John Grenham – Online or In Person

John Grenham is a “go-to guy” for Irish genealogy topics. He recently updated his “Irish Ancestors” website with a comprehensive list of online Irish records:

Grenham’s website has terrific search options (e.g., Surname, Ancestor, Placenames, Browse, Wizard) and great maps.  Continue reading John Grenham – Online or In Person

MGS TechTrek Genealogy Conference

The Minnesota Genealogical Society (MGS) is sponsoring a genealogy conference, “TechTrek,” to be held April 25-26 at Hennepin Technical College in Brooklyn Park.

While the deadline may have passed for advance registration, you can still sign up at Hennepin Technical College on the day of the conference.  Registration for the Friday evening program starts at 6:00 p.m. on April 25, and registration for the Saturday conference starts at 8:00 a.m. on April 26.

Here are the costs of on-site registration:

Friday only: $20

Saturday only (includes lunch): $50

Friday and Saturday (includes lunch): $65

Some conference highlights include:

  • Four talks by genealogy technology guru, Thomas MacEntee – one Friday evening and three Saturday: You Use WHAT for Genealogy?, Building a Research Toolbox, Managing Your Genealogy Data, and Google for Genealogists. 
  • Friday evening technology demos featuring the Legacy User Group, Family Tree Maker software, portable scanners (wands and FlipPal), and software for Macintosh. 
  • Saturday conference featuring 20 breakout sessions in seven tracks: social media, genealogy databases, image management, genealogy websites, ethnic websites, finding printed materials online, and geography/mapping tools. 
  • Exhibit tables featuring a dozen societies and genealogy vendors to browse, including genealogy books, charts, and quickguides from Maia’s Books. 
  • The opportunity to bid on Silent Auction items including genealogy services and more. 
  • Lots of fantastic door prizes including memberships to GenealogyBank,, Ancestry, and other great websites; MHS passes; courses from the National Institute for Genealogical Studies (NIGS); and more. 

BONUS! Even if you register at the door, you’ll receive a free voucher for an online NIGS course. This makes the conference a real bargain!  Available choices are Google for the Wise Genealogist, Connecting Family: Online and Virtually, and Social Media Tools for the Wise Genealogist. You must be present at the conference Saturday to receive your course voucher.  More details will be included in your registration packet.

See the MGS website for more details about the conference:

NAI Upload of Census Docs on April 28

The National Archives of Ireland (NAI) plans to upload its collection of 19th century census fragments and census search forms on Monday, April 28. NAI’s genealogy website is free: Continue reading NAI Upload of Census Docs on April 28

The Disappearance of Barton Kestle

Author Norah Labinar writes about the disappearance of her great-uncle, Barton Kestle:

I never knew my great uncle Barton Kestle. He disappeared before I was born. He belongs, too, to a disappeared world of typewriters and teacups. In old family photographs he is captured in profile, always off to the side, distant, blurred, as though trying to escape the camera. Continue reading The Disappearance of Barton Kestle

Social Media Mavericks

Family Tree Magazine periodically publishes “best” lists, such as their “101 Best Genealogy Websites 2013.” This week they released “Social Media Mavericks: 40 to Follow.” The latest Family Tree Magazine “best” list includes top genealogy bloggers, Tweeters, Facebookers, Pinners and YouTubers “who’ll keep you in the know.”  Continue reading Social Media Mavericks

Brian Ború, The Last Great High King of Ireland

Oh, to be in County Clare this week! The Clare Roots Society is sponsoring a lecture on Thursday, April 17 in Ennis. Dr. Catherine Swift, lecturer in Irish Studies at Mary Immaculate College, Limerick, will be the guest speaker. Her presentation is entitled “Brian Ború, The Last Great High King of Ireland.” Continue reading Brian Ború, The Last Great High King of Ireland

Who Belongs to IGSI?

Have you ever wondered about the membership of Irish Genealogical Society International (IGSI)?  Where are their members located? Are they really an international organization? Continue reading Who Belongs to IGSI?

We’re Back!


We’ve “escaped a bullet,” as they say. A WordPress update failed to complete last Friday, April 11, which prevented me from logging in to edit or post for over four days! There was some concern that the archived items couldn’t be restored. Happily, it looks like most everything is back to normal.

My thanks to IGSI board member Tom Rice for his continued technical support. The blog wouldn’t exist without him.

Save the Dates: IGSI Classes in May and June

Sorry about the confusion but there was a mixup in publicized dates for IGSI’s May 10 and June 14 classes.  Here’s the actual schedule for those Irish Saturdays at the Minnesota Genealogical Society (MGS) library: Continue reading Save the Dates: IGSI Classes in May and June

“They Came From Cork”

When I began researching family history, my husband and his sister repeated what they’d heard from their father about Irish ancestors: “they came from County Cork.” Continue reading “They Came From Cork”