Friday, November 09, 2018

NEHGS Offers FREE Access on American Ancestors Thru Tues!

NEHGS Offers FREE Access to All Databases
on from November 6–13

On November 7, 2018 NEHGS announced the following: 

To assist family historians of all levels with a great reason to fall back into research, American Ancestors and New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) are granting FREE access to more than 1.4 billion names within its data-rich online records. For a limited time only—from Tuesday, November 6, 2018, through Tuesday, November 13, 2018—anyone can access the many research databases within the award-winning website of NEHGS by registering as a FREE Guest Member at

The website of NEHGS at contains some of the most important online databases for researching American ancestry, with more than 1.4 billion names in records covering 18 countries. Many databases include original content created by the experts and scholars at NEHGS, and all are open for eight days of FREE research to anyone who registers as a Guest Member. Access to all databases is free from November 6 at 12:00 AM EST through November 13 at 11:59 PM EST.

Tuesday, November 06, 2018

News You Can Use #2: Who You Do Think You Are? Debuts New Episodes in December

New Episodes of Who Do You Think You Are? on TLC

Here is the schedule for the upcoming season of Who Do You Think You Are?
  • Mandy Moore (December 3): Mandy Moore is shocked to discover ancestors who lived in Australia and travels far, determined to unlock the mystery of how they got there. Moore is touched by the courage of those who made the journey and the sacrifice of those who were left behind.
  • Josh Duhamel (December 10): Josh Duhamel travels to England to investigate the extraordinary life of his 12 times great-grandfather and uncovers an astonishing, dark twist of interrogation and torture that rocks his belief system to the core.
  • Matthew Morrison (December 17): Matthew Morrison explores his American roots for the first time and is surprised to discover his family’s ties to the Revolutionary War. He learns of the bold lengths that his ancestor went through to protect his allegiances and the brutality he faced on the battlefield.
  • Regina King  (December 17): Regina King investigates her maternal family tree and uncovers an ancestor who was a passionate civil rights activist in Alabama; a man who came out of slavery, endured horrific violence, but never stopped fighting for his people.

News You Can Use #1: Updates DNA Estimates, Offers Free Military Records

Sorry for the long absence!  Life got a little crazy for a while.  Here are a few genealogy-related stories to catch you up.  There are a few things happening at Ancestry.  
First, they are offering FREE access to military records from November 2-12 in honor of Veterans.  You can access the more than 250 million records at

Second, if you haven't heard, Ancestry has added millions of results to their DNA database and unveiled new ethnicity estimates for everyone who has taken an Ancestry DNA test. So if you haven't checked your DNA lately, it is worth a look.  According to the Ancestry Blog

Ancestry will deliver ethnicity estimates with increased precision to its customers, through a new algorithm that analyzes longer segments of genetic information, marking an important evolution in the way we interpret DNA data. Having built and expanded our DNA reference panel, we have a better understanding of genetic signatures globally, can break down geographic ethnicity estimates with greater specificity and give you a more detailed picture of your origins.

Thursday, September 13, 2018

AncestryDNA Updates Estimates

If you have had your DNA tested by AncestryDNA you may or may not have found the results useful or seemingly accurate.  Ancestry has updated individual results this week, matching them against thousands of new results they have obtained during the last year.  Its worth your time to check.  My estimates changed dramatically!

Thursday, August 30, 2018

Three $1,000 21st Century Fund Grants Awarded

Jenna Mills, Awards Committee chair, presented $1,000 grants to the following groups:

Bill Sheehy accepts the grant on behalf of Iron County Historical Society. 

 Rhonda Simpleman accepts the grant on behalf of the Carrollton Public Library.
Linda Brink & Estella Morrison accept the grant on behalf of the Excelsior Springs Genealogical Society.

Congratulations to all our grant recipients!

Tuesday, August 28, 2018

2018 MoSGA Award Recipients

AWARDS presented at the 2018 Conference

MoSGA Awards Committee Chairman Jenna Mills with Harold Kerr.

  • Harold Kerr II received the Award of Merit. He was nominated by the Howard County Genealogical Society. 
  • A Certificate of Appreciation was awarded to Mike Bridwell of the St. Louis County Public Library.  
  • Debbie Furnell received the President's Award.

Monday, August 27, 2018

Prize Winners from the 2018 Conference

Did you know that our vendors offer door prizes at the annual conference?  This year prizes included an DNA test, 1 year membership in a county genealogical association, books, and lots of other goodies!

2018 MoSGA Conference Award Winners

Sunday, August 19, 2018

In Case You Missed It...

We had a great MoSGA conference last weekend! Everyone enjoyed hearing Amy Johnson Crow. She was informative and a lot of fun. Stay tuned here for more pictures of this year's event as well as details for things to come in 2019!

Thanks Amy and all our presenters!

Sunday, July 29, 2018

Think You Know Someone Who Died During the 1918 Influenza Pandemic? (Hint: We all do!)

Beginning in the spring of 1918 influenza crawled across the globe. In three waves the virus touched every continent and virtually every family on earth between early 1918 and the summer of 1920. Scientists now believe that at least 50 million people died, including 675,000 Americans. 

The question for genealogists is aside from death certificates, how do we know if our family was affected?

I have a personal interest in the pandemic and have studied it for more than ten years. In a session on Friday, August 10 at the MoSGA conference in Columbia, MO, I will talk about influenza and how to search a wide range of records available to researchers.  Influenza killed more people than WWI, WWII, Korea and the Vietnam Wars combined.  It is an important part of our history that is often overlooked.  

Don't miss out! Register for the conference at

Friday, July 27, 2018

Need Help Finding Your Ancestors? Come to the MoSGA Conference to Learn New Strategies!

We all have those ancestors that frustrate us, tease us with a little bit of a trail, then seemingly disappearing in front of our eyes.  Sound familiar?

Join us 10-11 August in Columbia, MO with our keynote speaker Amy Johnson Crow. She will be sharing several "alternate routes" to finding those who came before us in sessions that might just spark a light to a new avenue through timelines, local websites, occupational records as well as how to take a second (third or fourth) look at the sources you have found for additional clues. 

Its not too late to register at so do it today and join us in the fun!

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Have You Researched Online Newspaper Databases Lately?

If you haven't already, be sure to add Chronicling America: Historic American Newspapers at the Library of Congress to the research list.

With the ever-growing options to search digitized newspapers from home, the Library of Congress (LC) and the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH) have joined efforts to digitize and preserve newspaper history through their National Digital Newspaper Program (NDNP).

Courtesy of Library of Congress

The Chronicling America collection is an ongoing database of American newspapers digitized primarily from microfilm by NDNP participating institutions. Spanning from 1690 to the present, the collection currently comprises nearly 154,800 digitized newspapers across the United States, American Samoa, Mariana Islands, Puerto Rico, and the Virgin Islands. The Missouri database currently encompasses 88 newspapers within a date range of 1839 through 1922.

The online search engine offers several options to browse newspapers by title, state, date range, keyword, ethnicity, or by language. An advanced search further allows for searches of keywords and phrases.

No subscription or login is required to access ChroniclingAmerica.

Thanks to LaDonna Gardner for this blog post!

Don't forget to register for the MoSGA Conference at our homepage!

Tuesday, July 10, 2018

NEHGS Offers FREE Access to All Online Databases on July 10–17

For One Week, Family Historians May Search NEHGS’s Early New England Collections—Including the World’s LargestMayflower Database, 
As Well As the Archdiocese of Boston’s Historic Catholic Records—FREE
July 10, 2018—Boston, Massachusetts—American Ancestors and New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) are offering FREE access to some of the most popular, new online databases in the world of family history and genealogy during a one-week, summer promotion now underway. FREE Access is being granted to all databases on—the award-winning website of NEHGS—from 12:01 a.m. EDST on Tuesday, July 10, through 11:59 p.m. EDST on Tuesday, July 17. This free access is granted to anyone registering as a FREE Guest Member of NEHGS at
Included in this limited-time promotion is free access to NEHGS’s new, recently-released database “Mayflower Families Fifth Generation Descendants, 1700-1880”—created through a partnership with the General Society of Mayflower Descendants (GSMD), with meticulous documentation on the Mayflower passengers who arrived in 1620 and left descendants. It is the largest online database of authenticated Pilgrim genealogies, with more than half a million searchable names.

Sunday, July 08, 2018

International Institute of St. Louis Festival of Nations August 25 – 26, 2018

Embrace cultural heritage at the upcoming Festival of Nations sponsored by the International Institute of St. Louis. The two-day free event will entertain the public with dance, music, informative displays, and activities focused on world cultures. The festival will also host 40-plus ethnic food booths and a 30-booth bazaar for ethnic related shopping.

Festival of Nations will be held from 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., Saturday, Aug. 25th, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Sunday, Aug. 26th, at Tower Grove Park. Parking shuttle service by bus will be provided.

Visit Festival of Nations for the festival schedule, participating businesses, organizations, and supporters.

Thanks to LaDonna Gardner for this blog post!

Don't forget to register for the MoSGA Conference at our homepage!

Saturday, July 07, 2018

The National World War I Museum and Memorial Research Archives

We are pleased to announce that Jonathan Casey will be presenting at the 2018 MoSGA Conference in August this year.  Mr. Casey is Director of Archives and the Edward Jones Research Center at the National World War I Museum and Memorial in Kansas City, Mo. He has been with the Museum since April 2001 and was integral in the Museum re-opening to the public in 2002. Jonathan also was vital to the planning, developing and opening the Museum’s core exhibition and research center that opened in 2006. He manages the Museum’s two-dimensional collection of approximately 100,000 items and the Edward Jones Research Center library of approximately 10,000 titles. 

Want to learn more about the digital and archives at the Museum? Come and hear about the rich resources at the National World War I Museum in Kansas City, MO.

Don't forget to register for the MoSGA Conference, 
August 10-11, 2018 at!

Tuesday, July 03, 2018

2018 MoSGA Conference Update: Stoney Creek Hotel Conference Price Extended to July 20!

We are gearing up for a great annual conference in Columbia, MO on 10-11 August.  Our incredible venue Stoney Creek has extended the deadline for our conference special price! Rooms are just $99 per night, but book soon as reservations are filling up fast. Call the hotel and request the MoSGA rate today. 

For details and to register for the conference check out

4th of July Holiday Sales and Deals

Several websites are offering deals for the holiday week.  Here are a few of the genealogy bargains available:

Have a happy and healthy Fourth!

Sunday, July 01, 2018

Do You Have an Adoption in Your Family Tree?

MoSGA is proud to announce that Heather Dodd will present "The Missouri Adoptee Rights Act and Adoption Records Search" at the Annual MoSGA conference on August 10-11, 2018.   

Missouri Adoptee Rights Movement

Heather is the founder of the Missouri Adoptee Rights Movement, the Missouri representative for G’s Adoption Registry, and the owner of Genected (a genetic genealogy service that helps people find family connections through DNA). 

She is the daughter of Jennifer Holt, an adoptee who was separated from her siblings by adoption at the age of 6.  In 1994, they began their 13 year search for Jennifer’s long lost family.  The successful search led Heather to volunteer as a search angel and as a result, Heather became instrumental in working with the Missouri legislature seeing the passage of the Missouri Adoptee Rights Act. This historical bill became law in 2016 allowing Missouri-born adoptees to apply for their original birth certificates for the first time in 75 years!

If you have an adoptee in your tree, you won't want to miss this!  Have you registered for the upcoming conference? Do it today at!

Friday, June 29, 2018

Do You Know Where You Will Be in 6 Weeks?

Join Us in Columbia for the Annual Conference on 10-11 August 2018!  If you haven't already registered you can do it here.

We have a great line-up this year with keynote Amy Johnson Crow as well as sessions on DNA, Missouri research including the new adoption law, the National WWI Museum and Research Center, the 1918 Influenza Epidemic, using social media, and cemetery research at Jefferson Barracks.

Thursday, June 28, 2018

Do You Know Anyone Who Was an Orphan Train Rider?

Until the release of a 1993 documentary on PBS's The American Experience, the story of the orphan trains was not widely known.  Since that time books have been written and an effort to collect the personal stories has been underway.

Here are a few of the recent books, many of which are fiction:
A Last Survivor of the Orphan Trains: A Memoir (non-fiction, available Jul 11)
Orphan Train Rider: One Boy's True Story (non-fiction, 1998)
Riders on the Orphan Train: a novel (2012)
Orphan Train (2013)
Orphan Train Girl (2017)
The Orphan's Tale (2017)
The Chaperone (2012) This book is not about the orphan trains, but the main character was an orphan in Kansas and later in life she and her family hide the fact from society.

Courtesy of
Between 1854 and 1929 over 250,000 orphans and unwanted children were taken out of New York City and given away at train stations across America. Originally organized by minister Charles Loring Brace to rid New York of homeless street children and provide them with an opportunity to find new homes in the developing Midwest, this nearly eighty year experiment in child migration is filled with horror stories and happy endings. The last train came to Sulphur Springs, Texas in 1929. The trains stopped in pre-selected towns where people interested in taking a child would assemble. Kansas was the destination for many of the orphans. See the Kansas State Historical Society for more information.

Beatrice Flanagan was born in New York City on April 25, 1921 to Josephine Flanagan, an Irish immigrant. She was left at Bellevue Hospital and then transferred to the New York Foundling Hospital. She was sent on a train by the Sisters to Sealy, TX in 1922 when she was fourteen months old and later adopted by Mary Polak in Wharton County, TX.

Beatrice is now 97. If anyone has any information on any other living Riders, please contact Alison Moore at with any pertinent information.

Did Your Ancestor Hold a Patent? Check the National Archives!

From the National Archives Pieces of History Blog:

Just two weeks ago, the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office issued the 10 millionth utility patent on Tuesday, June 19, 2018. This is a historic milestone for the agency and for inventors in the United States. Did you know the National Archives holds 1,000,000 Utility Patent Drawings and 138,388 boxes of Patent Case Files

I have at least two ancestors with patents. How about you?

Monday, June 04, 2018

Has Your Genealogy Research Hit a Wall? Maybe You Need to Go Old-School and Hit the Books!

One of the most exciting aspects of MoSGA's annual conference is our book sale.  Each year we encourage historical societies, libraries or other organizations to donate books to our book sale that benefits our Association.  Our greatest benefactor is always Mid-continent Library in Kansas City, Missouri.  Their genealogical holdings are unsurpassed.  

The benefit of the book sale is that not only do you get to clean out your respective closets or get rid of multiples of old materials, those of us who are die-hard book-hounds (I am confessing here) get to go shopping.   

Last year I left with bags of books. Among my treasures I found the following: 
  • A listing of burials in a cemetery on my grandparents farm in Morgan County.  The gravestones are no longer legible and the family only remembers a few names. Now we have the list!
  • A South Carolina Genealogy book written in the early 1960s that included details on a client's family.
  • A History of Kansas City's early businessmen I have used in my research to list two Kansas City properties on the National Register of Historic Places.
  • Early Deed Records of from Virginia.  I have a few ancestors whose surname is Adams, making this search very difficult.
The internet is a great resource, but sometimes nothing beats a book.  Whether you have books to give or research to support THIS is your chance!

2018 MoSGA Book Sale
Lewis & Clark Room
(Outside the Vendor Area at the 2018 MoSGA Conference)

Sale begins at 9 a.m. on Friday and at 8 a.m. on Saturday

Friday:  Books 1 – 200 pages     = $ 2.00

               Books 201 – 500 pages = $ 5.00

               Books over 500 pages  = $10.00

Saturday:  As many books as you can fit into a plastic shopping bag (we provide the bag) for $5.00.

Got Genealogy Books Taking Up Valuable  Shelf Space?

Just bring them with you to the 2018 MoSGA Conference and drop them off at the MoSGA Book Sale after 9 a.m. on Friday and after 8 a.m. on Saturday.

All revenue generated by this sale goes to support MoSGA and its continuing mission to enhance the knowledge of its members and the public in the study of family history, genealogical records and the principles of sound genealogical research. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

2018 MoSGA Book Sale August 10-11, 2018

2018 MoSGA Book Sale
Lewis & Clark Room
(Outside the Vendor Area at the 2018 MoSGA Conference)
Sale begins at 9 a.m. on Friday and at 8 a.m. on Saturday

Friday:  Books 1 – 200 pages     = $ 2.00
               Books 201 – 500 pages = $ 5.00
               Books over 500 pages  = $10.00

Saturday:  As many books as you can fit into a plastic shopping bag (we provide the bag) for $5.00

Got Genealogy Books Taking Up Valuable  Shelf Space?


Just bring them with you to the 2018 MoSGA Conference and drop them off at the MoSGA Book Sale after 9 a.m. on Friday and after 8 a.m. on Saturday.

All revenue generated by this sale goes to support MoSGA and its continuing mission to enhance the knowledge of its members and the public in the study of family history, genealogical records and the principles of sound genealogical research. 

Monday, May 21, 2018

Having Trouble with Your DNA Research? The MoSGA Conference Has the Answer!

DNA Research seems to be the hottest genealogy subject this year.  In fact it seems everybody is doing it! Have you been tested? Got your results? Not sure what they mean?

Come to the 2018 MoSGA Conference and learn about DNA from an expert!  We are pleased to announce that Patricia Hobbs, a Certified Genealogist and DNA expert will be giving a workshop and a seminar on DNA.

The Workshop, scheduled for Friday August 10, "An Overview of DNA Testing" will cover the basics of DNA testing: what tests are available, pros and cons of testing companies, and what the test results can tell you.

On Saturday a second session Ms. Hobbs will delve into test results and explore the testing companies' online tools.

If you want to find out more about DNA and about Patricia, check out her website at Register for the MoSGA conference on our website here

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Don't Miss This: MoSGA Conference 10-11 August 2018!

We are so excited about our lineup this year! Our keynote speaker, Amy Johnson Crow will be sharing some tips and tricks to enliven your research. 

Amy will be joined by six excellent speakers who will share their knowledge of World War One research, the Jefferson Barracks Cemetery, the changes for Missouri adoptees, the 1918 Influenza Epidemic and much more! Go to for more details and to register for the conference.

Saturday, May 05, 2018

MoSGA Conference Registration is OPEN!

We are excited to announce that registration for the Missouri State Genealogical Association Conference to be held at Stoney Creek Conference Center in Columbia, MO on 10-11 August 2018 is now OPEN. Click here or visit today for more details.

Monday, April 16, 2018

Pre-Registration for NGS Conference Ends April 20, 2018!

Registration for all meals, social events, and pre-conference tours also closes on 20 April. Ticket purchases will not be available on-site at the conference for meals, social events, or tours. Only a few spots remain for the Grand Rapids City Tour and the Civil War Tour. Seats are still available for meal events including the WMGS Host Event at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Museum, and the NGS Banquet with guest speaker Ric Mixter who will share riveting stories about famous storms and shipwrecks on the Great Lakes. The pre-conference research excursion to the Library of Michigan and Archives of Michigan is sold out.

Be sure to make your reservations now at To add to your current registration, log on at, click on My Account, select My Events, and then click to Add Sessions.

Click Here to Register for the NGS 2018 Family History Conference
The conference program, Paths to Your Past, features more than 175 lectures from basic to advanced genealogical research, including four days of the Board for the Certification of Genealogists (BCG) Skillbuilding lectures. The DNA track will include twenty presentations on DNA discoveries, science, and methodology. Friday and Saturday will feature lectures on African American, Native American, Jewish, and other ethnic groups. Other tracks will include resources in Michigan, New York, midwestern states, Canada, and some European countries. With more than twenty tracks, there is a wide of variety of lectures from which to choose. You do not want to miss this year’s exciting conference program. Register today!

Genealogy Bargain Offer TODAY Only! Voice Software on Sale

Today Thomas McEntee posted the following offer from GENEALOGY BARGAINS to get up to 64% Off Dragon Naturally Speaking Software at Amazon!

This sale doesn't happen very often on the world’s most popular dictation program for your computer! I couldn’t get half as much research and work done if I didn’t have Dragon Naturally Speaking. I love how it recognizes my voice and “builds” a vocabulary of words and terms that I frequently use. Plus, I draft all my books with Dragon using Microsoft Word . . . I can state commands like “Next line” or “semicolon” and it knows what I mean!
Some advice: the Home version is really all you need and it is available in a download version (no shipping fee) or with a CD installation.  
Don’t miss this sale! Regular price is $99.99 USD, now pay just $35.99 USD! Visit Genealogy Bargains HERE to save!

Tuesday, April 03, 2018

Fold3 Offers Free Access to Civil War Records 1-15 April

Free Access to Fold3’s Civil War Collection, April 1–15

To commemorate the beginning of the Civil War in 1861, Fold3 is providing free access (with registration) to our Civil War Collection from April 1–15. This collection currently has 50 titles, with more than 91 million records, so if you’re looking for information on the Civil War veterans in your family tree—or doing other Civil War-era research—now is the perfect time to explore these records on Fold3.

Friday, March 30, 2018

Genealogy Springfield to Hold 4th Annual Conference, 27-28 April 2018

Genealogy Springfield is a free conference for those interested in family history and the technology we use in family history to be held on April 27-28, 2018 at 1357 South Ingram Mill Road Springfield, Missouri at the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints’ meeting house.

From an exciting keynote speaker, John Dougan the Missouri State Archivist, to our many breakout sessions, you will find something to love at our fourth annual seminar.

Missouri State Archivists and Analysts from the Missouri State Archives will be giving presentations on finding records in Missouri and so much more.

Seminar classes start Friday evening April 27, with a full day of workshops on Saturday, April 28. Please check out our wide variety classes and register early.

This is a free seminar; there is no charge to attend, but registration is required. 

Tuesday, March 27, 2018

Become a REEL Supporter!

The premier center for the study of Missouri history and culture
Cape Girardeau    Columbia    Kansas City    Rolla    St. Louis    Springfield

Who will tell
Missouri's story?

Perhaps Mark Twain said it best, “News is history in its first and best form.” The SHSMO newspaper collection offers a first rough draft of Missouri's narrative, weaving an intricate tapestry from the fabric of weekly and daily dispatches on events across the state. 

Your story is Missouri's story. 

Whether you are a serious history scholar, just looking for an account of your own exploits, or tracking down even a brief mention of a shadowy ancestor, you can probably find it in the newspaper collection. The State Historical Society of Missouri has more than 54 MILLION pages of Missouri newspapers on microfilm, dating back to the first newspaper in St. Louis in 1808.


More than 57,000 reels hold the stories of our past, starting with the July 26, 1808, issue of the Missouri Gazette. SHSMO films all of the nearly 300 current newspaper titles it receives. In addition to microfilming present-day newspapers, the Society remains active in locating and preserving old papers, making these formerly unavailable resources accessible for local historical research.

Missouri Newspapers Online

A forgotten event, an obscure detail about a building, or the mention of a long-ago relative: these can be found in Missouri's newspapers. Your support has helped SHSMO digitize over 1.4 million newspaper pages that are now freely available to patrons worldwide.

With your help, SHSMO can digitize more than 180,000 pages of newspapers from eight Missouri counties that have no digitized newspaper content available—anywhere.

Become a REEL Supporter

The State Historical Society of Missouri cannot continue to collect, microfilm, and digitize newspapers without your help. Your donation is a statement about what matters—preserving Missouri's story—and it is a gift to your descendants a century from now who might want to discover you.
Header Image Description: Michigan City News Newsroom
[National Women and Media Collection, Dorothy Misener Jurney Papers, C3904]