German-American Day L.A. & Oktoberfest

This Sunday, consider this event….  https://germandayla.com 

….where you can view the flyer shown below.

The date is Sunday, October 8th from 10 am until 6 pm, at Alpine Village in Torrance.

But whether or not you can make it, Happy German-American Day!

The Long Silence

To all, I apologize for the long silence.  It has been too difficult to keep up with everything else and also keep active with a blog.  But there are some new developments at the IGS Library that should be noted.

Those who come in might ask volunteer (and nominee to our Board) Janine Pizano about a project she and I are working on, and which was her idea, namely to build a database on our family histories and genealogies that goes beyond the catalog entry to specifically note information (such as major allied family names, time focus, major places of residence, etc.) that could assist researchers to learn about possible book resources they wouldn’t otherwise consult.  Databases, once constructed, are easily searchable.  And we want to see our books get more use and our researchers find more success.

A project of mine that now has received our Board’s approval, but which isn’t producing tangible results just yet, is to cull old research files and extract usable material (such as detailed request letters from lookup requestors, pedigree charts, document photocopies, etc.) to be filed according to major family in our surname files vertical file cabinets.  I found that — for the first 1,000 requests, dated from the late ‘80s — only 6% of requests had worthwhile material that should be saved to help others.  For the rest, we still have the volumes that were consulted to provide answers to the requests, so there’s really no need (this many years later) to save what we sent the requestors, as the search could be repeated easily if needed again.

Both of these projects are aimed at making what we have more available and useful to researchers.  Janine’s database project is partway into the letter “B,” and has covered exactly one shelf of books to date.  My filing project won’t immediately do anything beyond add to our IGS surname files, and there’s a lot of reorganizing of those files that also has to be done before they’ll be truly user-friendly.  And, at the moment, the papers selected for preservation have yet to be actually filed where they belong, so the project is only at the start.

But do come visit the Library.  New things are happening!

Re: Jamboree June 8 – 11

Attention, all friends of IGS!

Are you thinking you’ll not attend Jamboree this year because you don’t have the time or money for a full day’s activities?

Why not just come over for an hour or two to visit the IGS table and the other exhibitors?  The Jamboree Exhibit Hall is free and open to the public all weekend.  If you’re within commuting distance, you can still participate without making a major commitment!

If you park in the lot of the Marriott Burbank Airport Hotel, you can expect to pay for parking.  But the Exhibit Hall alone — with all the displays, products, and connections-to-be-made — can be well worth it.

Don’t miss out, come on over!!

Astrid Adler’s 5/13 talk at the Library

Thank you to all who came to hear her this afternoon, and welcome to those who plan to come on Tuesday evening to hear this engaging presentation.  Remember, May 16th at 1310 W. Magnolia Blvd. with informal reception at 6 pm and the talk beginning at 7 pm.  However, please plan on coming a bit earlier than you had planned, as we’ve received notice of filming that evening in the next block to our west — and parking could be at a premium.  [We have three lanes, for three cars each, behind our building off the alley.]

Now, here are photos from today’s talk….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When you come to hear her Tuesday, be sure to sign in at the front desk.  Astrid will be selling copies of her books — which she will inscribe for buyers if they wish — so come prepared.  She has done a great job telling the story of emigration to America from her home region, and these two books will make great gifts to family members who may wonder why genealogy fascinates you so!!  The first explains what the journey was like, and why people chose to make it.  The second tells the specific stories of eight families from her home town, including how they managed to adjust to their new country.

Astrid Adler’s Tuesday talk at IGS

This just in — there’s going to be filming activity in the next block of Magnolia Tuesday afternoon and evening.  What does that mean to us?  Simply that parking may be at a premium!

We received notice from TVM Productions, Inc. that filming will commence at 5 p.m. at 1420 W. Magnolia (Tyerman’s Automotive).  While we’ll be mostly unaffected, we learned that parking may well be restricted in front of our building, on Magnolia Blvd. all the way up to Mariposa Ave.  The West side of Griffith Park Drive, from Magnolia south to the alley, is also potentially “off limits.”

We’ve called to alert the company to our event, and it may be that part of the restricted spaces may be released for our use — but we won’t know for sure until Tuesday.  So, if you’re planning to come Tuesday evening (6 pm reception, 7 pm talk & book signing), do plan on coming early enough to secure parking.  Thanks!!

It’s happening!

Don’t forget to come hear Astrid Adler at the IGS Library!

This Saturday, May 13th, with an informal reception at Noon, her talk about her new books at 1 pm, and a book signing afterwards (and another opportunity to ask questions or chat).  And again on Tuesday, May 16th, with reception at 6 pm, talk at 7 pm, and the book signing and questions/chat afterwards.

There will be food trays at the receptions.  Parking can be either in the lanes behind our building, or on the neighborhood streets.

And a reminder — we’re closed this Sunday, as it’s Mother’s Day….

Astrid Adler Presents: “Emigration from the German Perspective”

During the 19th century, nearly six million Germans left their homes for other lands, and most would never see Germany again.  Ms. Adler writes about this historical migration in her new books, “Our Ancestors Were German” and “Goodbye Forever,” and has spoken previously on this topic on two occasions in Ventura County.

In “Our Ancestors Were German,” Ms. Adler discusses local emigration history from the Grand Duchy Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach region during the 19th century.  German descendants will learn about the reasons for their ancestors’ emigration.  Stories are told about the individuals and families who left Germany based on the historical evidence from passenger lists, census data, family letters, and family trees.  “Goodbye, Forever” tells about emigration history over a period of sixty years in the village of Tiefenort.  Meeting reports of the village council and weather records from the region were also analyzed, giving a unique impression about daily life in a typical German village during the 19th century.

Ms. Adler grew up and still lives in the village of Tiefenort in the former East Germany.  For the past ten years she has specialized in genealogy, especially emigration to America from the Grand Duchy Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach region during the 19th century.  She was honored by the State of Thuringia for her first research exhibition, and is also building an extensive private emigrant database for the South Thuringia area.

Two dates are available to hear her at the IGS Library in Burbank in May.  She will speak on Saturday, May 13th at 1 pm, and again on the evening of Tuesday, May 16th, at 7 pm.  Both talks will be preceded by informal receptions (Noon on the 13th, and 6 pm on the 16th), and will be followed by a further opportunity to meet and converse with our speaker.  Signed books will be available for purchase.  [Idea:  Plan to see our Thuringia resources (on the shelf, or in our vertical files) while at the Library, and bring anything you may have on this interesting area of Germany to share with others.]

Our Library is located at 1310 W. Magnolia Blvd., between Mariposa and Griffith Park cross-streets.  Limited parking is available behind the Library, and may be accessed via the alley.  Other parking is available on Magnolia Blvd. or on the residential streets close by the Library.

Volunteers wanted–German records to transcribe

Molly Rogers, Digital Database Coordinator for the New England Historic Genealogical Society, has requested our help.  She writes:

“The New England Historic Genealogical Society has partnered with the
Archdiocese of Boston to digitize and create a searchable database of
sacramental records. We have many volunteers helping us scan and index
volumes for this project. We are currently trying to transcribe
volumes from Holy Trinity Church which was a community center for
German immigrants in Boston. Many of these records are written in
German including old-fashioned script. We are looking for more
volunteers who could read German and help us index these volumes!

“I was hoping perhaps you could help me pass on this message to the
members of your society to see if anyone is interested in helping out.
We have many remote volunteers—we handle remote work through
Microsoft Excel and Dropbox. Thank you for your consideration! Please
contact me if you would like further information about this project.”

If you would like to assist, please contact Molly directly at <molly.rogers@nehgs.org>.  Thanks!

Give-aways at the Library

It’s Spring Cleaning time at the IGS Library, and there are some free items for those of you who can come in.  Of particular note are: some old world atlases that are not as useful as the ones we’re keeping, and some Ohio Gen. Soc. (OGS) Reporters from years ago that are duplicate issues.  But there are other items as well that could be of help to you.  The free items mentioned are in boxes on the tables closest to our rear door (to the parking behind the library).

Other free items are now on a cart that we’re placing outside our front door, for passersby to peruse.  These are things like folded maps, old genealogical directories and guides, and various U.S. items that might catch the eye.  We hope these items might cause people to stop in and chat with us.  But we have a lot of items we simply don’t need.  And we need to clear space, and so….

Still other items often duplicate our holdings, but are of greater value.  Many of these were Betty Sharp’s home office reference copies, often of items we’ve had on the shelves for years.  Betty’s daughter Jackie donated the home library to us about a year ago, and included were many other books and periodicals we did NOT have on our shelves, but quite a few that we did.

These latter items are in a separate grouping behind the computer we have for patron use, as one enters from the front door.  For these we’re requesting a donation; suggested amounts are listed on stickers, but we’re mostly interested in finding these duplicates “good homes” where they’ll be used (so, just ask, if the “price” isn’t right).  Proceeds will help us with new book purchases, such as Roger Minert’s continuing “German immigrants in American church records” series.

2017 International Germanic Genealogy Conference Registration – early bird ends on March 31

IGS members are invited to the 2017 International Germanic Genealogy Conference.  Many of you have already registered.  Thanks to each of you.

The early discount price expires this Friday!  We encourage you to register before April 1 to receive the partner discount.
As you know the 2017 International Germanic Genealogy Conference will be hosted by GGS and takes place July 28 – July 30, 2017 at the Marriott Northwest Hotel in the Minneapolis suburb of Brooklyn Park.  The conference will feature 40 speakers and over 70 presentations about Germanic genealogy.  It is an exciting opportunity to experience the first-ever International German Genealogy Partnership Conference.
We invite you to consider attending, and look forward to seeing you there.
The registration for the 2017 International Germanic Genealogy Conference has been open for less than two months and there are already over 440 people registered to attend.
Learn more about the conference.
If you wish to volunteer, there are many opportunities to help with the conference.
This is going to be fun!!!

Free Family History Mini-Seminar on DNA

THE VENTURA COUNTY GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY PRESENTS:
Free Family History Mini-Seminar on Saturday, April 15, 2017
at the Camarillo Library Community Room, 4101 Las Posas Road, Camarillo, CA

Presentations by Kathy Johnston:
1:00 P.M. DNA USES IN PEDIGREE BUILDING
Learn about the different types of DNA and which direct-to-consumer test companies will be most helpful to you. Find out how to navigate the maze of information that is out there. Examples will be provided for beginners.

2:30 P.M. AUTOSOMAL AND X CHROMOSOME SEGMENTS IN COMMON
Have you ever wondered where those DNA matching segments come from? Why is the basic science important in genealogy? Kathy will explain the practical uses of DNA segments found among your cousins and close family matches. Learn how to interpret segment matches in a browser. Success stories will be discussed.

Kathy Johnston is a retired dermatologist who has been actively researching her family tree for over 25 years. She is one of the administrators for the Southern California Genealogical Society DNA Interest Group and has been involved in developing techniques for chromosome mapping for genetic genealogists.

11:00 A.M. – 12:00 P.M.: VCGS DNA SPECIAL INTEREST GROUP MEETING
Join us for discussion on using DNA results to further your genealogy research. Please bring your DNA User Name & Password; also bring your family tree (paper or electronic). If possible, bring your laptop, tablet or other portable device; this will facilitate your research.