Showing posts with label Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy. Show all posts

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Getting Recharged

Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, Rootstech, Rootstech 2017, BCG, Board for Certification of Genealogist, Family History Library, FHL, Genealogy, Ancestry, Ancesetors
BCG Lectures 2016
Michelle Taggart and Michelle Goodrum
For months now I've been on hiatus from blogging due to some other things that needed my attention, but there is nothing like a genealogy conference, an institute or really any type of genealogy activity to refuel the fire! 

That's what I really needed and I got it this last Friday when I was able to attend the BCG* Lectures held in the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah. Of course the big draw was the speakers. Any opportunity to hear genealogists such as Elizabeth Shown Mills, Judy Russell and Pamela Boyer Sayre is worth the effort in my book, but being able to hear them absolutely free of charge was an extra bonus!

Pamela Boyer Sayre's  topic was "Enough is Enough, or Is It?"  She really hit the nail on the head when she talked about how many love the hunt and gather game, collecting lots of names and documents without taking the time to carefully analyze what they have. It is so easy to fall into this trap, especially when researching someone with an unusual name or when we first begin to research. She took time to share the steps she goes through in preparing to research and shared how much a carefully thought out research plan can help. I realized I need to slow it down sometimes and spend a little more time in the preparation phase of research. 

Elizabeth Shown Mills blew our socks off as she shared a current genealogy roadblock she hit and the progress she has made using a combination of the FAN club (friends, associates and neighbors), GPS (Genealogical Proof Standard)  and DNA in her lecture entitled "FAN + GPS + DNA: The Problem-Solver's Great Trifecta." She carefully outlined the problem at hand, which centered on finding women in a totally burned county, a problem many of us would likely run from. I loved watching how she was able to take a complex problem and using the "trifecta" was able to resolve a seemingly impossible task. I understand she gives more detail in her article in the current issue of NGS and I absolutely kicked myself for recently letting that subscription lapse.  Yes, I've since repented and renewed my subscription. It's worth every penny. 

In her lecture, "Black Sheep Ancestors and Their Records,"  Ann Staley shared the many records created for those ancestors who fall into the category of "black sheep." I am not sure who was more surprised---the people sitting next to me who realized I had researched my ancestors in many if not most of the records mentioned, or me to realize that they hadn't. Surely others have colorful ancestors as well! Ann not only shared the type of records to consider, but told us about many websites that help document those ancestors.

Jeanne Bloom talked about "Bringing Life to Our Ancestors: Manuscript Collections." I have to confess that although I've been to similar lectures in the past, this is a weak spot for me. I KNOW I need to utilize these collections more, but to do so feels a little like trying to find a needle in a haystack to me. But Jeanne made it seem do-able and provided many useful suggestions and ways to access manuscript collections. 

Michael S. Ramage talked about "Adoption for the Forensic Genealogist." I found his lecture fascinating as he shared many ways to find information on adoptees. I was really surprised to learn about some of the lesser known records available and to realize how much information can be found by digging in the right places. Of course, depending on time and place, there are lots of records that can not be accessed, but there is more available than I realized. I really enjoyed his lecture. 

Of course Judy Russell was, well Judy, which means she is entertaining and funny while educating. I take advantage of any opportunity to listen to Judy because I always learn something and this time was no exception. Through her topic, "When Worlds Collide: Resolving Conflicts in Genealogical Records," she shared fascinating case studies demonstrating ways to resolve the conflicting evidence we come across.  I came away with new ideas for tackling my brick walls. 

If you were not able to attend the event, no worries because it is available to watch for free on Legacy Family Tree Webinars until October 17th and then after that, it will continue to be available to those with an annual or monthly webinar membership. The lectures were so good I intend to watch them again even though I was able to attend.

BCG Lectures 2016
Michelle Taggart and Linda Carver 
As my friend Linda Carver and I were leaving at the end of the day, we both commented that it was really a great day. Not only were we able to learn from some of the best in the industry, we were able to associate with other genies! Genealogy can be a bit isolating at times as I often find myself with my nose in the books, on the computer or sitting in the dark, viewing microfilm. But opportunities such as this provide the opportunity to get out and be among others who have the same interests and I look forward to them so much.

For these reasons, I attend anything I can relating to genealogy, knowing that I will come away not only with a deeper understanding of the principles I need to become a better researcher, but also happier for having spent time with my genea-friends. 

Coming up, I have the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy on my calendar for January 2017 and Rootstech 2017 on my calendar for February. Will you be there? 

* BCG is The Board for Certification of Genealogist 

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2016, All rights reserved

Monday, January 21, 2013

All About Family

Rick and I at SLIG
(Picture taken by Roylene Bailey)
I have been a little slow on posting these past couple of weeks due to several issues.  The main reason being that we are dealing with a family crisis that is taking a lot of our time and emotional resources. While I have felt the tug to write my stories, I also know that there are times when the dead truly have to take a back seat to the living.  So I will continue to post as I can, but possibly the posts will be a little fewer in number for a time.   After all, it truly is "All About Family."

Despite the current craziness in my life, I was actually able to attend the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy this past week which is held annually at the Radisson in Salt Lake City, Utah.  I attended my first SLIG back in 2009 and took the course "Research of the Gulf South" with Mark J. Lowe .  It was such a wonderful experience that I have made it a tradition to return to SLIG each year.  Last year I was able to take Advanced Methodology with  Tom Jones and this year I took Forensic Genealogy with Melinde Lutz Byrne . I highly recommend SLIG to anyone who enjoys the opportunity to ramp up their learning and who loves an excuse to gather with other genealogist.  I have gained so much from taking classes from some of the finest genealogist in the country, in addition to learning from the experience of others who are traveling the down the same path in research.  While we all have varying levels of expertise, I learn something from everyone and welcome that opportunity. 

In addition to daytime classes at SLIG, there is the opportunity to take a variety of one hour classes offered in the evenings.  I couldn't resist the chance to attend Mark J. Lowe's lecture entitled "Whiskey, Brandy and Family Migration."   Mark has a wonderful ability to entertain while he instructs and I enjoyed his lecture very much.  His class reminded me that I need to share a story or two about my Alabama moonshiners!   Stay tuned for that post!

This year I had the added benefit of meeting a couple of bloggers whom I follow and admire.  Judy G. Russell of The Legal Genealogist and Anne Gillespie Mitchell  from Finding Forgotten Stories were both in attendance and were just as wonderful in "real life" as they are on the internet.  

I can't talk with other genealogist without noticing their love of family.  They truly love family---the living and the dead.  This year at SLIG, a friend made the comment that as we work and associate with each other over the years we all become family too---we feel those connections with each other, we care about and worry about each other and those ties to each other become strong, whether we share a common ancestor or not.  As I have watched the events unfold around the country this past year, the good and the bad, from personal triumphs to tragedies of all kinds, my thoughts have often gone to those that I know from that particular part of the country and then to the people and families that live there in general, most of whom I do not know.  As I have formed relationships with both those that I work with on my family lines and those that I have met online or at the various genealogy events I attend, I see that genealogy has not only helped me to know and love those that have passed onto the other side, but it has made the world a smaller and friendlier place in general.  So while I love researching in the dusty records of repositories, I will continue to find ways to connect and interact with othes because after all, it truly is "All About Family."

Copyright © Michelle G. Taggart 2013