Friday, January 30, 2015

Hear Names Pronounced Correctly

It can be a challenge to correctly pronounce some of the names of our ancestors, especially those that came from across the sea.

This site allows you to hear the names pronounced. To make it work, of course, you need to have speakers or headphones attached to your computer. The list of name origins you can choose from is impressive: American, Arabic, French, Fula, Irish, Rendille, Russian, Swedish, and Wolof to name just a few.

Once you select the name category, you then can select male or female first names, or surnames. The result will be an alphabetic listing of the names. Click on the one you are interested in, and you will hear a recorded pronunciation.

Check it our at:  Learn How To Pronounce Names Correctly

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Time is Running Out to Register for the PGS Annual Seminar

The Annual PGS Seminar will take place from 8:30am to 4pm on Saturday, 14 February at the Largo Public Library. This all-day event is one of the highlights of the year and features many speakers and activities that will be of interest to genealogists, both new and experienced.

Dr. John Colletta is the featured speaker, and will make four presentations during the day. He is one of America's more popular genealogical lecturers, having worked at the Library of Congress for twenty years and having taught workshops at the National Archives. He has published several books, articles, and manuals on various genealogical topics.

In addition to Dr. Colletta there will be three other speakers who will present during breakout sessions.

Other activities during the seminar included a continental breakfast, box lunch, beverages and snacks all day long, raffles, door prizes, huge book sale, guest organizations to talk to, and plenty of time to compare notes with other researchers.

Time is running out for registration, so follow the link below to get more detailed information on the program and to find a registration form. The price goes up after 7 February so act now.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

What are Things Worth

If you have tried to imagine what a home reported in the census as $1500 is worth today…and failed, then this site is for you.

Measuring Worth provides several calculators to help you answer questions like the one above. They can calculate relative values in either direction (what is is worth now vs. what was it worth then), purchasing power, inflation rates, and much more.

If you want to get a better understanding of your ancestral family’s economic situation, check it out.

Measuring Worth - Relative Worth Calculators and Data Sets

Sunday, January 25, 2015

PGS Educational Events for the Week of 25-31 January 2015

Monday, 26-Jan-2015 at 9:30 AM--Memorial Park Cemetery Canvass—9:30-11:30 AM. Meet at the south parking lot at 5750 49th Street N (intersection of 49th St. N. and 54th Ave, west side). Bring your digital camera and sun protection. Water and other refreshments will be provided. Wear your PGS shirt if you have one. Please RSVP to Debbie Schuler:, (727) 470-9967.
Monday, 26-Jan-15 at 6:00 PM--Family Tree Maker 2012 Basics--Part 2, Smith, Local History Room, Largo Library.
Tuesday, 27-Jan-15 at 10:00 AM--City Directories in Genealogy research--City directories are a valuable genealogy resource. They can give information on household composition, residence and business location, and insights into the lives our ancestors led. They can also be used as a substitute for the US Federal Census, or used in conjunction with the census to locate hard-to-find ancestors. This class explores the history of this resource, the research value of the information they provide, and where to find the records. Summers, Local History Room, Largo Library.
Wednesday, 28-Jan-15 at 10:00 AM to 4:00 PM--England & Wales Genealogy--Quirks and access to government censuses 1841-1911 plus less well known census pre-1841. Participants in the morning lecture are invited to bring their laptops for an afternoon workshop (after a lunch break) to search for personal records with individual guidance. Pearson, Local History Room, Largo Library
Thursday, 29-Jan-15 at 10:30 AM--Land Ownership Records & Maps—This class was scheduled to be led by Susan Luce focusing on using the website. However, Susan had knee replacement surgery last week and cannot do the class. So, we will offer instead a class closely related to Susan's. It will focus on property records generated when an individual acquired land from the US Government. The class will explore how to legally describe that land (essential) to finding records about it), demonstrate how to search for the land records at the Government Land Office website, how to use the website for the same purpose, how find supporting documentation at the and websites, and how to order the Land Entry Case Files from the National Archives.
This class in part is similar to the US Property Research Basics class offered last week, but focuses only on public land states, and goes much deeper to explore in real time the use of the resources mentioned above.  Summers, Local History Room, Largo Library.

Saturday, January 24, 2015

Online Resources From Rock Island County Illinois Genealogical Society

The Rock Island County, Illinois Genealogical Society has made available some important databases you may be interested in. In particular there are obituaries from 2005 through 2013 and funeral home memorial cards covering deaths from 1990 to mid 2013.

The information comes from mostly the Quad Cities area. Find those indexes and more at:  Online Resources

Thursday, January 22, 2015

Open House at Aging Well Center on 7 February 2015

The Aging Well Center at the Long Center in Clearwater (1501 N. Belcher Road) is holding an open house from 9 am to 1 pm on Saturday, 7 February.

PGS has been giving genealogy and history presentations at the AWC for several years now, and will have a display table at this event. Drop by and say hello to our representatives, and check out all of the activities and opportunities the Center has to offer.

Wednesday, January 21, 2015

World War I Soldier Photographs Free Online

The State Library of Massachusetts has made available for free online a collection of photographs of WWI soldiers. You can search the collection by keyword, or  browse it by date, author, title or subject.

There are over eight thousand photos in the collection, and they feature soldiers primarily from the state of Massachusetts. Some from nearby states are included also, so check it out.

World War I Soldier Photographs

Monday, January 19, 2015

Florida Humanities Council Presents Caren Neile at Largo Library

Tuesday, February 3rd at 6:00pm
Largo Public Library
Jenkins Community Wing

Doesn't it often seem like history is something that happens to other people? This engaging, highly interactive program uses real-life, old-Florida stories of adults and children, rascals and heroes as a jumping-off point for story creation that helps participants understand that they too are a vital part of living Florida history. Free tickets are available at the Largo Public Library.

"Our Stories, Ourselves" is part of the new annual event "Largo Turns a Page" which encourages members of our community to read and discuss a thought-provoking book. The book chosen for the 2015 community read is Learning to Die in Miami, an autobiography by Cuban refugee Carlos Eire who came to America in the 1960s through the Operation Pedro Pan Airlift. The Largo Public Library will host a series of programs incorporating music, dance, culture, and cuisine to promote and celebrate this year's book selection.

PGS will participate in the event by making a presentation on 15 March about Caribbean genealogy research and US naturalization. It will be at 10 am in the Local History Room of the Largo Library.

Sunday, January 18, 2015

PGS Educational Events for the Week of 18-24 January 2015

Tuesday, 20-Jan-15 at 1:00 PM--Italian Genealogy Interest Group (GIG). This is the initial meeting of all who have an interest in Italian genealogy research, LeConte, Local History Room, Largo Library.

Tuesday, 20-Jan-15 at 6:00 PM--Property Research Basics. This is a general treatment of property research in the United States. It will explore ownership documents from land grants to land patents to deeds; it will explain the difference in land descriptions in state land states and public land states; it will examine the historical context of military bounty land, the Homestead Act, and the cash purchase of public land. We will also survey where to find the records generated during the ownership and transfer of property. Summers, Local History Room, Largo Library.

Wednesday, 21-Jan-15 at 10:00 AM--Death Records-Part 2--where to find records for cemeteries,, church, SSDI, et al. Bryan, Local History Room, Largo Library

Wednesday, 21-Jan-2015 at 1:30 PM--Dropbox and Evernote for Genealogy. Summers, Charlotte County Genealogy Society, Port Charlotte, FL.


Research Value of Electoral Rolls

If you have not included electoral rolls in your search for ancestors, this article found in GenealogyInTime Magazine may be for you.

The article explains why the rolls were kept, what information is included in them, how they can be used, and where they can be found.

Check out the article at:  Searching Electoral Rolls for Ancestors

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Richland County Library in South Carolina Offers Online Resources

If your ancestors had connections to Richland County, South Carolina, this site may be worth checking out. The Richland Library offers an online obituary index, Columbia City Directories, and more.

Those links and more are found at:  Genealogy | Richland Library

Tuesday, January 13, 2015

Heritage Village Presents First "Speaking of History" Lecture of 2015

As baseball fans count the days until players report to Spring Training, historian Mark Panuthos discusses the first organized intra-city Florida baseball league from 1919 to 1926.
As part of the Speaking of History lecture series, Panuthos will present “Tampans and Blockheads: the Earliest Rays in the 1925 Florida State League Baseball Championship Series” lecture on Sunday, Jan. 18, at 2 p.m. in the Pinellas Room at Heritage Village.
Panuthos will focus on the 1925 Florida State League Championship series between the Tampa Smokers and the St. Petersburg Saints. The series featured the first two Tampa Bay area natives to ascend to Major League Baseball teams, and numerous players on their way up to, or down from, the major leagues.
Panuthos is a local historian, instructor and the founding editor of Epiphany Tampa Bay Magazine. He has spent the last three decades in Tampa Bay and has written for numerous magazines and for the Civil War Daily Life Encyclopedia.
He attended the University of Florida where he earned his bachelor’s and master’s degrees in American history. A native of Brooklyn, New York, Panuthos currently lives in Seminole with his wife and children.
Heritage Village is located at 11909 125th St. N. in Largo. This living history museum brings more than 150 years of local history to life. Tour 29 authentic buildings and structures and experience historical Pinellas County through hands-on exploration. Heritage Village has Wi-Fi availability.
Heritage Village is open Wednesday to Saturday, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. and Sunday, 1 to 4 p.m. It is closed all Pinellas County holidays. For more information about Heritage Village visit, or call (727) 582-2123.

Monday, January 12, 2015

Watch a Preview of Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

If you have missed episodes of Finding Your Roots  with Henry Louis Gates, Jr., just go to the link below. The full episodes are available for free.

Once on the home page, scroll down just a bit to find the listing of previous episodes.

Watch a Preview of Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates, Jr.

Saturday, January 10, 2015

PGS Educational Events for the Week of 11-17 January 2015

Monday, 12-Jan-15 at 6:00 PM--Family Tree Maker 2012/2014 Basics--Session 1 of 6 sessions. A detailed explanation and demonstration of the many features of this most popular genealogy database program. Smith, Local History Room, Largo, FL.
Tuesday, 13-Jan-15 at 10:00 AM--King Philip’s War, 1675-1676: Causes & Consequences – Although largely forgotten, King Philip’s War was a widespread conflict that had a significant and long-lasting impact on New England colonists and Native Americans. The class will look at causes leading up to this brutal war, analyze the course of the war, and outline the consequences that helped shape the future of the United States. Fortin, Local History Room, Largo Library/
Wednesday, 14-Jan-15 at 10:00 AM--Death Records-Part 1--where to find vital records, funeral home,  newspapers, and more. Bryan, Local History Room, Largo Library.
Thursday, 15-Jan-2015 at 12:30 PM--England & Wales Genealogy--Part 2. How to access the civil parish records of birth/christening/marriage/burials from 1837 to the present. Pearson, Aging Well Center, 1501 N. Belcher Rd., Clearwater, FL.
Friday, 16-Jan-15 at 10:30 AM--German Genealogy Interest Group (GIG), Dellinger, Local History Room, Largo Library.
Saturday, 17-Jan-15 at 10:00 AM--Computers in Genealogy--Question and answer session on the use of computers in genealogy research and record keeping.Bryan, Jenkins B, Largo Library.
Saturday, 17-Jan-15 at 11:00 AM--Program Meeting--"Who's the Head of this Household?”  Moughty, Jenkins B, Largo Library.

Saturday, 17-Jan-15 at 12:30 PM--Workshop tour of the Genealogy Center showing the many genealogical research resources there. Stokes, Genealogy Center, Largo Library.

The Value of undocumented family trees

Harold Henderson writing in the Midwestern Microhistory: A Genealogy Blog, offers us a short story of his use of one of those omnipresent undocumented online family trees. Rather than disregard it, he used it to great advantage.

Read Harold’s article here:  Midwestern Microhistory: A Genealogy Blog: How I learned what to do with undocumented family trees

Thursday, January 8, 2015

A Country Guide to Google Search Engines

Did you know that Google has different search engines for different countries? And it should also not be a surprise that each country search engine has a bias for that country when doing searches.

This can work against genealogy searches where breadth of search in important. But if you know how to work with the appropriate search engine, you may become more effective in your Internet searching.

GenealogyInTime Magazine offers us a guide to Google search engines used in various countries. The article explains the effects of country bias and concludes with a table of URLs for various country search engines.

Check it out at:  A Country Guide to Google Search Engines

Monday, January 5, 2015

Austrian Records Online

If you have ancestors from Austria or its neighboring countries (which amounts to most of the old Austro-Hungarian Empire), you may find the GenTeam website useful.

The site is free with registration and currently boasts over 11 million entries.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

PGS Educational Events for the Week of 5 - 10 January 2015

Monday, 5-Jan-15 at 2:00 PM--Swedish Genealogy Interest Group - Top Tips for Beginning Swedish Family History Research, a YouTube presentation by Crista Cowan, (The Barefoot Genealogist) will be played. This will provide a quick overview of migration patterns and a basic review of the research process. This will serve as a reminded of elements which we may have forgotten. A discussion will follow with some additional hints. Charest, Local History Room, Largo Library
Tue. 6-Jan-15 at 6:00 techniques for getting the most from this huge collection of databases.    Bryan, Local History Room, Largo Library

Wed, 7-Jan-15 at 10:00 AM--Homestead Act-History and Records- A review of the historical and political significance of the 1862 Homestead Act and associated legislation. Includes a discussion of the process followed to establish a homestead on public domain land, and an understanding of the method of legally surveying and describing the land. The presentation will also cover an examination of the records that were created in establishing a homestead, their genealogical value, and where those records are found today. This is an in-depth treatment of the Homestead Act, which is briefly referred to in the presentation on property Research Basics in the US. Summers, Local History Room, Largo Library
Thu, 8-Jan-15 at 10:30 AM--French Canadian & Acadian Discussion Group, Grandmaison, Local History Room, Largo Library.

Thu, 8-Jan-2015 at 7:00 PM--Who do you think you are?          Bryan, presentation for Indian Shores Women--Indian Shores Municipal Center at 19305 Gulf Blvd, 4th floor.

If you have time to contribute a couple hours to one of our on-going projects, consider this: Monday, 5-Jan-15 at 9:30 AM--Memorial Park Cemetery Canvass—9:30-11:30 AM. Meet at the south parking lot at 5750 49th Street N (intersection of 49th St. N. and 54th Ave, west side). Bring your digital camera and sun protection. Water and other refreshments will be provided. Wear your PGS shirt if you have one. Please RSVP to Debbie Schuler:, (727) 470-9967. Memorial Park Cemetery, 5750 49th St N, St. Petersburg, FL

Friday, January 2, 2015

Gloucester County, NJ Historical Society Offers Online Data

The Gloucester County Historical society gives us searchable marriage, death, and cemetery indexes. Their website also includes some Burlington County information.

If you have ancestors from this area, check it out at:  Gloucester County Historic Society - Search