Saturday, January 2, 2021

January 2021 Events of Interest

Wake County Genealogy Society has two virtual events scheduled this month, our GenHelp session on Jan. 7 and our Virtual WCGS meeting and presentation on Jan. 26. In addition to these several other interesting virtual events have been offered since the last newsletter was published on Dec 26. All are virtual and most are free. The exception being the DNA eConference on Jan. 30 which requires payment and a modest fee. Early bird pricing is offered and detailed at the link.

Jan. 7
WCGS GenHelp - free genealogy assistance for hobbyists
Details and Registration

Jan 11
Reading Old Handwriting
Online event offered by the Library of Virginia
Hosted on Zoom—no registration required.
Details and access

Jan 11
Who Are We? The Cultural Phenomenon of Home DNA Testing 
Virtual presentation offered by Wake County Public Libraries
Details and Registration

Jan 14
Preview Screening of Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates Jr. & Virtual Discussion with Laurel Saunders, President of NC Genealogical Society
Details and Registration

Jan 26
WCGS January Virtual Meeting & Presentation - Wake and Its Beginnings in Colonial Johnston County
Details and Registration

Jan 30
A Winter of DNA eConference
Virtual daylong conference offered by Family History Fanatics
Early bird discount through Jan.22
Details and Registration

Return to the WakeCoGen Website

Saturday, December 26, 2020

WCGS Newsletter - Wake Genealogy Watch - Winter 2021 now available

The Winter 2021 Issue (Vol.4 Issue 2) of our award winning newsletter, Wake Genealogy Watch, is now available online for reading or download.

You can visit the WCGS website or access through this link - Wake Genealogy Watch, Winter 2021
This issue contains the following topics:

  • Wake Treasures Journal search tips – We have over 20 years of content online available for our members to use. These tips will get you started.
  • Get details on the GenHelp sessions which return in 2021 to give guidance for your research.
  • An overview of the three new Wake Resources webpages that webmaster Cynthia Gage has curated for us.
  • Ann Myhre shares her experiences finding cousins in unexpected places.
  • Dr. Ted Bainbridge recounts his efforts to explore and verify a family history tradition.
  • Meet More of our Board Members – Barbara McGeachy, Carla Stancil, and Linda Hames.
  • Unexpected resources that may help enrich your ancestors’ stories and where to find them.
  • Carla Stancil shares her families experience with a virtual reunion.
  • Try these strategies to expand your surname research and create a list of alternate spellings.

Photo Note: If you choose to read a printed version of this newsletter, some of the photos will be difficult to view due to size constraints. Please refer back to the online edition where you can enlarge the photos to accommodate better viewing.  Enjoy!

Click this newsletter page link to view this and all past newsletter content.

We welcome your feedback, input, and submissions for inclusions in future editions. Please address all concerns to

Visit the WCGS Blog for more events, late breaking news, tutorials, updates and other special posts. 

Return to the WakeCoGen Website

Friday, December 18, 2020

Wake County Genealogical Society Meetings for 2021 - Virtual

 Mark your calendar for the first WCGS meeting and presentation of 2021. 

Date: January 26 at 6:30pm

Topic:  Wake and Its Beginnings in Colonial Johnston County
Speaker:  K. Todd Johnson

There is always a beginning, and for many of us with family from Wake County, our ancestors came from the east, passing through Johnston County. It is important for family historians to realize that Wake County was originally formed in 1771, being cut from pre-existing Johnston, Cumberland, and Orange Counties.
Join us for this talk by K. Todd Johnson, director of the Johnston County Heritage Center. He will speak about the citizenry of early Johnston County while touching on key historical developments predating and influencing the formation of Wake County. Drawing from resources at the Johnston County Heritage Center, including Elizabeth Reid Murry’s Wake County history (Volume 1), Todd’s presentation will cover items in her collection related to the early colonial period. He will also touch on the importance and impact of America’s first revolution known as the Regulator Movement. Come join us as we explore this exciting part of the story of who we were before the formation of Wake County.
This virtual meeting and presentation is open to all, but registration is required. 
Topic:  Where to Find Family Stories 
Speaker:   Barbara McGeachy
Registration - TBA

March 23 @ 6:30pm
Topic:  Native Americans, Africans and Europeans in North Carolina History: A Brief History of the Evolution  
Speaker:   Dr. Arwin Smallwood
Registration - TBA

WCGS GenHelp - Events for 2021

We are pleased to announce that WCGS will host three virtual help session in the first quarter of 2021.

The goal of  the monthly virtual sessions continues to be to provide free genealogy assistance to hobbyists. Mark your calendars for the first Thursday of the month at 6:30pm ET. 

It is not necessary to be a member of WCGS to participate and there is no cost. You will have an opportunity to ask questions and share knowledge during the 90-minute session. The session will be moderated. Please note this program will not include research requests or queries; all assistance will be given only within the time constraints of the monthly virtual session.

Thursday, January 7, 2021 @ 6:30pm

Thursday, February 4, 2021 @ 6:30pm

          Thursday, March 4, 2021 @ 6:30pm

Time: 6:30pm ET (this is an open session; you may enter the Zoom at any time during the 90-minute session or drop once your question is answered)

Click here to register to attendScroll down to the GenHelp registration section. 

Monday, November 16, 2020

Volunteer Opportunity - Nov. 2020 - Journal Copy Editor/Proofreader

This volunteer would work closely with our Journal editor, Donna Shackle, to publish our twice yearly journal, Wake Treasures.

Journal Copyeditor/Proofreader: Our journal team is in need of a crack proofreader for our bi-annual journals. Once our editor has the journal nearly complete, you'll step in to catch all the "oops" and "gotchas". Interested?  Please reach out to our volunteer coordinator, Saundra Cropps, at

Return to the WakeCoGen Website

Wednesday, November 11, 2020

Wake Wednesday - Psst.... Backdoor to Wake Records

If I told you there was a back door to see all of the viewable Wake County Records in the FamilySearch Catalog, would you be interested? It is like viewing virtual microfilm from your own comfy chair!

This is a variation on a tip found on a North Carolina regional research group on Facebook. Thanks to Delores Williams of NCGenweb for sharing the tip. 

You will need to log in to FamilySearch for this to be usable. Creating a log in is free.

Visit this link -

You will see the following page of Wake specific collections. Click on the text by the red arrow to access the ability to filter by township. 

click image for larger view

Click thru the collections. When you find one that is interesting, click through to that page. Scroll down the page to see if the camera icon exists. If so, click the camera to browse the record. 

Note that books by individuals are not usually available to view. Collections derived from state and county sources usually are viewable.

Want to search other places within North Carolina? Want to check out other states entirely?

You can use this same link to search other places in North Carolina or any other state. Just click on the "Part of United States, North Carolina" portion to get the drop down for other counties. Click it a second time to get back to a drop down for all the states. 

Have fun. Bring snacks. You may be browsing for a while.

Long url in case the short one doesn't work -

Friday, November 6, 2020

Latest edition of Wake Treasures is published - Volume 29 Issue 2

 From Donna Shackle, Journal Editor:

This issue is a treat!  We have the pentultimate installment from Cary Faison on the Railroad, Hortons, and Faisons and continuations of the 1897 Raleigh Colored School census and of the Soldiers Home Record.  In honor of the 100th anniversary of the 19th Amendment we have the 1915 & 1917 membership lists from the Raleigh Equal Suffrage League.  Belle Long, the former Director of the Joel Lane Museum House, has written about the identity of Colonel Theophilus Hunter's second wife, Jane.  Read along to see how she discovered the identity of Jane and puts to rest a local mystery. 

This issue could not have happened without the volunteers who helped to transcribe these records.  Please consider volunteering to transcribe from home.  If you are interested, please contact me for more information.

Members can access this issue of the journal by logging into the Member Area at the website. You will find the member area on the left sidebar. Enjoy! 

Return to the WakeCoGen Website

Sunday, November 1, 2020

New Resources Links for Wake County Researchers at Wakecogen Website

Cynthia Gage, WCGS Webmaster, has been hard at work restructuring portions of the Wakecogen website. Her efforts have been focused on expanding the curation of our link and resource page to enhance the usefulness for Wake researchers, both local and remote. 

What was previously one Links and Resources page has grown into three separate pages of Wake centric content, each with their own focus and curated list. Be sure to visit to check them out. You will find the three resource pages linked in the left side bar visible from any page on our website.

Here is a brief overview of what Cynthia has created for our use.

Wake Digital Resources -

"On-line resources are a wonderful source for genealogists - particularly remote researchers - to help find information and data about their ancestors.  There are many fee-based sites which have lots of information about Wake County and its people, but there are also some free resources, some easy to find and others buried deep within the sites.  This page is intended to provide direct links to free searchable sites pertaining to Wake County or to North Carolina sites which containing Wake County records…"   The Wake Digital Resources page can be filtered to search various categories - Church records, Death records, Directories, Land records, Military records, or Miscellaneous.

 Wake History Resources -

"The history of Wake County and its cities explains the progress of the area through time, gives us a glimpse of our ancestors' struggles and successes, and if we are lucky, will include their names.  Here are some resources to give context to their lives, some of which contain surnames."   The Wake History Resources can be filtered to search city or county categories.

More Wake County Links and Resources -

This page provides a list of links of a more broad focus that are relevant to research in Wake County and North Carolina.  Categories on this resource page include county and state resources, research facilities, social media, local affiliation groups, and blogs with a local genealogical focus. These resources are less focused on Wake County but still very relevant and useful.

Please visit our website, and give these new pages a try. We hope you find some juicy leads for your research. If you know of a resource that could be added to one of these lists, let Cynthia know via email,   

Return to the WakeCoGen Website

Friday, October 30, 2020

December 1 - Next WCGS Virtual Meeting and Presentation - Future Proof Your Research

WCGS members and followers should check your email for instructions on how to register for our next virtual meeting. If you are not a member and want to be included, visit our Registration page.

You must register for the meeting by November 30.

Date/Time:  Tuesday Dec.1, 2020 at 6:30pm ET

Speaker: Thomas MacEntee

Topic: After You are Gone; Future Proofing Your Genealogical Research
Have you ever considered what will happen to your years of genealogy research once you're gone? Learn how to ensure that your hard work carries on.  Through a combination of planning, common sense, and new technologies, we'll review how to create an action plan for preserving your genealogy research.

This virtual meeting and presentation is open to all members and newsletter recipients. If you are on one of those lists, you will receive an email with registration instructions closer to the date. If you want to be included in this event visit the WCGS Join page at our website.

When you join WCGS, you will have access to all of our virtual meetings through the end of the year. This is in addition to the member benefits listed on our membership page.

This meeting will be held virtually using the Zoom application. See the Registration page for Zoom details.

Return to the WakeCoGen Website

Monday, October 26, 2020

Elizabeth Reid Murray's Wake Capitol County of North Carolina, Vol.1 now available online

 If you are a seasoned Wake County researcher, you no doubt know of Elizabeth Reid Murray and her comprehensive history of Wake County. If not, you should. Her two volumes cover the history of the land we love from the prehistoric times in the region up through the 1920s. 

The first volume has always been my favorite with stories of dinosaurs and Wake underwater, on thru the early settlement, the "trouble" with Regulators, the Revolution and choice of Wake for the state capitol. I am delighted to bring to your attention that this first volume of Wake: Capitol County of North Carolina is available to read and enjoy online through a partnership between Olivia Raney Family History Library and Digital NC. The details and links are found in this blog post from the Digital North Carolina Blog:


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Friday, October 23, 2020

NGS Press Release seeking nominations for 2021

 From the National Genealogy Society:

Contact: Susan Yockey
Phone: 571-234-8021
For Release: 19 October 2020


National Genealogical Society
Invites Nominations for its
2021 Awards & Competitions

FALLS CHURCH, va, 19 October 2020—The National Genealogical Society (NGS) invites individuals, societies, and organizations to participate in its 2021 Awards and Competitions program. NGS annually recognizes excellence in the field of genealogy. This year it has expanded its program to reflect its merger with the Federation of Genealogical Societies.  The deadline for submission of nominations is 15 December 2020.

 The NGS Awards program recognizes scholarship, service, excellence, and achievement in the fields of genealogy, history, and biography by presenting awards to individuals, societies, and organizations. The Society’s competitions challenge individuals and societies!

“We encourage you to nominate an organization or an individual you work with, research with, or admire for an award.  We hope you will also consider participating in one of our competitions,” said Janet L. Bailey, chair of the awards committee. “There are so many outstanding individuals, societies, and organizations that deserve national recognition. We hope their peers will consider nominating them before December 15.”

Founded in 1903, the National Genealogical Society is dedicated to genealogical education, exemplary standards of research, and the preservation of genealogical records. The Arlington, Virginia-based nonprofit is the premier national society for everyone, from the beginner to the most advanced family historian seeking excellence in publications, educational offerings, and guidance in research. It also offers many opportunities to interact with other genealogists. On 1 October 2020, NGS and the Federation of Genealogical Societies merged, making support for genealogy societies, family history associations, and other organizations an important part of the NGS mission. We welcome your organization to the new NGS.

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