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December 2013, Vol. 7, No. 12e
Holiday Break
Library Closed for Two Weeks
The California Genealogical Society Library will be closed December 22, 2013 - January 2, 2014 for the Christmas and New Year holidays. The library will re-open on Friday, January 3, 2014 at 10:00 a.m. 

Have a wonderful holiday season. See you next year!



Bylaws Revised
Members Will Vote to Approve at the Annual Meeting, January 11, 2014
The Board of Directors recommends a change to Article IX, the Financial Review section of the California Genealogical Society Bylaws.

This change modifies the date of the reading of the financial records to the end of the fiscal year. Reading the financial books at the end of a fiscal year is a standard business practice. This proposed amendment will be presented at the Annual Membership Meeting on January 11, 2014.

According to Article X, the bylaws may be amended by a two-thirds (2/3) vote of present and voting members in good standing at any membership meeting, provided that the amendment has been sent to each member at least thirty (30) days before the meeting.

Please note the additions and changes in red. Download the bylaws document.



First Saturday Free Intro Classes
Saturday, January 4, 2014, 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
CGS Library, 2201 Broadway, Suite LL2, Oakland, CA 94612

First Saturday Free The California Genealogical Society opens its doors to the public on the first Saturday of every month. We waive the library usage fee for non-members and welcome everyone to use the library's extensive family history resources.

Jump start your genealogy in the New Year! Join us for our monthly First Saturday Introduction to Genealogy class from 1:00 p.m. - 3:00 pm. The January class will be taught by Lisa Gorrell. Register online.

Annual Business Meeting and Potluck 
Saturday, January 11, 2014, 12:00 p.m.  
CGS Library, 2201 Broadway, Suite LL2, Oakland, CA 94612 

by Diana Edwards
Mark your calendars! Members are invited to attend a social hour at 12:00 noon before the Annual Business Meeting. Bring your appetite and a dish to share for the buffet lunch. Beverages and dessert will be provided. Please come and meet fellow members and volunteers!

The meeting will begin promptly at 1:00 p.m. President Jeffrey Vaillant's agenda includes brief committee reports, approval of the society budget, consideration of the bylaws change, and the nomination and election of new board members. Learn more. Honored Again
"Best State Genealogy Website" by Family Tree Magazine
FTM Best State Website 2013For the fourth year running, the website of the California Genealogical Society has been named one of the 75 Best State Genealogy Websites in 2013 by Family Tree Magazine.

Congratulations to all the members of the Website Committee and especially to Webmaster Larry Youngman and to Kathy Watson, Chair of the Technology and Website Committees.

Ancestry Day 2013 Broke All Records
1150 Attendees + 75 Volunteers + 182 New Members = Success!
by Jane Lindsey

The Ancestry Day planning committee - Jane Lindsey, Tim Cox, Kathleen

Beitiks and Lavinia Schwarz - thanks all the volunteers who made Ancestry Day San Francisco 2013 the most successful event ever sponsored by the society.


The professionalism of our speakers, consultants, and hard-working staff volunteers was truly appreciated. We received great feedback from attendees and from the staff and raised a record dollar amount to fund the library and California Genealogical Society programs.


Thank you!

Event Planning for 2014
Watch the Website and Blog for News and Registration Links
Genealogy ResolutionsThe Events Committee is busy making plans for the new year. Pam Brett and Lavinia Schwarz are completely revising the Beginning Genealogy Series which will be offered in February. Also new in 2014 will be Saturday field trips to genealogy-rich archives and libraries.
Be sure to make time to check the website and blog for information and registration links as classes are finalized between now and the end of the year.

Coming in February
Save These Dates!

Mark Your Calendar
   2/1:  Saturday Field Trip to San Francisco Public Library

   2/1:  First Saturday Free - Intro to Genealogy

   2/6:  Beginning Genealogy Series starts, Pam Brett and Lavinia Schwarz

   2/11: Book Repair Committee

                              2/15:  San Francisco Special Interest Group   

                              2/18:  RootsMagic Special Interest Group
Visit for up-to-date information on classes and events.   


Announcing the 2014 Salt Lake City Research Tour 
Sunday to Sunday, April 14-21, 2013
Accommodations at the Shilo Inn, 206 West Temple, Salt Lake City, UT

SLCPast-president Jane Lindsey is leading the 14th Annual California Genealogical Society Salt Lake City Tour to the Family History Library April 14-21, 2013. Research Director Nancy Peterson returns to help lead this very popular trip. 


Download the tour flier for full information. Register online to reserve your space now!
Volunteer Corner
Jobs Well Done! 
by Linda Okazaki, Volunteer Coordinator
Volunteer Sign Up

California Genealogical Society volunteers are amazing. You pick up the pace. You figure out what needs to be done when and then accomplish those goals. Thank you everyone for all of your help, especially during the past few weeks with our three big events: Angel Island, Their Roots are Showing and Ancestry Day. Each was a tremendous success. 

If you would like to participate in our ongoing efforts, I would love to hear from you. Please email Linda Okazaki to discuss your interests. We especially need your immediate help in two areas. First, our computer team needs assistance with their Monday maintenance schedule. Secondly, we need database entry assistance for our volunteer management team. Check our volunteer page for additional opportunities. 
Again, a great shout out to all of our wonderful volunteers! Thanks to each of you for a job well done.

Passing the Baton
New Year, New eNews Editor 
by Kathryn Doyle
Marcelle White
Marcelle White

It has been a pleasure to serve as editor of the California Genealogical Society eNews for the past six years. I will continue to serve the society as chief blogger but it's time to pass the editorial "baton" to someone else. 


Starting with the January 2014 issue, Marcelle White will take over as newsletter editor. Marcelle has been involved in the nonprofit world for more than twenty years and has extensive experience writing and editing newsletters. She has been a member of the California Genealogical Society since 2009 and has been serving as a volunteer on the Library Committee. Welcome, Marcelle!


Editor's Picks: Suggested Links from the Blogosphere
California Ancestors: They Came from Everywhere!

Photo Tributes to the CGS Family

Edited by Lorna Wallace  


This month we honor H.C. Thomas, grandfather of member Sally Houston.


Henry Claud Thomas
Henry Claud Thomas and friend, ca. 1903

The skinny guy in the photograph slouching on the right is my grandfather, Henry Claud Thomas (1884-1966). He and an unidentified friend stand with wire and a telephone instrument - the tools of their trade. In 1910, H.C. Thomas was living with his parents in Abingdon, Illinois, as was his future wife, Ethel Evelyn Lewis (1892-1923) and her parents. By early 1911, H.C., his parents and his twin, Charlie, and family had moved to Richmond, California. Exact dates have not been found, nor are they likely to be. But what has been found (by CGS researcher Jane Hufft) is a marriage record for H.C. and Ethel, 6 Jun 1911, in Stockton, California.

My speculation is that Ethel had remained in Abingdon, because her father was very ill, but that a marriage had already been planned. After his death in April 1911 the minimal estate was quickly settled, Ethel and her mother, Eliza, packed up and took the train which went from Chicago to Oakland. H.C. met them in Stockton, which, being an inland port city provided a more direct route to Richmond. And it supposedly was a place to get married easily and quickly.

As an only child, Ethel wanted a large family so over the next eight years, they had seven children. After Ethel's death in 1923, Eliza took over the care of my mother and her siblings.  


-Sally Houston


Call for Submissions: Are you a member with a great family photo to share? Please email Lorna Wallace and send your image with a brief narrative.



Did You Miss These Posts in the California Genealogical Society & Library Blog?

Sixth Blogiversary!

Thank You and Welcome New Members


Spotlight Series: Membership Committee


News from the 2013 Nominating Committee


Wordless Wednesday: Their Roots Are Showing!


Wordless Wednesday: Ancestry Day San Francisco



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Kathryn Doyle, eNews Editor  email me