Classes will be presented in five sessions throughout the day and will cover a wide variety of research topics.
Use the list below to quickly jump to class descriptions and speaker bios located on this page. If available, click on the [class notes] link to download class documents provided by the speakers.
A Place Name: The Key to Unlocking Irish Records 
Taught by Ann Lamb. This class will focus on locating the origin of your Irish families using U.S. sources as a key to making progress in research in Ireland.New Online Resources at the National Archives
Taught by Carol Buswell. Most of the ten billion documents held at the various facilities of the National Archives have been in the public domain for many years, but were difficult to locate and search. New online delivery methods are now being used that make the search much easier and are making whole groups of records "suddenly appear" online. We will explore commercial websites who are scanning NARA's wonderful documents (and annotating some), social networking sites that are displaying more and more of our materials online, opportunities for online learning about archival research, as well as new additions to the original documents held at the National Archives in Seattle that could be scanned in the future.
Civil War Pension Files [Beginner/Intermediate]
Taught by Cynthia White-Wilson. A class focusing on the biographical and statistical information included in military pension files. Applicable to US research. Topics include both Union and Confederate files and the information about a soldier's spouse and family included in these records. These pension records often contain interesting information about the soldier's life many years after the completion of his service. The class also covers the application documents.
Documentation, Genealogy Without it is Mythology 
Taught by Jim Terry. [class description to be added]
England On-line - Part 1 [Beginning / Intermediate]
Taught by Godfrey and Merry Ellis. An updated class focusing on online research techniques for England. Topics in Part 1 include geography and maps, church records (Church of England & Non-Conformist) for baptisms, marriages and burials and civil registration records. Applicable to England. Part 1 and Part 2 are self-contained classes. Attend one or both depending on your needs.
England On-line - Part 2 [Beginning / Intermediate]
Taught by Godfrey and Merry Ellis. An updated class focusing on online research techniques for England. Topics in Part 2 include census 1841 to 1901, parish chest materials, military records, wills, probates and tombstones. We will also take a look at www.genuki.com. Applicable to England. Part 1 and Part 2 are self-contained classes. Attend one or both depending on your needs.
FamilySearch Indexing 
Taught by Bob Allen. [class description to be added]
Detours Around Irish Roadblocks and Stone Walls [Beginner]
Taught by Steven Morrison. Tired of making little progress finding your elusive ancestors in Ireland? Are you down to asking for either divine intervention or seeking the help of a leprechaun? Attempting to solve an Irish genealogical problem like you would in the states and failing to understand the limited sources of records is often two of the biggest obstacles in Ireland. So, if you are ready to learn how to get around ten of Ireland's top roadblocks and stone walls, let this session be your springboard to finding the Irish branches on your family tree.
How to find your American Revolution Patriot Online for Free 
Taught by Mary Sullens McEwan. You will learn how to find your patriot's actual service record, his family, his burial record and more. You can also gather maps, paintings and descriptions of the battles he fought in.
How to Find Your United States Ethnic Military Ancestor for Free Online 
Taught by Mary Sullens McEwan. Groups that will be covered are: African American, Belgian, Chinese, Filipino, German, Hispanic/Latino, Native American, Irish, Japanese, Jewish, and Scottish.
How to find Military Service Records for Free Online 
Taught by Mary Sullens McEwan. Countries to be discussed are: Australia, Belgium, Bermuda, Bulgaria, Canada, England, Finland, France, Germany, India, Ireland and Northern Ireland, Isle of Man, Italy, Lithuania, Malta, Mexico, Netherlands, New Zealand, Poland, Sweden, Puerto Rice, Russia, Scotland, Sweden, Untied States ,Vietnam and Wales. The countries mentioned will be discussed by a show of hands for interest in that country, otherwise the main focus will be on the United States.
How to Find Graves, Medals and Photos of Your Military Ancestors for Free Online 
Taught by Mary Sullens McEwan. The main emphasis will be on Australia, Canada, New Zealand, the British Isles and the United States, however there will be a brief discussion on France, Germany and Russia as well.
El Poder de Formar Redes (Power of Networking) [Principiante (Beginner)]
Enseñado en español por Don Doud. Una clase nueva con intento de ayudarles a principiantes a mejor entender técnicas en línea y fuera de línea. Temas incluyen poner información en tableros de mensajes, investigar mediante correo electrónico, inscribirse en informativos y grupos en línea, contactarles a bibliotecarias en su área de interés, hablar con conocidos y ccoperar con grupos de interés semejante. Un poquito de lenguaje de computadoras, pero a un paso más despacito.
Taught by Don Doud. A class with a commitment to beginners covering on-line and off-line techniques. Topics include posting to message boards, emailing for look ups, joining on-line newsletters and groups, contacting librarians in the locality, talking to acquaintances and working with interest groups. A little computer talk at an understandable pace.
Norway On-line and Off-line [Beginning/Intermediate]
Taught by Sarah Thorson Little. An updated class focusing on research techniques and methodology for Norway. Topics include naming patterns, censuses, parish records, bygdebøker and Internet resources. Emphasis on Norway, but information learned can be helpful in researching ancestors from other Scandinavian countries.
Principios de Genealogía en Latinoamérica y España 
Taught by Cruz Burrows. Esta clase esta diseñada para aquellos que no saben o no entienden como empezar sus registros genealógicos, aquí veremos la importancia que tiene el llevar a cabo una genealogía, veremos además, algunos sitios que nos permiten y nos ayudan a poder buscar nuestros ancestros en diferentes partes del mundo. Explicaremos los métodos que se pueden ulitizar para nuestra búsqueda genealógica y aprenderemos a utilizarlos.
Tracing Elusive Female Ancestors 
Taught by Sarah Thorson Little. Finding women in traditional records can be difficult in part due to historic legal rights and status. This talk will cover research methodology and strategies to locate and identify elusive female ancestors.
Advanced U.S. Census (1790 to 1840) [Intermediate / Advanced]
Taught by Dave Thaler. An updated class focusing on census research to find ancestors in the US between 1790 and 1840. Topics include the logic and applied problem solving, tracking heads of household over multiple years, and search techniques. Lots of tips on how to get around the problems inherent in head-of-household-only census research. Online resources and off-line resources. Class is advanced level and those with prior census research experience will get the most out of the class.
Basic U.S. Census (1850 to 1930) [Novice / Intermediate]
Taught by Dave Thaler. An updated class focusing on census research to find ancestors in the US between 1850 and 1930. Topics include the content of each census, oral record problems, comparison of on-line search engines and unusual search techniques. Lots of tips on how to get around the problems inherent in census research. Online resources and off-line resources.
Some Tips On Using Census Records 
Taught by Connie Bailey. Some useful historical background which will make it easier to use the census.
African American Civil War Soldiers of Washington State 
Taught by Cynthia Wilson. What you will see is a peek into the lives of some of the 28 soldiers who are buried in the State of Washington. I chose to research only those soldiers where pension files were available. These men, some of whom, fought in major battles, witnessed atrocities perpetrated on their own race; suffered from unbelievable mistreatment at the hands of others; and were supplied with inferior equipment, clothing, food and health care - but they fought like brave men. Within this presentation, there is a set of brothers, David and Edward who joined together; they are buried on Capitol Hill: David at Lake View and Edward at Grand Army of the Republic. There is a Union sailor who risked his life in the same battle as 7 future Medal of Honors winners fought but he did not receive the same recognition. I hope you will enjoy the stories that I will present.
Absolutely Basic - How to Start 
Taught by Leslie Edmunds. This class is committed to be absolutely basic, catering specifically to the needs of the first time or beginning family historian. In this class we will go over the Decisions to Make Now and Save Yourself Time Later. It will be a discussion of the pros and cons for the choices you need to make. We will go over some lingo and boost your confidence when talking with the old-timers.
Absolutely Basic - How to Enter Data Right the First Time 
Taught by Leslie Edmunds. This class is committed to be absolutely basic, catering specifically to the needs of the first time or beginning family historian. In this class, we will go over pedigree charts, family group sheets, naming conventions, dating conventions and place naming conventions. It will be a demonstration of tips and techniques that will stand the test of time as you document your family history. We will also go over how to publish your family history online and get others helping you. There is enough content here to interest the intermediate family historians also.
Absolutely Basic - Organizing Artifacts and Documents 
Taught by Leslie Edmunds. This class is committed to be absolutely basic, catering specifically to the needs of the first time or beginning family historian. In this class, we will go over how to organize and review your artifacts and documents to get the most you can out of each item to aid you in finding new family members. We will look at examples that follow the rules and explain why the rules are important. Then, we will review a list of alternate sources that could contain the information you are looking for to complete your family history. As I always say about this class, it is the most basic and obvious thought provoking class that will bring you the most success in the future. Many past students support that statement. This is enough content here to interest the intermediate family historians also.
Absolutely Basic - Writing a Personal History 
Taught by Stephanie Holmes. This class is geared for beginners in personal history writing. We will cover where to start, what to include, and how to present the information. Whether you are writing your own history or helping someone else write theirs, this class should help you find your footing.
Doing Your Family History in Style 
Taught by Mary Slawson. Learn accepted formatting to improve online research and reduce record duplication.
Irish Research Post Famine (1845-1945) 
Taught by Eva Gremmert. In this session you will discover that knowing some of the historical, cultural, economical and political influences on Irish families of this period will help guide you in your own Irish family history research. We will also discuss what is important to do before you embark on your dream genealogy trip to Ireland. You will gain an understanding of what resources are available, from major repositories to local resources. You will learn some pointers to assist you with "on the ground" research.
An Overview of Irish History for the Beginning Researcher 
Taught by Mary Slawson. If your ancestors came from Ireland this class will provide you with a basic understanding of Irish history giving you a strong foundation for your Irish research. The class begins with the first invasions of Ireland through the development of Christianity on the island, and will continue on through the Cromwallian invasion and Potato Famine. A basic history of the island will help you develop a research plan for your own research.
The Gaelic Family 
Taught by Mary Slawson. Are you writing your great grandmothers Irish history? This course provides an overview of life in Ireland for a Gaelic family. We will discuss traditions, beliefs, folk-lore, literature, and conditions during the late 1800 and early 1900's to assist you in writing your ancestors history.
Vision of Black Towns 
Taught by Andre` Head. This workshop will explore the research of "The Black Towns Project" and will provide participants with the rich history and overview of the over eighty-three All Black Townships and Settlements once located in the State of Oklahoma.
Creating a Digital Archival Family Photo Album 
Taught by Maureen Mead. Do you have old family photos and treasures from your family's history that you would like to archive and share? Would you like to do so without having to separate and divide the collection into disconnected, yet "equal" portions? I had a similar challenge in 2004. How could I divide a large box of old family photos, equally with my sisters, without casting them out to individual collections and disconnect the inter- relationship the photos had with one another? I wanted everyone in the family to have their own collection of ALL the photos-not just a few here and there. Also, I had spend a lovely afternoon with my father exploring all the photos and taking notes about who the strangers were within each of them. This was such a gift, because I knew who the people were even though I had never met them. I found a great solution that allows for sharing and archiving all those precious photos that are languishing in a big basket or old drawer. You can, too.
Ann Moloney Lamb is a retired Lake Washington School teacher, member and former vice-president of the Eastside Genealogical Society, and has been a volunteer librarian at the Bellevue Family History Center. She has been researching her father's Irish ancestors and teaching Irish Research Skills as well as general genealogy for 15 years. She has visited her Irish families' places of origin several times and recently returned from her latest sojourn there.
is the Education Specialist for the National Archives at Seattle, which holds the permanently valuable federal government documents for Washington, Oregon, and Idaho.
Carol has taught elementary and junior high school in various settings, from a one-room school house in Oregon to a special education classroom in the Los Angeles Public School system, both as a full-time educator and a substitute teacher. The majority of her full-time experience was spent in middle school and special education classrooms in Colorado and Oregon. Immediately prior to working for the National Archives, Carol worked as a publishing author, public speaker, and owner of an American Indian antique shop and bookstore. She has written about American Indian migration, genealogy, and historical issues. Carol is certified to teach elementary school in Washington and several other states. She holds her BA in Elementary Education and Fine Art from Western State College of Colorado and a master's degree in American Indian Studies from UCLA.
Carol has taught elementary and junior high school in various settings, from a one-room school house in Oregon to a special education classroom in the Los Angeles Public School system, both as a full-time educator and a substitute teacher. The majority of her full-time experience was spent in middle school and special education classrooms in Colorado and Oregon.
Immediately prior to working for the National Archives, Carol worked as a publishing author, public speaker, and owner of an American Indian antique shop and bookstore. She has written about American Indian migration, genealogy, and historical issues.
Carol is certified to teach elementary school in Washington and several other states. She holds her BA in Elementary Education and Fine Art from Western State College of Colorado and a master's degree in American Indian Studies from UCLA.
Ms. Cynthia A. Wilson is a native of Washington DC with ancestral roots in Patrick county Virginia and Alamance County North Carolina. After completing an intensive year's work in Portrait Photography at Seattle Art Institute, it was suggested that she do a photo family history; that was 16 years ago. In those years, Ms. Wilson has published 4 articles for AAGHS Journal; participated in television productions on genealogy; was the keynote speaker at Patrick County Virginia Historical Society's Black History Month event; was a committee member and instructor for genealogical conferences in Seattle sponsored by LDS, BGRG and Urban League and assisted many individuals with their research.
She presently holds the position of President of the Black Genealogy Research Group of Seattle.
Ms. Wilson has identified, thru 16 years of research, 20 slave owners of her maternal family and is currently working on a project of identifying Black Civil War Soldiers and Sailors, including Black Confederates who are buried in the State of Washington. Thus far the three year project has produced 28 individuals.
Jim Terry is the Webmaster, Newsgroup Administrator and Customer Support Representative for Millennia Corporation, which produces the Legacy Family Tree genealogy program. He majored in genealogical research at Brigham Young University. After graduation, he worked as a professional genealogist in Salt Lake City, but eventually pursued a career in public relations and photography. In 1996, Jim returned to college to study computer networks and database management.
Jim does professional research for a small number of favored clients. He has written published articles on the use of the Internet and Scottish church records. In addition he has spoken to a number of genealogical societies and groups in Illinois, Wisconsin, California, Utah and Washington.
Don Doud is a Seattle native. It could almost be said of him: "He lived in a log cabin which he helped his father build." Don was an accountant/financial analyst for over 25 years, and so enjoys solving mysteries and tracking things down. He currently is a financial worker at Washington State Dept. of Social and Health Services. He has also worked as a Spanish interpreter/translator for DSHS, King County Courts, Federal Way Public Schools, and others, and served a two-year mission for his church in Mexico. Don has been an adjunct professor at City University for over 13 years, teaching mostly undergraduate business courses. In 1977, Don and his wife Vicki moved from Seattle to Redmond in order to get out of the big city (that worked well, didn't it?).
As with most of us, Don's family roots are varied. His father's ancestors came from England to America in the 1600's, served in the Revolutionary War, came through Ohio and South Dakota, and eventually ended up here in Washington. His mother's ancestors were also English, but also had a healthy component of French Canadian and even Native American (A French fur trader working for the Hudson's Bay Co. next to then Fort Walla Walla married a local native girl from the tribe which later massacred the Whitmans). With some diligent research, Don was able to tie his father's line back into the already researched Doud genealogy. His wife's family has a large Icelandic component, and one of her genealogist cousins recently gifted her with some research tying the family line back to about the year 800 AD.
Godfrey Ellis is a Family History Consultant in Lacey, Washington. He has been tracing his genealogy and English family roots, off and on, since adolescence. Dr. Ellis recently presented on English genealogy at the Washington State conference on Family History and has lectured on several cruise ships - he and his wife Merry have sailed in the Caribbean, up to Alaska, and to Hawaii giving presentations on this addiction we call family history.
Not everyone is descended from royalty and famous figures, someone has to be descended from the commoners. Dr. Ellis has been working on a series of fact-based fictional accounts of several of his family lines embedding his ancestors in their personal and their social history. With dialogue and description, He hopes his books hook the next generations onto family history.
Merry Ellis is a Family History Consultant in Lacey, Washington and has been fascinated with her family history for many years. She has spent many days conducting research on pilgrim lines in the family history library in Salt Lake City. Merry has visited England several times for purposes of learning more about her and her husband's family histories. Along with her husband Godfrey Ellis, she has also lectured on genealogy on cruise ships to Alaska and other exotic locales.
Related to the same Mayflower pilgrim fathers as Joseph Smith and Winston Churchill, Merry has family lines extended to England, France, Germany, and French-Canada.
Mary Sullens McEwan studied Family and Local History at Brigham Young University and worked for ten years in the Salt Lake Family History Library as a private researcher. She is a graduate of Evergreen State College and the author of: Genealogy Fast Fun Free, Genealogy Fast Fun Free -Canada and Free Military Records around the World. She specializes in helping people find their ancestors free on the internet. She does this through her books, lectures and seminars.
Mary is also a published poet and award winning short story writer. She is the mother of six grown children and lives with her husband, noted sculptor, John McEwan in Lacey, Washington.
Steven Morrison is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists. He is a past president of the Olympia (WA) Genealogical Society. Steven has a Bachelor's degree in Environmental Planning from Western Washington University and Master's degree in Public Administration from The Evergreen State College, where he taught as an adjunct faculty for seven years. An urban planner by training, family history has been his second profession since 1992. Steve's areas of interest are: Quaker research, Ireland, Western Outlaws, and the Oregon Trail.
grew up in Oregon with a love for art, story-telling and history. One childhood
Christmas, her grandfather shared letters from a niece to "Uncle Lester,"
reporting her research on the colonial Mead and Slocum family of New England and
New York. It wasn't until 1990, using the old letters as clues, that Maureen
began her own research in earnest as a distraction from the stress of a family
Maureen majored in art at Portland State University, leaving to pursue graphic
design and fashion advertising. In the early 80's, she moved with her family to
California, where she was the Sr. Art Director at a San Francisco ad agency. It
is there that curiosity for family history and technology converged.
Sarah Thorson Little is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists and been a Professional Genealogist for 30 years. She has been the lead instructor at the University of Washington Certificate Program in Genealogy & Family History since 1989, and is also an instructor in family history and computer research at North & South Seattle Community Colleges. Ms. Thorson Little has specialized research expertise in Northwest Native Americans, Norwegian, 19th & 20th Century U.S. research and Washington State.
Sarah has been interested in family research since a young child. By the age of 14, she had been to every state in the United States at least twice, visiting historical landmarks and battlefields with her history professor father. She has since researched throughout the United States and in Europe visiting and researching in courthouses and archives in all areas where her known ancestors have lived.
Retired teacher, Central Michigan University, South Puget Sound Community College, University of Wisconsin, Parkside
LDS Stake Family History Consultant, LDS Ward Family History Consultant, LDS Service Missionary in Research Support, over 50 years experience in genealogy and family history, Family History Center staff
Dave Thaler has been a Family History Center staff member for several years and is one of the co-chairmen for these Family History Expos. Dave is the historian for the Thaler family organization, and has published a book "The Thaler Family in Germany and North America, 1655-1995", containing the ancestors and descendants of the family that immigrated to Canada in 1830. Over the years, Dave has taught several classes in German, US Census and Internet research. He holds a Ph.D. in Computer Science.
Dave has traveled to Germany to visit the Thaler ancestral home, although most of his other lines go back to early New England settlers. He collects books on royal ancestry of New England immigrants, and maintains a web site on a number of lines to make available which have been accepted and which have been disproved.
Kaylene Thaler is a staff member at the Redmond Family History Center. She has been involved in family history for many years and always has good ideas on how to find missing ancestors. Kaylene also has years of group teaching experience and is very thorough in covering a topic. Two years ago while becoming an expert in US land records for the Expo, Kaylene studied and attended FGS/UGA conferences to keep current with new resources and techniques for land record research.
Kaylene's own family history required her to prove that there were two cousins with the same name living in different parts of the country, not just one person as was widely published in books and on the Internet. For the past two years, Kaylene has taught the first detailed how-to class for land record research and she is back by popular demand.
Robert Allen has been associated with the Family Search Indexing program for many years. For several years it was referred to as extraction and he was instrumental in the change over to the current indexing program. He has been a Bata tester for the current program and its updates as well as the New.familysearch program. For the past several years he has been the Bellevue Stake director for indexing and is a family history consultant.
Delores Davis has been teaching computer classes for many years at SeniorNet of Puget Sound and Mercer Island Community Center in Mercer. She has written The Male Connection, God's blessing to me (1995), her personal autobiography Turning Stumbling Blocks into Stepping Stones (2000). Delores wrote these books for her children and their children and then developed a class for this purpose which is still being taught today.
When her youngest child said he didn't remember his father ever working, Delores knew the legacy of hard work and endurance needed to be written down. Her husband had his first heart attack when their son was 4, became disabled, and died when their son was 6. Delores expanded this legacy with an inspirational book of quotes, sayings and humor entitled A Book of Entertaining and Enlightening Words.
Andre` Head brings over twenty years of managerial experience to his quest for historical confirmation and family research. Having served as Experience Music Project's (EMP) Manager of Safety and rising to the same position at Chateau Ste Michelle, Andre' taught at Central State University (Health and Safety courses) while devoting his 'first career' to the Fire Service in his native Oklahoma. A bona fide and retired Fire Chief (!!), Andre was appointed Chief of Fire Services after serving earlier posts as Fire Marshal, as an Arson Investigator, as a Life Safety Instructor prior to moving to Washington to live with his new bride!
An avid genealogist, Andre` has devoted years of research to family heritage, having discovered and collected records, anecdotes, and other data on six-plus generations of his own family! Drawn to his most recent project through his research on cemeteries of Oklahoma-born family descendants, he is currently producing and directing a documentary on Black Towns of Oklahoma, a project about which he is extremely passionate. Having been amazed by the ongoing discovery of entrepreneurial and civic sophistication in our early All-Black townships, Andre` became excited to share this awe-inspiring information with others.
Eva Doherty Gremmert is a professional genealogist specializing in Irish research. She also has extensive research experience in the United States, Germany, United Kingdom and the Ukraine. Eva has spent 30 years traveling in the US and Europe, doing her own research as well as helping others gather their family history. Her greatest joy comes when she unites clients with long lost relations. In 2001, Eva was named the Worldwide Reunion Coordinator for the O'Dochartaigh clan, and is now planning the 2010 gathering. She is a founding member of the Irish Genealogical and Historical Society and currently is on the board of directors. Eva has researched and published five books on her family history and hosts two major genealogy research websites. Eva and her husband Arden, have four children and four grandchildren. They maintain homes in Carnation, WA and Carndonagh, Co. Donegal, Ireland.
Bonnie Jean MacDonald was born and raised in northern Seattle and currently lives in the Shoreline area. She has been researching her family genealogy for 11 years. She is owner of BJM Genealogical Research Services and has been assisting clients from the United States, Canada, Norway, France and Scotland. Bonnie likes to combine travel with genealogical research trips. She has planned and researched at the Family History Library several times and is planning to attend the NGS conference in April 2010 which will be in Salt Lake City. In researching her family history she has visited major repositories in Minnesota, Iowa, New England, Ohio, Oregon, British Columbia and more. She is currently President of the Puget Sound Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists and Region #2 (King and Pierce) Representative of the Washington State Genealogical Society.
Gary Zimmerman Gary Zimmerman is a fourth-generation resident of Seattle, and officer in the Pioneer Association of the State of Washington and the President of the Fiske Genealogical Foundation. He is retired from a professional career as a university administrator, with thirty three years of service to Seattle University and Antioch University Seattle. He also was involved in local politics for many years, serving as Mayor of Bellevue in the 1970's and chairman of Seattle Metro from 1980 to 1990. He currently serves on the board of the Public Development Authority that runs PacMed Clinics and on the board of the Chief Seattle Council, Boy Scouts.
Gary's work in genealogy began with a 5th grade assignment and his exploration of family history has been continuous since that time. In the early 1960's he began teaching other people how to do genealogy. In the 1980's, he began to consult with lawyers and title companies on how to use genealogical techniques to resolve land ownership and "living heir" problem's. Today, most of his work is through the instructional programs of the Fiske Foundation and in supervising the responses to genealogical questions asked of the Pioneer Hall organizations.