BEGINNER:
Eenie, Meenie, Miny, Moe, What to Save and What to Throw:  Clues to genealogical research can come from unusual sources.  Cleaning out an old attic or basement can uncover many family items.  The things that are found in the boxes and cartons were saved by your relative for a reason.  But many times you may look at the item and ask, “Why in the world did they keep that?”  Before you discard anything, you should examine each item for clues to your family’s history.
Preserving Your Family History; Collecting & Organizing:  Introductory presentation will concentrate on gathering your ancestry media to include photos, documents, website discoveries, slides, and videos.  We will then discuss methods of assembling these groups into an organized and standardized structure whereby one may easily locate their precious memories and family history.
Avoiding Mistakes:  The purpose of this session is to provide those who are new to genealogy with good basic skills and information to help with your research.  If you have been researching for a while, it will help with correcting any bad habits or help you realize what you haven’t been doing, but should.
Writing Your Family History:  After doing the research and organizing the facts, it’s time to tell your family’s story.  Tips on how to get started, how to keep the story lively and readable, and how to add the historical context that will make it more interesting.  Topics include knowing your audience, finding a theme, and choosing a voice.
TECHNICAL:
Google Earth and the Newberry Atlas of Historical Boundaries:  Do you use the free program Google Earth to virtually follow in your ancestors’ footsteps?  Or to add details of the relationships to a placemark? Or to locate the nearest churches, courthouses, and graveyards where you might find more records?  If you also couple Google Earth with the Newberry Atlas of Historical Boundaries, you will gain a 4-D tool for answering your WWW questions.
Genealogy Programs: Which One is Best?  Today there are many genealogy programs to select from, but which one is the best?  The best program is hard to select.  What will meet the requirements of one genealogist, may not meet the needs of another genealogists.  How do you select the best program for your needs?
Introduction to Family Tree Maker 2017:  Family Tree Maker (FTM) has undergone some development changes for the past couple years, but this major ancestral archival system is now upgraded and ready for action.  This class will provide an overview of the seven workspaces and their various displays, along with FTMs relationship with FamilySearch.com and Ancestry.com.
Technical Tools for Genealogy Today:  Lots of tricks and programs can aid your genealogical productivity. We’ll discuss many of them like optimizing your searches, finding urls that have disappeared, and saving screenshots. We’ll explore cloud storage, Evernote, and the enormous range of Google products that can let you collaborate in real time with others researching your family.
RESEARCH:
Repository Research, The Do’s and Don'ts:  Not everything is online and what is may be incorrect.  A visit to a repository is in order.  Preparation is the key to finding records.  Learn how to find those records and see some examples of what you may be missing.
Researching at the Virginia Historical Society:  You’re tracking your Virginia ancestors researching at the Library of Virginia; now learn how to augment your research by visiting the Virginia Historical Society.
Organize and Manage Your Research or It Will Overwhelm You:  Researching our ancestors produces a lot of information and often a lot of records.  Managing both the information and the records is not hard; it just takes a little effort.  Ways to manage research include paper-filing systems, computer programs and record forms.
Writing Letters That Get Answers:  Not all research can be done in person.  Sooner or later every researcher must write a letter requesting information.  Why is it that some letters never get answered?  This program is based on the lecturer’s experiences doing his own research, serving as secretary of a large genealogical society, and as a professional researcher.
 
Note there is no microwave or refrigerator available for lunch so attendees should pack accordingly.