Sunday, September 25, 2011

Genealogy Events in Nebraska - October 2011

October is Family History Month and there is no shortage of genealogy and history activities to participate in.

I am looking forward to the Genealogy workshop and research opportunities at the Cass County Historical Society and Museum in Plattsmouth next Saturday, October 1. Gail Blankenau will be doing two sessions.

The next day, October 2, is the Family History Fair sponsored by the Lincoln-Lancaster County Genealogical Society. More than 25 exhibitors and society members will be sharing tips and resources for genealogists. I'll be sharing information about genealogy blogging and how easy it is to get started sharing family history information by blogging. I'm also going to bring along my Flip-Pal scanner for those who haven't seen this handy little device yet.

October 15 will be the fall conference for the Greater Omaha Genealogical Society. Paul Milner will be the featured speaker, discussing English and Scottish ancestry.

Other upcoming events for Nebraska genealogists are included on this page. Please email me if you have events to add to the list.

Just Added for October:
October 22, 2011
4:00 p.m.
Gravestone Witching Workshop

Memorial Park Cemetery
W. J and W. 14th Sts
McCook, Nebraska

Date & Location

September 30, 2011
6:30 p.m.
W. Dale Clark Library
215 S. 15th St.
Omaha, Nebraska
Third annual Genealogy Lock-in presented by Greater Omaha Genealogical Society. During this after-hours event, library staff and society members will be available to help participants open the doors into their families' pasts by discovering genealogical treasures in the library's collection.

October 1, 2011
10:00 a.m.
Cass County Historical Society Museum
646 Main St
Plattsmouth, Nebraska
Genealogy Workshop with Gail Blakenau
Genealogy 101 and Genealogy 102
Research opportunities at the Museum – newspapers on microfilm, family history files, scrapbooks and history books. Gail and the museum staff will be able to help you.
$20 for Cass County Museum Members (includes lunch – Subway sandwiches);
$35 for non members

October 2, 2011
2:00 - 4:00 p.m.
College View
Seventh Day Adventist Church
48th & Prescott
Lincoln, Nebraska
Family History Month Fair
Organizing and preserving our work was a topic receiving many votes on our survey. We'll collect favorite techniques and display them at a fair for genealogists to exchange ideas during Family History Month.

October 6, 2011
6:30 p.m.
Thursdays through Oct 20.
Southeast Community College Continuing Education Center
301 S. 68th St Place
Lincoln, Nebraska
Taught by Marcia Stewart
See Page 24 of course catalog

October 6, 2011
7:30 p.m.
Thursday evenings through November 17
Lefler Middle School
1100 South 48th Street
Lincoln, NE
History of Lincoln, taught by Jim McKee
From 1854 – World War II.

October 7, 2011
LDS Family History Center
11027 Martha St
Omaha, Nebraska
GO-PAF meeting
Program to be announced

October 11, 2011
12:00 noon
Cass County Historical Society Museum
646 Main Street
Plattsmouth, Nebraska
Brown Bag Series: The Cass County Militia; speaker: Harlan Seyfer
The locally raised militia was created in August 1862, by several Cass County citizens who later rose to prominence in the territory and state. After it was officially recognized by the territorial government, the militia only existed for a few weeks. Mr. Seyfer will explain the reasons for the militia and its demise.

October 12, 2011
7:30 p.m.
Wednesday evenings through November 9
Lefler Middle School
1100 South 48th Street
Lincoln, NE
Lincoln’s Suburbs, taught by Jim McKee
From 1854 – World War II.

October 15, 2011
Nebraska Methodist College
N. 87th and Burt Sts
Omaha, Nebraska
Greater Omaha Genealogical Society Fall Workshop
Featuring Paul Milner

Scottish Emigration to North America:  Before, During and After the Rebellions
Learn the reasons for emigration from Scotland to the U.S. and Canada and how it was influenced by events on both sides of the Atlantic. Learn where the emigrants settled, what records they created, and what tools are available for tracing your Scottish ancestors.

Finding Your Scottish Ancestors The Big Five
We will examine available indexes, how to access and interpret the five primary records groups for Scottish research: civil registration, census, church records, probate, and land records. These are the primary records you need when searching for anyone from the Fifteenth to the Twentieth Century.

Finding Your English Ancestors:The Big Four 
We will examine available indexes, and how to access and interpret the four primary records groups for English research: civil registration, census, church records and probate.  These are the primary records you need when searching for anyone from the Fifteenth to the Twentieth Century.

Buried Treasures: What’s in the English Parish Chest
The English parish was both an ecclesiastical and a civil jurisdiction. Both jurisdictions created informative records and kept them in the Parish Chest. This presentation will examine the breadth and wealth of information that can be found, going well beyond the baptism, marriage and burial registers.

October 19, 2011
7:00 p.m.
Crown Pointe Retirement Center
2820 S. 80th St
Omaha, Nebraska
Early Residents in Omaha-Council Bluffs (1800-1835) and their Descendants. Speaker: Kira Gale

October 20, 2011
12:00 Noon
Nebraska History Museum
15th and P Sts
Lincoln, Nebraska
Presenter: Linda Hein

October 23, 2011
2:00 p.m. – 5:30 p.m.
Departing from general Crook House, followed by appetizers, wine and ghost stories.
Tombstone Tour of Omaha Cemeteries: Forest Lawn, Prospect Hill and Holy Sepulchre
Sponsored by Douglas County Historical Society
This popular tour sold out early last year, so sign up now if you want to attend.

October 25, 2011
12:00 noon
Cass County Historical Society Museum
646 Main Street
Plattsmouth, Nebraska
Brown Bag Series: The Battle of Whitestone Hill; Speaker: Dean Podoll
The Battle of Whitestone Hill took place in September of 1863 in southeastern North Dakota. The 2nd Nebraska Calvary, under the leadership of Co. Robert Furnas, fought in that battle.

On Exhibit through October 30, 2011
Cass County Historical Society Museum
646 Main Street
Plattsmouth, Nebraska
The Civil War and Cass County; Farm Life and Harvest; Remembering the Kass Kounty King Korn Karnival, Photographs and Memorabilia; Floods of our Past

Sunday, September 18, 2011

Sunday's Obituary - Harry Bellinger

Today's obituary is of Harry Miller Bellinger, the brother of my grandmother Sina Bellinger Kelly.

H. M. Bellinger,
Pitcher at 47,
Succumbs at 51

Harry M. Bellinger, 51, known in Omaha amateur baseball circles as a crack pitcher at the age of 47, when he withdrew from competition, died Saturday noon at his home, 1515 William street. He had been ill a week with a form of smallpox.

He was a locomotive engineer with the Union Pacific railroad. Besides being a member of the Brotherhood of Locomotive Engineers he belonged to the Izaak Walton league.

Surviving are his wife, Alvina; a daughter, Mrs. Clifton Gibbons; his father, J. W. Bellinger, and sister, Mrs. William Kelly, both of Greenwood, Neb.; a brother, Clifford of Gretna, and two grandchildren. Funeral services will be held today at 2:30 p.m. at the Heafey & Heafey mortuary. Burial will be in West Lawn cemetery, with the railroad brotherhood conducting services.

Source: Omaha World Herald, Omaha, Nebraska; 7 Feb 1932, page 1

Harry Bellinger

Harry Bellinger
Pitcher for the Greenwood, Nebraska
baseball team

Harry Bellinger
Locomotive Engineer

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Family History Fair - Lincoln Nebraska October 2, 2011

If you're in the vicinity of Lincoln, Nebraska on October 2, 2011 make plans to attend the Family History Fair sponsored by the Lincoln-Lancaster County Genealogical Society.

Society members and vendors will be there to provide genealogy help, information on technology, publishing your family history, ethnic food and much more!

The event will take place on Sunday, October 2, 2011 from 2:00 p.m. - 4:00 p.m. in Heritage Hall, Lower Level, College View Church, 48th and Prescott, Lincoln, Nebraska.

I will be on hand to discuss the benefits of using an online blog to share family history stories and share examples of many of the popular genealogy blogs on the internet. I will probably also bring along my Flip-Pal scanner for those who haven't seen one up close.

It looks like it's shaping up to be a fun and informative afternoon!

Meme Time Again: Tech Savvy Genealogist

Another fun meme is going around about genealogy and technology. This one was originated by Jill Ball of Geniaus

The Tech Savvy Genealogists' Meme

The list should be annotated in the following manner:
  • Things you have already done or found: bold face type
  • Things you would like to do or find: italicize (color optional)
  • Things you haven’t done or found and don’t care to: plain type
Feel free to add extra comments in brackets after each item!

Here's my responses!

Which of these apply to you?
  1. Own an Android or Windows tablet or an iPad
  2. Use a tablet or iPad for genealogy related purposes
  3. Have used Skype for genealogy purposes - have used Skype for non-genealogy purposes.
  4. Have used a camera to capture images in a library/archives/ancestor's home
  5. Use a genealogy software program on your computer to manage your family tree
  6. Have a Twitter account
  7. Tweet daily
  8. Have a genealogy blog - duh! you're reading it!
  9. Have more then one genealogy blog - see Nothing But Tombstones
  10. Have lectured/presented to a genealogy group on a technology topic - genealogy blogging!
  11. Currently an active member of Genealogy Wise.
  12. Have a Facebook Account
  13. Have connected with genealogists via Facebook
  14. Maintain a genealogy related Facebook Page - recently started the Nebraska Genea-Peeps group
  15. Maintain a blog or website for a genealogy society
  16. Have submitted text corrections online to Ancestry, Trove or a similar site
  17. Have registered a domain name - Many!
  18. Post regularly to Google+ 
  19. Have a blog listed on Geneabloggers
  20. Have transcribed/indexed records for FamilySearch or a similar project
  21. Own a Flip-Pal or hand-held scanner
  22. Can code a webpage in .html - that's how a lot of this web stuff started - writing code
  23. Own a smartphone - I plan to hold out as long as possible
  24. Have a personal subscription to one or more paid genealogy databases
  25. Use a digital voice recorder to record genealogy lectures
  26. Have contributed to a genealogy blog carnival
  27. Use Chrome as a Web browser
  28. Have participated in a genealogy webinar
  29. Have taken a DNA test for genealogy purposes -
  30. Have a personal genealogy website
  31. Have found mention of an ancestor in an online newspaper archive - HUNDREDS
  32. Have tweeted during a genealogy lecture
  33. Have scanned your hardcopy genealogy files
  34. Use an RSS Reader to follow genealogy news and blogs
  35. Have uploaded a gedcom file to a site like Geni, MyHeritage or Ancestry (WikiTree at
  36. Own a netbook
  37. Use a computer/tablet/smartphone to take genealogy lecture notes
  38. Have a profile on LinkedIn that mentions your genealogy habit
  39. Have developed a genealogy software program, app or widget
  40. Have listened to a genealogy podcast online
  41. Have downloaded genealogy podcasts for later listening
  42. Backup your files to a portable hard drive
  43. Have a copy of your genealogy files stored offsite
  44. Know about Rootstech
  45. Have listened to a Blogtalk radio session about genealogy
  46. Use Dropbox, SugarSync or other service to save documents in the cloud 
  47. Schedule regular email backups 
  48. Have contriibuted to the FamilySearch Research Wiki 
  49. Have scanned and tagged your genealogy photographs
  50. Have published a genealogy book in an online/digital format
I suppose it's safe to say that I am a genea-techno-geek, eh?

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Around the Blogosphere - September 11, 2011

I am still outrageously behind in reading everyone's blog posts from the past week, but I have managed to select a few for inclusion in Around the Blogosphere.

Since so many folks attended FGS in Springfield, Illinois this week, I kept up on those activities via blogs, tweets and postings on Facebook. Rather than single out any of these posts, I suggest you take a look at the blog roll and tweets from the conference that are available on

The best photos to capture the event were posted by Linda McCauley. My favorites were Abe Lincoln listening intently to Thomas MacEntee, and Dear Myrtle wielding a pitchfork. I hope someone shares the story about that! I think Abe really wants to get his hands on some geneablogger beads!

Good blog reading this week came from:

Labor Day Isn't a Good Day For Me - Debi Austen's beautiful tribute to her father on Who Knew?

Deb Ruth shared how she made use of her electricity-deficit time in When the Lights Go Out on Adventures in Genealogy.

Beatles fans will get the reference in Everyone Knew Her as Nancy, but her name was Agnes by Jean on Bluegrass and Buckeye Roots.

It's a short list this week, but as I get through my Google Reader, perhaps more of this week's posts will show up in next week's list.

September 11 - 10 years later

There's nothing more that I can add to what I wrote one year ago today. Take time to remember and reflect.

September 11 - Time to Remember

Meme: 99 (Plus) Genealogy Things

A meme is going around Geneabloggers' circles about 99 (or more) genealogy things you've done, not done or have no desire to do. It's been going viral lately and I thought I would join the party. The latest version was created by Becky at the Kinexxions blog.

Rules are simple:

The list should be annotated in the following manner:
Things you have already done or found: bold face type
Things you would like to do or find: italicize (color optional)
Things you haven’t done or found and don’t care to: plain type

Here's mine, with some variations of my own:

1.  Belong to a genealogical society. Several!
2.  Researched records onsite at a court house. I'm still finding information online and in my own personal family archives. Once I get through that, maybe I'll have time to do the "real" research.
3.  Transcribed records.
4.  Uploaded tombstone pictures to Find-A-Grave. And have taken some volunteer photos. And I'm always willing to transfer memorials to people who are more closely related to a subject.
5.  Documented ancestors for four generations (self, parents, grandparents, great-grandparents). And beyond.
6.  Joined Facebook. And Twitter. And Google Plus. And LinkedIn.
7.  Helped to clean up a run-down cemetery.
8.  Joined the Geneabloggers Group on Facebook. And more. And created a group for Nebraska researchers - the Nebraska Genea-Peeps.
9.  Attended a genealogy conference. Several.
10.  Lectured at a genealogy conference. My first big speaking gig was at the 2011 Land Records and Genealogy conference sponsored by Homestead National Monument of America and Southeast Community College. What an honor to be invited.
11. Spoke on a genealogy topic at a local genealogy society. I've been invited, so this will occur in the coming months. Shameless plug:
12. Been the editor of a genealogy society newsletter.
13. Contributed to a genealogy society publication.
14. Served on the board or as an officer of a genealogy society. When I know I am able to make the time commitment I'd love to.
15. Got lost on the way to a cemetery. You haven't?
16. Talked to dead ancestors. I get along much better with them than with living relatives.
17. Researched outside the state in which I live.
18. Knocked on the door of an ancestral home and visited with the current occupants. Actually, the first time, a group of us were invited. A few years later, my cousins and I dropped in unannounced and the current owners were very gracious.
19. Cold called a distant relative. Not a call, but I believe I should write to the first cousin whose baby book I have. There's been no contact with our family since he was two years old. I do have his address and phone number. But not a lot of nerve.
20. Posted messages on a surname message board.
21. Uploaded a gedcom file to the internet.
22. Googled my name. You haven't?
23. Performed a random act of genealogical kindness. Among the most rewarding aspects of genealogy.
24. Researched a non-related family, just for the fun of it. I work on the trees of friends when I get stumped on my own.
25. Have been paid to do genealogical research. No way. No how. I have enough to stay busy the rest of my life doing my own research.
26. Earn a living (majority of income) from genealogical research. No way. No how. I have enough to stay busy the rest of my life doing my own research.
27. Wrote a letter (or email) to a previously unknown relative.
28. Contributed to one of the genealogy carnivals.
29. Responded to messages on a message board or forum.
30. Was injured while on a genealogy excursion. Not exactly on my bucket list.
31. Participated in a genealogy meme.
32. Created family history gift items (calendars, cookbooks, etc.).
33. Performed a record lookup for someone else.
34. Went on a genealogy seminar cruise. An inland trip is more to my liking.
35. Am convinced that a relative must have arrived here from outer space. No, but sometimes I think that I might have.
36. Found a disturbing family secret. Others may think so. I'm not too easily shocked.
37. Told others about a disturbing family secret. What would you do if an ancestor killed his daughter and then committed suicide?
38. Combined genealogy with crafts (family picture quilt, scrapbooking).
39. Think genealogy is a passion not a hobby.
40. Assisted finding next of kin for a deceased person (Unclaimed Persons).
41. Taught someone else how to find their roots.
42. Lost valuable genealogy data due to a computer crash or hard drive failure. Nope. This was the year I discovered cloud storage. Thank you, Dropbox. Plus, I upload as much as possible to my tree on
43. Been overwhelmed by available genealogy technology. Not so much overwhelmed, but amazed.
44. Know a cousin of the 4th degree or higher. Does knowing them online count?
45. Disproved a family myth through research. A family history that was published 40+ years ago stated that my murderous ancestor "drowned while trying to save his daughter from drowning and they both died." Finding some newspaper articles from the time of the event (1851) contradicted that myth.
46. Got a family member to let you copy photos. And now wondering why I didn't label them with names. Hindsight is 20/20.
47. Used a digital camera to “copy” photos or records.
48. Translated a record from a foreign language. This may be pushing it. Used Google translate feature on some Danish records.
49. Found an immigrant ancestor’s passenger arrival record. Who would have believed that the Danish immigrants would be the first (and so far, only) ones I would find. They changed the family surname every generation until they arrived in America.
50. Looked at census records on microfilm, not on the computer. And still have the printouts.
51. Used microfiche.
52. Visited the Family History Library in Salt Lake City.
53. Visited more than one LDS Family History Center.
54. Visited a church or place of worship of one of your ancestors.
55. Taught a class in genealogy. I love seeing the instant someone gets hooked on this hobby.
56. Traced ancestors back to the 18th Century.
57. Traced ancestors back to the 17th Century. Hmm. well, I've connected my kin to a published family history. I'm not sure that counts.
58. Traced ancestors back to the 16th Century.
59. Can name all of your great-great-grandparents.
60. Found an ancestor’s Social Security application.
61. Know how to determine a soundex code without the help of a computer. Well, I read an article about this once.
62. Used Steve Morse’s One-Step searches.
63. Own a copy of Evidence Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills. Bought this even before I ever heard of Elizabeth Shown Mills.
64. Helped someone find an ancestor using records you had never used for your own research.
65. Visited the main National Archives building in Washington, DC.
66. Visited the Library of Congress. On vacation, not to do research.
67. Have an ancestor who came over on the Mayflower. Francis Cooke and Stephen Hopkins.
68. Have an ancestor who fought in the Civil War. John Laymon
69. Taken a photograph of an ancestor’s tombstone. Duh! Of course. And there's a lot who don't have tombstones.
70. Became a member of the Association of Graveyard Rabbits.
71. Can read a church record in Latin. Et tu, Brute. No thanks. 
72. Have an ancestor who changed their name.
73. Joined a Rootsweb mailing list. I'm moderator of the Cass County, Nebraska list.
74. Created a family website.
75. Have more than one "genealogy" blog. Like genealogy, blogging is addictive.
76. Was overwhelmed by the amount of family information received from someone. Overwhelmed by what I found in my own boxes of Stuff.
77. Have broken through at least one brick wall.
78. Visited the DAR Library in Washington D.C.
79. Borrowed a microfilm from the Family History Library through a local Family History Center.
80. Have done indexing for Family Search Indexing or another genealogy project.
81. Visited the Allen County Public Library Genealogy Center in Fort Wayne, Indiana.
82. Had an amazing serendipitous find of the "Psychic Roots" variety. All the time.
83. Have an ancestor who was a Patriot in the American Revolutionary War. John Bellinger.
84. Have an ancestor who was a Loyalist in the American Revolutionary War.
85. Have both Patriot & Loyalist ancestors.
86. Have used Border Crossing records to locate an ancestor.
87. Use maps in my genealogy research.
88. Have a convict ancestor who was transported from the UK.
89. Found a bigamist amongst the ancestors.
93. Consistently cite my sources. I can do better.
94. Visited a foreign country (i.e. one I don't live in) in search of ancestors.
95. Can locate any document in my research files within a few minutes. If it's been digitized, yes.
96. Have an ancestor who was married four times (or more).
97. Made a rubbing of an ancestors gravestone.
98. Organized a family reunion.
99. Published a family history book (on one of my families). Really want to publish a book on four generations of the Kelly family in America, but I haven't found all of the collateral lines yet.
100. Learned of the death of a fairly close relative through research. It is very, very weird to learn of a family death via my Google Reader. It's happened a few times now.
101. Have done the genealogy happy dance.
102. Sustained an injury doing the genealogy happy dance. Let's hope not.
103. Offended a family member with my research. Possibly, I don't know for sure. A cousin once asked that I not include her first husband (and the father of her children) in the family tree.
104. Reunited someone with precious family photos or artifacts.

So, how did I score? 62. More than I expected when I started this exercise.