California Genealogical Society
and Library eNews
March 2008, Vol. 2, No. 3
March Membership Meeting - Oakland Family History Center
Amazing New Offerings at the Family History Library
Saturday, March 8, 2008 at 1:30 p.m.
4766 Lincoln Avenue, Oakland, CA 94602.
Those who have signed up for the CGS Research Tour to Salt Lake City in April won't want to miss the March Membership Meeting this coming Saturday. Margery Bell, Assistant Director of the Oakland Regional Family History Center, will update us on the new projects that the LDS Church is working on from to the results of the massive indexing program that is underway. Currently more than 100,000 volunteers are indexing over 1 million names a month and they are rapidly coming on-line with links to the original records. Some of the new technologies can be seen at FamilySearch Labs. Marge will also show us the family history center portal that is the gateway to the member websites available in the Family History Center and demonstrate how their favorites list is organized to provide easy access to some of the choice websites for genealogical research.

An avid genealogist for thirty-eight years, Margery Bell is the author of "Line Upon Line: A Beginner's Guide to Genealogy" that is published with Ancestral Quest software.

Please note, the CGS Library will be open as per the usual schedule.

110th Celebration Highlights
BooksThe California Genealogical Society 110th Anniversary Celebration was a smashing success.  Among the 140 attendees was honored guest, and past president (1979-1982), John E. Hale. Mr. Hale has held membership in CGS since 1959 and has the distinction of being the longest continuous current member.

Maureen Taylor, the Photo Detective, was outstanding.  In addition to the four crowd-pleasing lectures, Maureen also gave several one-on-one consultations.

Volunteers needed! 
Help Put Our Books in Order!
by Marianne Frey
BooksIf you've been to the Library lately you've probably admired our books on their nice new shelves (no more mismatched hand-me-downs), clearly marked and easy to find. But -- are they perfectly arranged? No. Like cars on the freeway, the books bunch up in one place and are generously spaced in another. Donations come in (two big ones recently) and must be accommodated. And books are occasionally re-shelved in the wrong place.

With your help we can get every book in the right place. Come to the library on Wednesday, March 19th at 10:00 am for a review of the Library of Congress call number system and a chance to check your shelving skills. Then you can get to work, or come in on other days if convenient. (Volunteers who helped read shelves last year used the shelf list and noted missing cards and books.  This will be easier -- you'll just put the books in order.)

Bring a brown bag lunch or check out the good local lunch places. Your help will be much appreciated.

CGS Membership Coffees
San Francisco - April 2, 2008, 10 a.m. - 12 noon
Sacramento - May 7, 2008, 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.

Mechanics' Institute Logo Invitations have been sent out to CGS members who live in San Francisco for the Membership Coffee to be held on Wednesday, April 2, 2008, 10 a.m. - 12 noon, at the Mechanics' Institute Library cafe in San Francisco's Financial District. Immediately following the coffee, the regularly scheduled public tour of the Mechanics' Institute Library takes place at noon. The historic Mechanics' Institute is private and only members are allowed inside the library, so this will be a unique opportunity to tour this historic facility.  Reservations are required because of space limitations. The society acknowledges the generosity of Mary Beth Frederick who is a member of the California Genealogical Society and the Mechanics' Institute and who graciously made the arrangements. Please respond to Barbara Bentley.

Members in the greater Sacramento area will be receiving invitations for a membership coffee at the Belle Cooledge Branch Library on Wednesday, May 7, 2008 from 1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

CGS President Jane Lindsey is still looking for a member who lives in the Los Angeles area to help organize a membership coffee to coincide with the Southern California Genealogical Society Jamboree 2008, which will be held June 27-29 at the Burbank Airport Marriott Hotel and Convention Center.

8th Annual Salt Lake City Research Tour
April 13-20, 2008
There are still a few spaces left for the 8th annual CGS Salt Lake City Research Tour, April 13-20, 2008. CGS President, Jane Lindsey and CGS Research Director, Nancy Peterson return again as volunteer leaders of this very popular trip to the Family History Library. Accommodations are at the Shilo Inn, located three blocks from the Family History Library.

The Tour Package includes:
* Hotel room (7 nights, double occupancy)
* Shuttle service to and from the airport
* Three group dinners (Sunday, Wednesday and Saturday)
* Orientation meeting and several lectures
* Optional assistance at CGS prior to the trip
* Computer assistance
* Hotel shuttle to library, if needed
* Continental breakfast included

The cost is $625 (airfare not included.) A deposit of $200 holds one space. The trip registration form gives the full details and a description of the cancellation and refund policy.

A special note for Danish researchers: The Family History Library will have three lectures during the week of the CGS trip on Danish census records, military levying rolls and probates. Check the FHL April Class Schedule for the complete list of classes and times.

Eastern European Research Workshop
Saturday, April 12, 2008, 10:30 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Plans are being made for a special research workshop for members with roots in Central and Eastern Europe. CGS members, Stephen J. Danko, author of Steve's Genealogy Blog and Jeremy Frankel, President of the San Francisco Bay Area Jewish Genealogical Society, will be on hand to lend their expertise. Don't miss this opportunity to learn new strategies and meet other members with similar research interests.  A Scandanavian Research Workshop has been scheduled for Saturday, June 14, 2008.  Save the dates.

In Memory
Chuck Knuthson (1946-2008)
Chuck KnuthsonThe genealogy world is saddened by the death of nationally known speaker, Charles V. "Chuck" Knuthson, who died at his home in Roseville, California on Thursday, February 27, 2008.  Chuck was a member of CGS and spoke at our September 2007 membership meeting. He served as Vice President for Administration for the Federation ofGenealogy Societies, as a Director for the Genealogical Speakers Guild, as the Forum Leader for the National Genealogical Society's German Forum and President of the Sacramento German Genealogy Society.

Suggested Links
In Honor of St. Patrick's Day
Irish Roots Cafe

Small-leaved Shamrock: Off to Ireland!

Family Tree Magazine - Irish Resources Toolkit

Apostrophes Lead to Catastrophes | The Genealogue

Genealogy Ireland - Irish genealogy research guide

Information Wanted: Advertisments from the Boston Pilot 1831-1921

Born Fighting - What do Clinton, Huckabee, McCain and Obama Have in Common?

CGS Ancestors
Photo Tributes to the CGS Family
Myrtle & Norah

This month's CGS Ancestor was submitted by Sandra Hart.

This is my favorite photograph of my father's mother, Myrtle Helen Kavaney.  She was born in Wellston, Ohio in 1890 to Michael Kaveny and Emma Rebecca Handley, both of Irish ancestry.  In 1908, Myrtle's coal-miner father died leaving the family destitute.  Myrtle decided to seek her fortune in the goldfields of Alaska. She made the trip by stagecoach, ship, train, and riverboat with her aunt, Norah Handley Morley, who was rejoining her family. They lived in Fairbanks and ran a business hauling people and supplies to the Ester Creek mining operations.  The first person Myrtle met when the riverboat docked in Fairbanks was the man who would become her husband, Ralph Hugho Harris from Selma, California. In the next few years, Myrtle lived in North Vancouver Island with her aunt and mother. The photo shows Myrtle and Norah working a float of logs in their long skirts and high-button shoes in 1911.  By 1920, Myrtle and Ralph married and moved to California to farm in Selma.  The rest of Ralph's family also returned to California from their 20-year adventure in Alaska to a ranch in Napa.
If you would like to see your CGS Ancestor featured in a future edition of the CGS eNews, please email your image to and include a brief description.

Keep up with the CGS blog
CGS Blog Screenshot

The link is also accesible from the homepage of our website:

California Genealogical Society and Library
A Northern California Genealogy Resource
Oakland, CA 94612-3031

Founded February 12, 1898 in San Francisco, CGS, a non-profit, all-volunteer organization that seeks to aid, educate and encourage research in family history, is presently located in Oakland, California. The society maintains a library, gathers and preserves vital records and disseminates information through publications, meetings, seminars, workshops, its Web site, blog and online catalog.