Monday, March 30, 2015

Sioux Valley Genealogical Society Seminar

The Sioux Valley Genealogical Society (SVGS) will be hosting a Genealogy Seminar on Saturday, 18 April 2015 from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Faith Lutheran Church, 602 N. Cliff Ave., Sioux Falls, South Dakota.  More information can be found at the Sioux Valley Genealogical Society web site.

Gail Blankenau of Nebraska is the featured speaker.  She is an experienced genealogist and photo historian who shares her research and advice in many well-known periodicals.  We are proud to have her as a Nebraska genealogist!

Topics at the Genealogy Seminar are ...
Stories in Stone - Cemetery Research
Using German Parish Records
Who is hiding in your drawer? - dating and identifying photographs

She will also be speaking at a free seminar on Friday, 17 April 2015 from 4 p.m. to 6 p.m. at the Siouxland Libraries Main Branch, 200 N. Dakota Ave., Sioux Falls, South Dakota.  The topic for this will be Beginning Genealogy - Hunting and Gathering.

While you are checking out the seminar, be sure to browse through the web site.  If you have ancestry in that part of South Dakota, there is a good deal of information available.

Friday, February 27, 2015

Nebraska Webinars

Want to learn more about genealogical researching in Nebraska?  I have two recorded (bonus) webinars at Legacy Family Tree Webinars.  They are

Nebraska  - A Genealogy Journey 
Nebraska - Locating Records

You must be a subscriber (member) of Legacy Family Tree Webinars.  If you elect to subscribe, membership will allow more than 213 and growing webinars, but also a discount from the online products that include quick guides, books, CDs, software and more.  The nice thing about having a membership in Legacy Family Tree Webinars is that you can watch the webinars at any time of the day or night.

In the first webinar, learn about the early history, settlements and geography of Nebraska, all of which are influential in your research.  The diversified state has 93 counties with varying records.  In the second webinar, I go into more detail about the types of records you will encounter, the collections and records in the Nebraska State Historical Society, Nebraska State Surveyor's Office and Civil War Veterans Museum.

When you login and click to view one of my webinars, there will also be a link for the syllabus, plus to purchase my book, Genealogical Research in Nebraska, revised edition in digital format.

While browsing through the list of 213 classes/webinars, be sure to click on my friend Gail Blankenau's webinar Women Homesteaders and Genealogy.  We both love doing research in Nebraska.  


Tuesday, November 4, 2014

Homecoming: The Impact on Nebraska Veterans

What is the impact of a homecoming on a soldier?  It can produce lasting effects.  NET 1 in Nebraska will be presenting Homecoming: The Impact on Nebraska Veterans on November 10th, 14th and 17th.  It will air at 9 pm CT on the 10th and 14th and at 11 p.m. CT on the 17th.

NET News talks with veterans from different wars, military experts and a psychologist to examine the issue.  They also look at a second homecoming some sixty years in the making for Nebraska Korean War veterans.  The Heartland Honor Flight project gives those veterans an opportunity to visit the Korean War Veterans Memorial in Washington, DC.

Did you know that those "honor flights" were conceived by Nebraskans?  Bill and Evonne Williams worked on the idea around their kitchen table and over the past seven years, a series of trips has made veterans' dreams come true.

More information can be found at the NET web site.  Mark your calendars because you will not want to miss this presentation.

Tuesday, July 29, 2014


This will be a real treat for the eyes! NEBRASKA Land & Sky is a 60 minute program that will air on Monday, August 11, 2014 at 7 pm on NET 1.  Living in this state for many years, I can't wait to see the sweeping views that the program promises to bring to the viewers. 

From high above the land and down on-the-ground, the documentary traces Nebraska’s history and legacy. Featured stops include Willa Cather’s childhood home in Red Cloud, Nebraska’s majestic and rugged landscapes around Wildcat Hills in the Panhandle and the vibrant cityscapes of eastern Nebraska.  Homage is given to Nebraska’s ranchers and farmers, the state’s culture, recreation and exciting moments in Nebraska sports history. A British aerial photographic team, Skyworks, joined the NET crew on their statewide journey to film and archive Nebraska’s vast landscapes and hidden places from above. Skyworks specializes in top-end aerial filming, creating footage and shows for broadcasters all over the world, including National Geographic, PBS and the BBC. “NEBRASKA Land & Sky,” funded in part by the Nebraska Tourism Commission and Nebraska Game and Parks Commission, is a production of NET Television. 

Watch the Preview Link.   Then mark your calendar for the viewing times on NET 1.  They are 

Monday, August 11th at 7 pm CDT on NET 1
Monday, August 11th at 10 pm CDT on NET 1
Wednesday, August 13th at 9 pm CDT on NET 1


Sunday, May 11, 2014

Researching in Nebraska

As vehicles whiz through Nebraska, passengers proclaiming there is nothing to see, the trail travelers had all the time in the world to view their surroundings.  Some left diaries or journals and the accounts differed, probably according to the weather or the personality of the writer.  Eventually people began staying in Nebraska, paving the way for the great state it is today.

From one end of the state to the other, and north and south, there are great repositories of records.  Nebraska became a state in 1867 and while not like the early 1600s records of New England, records of the 1860s do exist.

The Homestead Act brought a huge influx of people to the state, particularly after the Civil War.  Records and complete files of land secured by this act can now be found online at Fold3.

For more than a glimpse of how to do research in Nebraska, I have written the book Genealogical Research in Nebraska, revised edition.  It contains 537 pages, thousands of URLs and genealogical plus historical information.  The chapters are ...

Nebraska Settlement and Statehood
Trails, Roads and Forts
Ethnic Groups and Settlements
Native Americans
Courts and Records
Land Laws and Records
Nebraska's Large Repositories
Census Records
Religious Records
Steamboats and Railroads
Orphan Trains
Wars and Military Records
Farming, Ranching and Records
Federal Records of Nebraska
Nebraska Counties
Nebraska Publications and Histories
Family History Centers
Maps, Atlases, Directories and Gazetteers

The book sells for $32.95 plus $5.00 postage and handling.   It is spiral bound and the most up to date compilation about doing research in Nebraska.  It can be ordered online at Genealogy Works.

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Nebraska Stories on NET 1

Living in Nebraska, I have developed an appreciation for the landscape, the geography, the history and the people who have devoted their energy and lives to make this a great state.

The Nebraska Stories February episode will be one Nebraskans should watch.  It airs on Sunday, February 9th at 9 pm (central time) on NET 1.  It will be repeated on Friday, February 14th at 7 pm (central time); Saturday, February 15th at 9:30 pm (central time); Friday, February 21st at 7:30 pm (central time) and Sunday, February 23rd at 6 pm and 10:30 pm (central time).

This will be a very interesting episode that you won't want to miss.  Two of the featured stories are the Wildcat Hills and The Forgotten War.

The Wildcat Hills are an interesting formation eight miles south of Gering in the Nebraska Panhandle.  A rangeland ecologist will take us on a walk through the hills which loom up from prairie land to form crags and rocks along with trees and other plants.

The Forgotten War will be interesting to anyone whose relatives served in the Korean War.  This episode follows a group of Nebraska Korean War veterans on their visit to the Korean War Memorial in Washington, DC.  This is a great opportunity to experience the war through the eyes and words of those who saw action there.

There are other segments within the episode also including a talk with young Jack Hoffman who made the famous Husker touchdown run in 2013.  There is also a segment of a piano "experiment" conducted in Omaha.

You can watch a preview of the episode on the Nebraska Stories web site for NET.  Make this a night of learning and enjoyment with NET 1.

Thursday, August 22, 2013

Nebraska ... get ready for the Family History Expo

The Midwest Family History Expo will be held September 6th and 7th at the Holiday Inn Convention Center in Kearney, Nebraska.  This is the second year the Expo has been at this location.  Nebraska genealogists will find it a rewarding experience.

The Holiday Inn Convention Center is located at 110 South Second Avenue in Kearney.  Check out the web site for how to contact the hotel for room reservations.  You can register online for the Expo and save money.  The full registration is $69 ... a real bargain considering that gets you in for two days of lectures by top-notch genealogists and presenters.  If you pay at the door, it is $99.

James L. Tanner is the keynote speaker.  He will be presenting an entertaining message, Top 10 Techniques:  Fishing for Ancestors & Other Persons of Interest.  During the two days, you can attend classes ranging from how to use the flip-pal, using the FamilySearch catalog, finding German ancestors,  researching Swedish ancestors, the state and territorial census, land records to military records.

There will be vendors and door prizes.  Plan on meeting old friends and making new genealogy friends.     This is a great event to get you jump-started with your research.  This is definitely the place for genealogists!!

See you in Kearney ... yes, I am one of the presenters.