One of my favorite types of maps, especially for enhancing your imagination when thinking about your ancestors, is the bird’s eye view map. These are intricately drawn maps were popular in the late 1800s and early 1900s to depict towns and cities from above. These maps might be called other names such as panoramic maps, perspective maps, or aero view maps.
These maps may not be drawn to scale but rather they depict streets, buildings, waterways, and city life. Many of these are so intricate that if you zoom in you can see horses and buggies, names on the ships in the harbor, people walking, and more. They are art the informs our ancestors’ surroundings. For me, they are almost like stepping into a time-travel portal. Almost. They are so much fun to look at and imagine with.
I am so excited to attend the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) Conference in Washington DC, August 21-24. Registration ends this Friday, August 2nd so get registered!
There is still room at the conference hotel (Omni Shoreham) for an incredible $169 (a steal for D.C.) which is good for a few days before and after the conference (see the conference website for complete details). If you want to do some research at the Library of Congress, the Daughters of the American Revolution library, or the National Archives, this is a fantastic opportunity! If you have never been to one of these repositories, there are several guided tours that still have space available, as well as a tour of the National Museum of African American History & Culture. Check this page for more information.
In addition, this conference is different from previous FGS conferences. The society management topics are woven throughout the entire 4-day conference allowing you more choices in each time slot.
The Friday night event sounds fantastic, “Swing Back to the 30s with Your Ancestors” where you can represent one of your 1930s ancestors with live jazz playing in the background! Personally, I am excited for some of the luncheon speakers! There are still a few tickets left for those as well.
I will be speaking on Thursday, once on the society management topic “Create an Attractive Education Plan for Your Society” (T-217), once on research methodology “Unfamiliar Territory: Researching in a New (to you) Geographic Area” (T-232), and I’ll be participating in “Ask FGS! Panel with FGS Leaders” (T-247) with other members of FGS leadership.
This incredible opportunity is coming up quickly and I hope to see you there!
In my continuing quest to describe institutes and ultimately convince you to attend one if you haven’t already, this post will highlight the last two of the five major genealogy institutes that I have identified. I have not personally attended either NIGR or SLIG so the following information is a summary from what I’ve learned from reading their websites and from various friends and colleagues who have attended.
I am registered to attend the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, or SLIG, this coming January. This institute is hosted by the Utah Genealogical Association and is held annually in January at the Radisson in downtown Salt Lake City. It offers a wide range of topics for various skill levels through 10-12 different tracks. The courses for 2014 are:
“American Research and Records: Focus on Families” with Paula Stuart-Warren, CG, FUGA
“New York Research” with Karen Mauer Green, CG
“Research in the South” with J. Mark Lowe, CG
“Advanced Research Tools: Land Records” with Richard G. Sayre, CG and Pamela Boyer Sayre, CG, CGL
“Credentialing: Accreditation, Certification, or Both?” with Apryl Cox, AG and Elissa Scalise Powell, CG, CGL
“Producing a Quality Family Narrative” with John Philip Colletta Ph.D., FUGA
“Researching in Eastern Europe” with Kory Meyerink, AG
“Advanced Evidence Analysis Practicum” with Angela McGhie and Kimberly Powell
“Advanced Genealogical Methods” with Thomas Jones Ph.D., CG, CGL, FASG, FUGA, FNGS
“Problem Solving” with Judith Hansen, AG, MLS
I will be taking the “Advanced Evidence Analysis Practicum” track and I am very excited for the experience. The benefit of this conference, like British Institute, is that it takes place in Salt Lake. Classes take place in the morning and research or homework in the Family History Library. This coming year, the Association of Professional Genealogists’ Professional Management Conference (PMC) is being held a few days before SLIG. I plan to attend that as well. At the writing of this post, their website had not been updated to reflect this yet, but the information was sent to members via email. Keep checking their website for more information.
The National Institute on Genealogical Research is held in Washington, D.C. annually in July (typically the week preceding GRIP). This institute stands out from the others in that it is very specific in scope. NIGR is not a beginning course and is aimed at a focused examination of federal records, there is only one track with everyone in the same course together. Most of the week is spent at the main branch of the National Archives with one day being spent at the Archives II in College Park, MD. There are optional evening sessions to spend at the Library of Congress and the DAR Library. This institute is different also by the registration format. This one is currently via regular postal mail only, no online registration at this time. You must go to their website and be added to their mailing list. Then, when registration time comes, you need to fill out the application and mail it back as soon as you get it. They have a limited number of spaces in the course so it is important to return the application promptly.
This institute also has two scholarship opportunities that help pay for tuition and some of the travel expenses. One scholarship is from the American Society of Genealogists, the other is the Richard S. Lackey Memorial Scholarship. The details are on their website.
That wraps up the details on the five major institutes. Up next, some tips on registering for institutes and later, what you might expect during your week.