Sunday, December 16, 2007

Topeka Genealogical Society Brings Megan Smolenyak to Kansas

Topeka Genealogical Society will hold their annual conference on Saturday, April 26, 2008 at the Kansas State History Center, 6425 SW Sixth Street, Topeka, Kansas. This conference will be co-hosted by the Kansas State Historical Society and the hosts are pleased to announce that the guest speaker will be Megan Smolenyak. She will make four presentations during the conference: "Trace Your Roots with DNA", "Beyond Y-DNA: Your Genetic Genealogy Options", "Building a Village-Based Community", 'Reverse Genealogy: Techniques for Finding Your Lost Loved Ones".

Megan Smolenyak, author of Honoring Our Ancestors: Inspiring Stories of the Quest for Our Roots, In Search of Our Ancestors: 101 Inspiring Stories of Serendipity and Connection in Rediscovering Our Family History, and They Came to America: Finding Your Immigrant Ancestors has been an avid genealogist since the 6th grade and is skilled in many aspects of family history research. Megan is co-founder of Roots Television, a pioneering and popular online channel of genealogy and history-oriented programming. Her latest book, Trace Your Roots with DNA: Using Genetic Tests to Explore Your Family Tree, is co-authored with Ann Turner, MD, has been featured in Newsweek, The New York Times, on NPR, and in the Book of the Month Club.

For registration information visit the TGS web site .

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Placing Out: The Orphan Trains

An encore broadcast of its most recent historical documentary, "Placing Out: The Orphan Trains," will be on Smoky Hills Public Television on Thursday, Nov. 29, at 7:00 p.m.
Among those interviewed for the documentary were actual orphan train rider Ann Harrison, Lincoln, NB, and rider descendants Francis Schippers, Hays; Doloris Pfeifer Pederson, Russell; Walter Straub and Kevin Lockwood, both of Great Bend; and Sharla Thill, Ellinwood.
Between 1854 and 1929 an estimated 200,000 orphaned, abandoned and homeless children, primarily from cities in the East, were put on trains headed for the Midwest in hopes of finding new homes.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Nicodemus Historical Society Displays Pioneer Settlers Family Trees

Nicodemus Pioneer Settler Family Trees on permanent exhibit at the Nicodemus Historical Society Museum at historic Nicodemus. Four family trees are currently on display (Moore, Samuels, Bates, Williams). Fall and Winter hours at the museum are by appointment, but Angela Bates is usually here daily. (785) 839-4280.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Forgotten Settler Certificates Available

Many of the early pioneers who have helped make Kansas a great state have been lost in history because no other information existed except in family records. In order to gather information on these pioneers, the Kansas Council of Genealogical Societies has a project of issuing a Territorial, Pioneer or Early Settler certificate to a direct descendant of a person who lived in Kansas before 1900.


  1. To receive the Territorial Certificate an applicant must be a direct descendant of an ancestor who lived in Kansas prior to 29 January 1861.
  2. To receive the Pioneer Certificate an applicant must be a direct descendant of an ancestor who lived in Kansas between 29 January 1861 and 31 December 1880.
  3. To receive the Early Settler Certificate, an applicant must be a direct descendant of an ancestor who lived in Kansas between 1 January 1881 and 31 December 1900.
  4. Applicant must be able to prove descent with an official record of some type or some other acceptable source of proof (i.e.: census records; obituaries; county histories; birth, death or marriage records; school or church records; newspaper clippings and any other records showing proof.)
  5. Applicant does not have to live in Kansas or ever have lived in Kansas.

To apply for a certificate, each applicant will need to complete a the four-page application form. This form includes the certificate application (page 1), permission to publish (page 2), a line of descendant chart (page 3) and a pedigree chart (page 4). In addition, each application will need to submit documentation to substantiate the information included in the line of descent chart. Pages 1 and 4 will be printed in a Forgotten Settlers book at a later date.

The documentation sent to establish eligibility for a certificate is placed in the Library and Archives Division of the Kansas State Historical Society. It is available to researchers as part of The Forgotten Settlers of Kansas manuscript collection, no. 206. For information about doing research in person at the Center for Historical Research, please go to the KSHS website, Information on reference policies and requesting copies by mail is at When requesting copies, the file number, either a letter-number combination such as G28 or a number such as 5922, should be included if possible. It appears at the bottom of each Form #1 in the published The Forgotten Settlers of Kansas volumes, available in many Kansas and some out-of-state libraries.

The cost of the certificate is $7.00 for out-of-state residents and $7.50 for Kansas resident.

Apply for Your Certificate Today
Complete Forgotten Settlers Certificate Application in PDF Format
Please click on "Shrink to Fit" when printing

Return all four pages of the completed application with copies of documentation to
PO BOX 3858
TOPEKA KS 66604-6858

50 Years of Kansas Genealogical Society of Dodge City

Programs for 2008 50th Anniversary of KGS
Sunday, 13 Jan, 2:00 - 4:00 P.M.: Village Square Mall, No charge.
Frederico 'Fred' Rodriguez, Dodge City; Topic: DODGE CITY'S MEXICAN VILLAGE

Saturday, 12 April, 2:00-4:00 P.M.: Village Square Mall, Dodge City, No charge.

Sunday, 13 July, 2:00-4:00 P.M.: Village Square Mall, Dodge City, No charge.

Saturday, 11 Oct, 9:00 A.M.-2:45 P.M., USD 443 Learning Center, 308 Frontview, Dodge City,
Speaker: Arlene H. Eakle, Tremonton, UT; Topics: To be announced

Saturday, September 29, 2007

McPherson County Old Mill Museum to Host Swedish Workshop October 12, 2007

Respected Swedish Researcher Elisabeth Thorsell Presents Genealogy Workshop October 12th in Lindsborg

Well-known Swedish genealogist Elisabeth Thorsell comes to Lindsborg for Hyllningsfest 2007. Mrs. Thorsell’s significant knowledge of Swedish records and vast research experience make her one of the most sought-after speakers and researchers in the field of Swedish genealogy. On Friday, October 12, from 10 am to 12 noon, she will present a workshop for all those interested in finding their Swedish roots. The goal of the workshop is to teach the participants how to cross the Atlantic back to Sweden and the basics of using the Swedish church records, including the invaluable husförhörslängder (clerical surveys).

The workshop will be held at the historic 1904 World’s Fair Swedish Pavilion, on the grounds of the McPherson County Old Mill Museum, 120 Mill Street. The public is invited to attend and pre-registration is not required. There will be a modest workshop fee of $2 per person, payable at the door.

Many festival attendees are likely to know of Elisabeth Thorsell, one of Sweden’s leading genealogists. She lives near Stockholm, Sweden, and is married with three sons and four grandchildren. Elizabeth has worked finding the origins of Swedish American since 1978. She has also been deeply involved in the Swedish genealogical community, with ten years as the Secretary of the Swedish Federation of Genealogical Societies, and editor of their journal "Släkthistoriskt Forum" for nine years. These days she serves as the editor of "Swedish American Genealogist (SAG)", serves on the staff on the annual SAG Workshop in Salt Lake City, and continues doing research for Swedish Americans. She received the "Award of Merit" from Swedish Council of America in 2006.

Don’t miss this chance to learn more about your Swedish ancestors with the help of one of Sweden’s best genealogists. For more information call 785-227-3595 or email

Osage County Historical Society Museum & Research Center Announces Two Projects

Osage County Historical Society Museum & Research Center is proud to announce the NEAR completion of two major projects.
We own an obituary collection amassed in nearly thirty scrapbooks. The scrapbooks have been re-indexed by the names of the deceased rather than chronological order. The indices now also contain the maiden names, as well as previous married names, of ladies (insofar as we could determine from the obituary. The master index now contains over 30,000 records with more being added weekly.
One year ago we obtained four reels of microfilm which contain the naturalization records of Osage County. We've been working on that master index since January 2007. While not complete, the index now contains nearly 10,000 records.
The first half of the Naturalization Index can be found under the Resources heading at our website,
The second half will be added when the index is complete.
If your people ever spent any time in Osage County, you may wish to examine these records. Check with us for research and copy fees via email at:

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Finney County Genealogical Society Celebrates 40 Years

Finney County Genealogical Society will be having its 40th anniversary celebration on October 20th. Our regular meeting will be in the morning from 10:00 A.M. to 12:30 P.M. with Rick Mandigo giving a presentation on "Preparing a Genealogical Photographic". The 40th anniversary celebration will be in the afternoon from 2 P.M. to 4 P.M. It will all take place in the Finnup Room at the Finney County Public Library 605 E. Walnut, Garden City, Kansas.

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Harper County Courthouse - 100 Years Old

The Harper County Courthouse will be 100 years old next year. The centennial committee is asking for photographs relating to the courthouse, any county building and/or county events that you might like to share. Plans are being made for photos and other memorabilia to be displayed during this event. Your photographs could possibly be included in the centennial courthouse book that is being written. Please contact me on how to send or make copies of your photographs. Thank you!
Carol Burke Peterson

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Midwest Historical & Genealogical Society

Calendar of Events for Midwest Historical and Genealogical Society
April 5 - Beginning on Thursday the MHGS Library will be open from 4 pm to 7 pm during Daylight Savings Time for researchers to use.

August 18 - Family History Detective Class, 10:00 a.m. - Bits and Pieces of Family History Research
August 25, Computer Support Group, 1:00 p.m. Using the Many Features of FamilyTree Maker Software
September 1 - 4 - Library Closed for Labor Day holiday.
September 8 - Westwood Presbyterian Church, 8007 West Maple. Wichita, KS. Speaker at 1 p.m. - Della Shafer and her husband will demonstrate grave finding by dowsing.
September 15 - Family History Detective Class, 10:00 a.m. - What Map did Grandpa Use in His Travels
September 22 - Computer Support Group 1:00 p.m. - Learn how to use libraries on the Internet
November 10 - Grace Methodist Church, 944 South Topeka. Lunch at noon, speaker at 1:00 p.m.. Sherry Kline, free lance writer of Family Tree in the Wichita Eagle magazine, Active Life.

Brown County Genealogical Society

Rebecca Brown, a Hiawatha High School Sophomore, did a project for Biology class concerning diseases that are inherited. She went back 6 generations and has what her ancestors died from, so one can see if there is an inheritable disease in the family. Rebecca will present her project at the regular meeting of the Brown County Genealogical Society to be held in the research library, 116 South 7th, Hiawatha, KS, August 16, 2007 at 7:00 p.m.

Finney County Genealogical Society Meetings

Finney County Genealogical Society Monthly Meetings
(Except June and August)

All of our 2007 genealogy meetings are scheduled to be at the Finney County Public Library, 605 E. Walnut, Garden City, Kansas, in the Hutchinson Room--from 10:00 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
October 20 "Preparing a Genealogical Photographic" Rick Mandigo
November 17 "Show and Tell" Everyone Share Their Latest Finds
December 15 "Christmas Traditions" Johnetta Hebrlee
January 19, 2008 "Grandma, Who Am I?" Johnetta Hebrlee

Harper County Genealogical Society

Harper County Genealogical Society announces their meeting dates for the remainder of 2007. Visitors are always welcome.

August 21, 2007 - Pleasant Valley Mennonite Church Library, 1420 East 14th, Harper, KS 2:00 p.m. - Business meeting . Program: Bring your Genealogy Questions for Discussion.

September 18, 2007 - Pleasant Valley Mennonite Church Library, 1420 East 14th, Harper, KS 2:00 p.m. - Business meeting . Program: What's New at, presented by Sandy Trotter.

October 16, 2007 - Pleasant Valley Mennonite Church Library, 1420 East 14th, Harper, KS 2:00 p.m. - Business meeting . Program: By Virginia Downing.

November 13, 2007 - Pleasant Valley Mennonite Church Library, 1420 East 14th, Harper, KS 2:00 p.m. - Business meeting . Program: By Virginia Downing.

No Meeting in December

Kansas Genealogy Blog

Kansas Council of Genealogical Societies is sponsoring a Kansas Genealogy Blog, as yet, another means of communication. Member societies are encouraged to take advantage of this blog to advertise their meetings, conferences and other activities. Affiliate members and Kansas researchers are welcome to submit Kansas genealogy news, or make comments on articles already posted. Instructions for placing new articles on the blog appear at the bottom of the blog home page.
The members of KCGS board are pleased to offer this service and hope that you will help make it a successful genealogical adventure.


Welcome to this Kansas Genealogy blog site, sponsored by the Kansas Council of Genealogical Societies. We hope you find this site to be a useful tool in your quest to find your ancestors. We especially hope that the users of this site will share research techniques and the best way to obtain information from various sources. The Kansas Council wants genealogists to have all the resources possible available for their research. May this blog help you to achieve your family history goal.

Bill Ballard
Kansas Council of Genealogical Societies