Mount Vernon Genealogical Society - Founded 1991
Founded 1991

1500 Shenandoah Road
Alexandria, Virginia 22308
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Genetic Privacy and the Law
Tuesday, June 15
Genetic Privacy and the Law  (General Meeting)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
ZOOM Meeting (Registration required)
 
Presenter:  Natalie Ram, J.D., Associate Professor of Law, Law & Health Care Program, University of Maryland  
 
Description:  When you send your DNA to a consumer genetics service, or upload your DNA profile to a site like GEDmatch, do you know how your data may be used, with or without your explicit consent, by law enforcement or others? What legal protections, if any, attach to that genetic data? "Genetic Privacy and the Law" will discuss the legal landscape surrounding consumer genetic data, with a particular focus on law enforcement use of genetic genealogy to investigate crimes.
 
Registration:
Speaker Bio:  Natalie Ram joined the Maryland Carey Law faculty in 2019. Ram is a top scholar on the intersection of genetic privacy and the law, publishing groundbreaking research in Harvard Law ReviewStanford Law ReviewColumbia Law ReviewVirginia Law Review, and Northwestern Law Review, and in the scientific journals Science and Nature Biotechnology. She teaches courses in Maryland Carey Law’s Law and Health Care program. Ram is a 2021 Greenwall Faculty Scholar in Bioethics, which awards three-year career development grants to promising young scholars across disciplines.
 
Before joining Maryland Carey Law, Ram clerked for Judge Guido Calabresi, U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit, and for Associate Justice Stephen G. Breyer, U.S. Supreme Court. Subsequently, she worked in the Appellate and Supreme Court Litigation Group at Morrison & Foerster in Washington, D.C. From 2014 to 2019, Ram taught at the University of Baltimore School of Law. At UB, she was also associate director of the Center for Law and Medicine. Ram earned her JD at Yale Law School and AB in public and international affairs from the Woodrow Wilson School at Princeton University.  She has appeared on CNN, national radio broadcasts Science Friday and Here & Now, and been quoted in the Wall Street JournalWashington Post and BuzzFeed News. She has also written several op-eds for Slate.


Thursday, June 17
Pandemic Project - Photography, Drawing and Scrapbooking  (Training and Education)
10:00 am to 12:00 pm
TBD - zoom or in-person?
INSTRUCTORPandemic Project Members
 
We've all heard this line:  "If a picture paints a thousand words"....  It's true!  A picture can indeed convey meanings more effectively that words!  Join in with sketching pens or camera (especially your mobile phone's camera!) and learn tips on capturing this historic time.  We'll conclude with clever ideas on scrapbooking to dispay your artful story.
 
To register for this session please send an email with your name and phone number, and the date and title of the session to Amy Breedlove at albreedlove@comcast.net.
 



Thursday, July 15
Pandemic Project - Editing Collaboration  (Training and Education)
10:00 am to 12:00 pm
ZOOM
INSTRUCTORPandemic Project Members
 
The MVGS Writing Family SIG includes both beginners and published authors.  We read and discuss one another's pieces, noting the things we liked, the things we thought were missing, and what the author should do next to improve or expand his/her story.  This session will give us an opportunity to offer the same services to other MVGS members - as first readers and reviewers for what you've written, but also as a source of the encouragement that every writer needs.
 
To register for this session, please send an email with your name and phone number, and the date and title of the session to Amy Breedlove at albreedlove@comcast.net.
 


2021 International German Genealogy Conference
Saturday, July 17 through Saturday, July 24
2021 International German Genealogy Conference  (Conference)
Virtual
The International German Genealogy Partnership is thrilled to announce that the 2021 International German Genealogy Conference, previously cancelled as an in-person event due to the COVID-19 pandemic, will now be held virtually from 17 July to 24 July 2021 with the theme of “Researching Together Worldwide / Weltweit Gemeinsam Forschen”. This new format will allow both passionate genealogists and expert speakers from around the world – including many from our partner organizations in Germany – to attend and participate. Will you be one of them?

For more conference and registration, click here.


Tuesday, July 20
How You Can Use GEDMatch Tools in Your Genealogical Research  (General Meeting)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
ZOOM Meeting (Registration required)

Presenter:  David Vasquez
 
Description: GEDMatch offers powerful tools and techniques to identify potential relatives, including very distant ones. This presentation will demonstrate how to identify from which distant ancestors you and these newfound relatives are descended; and then start to reconstruct, in small but significant ways, the genomes of these ‘ancient’ ancestors. In this way you can start to bring these 18th and 17th century ancestors back to life (on paper and in your imaginations at least!), as they live on in our own genomes.
 
Registration:
  • All active MVGS members will receive an email with Zoom registration instructions before the meeting. Handouts for members will be posted in the Members Only section of the website prior to the presentation.
  • Nonmembers may attend one meeting for free each year. Nonmembers find event registration and membership information here. 
Speaker Bio: David Vasquez is an amateur historian, with a military background in aviation technology. He is a former Norfolk city police detective, where he was fortunate to work some cases in which DNA evidence led to the arrest and prosecution of suspects.  He is now a private investigator in West Virginia, and is working on degrees in History and Aviation Technology.  With the help of GEDMatch and many other sources, David was able to discover and research previously unknown Virginia ancestors. As a result of his genealogical research, his mother was able to join the Daughters of the American Revolution; and he proudly become a member of the Sons of the American Revolution, Virginia Society of the War of 1812, and Sons of Confederate Veterans. David suggests that perhaps you could benefit at least a little from his own sometimes serpentine and convoluted research experiences!


Thursday, July 22
Research in the Mid-Atlantic States  (Training and Education)
10:00 am to 12:00 pm
TBD
INSTRUCTOR:  CHUCK MASON
 
New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Maryland and Delaware compose the Mid-Atlantic States.  They share similar record keeping practices, but did not always begin keeping those records at the same time.  Border disputes also influence where you may find your ancestor's records.  This class will present an introduction to what records were kept, when they started, and where to find them.  
 
To register for the class, please send an email with the date of the class, the title of the class, your name and phone number to Amy Breedlove at albreedlove@comcast.net.
 



Facebook: A Tool for Genealogy Research
Tuesday, August 17
Facebook: A Tool for Genealogy Research  (General Meeting)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
Meeting and Presentation will be held via ZOOM
 
Presenter: Thomas MacEntee, a genealogy professional based in the United States who is also a blogger, educator, author, social media connector, online community builder and more.
 
Description: While Facebook is the world’s largest online social network with more than 1.2 billion users, did you know that it can be leveraged as a genealogy research “work horse” to help find your ancestors?  In this session you’ll go beyond the basics of setting up a Facebook account and simply posting status updates or playing games. The focus is on developing the following skill set for genealogy research:
  • Using the Search function to locate living relatives and others researching your same surnames.
  • Locating Facebook Groups and Pages related to your genealogy research, especially geographical locations and specific ethnic groups, as well as surname groups.
  • Creating a Facebook Group to facilitate collaboration and participant interaction around a specific genealogy topic such as a Surname Group or a One Place Study Group.
  • Creating a Facebook Page to advertise a genealogy society, an event and more.
  • Understanding the difference between a Facebook Page and a Facebook Group and why you might use one instead of the other as well as when it is best to use both.
  • Protecting your privacy and ensuring an enjoyable Facebook experience when researching genealogy.
Registration:
  • All active MVGS members will receive an email with Zoom registration instructions before the meeting. Handouts for members will be posted in the Members Only section of the website prior to the presentation.
  • Nonmembers may attend one meeting for free each year. Nonmembers find event registration and membership information here. 
 
Speaker Bio:  What happens when a “tech guy” with a love for history gets laid off during The Great Recession of 2008? You get Thomas MacEntee, a genealogy professional based in the United States who is also a blogger, educator, author, social media connector, online community builder and more. Thomas has over 42 years of experience researching family history.
 
Thomas was laid off after a 25-year career in the information technology field, so he started his own genealogy-related business called High Definition Genealogy. Currently Thomas shares many of his articles and videos for free at Abundant Genealogy and also runs the popular Genealogy Bargains and DNA Bargains websites!
 
Thomas describes himself as a lifelong learner with a background in a multitude of topics who has finally figured out what he does best: teach, inspire, instigate, and serve as a curator and go-to-guy for concept nurturing and inspiration. Thomas is a big believer in success, and that we all succeed when we help each other find success.


Thursday, August 19
Family Tree Maker - Beginner's Class - DATE WILL BE CHANGING  (Training and Education)
Room 217 HHSC hopefully
INSTRUCTOR:  CHUCK GEARHART
 
This class will only be held if HHSC is open; it will not be offered via Zoom.   The time has been left open for now until we know for sure what rooms/times HHSC is giving us.  
 
Class will cover Getting Started, Entering Media and Data, and Maintaining and Sharing Your Tree.  This will be aimed at beginners.
 
To register for the class, please send an email with the date of the class, the title of the class, your name and phone number to Amy Breedlove at albreedlove@comcast.net.
 


Thursday, August 19
PANDEMIC PROJECT - Tying Up Loose Ends  (Training and Education)
10:00 am to 12:00 pm
ZOOM
INSTRUCTOR:  Pandemic Project Members
 
This session is an opportunity to get a brief refresher about each of the ways to document the Pandemic, ask questions of "the experts," and get help with your submission if you want it.  It will also be an opportunity to hear about how the Pandemic Project will be incorporated into our Fall Conference and learn what the deadline for submissions will be.
 
As a reminder, the documenting types we've covered are: Writing:  Journals, Diaries, and Narrative Essays; Poetry and Prose; Life Stories and Oral Histories; Photography, Drawing, and Scrapbooking; and we've had an Editing Collaboration session with volunteers from the Writing SIG.
 
To register, please send an email with your name and phone number, along with the date and title of the class you want to attend to Amy Breedlove at albreedlove@comcast.net.
 



Using Genealogy to Tell the Story of New York City's Irish Famine Immigrants
Tuesday, September 21
Using Genealogy to Tell the Story of New York City's Irish Famine Immigrants  (General Meeting)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
ZOOM Meeting (Registration required)
 
Presenter: Tyler Anbinder, Ph.D,  Professor of History, George Washington University 
 
Description: Genealogy is being used more and more to write history, and in this case the Great Famine and the Irish immigrants’ impact in New York City. Professor Tyler Anbinder, in collaboration with a genealogist, has tracked down several thousand famine immigrants through ancestry.com and similar sources, and is using the life stories of those several thousand people to write a group biography of the Famine generation in New York.
 
Registration:
  • All active MVGS members will receive an email with Zoom registration instructions before the meeting. Handouts for members will be posted in the Members Only section of the website prior to the presentation.
  • Nonmembers may attend one meeting for free each year. Nonmembers find event registration and membership information here. 
Speaker Bio: Author of City of Dreams: The 400-Year Epic History of Immigrant New York. Tyler Anbinder is a specialist in nineteenth-century American politics and the history of immigration and ethnicity in American life. His most recent book, City of Dreams (2016), is a history of immigrant life in New York City from the early 1600s to the present.  Before that, in 2001, he published Five Points, a history of nineteenth-century America's most infamous immigrant slum, focusing in particular on tenement life, inter-ethnic relations, and ethnic politics.  His first book, Nativism and Slavery (1992), analyzed the role of the anti-immigrant, anti-Catholic Know Nothing party on the political crisis that led to the Civil War. 
 
Professor Anbinder has won fellowships from the National Endowment for the Humanities and held the Fulbright Thomas Jefferson Chair in American History at the University of Utrecht. He has won awards for his scholarship from the Organization of American Historians, the Columbia University School of Journalism, and the journal Civil War History. He also served as a historical consultant to Martin Scorsese for the making of The Gangs of New York. His is currently writing a book tracing the lives of several thousand Irish Famine immigrants who moved to New York City in the 1840s and '50s. That project's digital history component, created with research assistance from more than two dozen GW students, has already been completed and can be found at http://beyondragstoriches.org.


Thursday, September 23
Research in Washington DC: Using the National Archives  (Training and Education)
10:00 am to 12:00 pm
TBD
INSTRUCTOR:  CHUCK MASON
 
Once we know the status of HHSC, we'll be able to enter a final time and location.
 
Many changes in how to do research have taken place at the National Archives.  Some records are now available online and others still must be researched onsite.  What is the best way to accomplish your research needs?
 
To register for this class, please send an email with the date and title of the class, and your name and phone number to Amy Breedlove at albreedlove@comcast.net.
 



French North American Research
Tuesday, October 19
French North American Research  (General Meeting)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
ZOOM Meeting (Registration required)
 
Presenter: Daniel Lilienkamp, JD
 
Description: The population of New France was much smaller than that of the English Colonies in North America, but its vast territorial expanse left imprints from the Atlantic Ocean to the Rocky Mountains and from the Gulf of Mexico to Hudson Bay. Learn what records were created by these early French settlers in Le Canada [Québec], Pays des Illinois, La Louisiane, L'Acadie, and Pays d’en Haut. You will also learn about the Huguenots and their records. The Huguenots were  French protestants who fled persecution in their homeland for a life in the English colonies.
 
Registration:
  • All active MVGS members will receive an email with Zoom registration instructions before the meeting. Handouts for members will be posted in the Members Only section of the website prior to the presentation.
  • Nonmembers may attend one meeting for free each year. Nonmembers find event registration and membership information here. 
Biography: Daniel R. Lilienkamp, J.D. earned a BA in History from Texas Lutheran University and a J.D. from Tulane University. He has been researching his own family for more than twenty years. He is the Reference Specialist at History & Genealogy at St. Louis County Library where he has worked for the past fourteen years. He regularly speaks at local, regional, and national conferences where he uses expertise in African American, German, Swiss, Alsace & Lorraine, French Canadian (Quebec), Appalachian and Ohio Valley genealogy to demonstrate sound research practices and the use of complex sources.


Thursday, October 21
Introduction to Scottish Research  (Training and Education)
TBD
INSTRUCTOR:  CHUCK MASON
 
Once HHSC status is known, we'll be able to determine a time and place.
 
This class will present an introduction to researching your ancestors who came from Scotland.  What do you need to know about them before you start researching in Scotland?  What records are available in Scotland?  Where are they kept and what is available online?
 
To register for the class, please send an email with the date and title of the class, and your name and phone number to Amy Breedlove at albreedlove@comcast.net.
 


Thursday, October 28
Family Tree Maker - an Advanced class  (Training and Education)
TBD
INSTRUCTOR:  CHUCK GEARHART
 
Class will only be held if HHSC is open.  Stay tuned.
 
Class will cover a Review of Family Tree Maker 2019 improvements, Attendee Questions and Comments.  Class is focused on advanced users.
 
To register for the class, please send an email with the date of the class, the title of the class, your name and phone number to Amy Breedlove at albreedlove@comcast.net.
 



Tuesday, November 9
Using and Understanding Virginia Court Records  (Training and Education)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
TBD
INSTRUCTOR:  SHARON HODGES
 
In order to locate records relating to your Virginia ancestor, it is important to understand the court system in the state/colony at the time your ancestor resided there.  It is also important to understand the types of records created by those courts and where those records can be found today, including why you should look for loose papers filed with the courts. 
 
To register for the class, please send an email with the date and title of the class, along with your name and phone number to Amy Breedlove at albreedlove@comcast.net.
 


Tuesday, November 16
Migration Trails West  (General Meeting)
1:00 pm to 3:00 pm
ZOOM Meeting (Registration required)
 
Presenter:  Jacob Eubanks, Associate Librarian at St. Louis County Library, St. Louis, MO
 
Description: This talk looks at colonial migration patterns west - examining possible routes individuals might have taken to migrate from east to west. The focus will be on ancestor settlers who left the colonies for the Northwest Territory or the western reaches of colonial North Carolina and Virginia (Kentucky and Tennessee).  The talk will cover about a 200 year period from the late 17th to late 19th centuries and look at the development of footpaths, roads, trails, railroads etc. Many of these follow the modern roadways we know today - but their development impacts when and where folks migrated.  
 
Registration:
  • All active MVGS members will receive an email with Zoom registration instructions before the meeting. Handouts for members will be posted in the Members Only section of the website prior to the presentation.
  • Nonmembers may attend one meeting for free each year. Nonmembers find event registration and membership information here. 
 
Speaker Bio: Jacob Eubanks, MLS, is the Assistant Manager of History & Genealogy at St. Louis County Library. Jacob is an expert in westward U.S. migration. He regularly lectures on the use of sources including maps, deeds, military, probate, court, and church to resolve challenging and often complex genealogical queries. Jacob is a regular contributor to PastPorts Newsletter and serves as Editorial Director of the Missouri State Genealogical Association. He was previously the Local History and Genealogy Librarian at the Johnson County Library in Overland Park, Kansas.