Meetings are held the third Thursday of each month, September through May starting at 7:00 p.m. and are held in the River Falls Public Library. The programs cover a variety of material from general to specific and hold the interest of everyone. Information on various upcoming genealogy events in the area, the state, and the nation are shared. There are also wonderful treats and a time to visit with others.
From 6:30 p.m. to 7:00 p.m. SCVGS members will be available to help others with genealogy research questions.
The River Falls Public Library is a beautifully designed building at 140 Union Street, at the corner of Union and Main Streets. Main Street is also Wisconsin State Highway 35. Turn east on Union Street beside the library and go to the parking lot behind the building where there is ample parking. The handicapped accessible meeting room is on the main floor just inside the doors.
September 18, 2014—Annual Sharing Meeting—Share the successes you have had over the past year and especially over the summer months with other members at this informal gathering. Bring documents, stories, photographs, heirlooms, guests, and anything else you would like to share. This is always one of our most popular meetings.
A magazine swap will also be held at the September meeting. If you have past issues of genealogical or historical magazines/journals/newsletters that you no longer want, please bring them to the meeting. Anyone can purchase the magazines/journals for 25¢ each; the newsletters are free. Come early to browse.
October 16, 2014—Getting the Most Out of FamilySearch.org—Kim Ashford has spent 15 years researching her family history. She recently received her Bachelor’s Degree in General Studies with an emphasis in Family History from Brigham Young University. She will discuss the use of one of the most valuable free websites available for genealogy researchers—FamilySearch.org. The website has undergone a lot of recent changes. Come get familiar with how to find valuable records, many that are digitized and online and other records that you may want to order on microfilm. Learn how the FamilySearch Wiki and the tutorials can help you understand records and point your research in the right direction. The amount of help available on FamilySearch.org for researchers is constantly growing—come find out how to find it. Getting to understand this website is a must before any trip to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City.
Kim is the current President of the Germanic Genealogy Society and the assistant director of her local Family History Center. In addition to assisting patrons, she frequently teaches classes on a variety of topics. She uses FamilySearch.org on a nearly daily basis and is excited to share her insights about this valuable free resource.
November 20, 2014—Writing a Family History in Small Manageable Pieces—Come join the circle and share your idea for a small family history project that you have created for a special family member, reunion, or other occasion. We are not looking for full-blown bound family histories here. Instead, we will consider smaller scale creations that are not as intimidating, yet will help you make steps toward documenting your overall genealogy in a lasting family treasure. Examples might be a transcribed diary, a collection of letters put together in book form, a storybook or scrapbook, an illustrated timeline, a (small) family history written on one or more branches of your family, a family anniversary quilt, etc. We ask that you bring the project and explain how you went about putting it together. Did you hand-write it or use a word precessing program; did you self-publish it, use an online publishing source, etc. If you haven’t written anything yet and have nothing to share, come and get ideas from others to start your own family history project.
January 10, 2015—Annual Holiday Outing—Twin Cities Bronze Twelfth Night Concert “The Meltdown”—Because December is such a busy month for everyone, we are planning our annual holiday outing after the holidays on Saturday, January 10, 2015. This date allows for a relaxing evening of food, music, and camaraderie.
We will attend the Twin Cities Bronze (TCB) Twelfth Night Concert “The Meltdown”. TCB is an auditioned ensemble of twelve English handbell ringers who are amazing. If you have never heard TCB before, you will be blown away by their music and skill in playing handbells in a variety of ways. The concert starts at 7:00 p.m. at Peace United Methodist Church, 5050 Hodgson Road, Shoreview, Minnesota. Tickets are $15 for adults and $10 for students. Tickets can be purchased online at the TCB website. Click on Twelfth Night in the left sidebar.
We will dine at Panino’s in North Oaks prior to the concert. The restaurant is noted for its paninos, but also serves other Italian cuisine and pizza. Watch for an email in the near future, so we can get an accurate count for the reservation at Panino’s. We will carpool to the restaurant and concert.
January 27, 2015—Annual Work Night at the Area Research Center—The January meeting is a work night in the Area Research Center (ARC) on the University of Wisconsin-River Falls campus. This meeting was originally scheduled for January 15, but needed to be postponed and is now rescheduled for January 27. This is our chance to give back some of our time to the ARC by helping with one or more indexing projects or other work as chosen by Archivist, Kathie Otto. The ARC is located on the lower level of the Chalmer Davee Library. Clear signage will direct you to the Area Research Center. We will work from 6:00-8:30 p.m. followed by refreshments. Most likely we will continue with the indexing of criminal court records for Pierce County. If you have a laptop, please bring it and pair up with someone who does not have one. It really helps to work in pairs.
Limited parking is available behind South Hall, next to Chalmer Davee Library. Other parking is available in the lot across Cascade Avenue next to North Hall. Entrances to the parking lot next to North Hall are on S 2nd Street and Spring Street. After 4:30 p.m., parking is free. If you are traveling from the west on Cascade Avenue, continue straight at the roundabout, take the first right and then turn into the parking lot on your left to enter the lot next to Chalmer Davee Library. If travelling from the east on Cascade Avenue, continue straight at the first roundabout, go all the way around the 2nd roundabout and take the first right. The parking lot next to Chalmer Davee Library will be on your left. Parking in this lot is also free after 4:30 p.m.
Refer to the map below to help find your way to either of the parking lots.
February 19, 2015—Naming Your Digital Files—Judy Olsen and Myke Rachu speakers. Did you make a New Year’s resolution to scan all your images and documents as backup or for easy retrieval? Once you decide to scan your papers and photographs, it’s important to have a system for naming those digital files. This allows for easier access of your scanned content without having to open the files. Join us to learn the components of two naming systems and decide which will work best for you. Q & A and discussion will follow.
March 19, 2015—Dr. John Till, the Barefoot Doctor—Dr. Till, known locally as the Barefoot Doctor, practiced primarily in New Richmond, Wisconsin, but also in Somerset and Hudson. People flocked to him because of his magical plasters that supposedly drew poisons out of a person’s body. Additional trains were scheduled to transport people to see him. He was quite a character and was eventually jailed in Barron County, Wisconsin. Come and learn more about this interesting person from his granddaughter, Alexandra Till, and discover why he was called “The Barefoot Doctor”.
April 16, 2015—FamilySearch Memories and FamilySearch Family Tree—Jennifer Fritzler will explain how to use the Memories and Family Tree portions of FamilySearch.org. Memories allows you to add stories, photos, documents, and more to your online family tree on FamilySearch. Family Tree allows you to create your own family tree and add to other trees when you have source citations to back up your research. The idea behind Family Tree is to have one family tree for a family line and not have duplicates.
May 21, 2015—Using Timelines in Your Research—Timelines (chronologies of events in the lives of your ancestral families) are a terrific genealogical tool. Not only can they help you solve problems and identify holes in your research, they can help you get ready to write up and share your findings. The speaker, Lois Abromitis Mackin, Ph.D., focuses on Midwest, Pennsylvania, and English research, as well as on methodology. Her Ph.D. is in history from Brown University, and she has studied with Elizabeth Mills and Tom Jones at Samford University’s Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research. She is a past director of the Minnesota Genealogical Society.
The program originally scheduled for this date—Leaving Your Legacy—needed to be postponed until next fall because of a conflict.
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