Saturday, December 22, 2012

Society Saturday: LLCGS

Society Saturday is a fairly new blogging theme offered by Geneabloggers.

I am a member of many genealogical and historical societies in Nebraska and around the country. Today, I am very proud to take some time to spotlight my "home" society, the Lincoln-Lancaster County Genealogical Society (LLCGS) of Nebraska.

I've been a member of LLCGS on and off for the past 30+ years, but a steady member since 2005. A little over a year ago, I wanted to become more involved in the group and was delighted when I was asked to become the group's publicity chair. I've wanted to bring LLCGS into the social media arena and the time was finally right for our society to have an online presence in addition to our web site, which is superbly managed by Al Harlow.

LLCGS now has a blog, a Facebook page, a Twitter feed and a Google+ page. We also have a newsletter, which is a monthly publication for members only, which is under the guidance of editor Susie Dunn. We all work together in conveying the LLCGS image to the public.

LLCGS is in its 36th year, serving Lincoln, Nebraska, Lancaster County and researchers from around the globe. While many societies are struggling financially and have dwindling membership numbers, LLCGS is strong, with a solid financial base and a membership roster that recently hit 205!

Speaking as a genealogist rather than as the organization's publicity chair, for me the society has three great strengths that make my membership important to me: the variety of our education programs, our free online databases and our resource library of 8,000+ items.


LLCGS has monthly programs along with the member meetings on the second Tuesday of each month. In the last year or so, additional weekly events have been added to our offerings at what I refer to as "Sunday Sessions at the Library." From 2 to 4 p.m. on Sunday afternoons, LLCGS members gather at Walt Branch Library, 6701 S. 14th Street in Lincoln, Nebraska for demonstrations, discussion groups, and "help sessions" for budding genealogists. There are Genealogy Interest Groups (GIGs) for German research, technology, DNA and sharing your genealogy. We will soon be adding a writer's group. All of our sessions are open to the public and our presence in one the newest city library branches has opened our group to new members who noticed our sign as they entered the library.

Two of our members hold afternoon discussion groups monthly in other locations in Lincoln.

Our program topics for 2013 have been identified and the program and education committees are in the process of securing speakers and planning presentations. Also in the works are field trips to out of town libraries and research facilities, as well as other special events.

We will be partnering with Lincoln City Libraries in February in the promotion of the One Book One Lincoln project. The book selected this year is Destiny of the Republic by Candice Millard. LLCGS will be branching out to other branch libraries to make a presentation regarding the era following the Civil War and reconstruction and how our families fit into that time frame. LLCGS members will be available to help genealogists with their family history and acquaint them with genealogy resources available in the Lincoln City Libraries.

I counted nearly 100 different education sessions that will be available for our members and the community during 2013. How's that for an active society!

Online Databases

LLCGS has provided many free databases to help researchers with their Lancaster county roots. You can search cemetery records, marriage records, mortuary information, probate information, naturalization information. Naturalization records (vols 1 - 14) were indexed by LLCGS members for the period of October 6, 1906 through June 29, 1929.

Sample Search Result for
my grandparents in the
LLCGS database
I've always said that I was fortunate that my ancestors have been in the Lancaster county area since the 1870s, so these database searches are rich with Kelly, Bellinger, Landon, Fitzgerald, Loder and other surnames. The marriage database is also current enough to include my parent's marriage record from 1947.

The newspaper database is growing, with more than 2,200 names uploaded from the Nebraska State Journal this week. I found two references for my great grandfather John Bellinger's marriage to Emma Landon in 1879. This newspaper index is based on cards that were done primarily by Melvin Sitler and cover the period from May 1873 through December 1899. This is a gold mine of records as the information pre-dates vital records in Nebraska.

People can learn more about the LLCGS digitization projects at our first meeting of 2013 on January 8. Facilitators will be webmaster Al Harlow and librarian Cindy Cochrane.

LLCGS Library

The LLCGS library is housed in the Don Love building on the Union College campus, 3800 S. 48th Street in Lincoln, Nebraska. Yes, you read correctly. We have more than 8,000 volumes of genealogy resources including reference books, genealogies, DVDs, microform, periodicals and videos. Our catalog can be searched here. Not only does our collection cover Lincoln and Lancaster county, but other areas of the country as well. Sadly, as someone who has been working full time and being a caregiver, I've yet to visit our library. BUT - once I am retired after the end of January, I can assure you, I will be spending many hours perusing our collection.

Our library accepts donations of materials and funds to purchase new items. At the moment, we are interested in adding to our collection of high school and college yearbooks. I know that once I make a few scans of my own yearbooks, they will be going to the LLCGS library.

Special Projects

We welcome volunteers to help index and scan records and assist in a variety of projects.


Membership to LLCGS is a bargain at $15 for an individual. Joint memberships are only $20. We also have patron levels and accept donations via PayPal. To become a member, visit our web site.

A gift membership to LLCGS makes a great stocking stuffer for you last minute shoppers!

Visit LLCGS Online

Web site





I also want to salute the members of LLCGS, committee chairs and the board of directors. Without the work of this active group of people, LLCGS would not be what it is today. It's all about the people giving back to the community.

LLCGS is a nonprofit 501(c)(3) education organization.


  1. This is a great piece. Thank you, Susan.

  2. Thanks, Tom! You are one of the driving forces behind LLCGS!!!

  3. Thanks for posting this! I have a few distant cousins that spent some time in Lincoln (POE family), and was able to find them in the databases!

    1. Glad you were able to find some of your kin, Travis! Continue to check back as LLCGS continues to add more and more to our databases all the time!

    2. Glad you were able to find some of your kin, Travis! Continue to check back as LLCGS continues to add more and more to our databases all the time!