Olympia Genealogical Society
  Donations & Memorials

Jewish Research - May 9 Meeting

Janice M. Sellers will present “Jewish Genealogy: How Is This Research Different from All Other Research?” at our May general meeting.  This talk will tell us what is unique about Jewish research, show us what resources are available, and suggest what can be done with your research.
Janice is a professional genealogist specializing in black, Jewish, dual citizenship, forensic, and newspaper research. She is the president of the Jewish Genealogical Society of Oregon and a board member of the San Francisco Bay Area Jewish Genealogical Society (SFBAJGS) and other genealogy publications. She has volunteered at LDS FamilySearch Centers since 2000 and gives presentations on many genealogical topics at local, regional, state, and national/international levels. She has researched her own family history for almost 50 years.  For more information, visit her website.
A link to the 7:00 pm Zoom meeting (starting at 6:30 pm for social time) will be provided here on the day of the meeting.

Genealogical Gems in Ledgers - April 11 meeting

Diane Richard spoke about Genealogical Gems in Ledgers at our April general meeting.
Have you explored “small business” ledgers, typically found in manuscript collections (privately held or as part of a university collection)? You can learn so much about your family, FAN club, and neighborhood through these records. Store, business, post office, health-related and many other types of ledgers can link family members and provide content invaluable to your family history narrative. The frequent use of the barter system connected many! Samples of many ledgers are shared along with insight into the myriad resources helpful in discovering their existence.
Diane L Richard, www.mosaicrpm.com, has been doing genealogy research since 1987 and, since 2004, professionally focused on the records of North Carolina and southern states. She has authored over 600 articles on genealogy topics. In 2019, she published Tracing Your Ancestors — African American Research: A Practical Guide via Moorshead Publications. Since 2016, she has been the editor of the North Carolina Genealogical Society (NCGS) journal. She is co-leader of Tar Heel Discoveries, www.tarheeldiscoveries.com, which offers guided North Carolina genealogical research programs providing participants with targeted, focused research assistance. She is VP of NC Historical Records Online (NCHRO), http://nchistoricalrecords.org/, a non-profit organization dedicated to providing public access to high-quality images of original records and other related information to research North Carolina history and genealogy. She is co-owner of GenWebinars, direct to consumer webinar offerings coming in 2024.
A recording of the Zoom meeting will be available soon for OGS members.

Between Home and the Front - March 14 Meeting

Lynn Heidelbaugh and Thomas Paone discussed their book "Between Home and the Front: Civil War Letters of the Walters Family" at our March general meeting.
Between Home and the Front: Civil War Letters of the Walters Family (Indiana University Press, 2022) provides a glimpse into wartime experiences taken from the family’s papers in the collection of the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum, transcribed to preserve the language of the originals that make apparent the writers’ literacy and period customs of correspondence. The letters by Private David Walters of the 5th Indiana Cavalry include details about life as a volunteer Union soldier. His wife Rachel’s poignant replies document how she managed the household and a young child while being a hub of communication for the family. The presenters discussed how they applied genealogical research to learn about the family’s circumstances and to contextualize their experiences of the war.
Lynn Heidelbaugh is a curator at the Smithsonian’s National Postal Museum, where she specializes in the history of the postal service, military mail, and the material culture of letter writing.
Thomas Paone curates several collections at the Smithsonian National Air and Space Museum, including the lighter-than-air, Pre-1945 US Navy, and Wright Brothers collections. 
The recording of the presentation is now available to view under Community Events / Recordings*; OGS Member logon is required. Recording will be available through 27 April 2024.

Welcome to Our Website!

The OGS website is designed to allow our members to engage with each other as they trace their ancestors and discover their family histories. We want to make this site a dynamic experience. Here are just a few ways to engage on this site today:
If you aren’t already an OGS member, please consider joining and engaging with our community. To do so, see Membership in the menu in the left column.

OGS Needs You!

Fellow OGS Members, as we begin our 50th year as a group with the special interest of family history, we are looking to reconnect with the community at large while serving our membership's continued interest in all things genealogy!  With this end goal in mind, we are in need of more members to become involved to helping out.  Listed below are various opportunities to help.  Take a look, see what you can contribute to help grow and keep OGS vital for the next 50 years!  
  • 50th Anniversary - This is a group to plan how we'll celebrate our 50th Anniversary this year.  This commitment would be for this year only.  Ideas for helping out could be planning one large event, helping with PR to news media, scanning photos for Facebook and Instagram posts, etc.  Please send an email to info@olygensoc.org if you are able to help this year!
  • DIG Virtually - There is interest in having a group to help out members in the community like we have done in the past at the Olympia Library, but to do this virtually.  Virtual meeting times may be a couple of times a month, perhaps a week day and a Saturday for a couple of hours.  If we were to have 6-10 members volunteer, there could be a rotating schedule.  Schedule would depend on how many members volunteer.  Training will be provided.  Send an email to Info@olygensoc.org if you have an interest in participating in this outreach opportunity.
  • Historian - Our society has kept a record of our events and members in the news for the past 50 years.  This is done through the board position of Historian.  Currently we are without a historian.  This is an individual position, so working on your own, posting our live history in our scrapbooks is the purpose of this position.  Since this is a board position, attending and voting at board meetings about the direction this organization is required.  Being on the board, you'll be in a front row seat as our history is happening.  Please contact Kathy Erlandson, pastpresident@olygensoc.org if you are interested.
  • Meeting Tech Team - We have a location secured with all of the needed equipment for hybrid general membership meetings, but we need one or preferably two people who can help with the tech setup at the in-person site for each meeting. Set up is pretty simple. You would be bringing the OGS laptop to each meeting and making the connections; much easier than when we met at the courthouse!! Orientation/training will be provided. If you are interested, send an email to webmaster@olygensoc.org.
  • Speakers Bureau team - From time to time we receive requests for a member from our organization to come and speak to a group about genealogy and OGS.  It would be great to have a few members who would like to speak for 30-45 minutes about genealogy to a neighborhood group, classroom full of kids, or service organization.  Opportunities for this maybe once or twice a year depending on how many setup to represent OGS.  Great outreach opportunities to grow our organization.  Send an email to Info@olygensoc.org if you have an interest!

2023-24 Special Interest Groups (SIGs)

It's a New Year and our 50th Anniversary!  As a "New Year's Resolution" consider joining a Special Interest Group if you haven't done so.  This is a great venue to learn more and get to know fellow members in a small group setting.  SIGs are a benefit of membership so make sure your membership status is updated to access this wonderful benefit.  SIG meetings will continue to be held virtually using Google Meet except for the FTM SIG which will use Zoom.  See the SIGs page for a list of our SIGs, coordinators, meeting times, etc.

OGS Surname Database

OGS provides a searchable public database to which an OGS member can add the surnames of their ancestors. At this writing, the database includes 348 entries. See OGS Surname Database for more information.

April 20
Legacy Family Tree SIG
Log on to OGS website, click on SIGs in main nav menu, click on Legacy Family Tree for Google Meet link. Can access 10 mins before ...

April 24
FamilySearch.org SIG
Log on to OGS website, click on SIGs in main nav menu, click on FamilySearch.org for Google Meet link. Can access 10 mins before start ...

April 27
Ancestry.com SIG
Log on to OGS website, click on SIGs in main nav menu, click on Ancestry.com for Google Meet link. Can access 10 mins before start ...

May 6
Family History Writing SIG
Log on to OGS website, click on SIGs in main nav menu, click on Family History Writing SIG for Google Meet link. Can access 10 ...

May 9
Monthly General Membership Meeting
Program: Jewish Genealogy: How Is This Research Different from All Other Research?   What Do You Want to Do? Branches of Judaism What Is Unique ...
Featured Item
WSGS Calendar
Washington State Genealogical Society calendar

Web Tips