Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Sunday, February 16, 2020

Free Webinar Wednesday Night, Feb. 19 - Cold Calls, First Contact

Get more from your first contact, whether it be fleshing out family stories or connecting with your DNA cousins. Great Free Webinar Wednesday night.

Southern California Genealogical Society 2020 Jamboree Webinar Series -
De-Thorning Interviews: Cold Calls and First Contact
Wednesday, February 19, 2020, 9:00 PM (Eastern Time)

This lecture will demonstrate the tactful approach to interviewing individuals, making cold calls and making first contact with individuals via emails and social media. Learn how to be comfortable gleaning oral family history stories from people you know and have never met before. Examples of these types of contact will be given.
1. Approaches, Considerations & Cautions
2. How to Prove If True

Professional genealogist Tammy Priolo BASc, PLCGS 25+yrs. Consults, researches, writes, lectures & workshops nationally & internationally. Many genealogical volunteer positions including nine years with the FHC in North Bay Ontario. Member of APG, GSG, OGS and Advisory Board Member
Sign Up -

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Saturday, February 15, 2020

RootsTech 2020 Presentation Schedule

The schedule for RootsTech2020 is posted now online at their website. I was pleasantly surprised that many of the presentations have PDF files of their syllabi posted in the descriptions.

It may be entertaining and worth your while to take a look.

RootsTech2020 Presentation Schedule

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Thursday, February 13, 2020

News and Events from Friends of Oberlin Village

I received the following in an email from EOV this week:

Dear Friends of Oberlin Village,
Please join other Friends of Oberlin Village for our  Feb. 24 meeting, beginning 6 pm, in the fellowship hall of Wilson Temple United Methodist Church, 1023 Oberlin Road.  All are welcome.  This month's meeting will include a "Voices from the Past" presentation by Earl Ijames, Curator, NC Museum of History.

Also of possible interest are upcoming events:

Preservation North Carolina's (PNC's) documentary "Oberlin -- A Village Rooted in Freedom"  is slated to be shown on UNC-TV on February 20th at 10:00 P.M.  Dive in to the history of Oberlin, one of North Carolina’s largest freedmen’s villages established after the Civil War, and witness Preservation North Carolina’s effort to save two landmark properties for its new headquarters.

Because PNC realizes that that is not an ideal time for many viewers, they have made arrangements to provide preliminary screenings. These preliminary screenings will not be abbreviated versions --- they will show the documentary in its entirety. Here's the schedule:
February 17, 6:30 P.M., Oberlin Baptist Church, 806 Oberlin Rd.
February 19, 6:30 P.M. --- N.C. Art Museum, 2110 Blue Ridge Road
Watch anywhere, anytime at and!   

Cheryl Williams and the Education Committee are looking for volunteers to staff an information table at each screening (need 2 volunteers 20 min before and after).  If you can help, contact Cheryl who can arrange for you to get the table, brochures, etc. or (919) 592-2333.

Virtual MLK: 60th anniversary of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.s' "Fill Up the Jails" Speech
Saturday, February 15, 10:00 a.m.- 3:00 p.m.
NC State University Centennial Campus Hunt Library
1070 Partners Way, Raleigh, NC 27606  (Most parking is free on the weekend)

Event is free and open to the public

NC State researchers, led by Dr. Victoria Gallagher, will immerse community members in one of Martin Luther King Jr.’s most iconic speeches. King delivered this speech, originally titled “A Creative Protest” but later referred to by King and others as “Fill Up the Jails,” on February 16, 1960 at White Rock Baptist Church in Durham. The Virtual MLK (vMLK) event will take audiences back in time by leveraging the Hunt Library's 270-degree visualization capabilities, allowing them to virtually walk around the historic sanctuary, hear a re-creation of King’s speech, and virtually sit with congregation members.

The day includes family activities, choir performances, and a community conversation on advocacy.
For a detailed schedule and to register for scholar-guided tours, click here.

FOV has received the following invitations

African-American Cemeteries
Saturday, February 22, 2020, 2 PM, free admission with reception to follow
Eagle Lodge #19, 142 W King St, Hillsborough, NC   
Orange County’s Cultural Resources Coordinator Peter Sandbeck will present a program with slideshow on how to identify, protect and preserve the many abandoned or otherwise mostly unknown African-American cemeteries in the county. They all have a story to tell, and no one knows more about them than Peter Sandbeck.

Screening of documentary "February One"
Wednesday February 19, 2020 7 PM
Unitarian Universalist Fellowship of Raleigh
3313 Wade Ave, Raleigh, 27607

Join us for the viewing and discussion of the documentary February One recounting the courageous sit-ins led by the college students known as the Greensboro Four. The video uses first hand accounts and rare archival footage to document  the volatile winter of 1960 in Greensboro, NC. The students’ actions not only challenged public accommodation laws in North Carolina, but served as a blueprint for the wave of non-violent civil rights protests that swept the South and the nation throughout the 1960’s.
For more information:
Please note that this will replace the presentation "Revisiting Raleigh’s “Black Main Street”: Vintage Photos and Lasting Impact of the 3rd Ward" that was announced at the January FOV meeting due to illness of the presenter. 

Hope to see you a week from Monday at our next meeting,

Becky Boston

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Wednesday, February 12, 2020

Wake Wednesday - John Hunter, born a slave, lived 112 years

For those of you who missed the COR Museum African-American Symposium last Saturday, or the N&O article that preceded it, you missed some great local history. I will refer you back to the N&O article that chronicles the discovery of John Hunter's history and Ernest Dollar's efforts to unite that history with living family members.

John Hunter was an enslaved person on the Spring Hill Plantation, owned by Theophilus Hunter. John was well loved and lived a very long life. His obituary claimed 112 years. He was interviewed in the 1870 for an article in the Raleign Sentinel. His memories include Fayetteville Street while it was surrounded by wilderness and wild animals, the blood thirsty dragoons of Col, Tarleton, and local buildings burning in 1812.

We are lucky that Ernest Dollar, COR director, discovered John and his history so that his story can be share again now.

See the article and the video at the N&O.

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Saturday, February 8, 2020

Mark Your Calendar - Thomas W. Jones Workshop in Asheville June 20, 2020

We received this notice from the Old Buncombe County Genealogical Society in Ashville very recently:
I am contacting you on behalf of the Old Buncombe County Genealogical Society (OBCGS) in Asheville, NC.
We are offering a professional workshop, “Beyond the Barriers” on June 20, 2020 that may be of interest to your members. The speaker is Dr. Thomas W. Jones, a board-certified genealogist, who is nationally known as a writer, a knowledgeable and entertaining presenter and editor of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly.

The most interesting topic lineup includes:
  • Building a Credible Lineage Despite Missing information, Conflicting and Incorrect Records and Undocumented Publication
  • Finding ‘Unfindable’ Ancestors
  • The Jones Jinx: Tracing Common Surnames
  • Systematically Using Autosomal DNA Test Results to Help Break Through Genealogical Brick Walls
Early bird pricing is available prior to May 15.

Friday, February 7, 2020

Event - Feb. 8 - 4th Annual African-American History Symposium - Transformation from Slavery to Freedom

Visit the City of Raleigh Museum Saturday, Feb. 8 from 1-3pm. COR will present the 4th Annual African-American History Symposium, a free event. 

From the City of Raleigh Museum Facebook event page:
The fourth annual African American History Symposium will explore the transformation from slavery to freedom through two lectures. Collector Craig James will discuss images from his personal collection of early African American photographs. James’ library of rare photos captures the transformation from slavery to freedom and the emergence of a new black identity. A native North Carolinian, James is descended from slaves from the Spring Hill Plantation in Pender County. Among his collection are images of his family, “Nursey” James, who was born into slavery and lived into the 20th century. Also speaking will be City of Raleigh Museum director, Ernest Dollar, will share new research on the enslaved community of Dix Park and the efforts to locate living descendants. During research on the museum’s latest exhibit, From Plantation to Park: The Story of Dix Hill, Dollar discovered John Hunter, born in the 1760s, and traced eight generations of his family to New York. In November 2019, John’s family traveled back to Raleigh to learn about their historic roots and the future of the new park.

Parking and Directions for COR

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Thursday, February 6, 2020

Fold3 Black History Collection Free Access

I received this in an email from Fold3 today:
In recognition of Black History Month, Fold3® is making the records in its Black History Collection available for free through the end of February.

Whether you're searching for your ancestors or looking for primary documents to help with other research, the Black History collection gives you access to more than a million documents, records, and photos that help to capture the African-American experience during five eras of American history: Slavery, The Civil War, Reconstruction & Jim Crow Laws, World War I & II, and the Civil Rights Movement.
Fold3 Black History Collection - free access through the end of February

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Wednesday, February 5, 2020

Wake Wednesday - Check out the Joel Lane House before it gets a new coat of paint!

See the red pigment from the original construction 250 years ago. See the pit saw marks in the boards. Most surprising see the two small bullet embedded in the wood. Wonder when that happened?


Click through to WRAL to read the article by Heather Leah.

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Tuesday, February 4, 2020

Local Event - Feb 16 - Dedication Ceremony - Memorial to the Enslaved of Joel Lane Plantation

We have received notice that there will be a dedication event for a Memorial to the Enslaved of Joel Lane Plantation on February 16.

Details are as follows:

Dedication Ceremony: Memorial to the Enslaved of the Joel Lane Plantation, 1769-1800

On Sunday, February 16, 2020, we will gather in the Joel Lane Museum House gardens for a time of contemplation and remembrance, as we dedicate a memorial to the people who were held in slavery by Joel Lane and his family. More details.

Time: Sunday, February 16, 2020,
Light refreshments will be served following the ceremony.

Location: Joel Lane Museum House Herb Garden, at the southeast corner of the JLMH grounds, located at 160 S. St. Mary’s St., Raleigh, NC 27603. Parking is available on the streets surrounding the museum.

Admission: Free; All are welcome.

Contact Information: tel: (919) 833-3431; email:

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Sunday, February 2, 2020

Reminder - Transcription Session Saturday, Feb 8 at Cameron Village Regional Library

Join us at CVRL this Saturday morning, Feb. 8.

WCGS Transcription Session @ Room 202,Cameron Village Regional Library, 1930 Clark Ave, Raleigh, NC 27605. 10:30am - 12:30pm. Details and Contact info.

Transcription events are scheduled for the second Saturday of each month through the end of 2020. These events are not educational workshops, but time set aside for us to work together on transcription projects to benefit either the WCGS journal, Wake Treasures, or your own research. You can bring your own photocopies or digital files of documents or records needing transcription. We will also provide photocopies and digital files of Wake County-related records needing transcription. These transcriptions will be used in future issues of Wake Treasures. 

See you Saturday! Get a dose of local history and leave a Wake Legacy at the same time!

Dates for 2020 Transcription events ** The second Saturday of each month from 10:30-12:30 in Room 202, Cameron Village Regional Library, 1930 Clark Ave, Raleigh, NC 27605** Location change!

Mark your calender - Jan. 11, Feb. 8, Mar. 14, Apr. 11, May 9, Jun. 13, Jul. 11, Aug.8, Sep. 12, Oct. 10, Nov. 14, Dec. 12

You may be interested in these useful transcription tools:

Handy, easy rules sheet from our Wakecogen Projects page.

Instructional video by our former editor, Diane Richard. To view "Accurate Transcription for Historical Records", click on the title and scroll down to the viewing window.  

FamilySearch has an extensive wiki on Transcribing Historical Documents here.

Guidelines for Reading Old Documents includes some of the standard text often seen in old wills, deeds, etc.

11 Tips for Reading Old Handwriting has suggestions for parsing out those letters that don't look quite like today's cursive or printed letters.

Various ways letters were written over time:


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Saturday, February 1, 2020

Rootsweb Email Lists are going away soon.

If you are a user of Rootsweb email lists and you have visited recently, you have encountered this message header at the landing page...

Beginning March 2nd, 2020 the Mailing Lists functionality on RootsWeb will be discontinued. Users will no longer be able to send outgoing emails or accept incoming emails.  Additionally, administration tools will no longer be available to list administrators and mailing lists will be put into an archival state.  Administrators may save the emails in their list prior to March 2nd. After that, mailing list archives will remain available and searchable on RootsWeb.    - source

If you are already a frequent user, this will come as sad news. If you are not familiar with the Rootsweb lists yet, visit their index page to see the wealth of information there and know that these are discussions that will cease soon. If you see a list where you want to collaborate, you better get a move on.  Effective March 2, they will no longer be interactive. 

WCGS member, George Thomas, sees this as a huge loss and encourages all Wake County and North Carolina researchers that wish to have "your thoughts recorded (and searchable) on the rootsweb lists", to act fast. 

Your only chance is between now and between now and March 2. After that, mailing list archives will remain available and searchable on RootsWeb.

Friday, January 31, 2020

24 Hour Learning Opportunity from Legacy Webinars - March 12 - 13 Eastern Time

Great news from Legacy Family Tree Webinars & MyHeritage Webinars --

Event: FREE Live Webinar: The 24-Hour Genealogy Webinar Marathon
Host: Legacy Family Tree Webinars & MyHeritage Webinars

Join us in making history as we embark on the first-ever 24-hour genealogy webinar marathon, where you will learn how to trace your ancestors from the world's top genealogists and educators. From advanced Googling to DNA, from The Great Lakes to Australia and Germany, there's something for everyone... in every time zone. And thanks to and MyHeritage, the entire event is free! Pop in for a session or two, or stick around for the full 24 hours — it's completely up to you. There will even be time for Q&A and door prizes. If you can't join us in real time, we've got you covered: all recordings will be available absolutely free for a week. Beyond that, you can watch them anytime with a webinar membership to

Click registration link for list of topics and speakers.

Topics: 24 topics
Presenters: 24 speakers
Dates: Thursday-Friday, March 12-13, 2020
Start Time: 24 hrs.
2:00 PM Pacific
3:00 PM Mountain
4:00 PM Central
5:00 PM Eastern

**All recordings will be available absolutely free for a week after the 24hour presentation.

Thursday, January 30, 2020

Nearby next week - Durham/Orange Gen Society Meeting - Feb 5

Nearby next week -

February 2020 D-OGS Meeting: Using Maps and Mapping Tools in Genealogy 

Wednesday, February 5, 7:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Speaker Name: David McCorkle
It's great to find the exact location or at least general area where you ancestors lived on a modern map, but that alone is only part of the story. Please join us on Wednesday, February 5, at 7:00PM at the OWASA Community Center, 400 Jones Ferry Rd, Carrboro, NC to hear D-OGS President David McCorkle present Using Maps and Mapping Tools in Genealogy. In addition to helping find your ancestor's home, maps can provide clues to questions like where to find county and state records, who were their neighbors, what migration routes they used, why they might have settled in that area, what church they attended, where they are buried, what newspapers to search, and much more. David will discuss the many historical and modern maps available online, where to find them, and how to use them. He will also discuss and demonstrate various mapping tools that allow you to combine different types of maps and data to help with your research.

Location: OWASA Community Center
Address: 400 W. Jones Ferry Road, Carrboro

The OWASA Community Center is on the right side of Jones Ferry Road heading west out of town. Park in the lower lot on the west side of the facility - the center is the door closest to the street on the lower level.

More Details at D-OGS webpage.

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

Wake Wednesday - Five Points ca 1920

This photo appeared in my Facebook feed yesterday and I just really have to share it with you. Wrap your head around this pastoral scene and try to reconcile it with the Five Points of today...

click photo to see larger size

Houses, barns, fields, streetcar tracks. How much it changed between the 1920s and the 1940s!
How much will it change now with the present growth and building spree?

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Friday, January 24, 2020

Family History Affiliate Access - while Olivia Raney is closed for renovation.

I have the details for interim Family History Affiliate access now. I heard from Carrie Lee, the adult services manager at Cameron Village Regional Library last week. She confirms that access to the FamilySearch database at CVRL is now live. There is only one dedicated computer for this service.

To use:
Check in with a staff member at the reference desk – second floor.
Staff will get you logged in.  

CRVL is located at 1930 Clark Ave. Raleigh, NC 27605

It is wonderful that CVRL has worked through the paperwork process to make this irreplaceable access available during the time that ORL is out of commission.

WCGS is surely appreciative of all the staff at CVRL has done to accommodate us and make us feel welcome!

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Wednesday, January 22, 2020

Wake Wednesday - John Lawson - Did He Pass Through Wake County?

I found this great account of John Lawson's 1700 exploration of the area that would become North and South Carolina, in a book written back in 1922 - History of Wake County, North Carolina, by Hope Summerell Chamberlain. It is a fantastic book, fast paced and pleasant enough that I am frankly captivated. You may see more posts inspired by it pages in the future.

Chamberlain describes Lawson's voyage:
"The first historian of North Carolina, the explorer Lawson, although known to have passed through the central part of this State, cannot actually be proved to have trod the soil of Wake County. One authority on our local history thinks that he did, and indeed it seems more than possible.

Lawson made a journey through western and middle Carolina in the year seventeen hundred or thereabout. His course was a long loop coming out of South Carolina and crossing the Catawba and the ''Realkin" (or Yadkin) and other streams, continuing in a northeasterly direction and then due east, until he finally reached the settlements of the North Carolina seaboard. His descriptive traveller's journal reads as fresh and as crisply Interesting as if penned last year, and we get the impression of a writer alert in every sense and perception. He was a fine optimistic fellow, and though he was hired no doubt to praise the new colony, and so draw In settlers from among the readers of his account, yet no one can close his book without the feeling that he too, like many another coming to North Carolina to live, soon fell in love with the climate, and delighted to bask under the sunny sky.

Hear his account of leaving ''Acconeechy Town" (which must have been near Hillsborough), and marching twenty miles eastward over "stony rough ways" till he reached "a mighty river." This river is as large as the Realkin, the south bank having tracts of good land, the banks high, and stone quarries. We got then to the north shore, which is poor white sandy soil with scrubby oaks. We went ten miles or so, and sat down at the falls of a large creek where lay mighty rocks, the water making a strange noise as of a great many water wheels at once. This I take to be the falls of News Creek, called by the Indians 'We-Quo-Whom.'

For a first trip through an unknown wilderness, guided only by a compass, this suggests
the neighborhood, and describes the granite ridges that traverse Wake County, and produce the Falls of Neuse, where the river flows across one of these barriers.

During the next days' travel he comments on the land ''abating of its height" and ''mixed
with pines and poor soil." This, too, makes it sound as if he perceived the swift
transition which may be seen in the eastern part of Wake County from one zone to the
next, from the hard-wood growth to the pine timber, and from a clay to a sandy soil.

Lawson highly praised the midland of North Carolina, between the sandy land and the
mountains, and it is pleasant to read his enthusiastic account of this home of ours, and
learn the impression it made on a good observer in its pristine state, and before the white
man's foot had become familiar with the long trading path, which must have crossed west, near this section, but not certainly in the exact longitude of Wake County.
This trail is known to have passed Hillsborough, and to have crossed Haw River at
the Haw Fields. It may well have followed the same course, as later did the Granville
Tobacco Path, which certainly traversed Wake County near Raleigh."
Chamberlain really wants Lawson's path to have cut through Wake County and his descriptions of portions certainly do sound like our wild surrounds. The "large creek where lay mighty rocks," The granite ridges, the land ''abating of its height" ... ''mixedwith pines and poor soil." I feel I have walked those very spots.

Was he describing "News Creek" (Neuse River)? Others feel it could easily have been the banks of the Little River.

For more insight, you could attend this talk at the City of Raleigh Museum on Thursday night:
Scott Huler talks about John Lawson's trek, his own trek in Lawsons footsteps, his book and the exhibit at COR.
City of Raleigh Museum at 7 - 8:30 pm on Jan. 23
info: 919.996.2220

Tuesday, January 21, 2020

Reminder - WCGS Meeting - Tuesday, Jan 28, 6:30pm

Join us!

Quaker Patriot Research: Daniel Bills - A Man for His Place and Time
Tuesday January 28, 6:30 pm to 8:15 pm
Cameron Village Regional Library
1930 Clark Drive
Raleigh, NC 27605
Speaker: Ann Myhre
Join us for the story of Daniel Bills - a Quaker who was a patriot in the Revolutionary War.  We'll highlight the records used in his discovery and some of the other unusual resources that shed light on his life.
All WCGS meetings are free and open to the public.  Bring a friend!  Social time: 6:30; Announcements: 6:45pm. Presentation will start at 7:00.

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Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Thursday, January 9, 2020

NGS Conference 2020 Brochure Link

For your browsing pleasure... Who is planning on going to NGS 2020 in Salt Lake City in May?

May 19 -23
NGS Family History Conference - Salt Lake City, UT. Multiple speakers. Multiple tracks. 

Wake Genealogy Watch - Winter 2020 Is available at the website now!

Happy New Year, fellow Wake researchers.

TheWinter 2020 Issue (Vol.3 Issue 2)  of our award winning  newsletter Wake Genealogy Watch, is now available online for reading or download. 

This issue contains the following topics:
• Get Acquainted with the new Wake Treasures Journal Team
• Ann Myhre shares some very useful tips for tackling foreign language translations
• Popular tips, technique, and historical context of 2019 from the WCGS Facebook feed
• Ted Bainbridge shares important points to consider when evaluating sources, information, and evidence
• Cyndi Deal explores the workflow and challenges of researching that Native American family lore
• Another very full calendar of events

 As always we welcome your articles, comments, or other items for the newsletter, so please contact Cyndi at if you have something to share.

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.  This recent issue of the Newsletter may be downloaded from the WCGS Newsletter page.  Enjoy!

Or, click this newsletter page link to view this and all past newsletter content.

Photo Note: When reading from a printed copy, please refer back to the online edition where you can enlarge the photos for better viewing.

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. 

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Family History Webinar series at Cameron Village Regional Library

The ongoing Family History Webinar series that has been a Monday staple at ORL, will continue on at CVRL, observing the same schedule as before. Join Saundra Cropps at 1pm each Monday to view and discuss a webinar from Legacy Family Tree. Check website or call for details.

click to view original size

Wednesday, January 8, 2020

Wake Wednesday - 1914 Raleigh Street Car Map

This wonderful street car map from 1914 recently passed thru my Facebook Feed. Mike Legeros of Legeros Fire Blog shared his map with the "You know you grew up in Raleigh when..." group there. 
His map is an annotated version showing the street car lines of the time. It is available for download at his website. Click map to see larger.

The original is available via North Carolina Maps site from UNC-CH.

No photo description available.

Friday, January 3, 2020

Genealogy Skillbuilder offerings for SeniorTechEd for 2020

I counted no less than 14 different genealogy topic offered by SeniorTechEd starting next week! I see everything from DNA and Genealogy Basics, to Citing Sources and Organizing Strategies. Don't just take my word for it. Check it out now. There is still time to get signed up...

Scheduled Offerings for Eary 2020

Course Descriptions

Please share these links if you know someone just starting their genealogy journey.

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