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March 2010, Vol. 4, No. 3
The Countdown Has Begun!
Who Do You Think You Are? Premiers Friday, March 5, 2010, 8:00 p.m. PST
Who Do You Think You Are? In case you missed the promotional ads throughout coverage of the Olympics, the latest copycat television series from across the pond airs this week on NBC.

When the BBC's Who Do You Think You Are? made its debut in the UK in 2004, queues of family researchers formed at archives and libraries all over England and the show became a huge hit. Will it have the same impact here and become the twenty-first century version of Roots?

Meet the seven celebrities who will trace their ancestry this season on the blog. Set your digital video recorders and spread the word to family and friends. This is an opportunity for us to explain painlessly exactly what it is we do!
March Membership Meeting with Mary Mettler
Saturday, March 13, 2010, 1:00 p.m.
CGS Library, 2201 Broadway, Suite LL2, Oakland

Mary MettlerThe Successful Research Trip: Lessons Learned on the Road

Many will recognize Mary's name from Tuesday Tales - the series of blog articles she wrote in 2008 during her three-month genealogical trek across country. She's made six shorter trips researching her ancestors so her expertise is measured in time and miles. Mary will share her tips and tricks on how to prepare for a genealogy research trip: taking the right tools, finding unique sources and preventing pitfalls. Learn more at the blog.

Tech Saturday Workshop with Mary Beth Frederick - An Encore Presentation
Digital Photography: A Tool For Your Genealogical Research
Saturday, March 20, 2010, 10:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Wednesday, March 31, 2010, 10:30 a.m. - 2:30 p.m.
Mary Beth's presentation is proving to be the most popular workshop the society has ever offered. After an overwhelming response to last month's announcement, the March 20 class was filled and Mary Beth graciously agreed to repeat the class on Wednesday, March 31, 2010. Unfortunately, the second class is also full. 

To be added to the waiting list for either class, email Tim Cox at No phone calls please.

Cemetery Walking Tour with Gaye Lenahan
Wednesday, March 24, 2010, 10:00 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Mountain View Cemetery, 5000 Piedmont Avenue, Oakland, CA 94611

Mountain View Cemetery gateMember Gaye Lenehan will lead this exploration of an Oakland gem. The walking tour of Mountain View will start promptly at 10:00 a.m. - everyone should gather in front of the main office.

If Mother Nature cooperates, attendees should witness a spectacular show since the tour has been timed to occur when the tulips are in full bloom. Gaye tells us that if the weather is nice, a bag lunch up on Millionaire's Row is fun. Learn more at the blog.

Ethnic Research Series: Chinese Ancestry Two-Session Workshop
Saturday, April 17, 2010, CGS Library, 2201 Broadway, Suite LL2, Oakland
Saturday, May 8, 2010, NARA, Pacific Region, 1000 Commodore Drive, San Bruno

The California Genealogical Society and Library is partnering with the National Archives and Records Administration - Pacific Region to present a two-day workshop series - one day at each location.

At Session I, members Christine DeVillier, Jeanie Low and Kay Speaks will share their expertise learned by researching their own Chinese ancestry. NARA archivist Marisa Louie will lecture on the resources in the NARA records collection pertaining to Chinese research.

At Session 2, attendees will put their new research skills to the test at NARA with access to the Angel Island Immigration Station case files. 

Attendance at both sessions is required. Only those who attend the April 17 lectures will be admitted to the NARA research day on May 8.

See the full schedule and detailed information at the blog. Register online.

Coming in May
Save These Dates!
Mark Your Calendar Membership Meeting - Saturday, May 8, 2010, 1:00 p.m. - Using Rootsweb and Social Networking, Jo Ann Rowley-Minhoto

Tech Saturday - May 15, 2010, 11:00 a.m. - 12:30 p.m., Hard Drive Organization; Making Use of Your Computer File Folders, Tim Cox

Field Trip to Sutro Library - Wednesday, May 26, 2010, Dick Rees
A Membership Request
Don't Throw That Old Issue Away!
California Nugget

Demand for the Spring and Fall 2009 issues of The California Nugget has exceeded the supply. The Membership Committee is requesting members who are not saving their issues, to please donate them back to the library. Please leave them at the desk for Arlene Miles.

Editor's Picks: Suggested Links From the Blogosphere

Griffith's Valuation by Deborah Large Fox

VA Pension Cards 1907-1933 Going Online by Taneya

CGS February Meeting a History Maker by Craig Manson

The Genealogy "Room" at Internet Archive by Denise Olson

Genealogical Resources of the National Archives of Ireland by James Tanner

San Francisco: 'Jews in China' Series During March by Schelly Talalay Dardashti

Faces of America - My Newfound Cousin [Meryl Streep!] by Earline Hines Bradt

52 Weeks of Online American Digital Archives and Databases: California by Miriam Robbins Midkiff

California Ancestors: Diverse Heritage From Around the World
Photo Tributes to the CGS Family
Edited by Cathy H. Paris

This month we pay tribute to our Irish Roots. The photographs and story were submitted by our Photo Editor, Cathy H. Paris

March 17 is fast approaching, so you may want to check your closet to make sure you have something green to wear. As a child, I was always in a painful quandary as to whether or not I should wear green on St. Patrick's Day. After spending the last several years researching the history of my family, I no longer have misgivings. 

When I asked my maternal grandmother, Helen Nimmo, a somewhat non-practicing Episcopalian, if she was Irish, she gave me a look that could kill. She paused a few moments to regain her composure, then explained that her father was born in England and her mother had Scottish roots. All this was true, as far as it went.

When I asked my mother if I was Irish, she assured me that while I had some Irish, I was a "mix." I created this graphic so you can appreciate how mixed up I really am!

Cathy's Ancestry
I never had the chance to talk about being Irish with my paternal grandmother, Mary Fitzgerald. She died in 1918 of the Spanish influenza, and was buried in the Catholic cemetery in Portsmouth, New Hampshire. She was born in Penacook, New Hampshire, on September 20, 1886, the daughter of Jennie McCormick, a young immigrant from County Clare, and James E.  Fitzgerald, the American-born son of immigrants from County Kerry.

I wonder what Mary Fitzgerald would have thought about her son marrying my mother. And what do you think my mother's mother, Helen, would say if she knew that despite her disclaimers, I have discovered that all four of her grandparents were from Ireland?

This month I pay tribute to my grandmothers, pictured below, and their discordant Irish roots: Helen Elizabeth Nimmo (1898 - 1976), left, and Mary Elizabeth Fitzgerald (1886 - 1918), right.

Helen Nimmo and Mary Fitzgerald


Call For Submissions - We need your photographs and stories! Do you have a great family photo that is scanned and ready to be shared? Do you have a wonderful family story and a photo to go with it? If you would like to pay tribute to your ancestor in a future edition of the eNews, please email Cathy Paris and send your image with a brief narrative.
Did you miss these posts in the California Genealogical Society & Library blog?

Our New LookCGSL blog

Honored by Family Tree Magazine!

A Valentine From the Manuscript Collection

Wanted! U.S. Criminal Records by Ron Arons

What We Missed and How Technology Saved the Day

Kate's Story in the Missouri State Genealogical Journal

Judy Avery's Report From London: Who Do You Think You Are?

Call For Submissions: First Edition of the Carnival of Genealogical Societies

Kathryn Doyle, eNews Editor
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