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