Sunday, January 24, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Two Degrees of Separation

Here is our assignment:

1) Using your ancestral lines, how far back in time can you go with two degrees of separation? That means "you knew an ancestor, who knew another ancestor." When was that second ancestor born?

2) Tell us about it in a blog post of your own, in a comment to this blog post, in a status line on Facebook or a stream post on Google+.


I tried this with both my father's line and my mother's:

1. My Hork-Sullivan-Gleeson line: My paternal great grandaunt, Loretto M. Sullivan Patterson (1885-1972) held me (born in 1954 in Concord, California). She definitely knew her grandmother, Margaret Tierney Gleeson (1835 in Canada, d. 1920 in Portland, Oregon) because she lived with her grandparents after her mother died in 1912.

Me with Aunt Loretta - 1954
Loretta with her Aunt and Grandmother - 1913 or so

2. My Hork-Johnston-Lancaster-Polly line: My grandmother, Pansy Louise Lancaster Johnston (1913-2013) knew her great-grandfather, George Wilson Lancaster (1839-1919). George W. Lancaster would have known his grandfather, Nathan H.O. Polly (1820-1902). These family all lived in proximity of each other in Erath and Rockwall Counties in Texas.

Pretty good. I was able to get back to 1820!

Copyright © 2016 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.

Sunday, January 17, 2016

Saturday Night Genealogy Fun -- Your 2016 Genealogy Education Plans

It's another great assignment from Randy Seaver of Genea-Musing.

Your mission, should you decide to accept it (cue the Mission Impossible! music) is to:

1) What are your genealogy education plans for 2016?  Local society meetings or seminars?  Regional or national conferences?  Weeklong institutes?  Genealogy cruises?  Podcasts?  YouTube Videos?  Webinars or Hangouts On Air?  Magazines?  Websites?  Blogs?
2)  How much time do you invest in Genealogy Education?  Why do you do it?
3)  Tell us about it in your own blog post, in a comment to this blog post, or in a Facebook or Google+ post.
Here are my answers:

1. My 2016 genealogy education plan is:

a. Attend Institutes.
  • Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG).  This is already completed. I attended the course “Advanced Genealogical Methods” with Thomas W. Jones. It was a very rigorous class but very rewarding. I knew there would be homework, so made no effort to research at the Family History Library in the evenings of the class and instead worked on the homework. Completing the homework really helped solidify the ideas and techniques he taught in the class. I highly recommend it. The schedule for 2017 was announced at the banquet and will be posted to their website soon. (P.S. I arrived early the week before to get in my researching fix at the Family History Library).

b. Online Classes.

c. Other online education.
  • Study groups with DearMyrtle.  She has several opportunities during the week including Mondays With Myrt, Wacky Wednesday, and special topic workshops. I have been a panelist on several of the previous study groups where we take a specific topic, explore it in depth, and talk about it.
  • Bootcamps created by Thomas MacEntee at Hack Genealogy. I attended two Bootcamps previously and will take “Scrivener II: Beyond the Basics” this coming Saturday.

d. Local and regional society activities. 
  • I will attend most of the meetings of the Contra Costa County Society and the Sacramento German Genealogical Society meetings. I will attend classes and teach classes at the California Genealogical Society.   
  • Once a year seminars given by other local societies will also be an attraction.

e. Classes and presentations.
  • I am part of the joint Contra Costa County Genealogical Society and Concord Family History Center intermediate genealogy class called “Beyond the Basics” class, a 6 week course continuing where we left off with our introduction class.
  • I will also be giving presentations throughout the year to several local genealogy societies.

f.  Self-study.
  • I also read several publications, such as the National Genealogical Society Quarterly, and follow many blogs. I probably spend about 25-30% of my time on education, counting the time spent learning about new resources and localities of places where my ancestors lived.


Education is important. I spend time in organized classes taught by experts in the field and I spent time with self-study, focusing on what I need for personal research.

Copyright © 2011-2016 by Lisa Suzanne Gorrell, My Trails into the Past. All Rights Reserved.