Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Principles of Effective Genealogy Librarianship

It's time for another installment in our series of blog posts about the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG).  Today's guest blogger is Course 7 Coordinator, Drew Smith.

One of the biggest difficulties in being a genealogy librarian is that relevant education is hard to come by. Very few library schools offer a course in genealogical librarianship, and continuing education for genealogy librarians usually consists of a single hour or at best a one-day series of workshops covering a very limited number of topics. But what if you could experience a full five days of classes designed to carry you through the entire spectrum of issues faced by genealogy librarians? Now you can have that opportunity.

You already know the basics of librarianship, and you likely have a grounding in the basics of genealogical research. This course will take you further by addressing twenty different skills and knowledge bases that any modern genealogy librarian will need to develop as part of their profession. While many librarians engage in reference interviews, collection development, library instruction for their patrons, and professional development for themselves, this course will take each of those topics and look at them from the special viewpoint of a genealogy librarian.

We’ll cover in detail the kinds of resources most used by genealogists in the typical library, such as newspapers, published materials, and manuscripts, but we’ll also bring to light the other useful resources found in a typical library but not usually thought of as a part of the genealogy collection. We’ll discuss the new online tools that have become critical only in the 21st century, such as Ancestry Library Edition, HeritageQuest Online,, and social networking services. And we’ll address the importance of the genealogy library in leading the way in digitization projects for local materials.

Genealogy librarians, perhaps more than any other kind of librarian, need to understand how to work with volunteers and local societies, and we’ll learn about the best practices in these areas. What happens when patrons want to donate their own materials? How do you market your library’s genealogy resources and services so that they are used to the fullest? What kinds of ethical and legal issues are you likely to encounter as a genealogy librarian? We’ll address those questions, too. Finally, we’ll explore as a group the hot-topic issues of genealogical librarianship, drawing upon the interests and experiences of the students.

This course will also provide you with the unique opportunity to network with your fellow students, each of whom is very likely to bring to the course a wealth of knowledge and experience that they can share with us all. Of course, there will also be plenty of time during the week to enjoy the resources of the Family History Library. As a genealogy librarian, what more could you ask for?

Thanks, Drew!  If you are a genealogy librarian register for the course or check out more details here. If you have any questions about this course, please comment on this post.  Are you going to join us in January?

If you enjoyed this article we invite you to share it via your favorite social networking media using the appropriate icon below. You may also reprint this article in any email or print newsletters you wish to distribute provided you include the date of original publication and the following text:

This article reprinted with permission of the Utah Genealogical Association. To learn more about the Utah Genealogical Association (UGA) or the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG), please visit their website at:

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Thanks to the Mormon Trails Chapter for the fantastic tour

On June 18th, members of the Utah Genealogical Association were treated to a wonderful tour of the historic sites along the pioneer trail in and around Echo Canyon, Utah.

We were greeted in Henefer by Kris Whittaker and her team who organized the trip. They did a wonderful job and the whole tour went off without a hitch. Each family group was given a manila folder with all sorts of information about the history of the area—a great collection of info in handouts and various brochures that was enlightening in and of itself. But then as the tour commenced we were treated to John Eldredge’s comprehensive knowledge about the area. Eldredge’s books, The Utah War: a guide to the historic sites South Pass to Camp Floyd, and Illustrated Emigrants’ Guide to the Historic Sites Along the Hastings/Mormon Trail are great resources on the area.

The highlight of the trip was being able to see Cache Cave. Located on privately held land, the cave is only open to the public on the third Saturday of June every year. The cave earned its name by being a place where goods were cached for future travelers. Many pioneers carved their names in the sandstone, and while most have eroded away, many were still visible. Two of the people in our modern expedition were surprised to find ancestors who had carved their names in the rock. Kathy Palmer and Vicky Hayes were able to locate their ancestors and were moved to see a piece of their family history there in stone. To touch the same rock, and be in the same cave that a progenitor passed through brings an amazing reality to your history.

The tour ended at Johns Park in Henefer where we enjoyed a wonderful lunch of pulled pork sandwiches, potato salad, rolls, cold slaw and peach cobbler alamode. Our lunch program began with the Major of Henefer telling stories of the early settlers and the history of the town. Ari Hunsaker of barbershop quartet background played his guitar and sang ‘Riders in the Sky’, ‘Come, Come Ye Saints and ‘If I Could Hie to Kolob’. We all then joined him in singing pioneer songs including ‘Little Pioneer Children’ and ‘The Ox Cart’. The program ended with John Eldredge telling about the history of the area.

Every day on interstate 80, cars, semi-trucks and trailers zoom past the beautiful rock formations of The Great Eastern, Hanging Rock, Winged Rock and Castle on the Mountain, rushing on to their appointments in the east. Few people realize the history of the area and the interesting events that happened there. On June 18th, a group of people with the Utah Genealogical Association got to slow down, take in the scenery and learn about the historical sites along the way. Now, thanks to John Eldredge, we also see in our mind’s eye, the camps of Johnston’s army covering those fields, and the wonder of our ancestors at these incredible surroundings. Thank you to the Mormon Trails chapter leadership for all of their hard work in organizing this great tour. Everyone enjoyed the day immensely. We hope to join the UGA Summit County Chapter for this tour again next year.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

Bountiful Cemetery Walking Tour

Looking for something meaningful to do on July 24th?
Join the South Davis UGA chapter for their
Bountiful Cemetery Walking Tour.

Visit with some of Bountiful's first pioneers.
Ashby Family, Simmons Family, Duncan Family, Hatch Family, Perkins Family, Hogans Family, Kippens Family, Buys Family, Marshalls Family, Muir Famly, Moss Family and others.

Sunday Evening July 24th between 6 and 8 pm.
2224 South 200 West, Bountiful
No charge for the tour. Booklets with all the pioneers' stories will be available for $5 purchase if desired.

Monday, July 18, 2011

July Virtual Chapter Meeting--Descendancy Research: Finding the Past in the Present

Utah Genealogical Association
Descendancy Research: Finding the Past in the Present

This presentation, using a case study, will discuss how to do descendancy research. By finding descendants of a common ancestor you may be able to find documents, artifacts and additional family information that may enhance your family story.

Tim Bingaman, AG, was born in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania. Tim has lived in Utah since 1980. He began to research his family lines in 1982 and has never stopped. After a three-year stint in the U.S. Army, he attended Harrisburg Area Community College and received his B.A. in history from Brigham Young University. Tim taught high school in St. Johns, Arizona from 1984-1989 teaching U.S. and World History, Geography, Economics and Health. He has been an accredited genealogist since 1991 in Mid-Atlantic States research. Currently, he is a reference consultant at the Family History Library.

July 21, 2011, 7:00 pm Mountain Time

The UGA Virtual Chapter meets online on the third Thursday of the month. These meetings are free to members of UGA, and free to non-members for a limited time. To join UGA visit our website at Membership is just $35.00 per year. Members will also have access to all archived virtual chapter meeting presentations, discounts for registration to the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy, a free subscription to our quarterly journal Crossroads, and more.

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

American Records & Research: Focusing on Families

Starting off our new series of blog posts about the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG), today's guest blogger is Course I coordinator, Paula Stuart-Warren.

Are you at a point in your research where you need some in-depth education about evaluating records, research, and U.S. resources in the 19th -21st centuries? Would you like five days of learning from some of the top experts in the field of family history? How about one-on-one consultation time to work on your own family history with some of these experts? What about working on a project in small groups that provides insight into the research process?

Then this is the course for you. Maybe you have already done basic searches online or in a library, but know there are more records to check and more to learn about those records that are online. This intermediate level course provides all that and more for strategies that take you beyond basic research tools both online and off. On-site consultations at the Family History Library from course instructors on three afternoons provide one-on-one assistance and guidance with your own research. The instructors don’t just lecture, they interact with you. This is the perfect course to take before you venture into other SLIG courses.

We’ll delve deeper into probate, vital records, guardianships, manuscripts, passports, lesser used federal records, school related records and church records. The records of births, deaths, and marriage will be scrutinized more closely along with substitutes for them. Civil war related records (other than pensions) will be discussed. All of these are goldmines for family details.

This course helps you extend your research skills with light, optional homework assignments to immediately apply the classroom information to research on your own families. There is ample time for open research in the afternoon and evening. The 2011 the Intermediate Course focused on localities. In 2012 this course focuses on individuals and families.

here to see the 2012 Course I lineup of excellent classes and "top-flight" instructors. See you next January!

Thanks, Paula! And, for those of you still debating about coming to Salt Lake in January for Course I, decide quickly. As of this evening there are only 17 seats remaining in this course.

If you enjoyed this article we invite you to share it via your favorite social networking media using the appropriate icon below. You may also reprint this article in any email or print newsletters you wish to distribute provided you include the date of original publication and the following text:

This article reprinted with permission of the Utah Genealogical Association. To learn more about the Utah Genealogical Association (UGA) or the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG), please visit their website at:

Sunday, July 10, 2011

New SLIG Series

I am very excited to announce a new blog series. For the next few months we will be featuring a different Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy course and course coordinator on our blog. Please feel free to comment if you have previously taken the course or if you have questions.

We will be alternating these with posts from past attendees on what gained from attending. If you would like to contribute please comment and we'll get in touch with you.

We're looking forward to our best Institute ever!

~Christy Fillerup