Genealogy Education Plan

With traveling and focusing on training to improve my genealogy research and writing skills, I haven’t posted on the blog for awhile.

In April, I finished the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) Genealogy Education Programs (GEP I, II and III). The on-line courses covered DAR applications, plus information useful for other genealogical research. Topics in the twenty-seven lessons included vital records, evaluation of evidence, federal, state, and local records, finding alternative sources, using indirect evidence, creating an analysis, and resolving complex service problems. The last two lessons required submitting an written analysis. I’m now a DAR Genealogy Consultant and feel better prepared to research Revolutionary War patriots for myself and others in our local chapter.

The National Genealogical Society Family History Conference was held in Richmond, Virginia, 7-10 May 2014. I flew in for pre-conference workshops on the probate process and on writing. From Wednesday through Saturday, attendees could choose from dozens of lectures from 8:30 AM to 8:30 PM. When not attending lectures, I was in the Library of Virginia pulling records on Holders and Piggs from Pittsylvania County, perhaps the native home of my Virginia-borne Holder ancestors.

After a week back home, my husband and I flew to Scotland for a tour with a group from our Presbyterian church. Visits to Iona, Stirling Castle of Braveheart fame, Edinburgh, Holy Island-site of the first Viking landing, Rosslyn Chapel-featured in the Da Vinci Code, Cambridge, and several places in and around London were included. During twelve days in Scotland and England, I saw many family surnames-the tomb of Archbishop Musgrave at York Minister, very near where our possible Musgrave ancestors lived; Medcalf in northern England; Knox, Craig, McIntyre and other familiar surnames in Scotland; Archbishop Davidson in southern England and many more. I wish I had ancestors traced back across the pond-maybe a later trip. A wonderful experience, with great scenery and traveling companions.  In the meantime, 500 pictures are awaiting processing.

A week after the overseas trip, I headed to Birmingham, Alabama, for the week-long Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research at Samford University. I was one of twenty five people taking the Writing and Publishing Course taught by Thomas Jones, PhD, one of the most highly regarded genealogy authors and editors in the field and editor of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly (NGSQ). In addition to pre-work, homework was assigned most nights. On Monday night, after attending an optional evening lecture, I finished my homework at midnight. No more evening lectures for me. During our lunch breaks and long afternoon break, I was in the library researching Alabama ancestors, including Isaac Oaks, a Revolutionary War soldier who fought in Virginia, moved to Georgia, then onto Alabama where he is buried. If I can document this lineage, Isaac Oaks will be my first DAR patriot in our Holder line. A highlight of this trip was meeting a Vickers cousin; we connected through my blog post on Daisy McIntire Vickers.

A genealogy education goal is to participate in a study group based on Professional Genealogy: A Manual for Researchers, Writers, Editors, Lecturers and Librarians, edited by Elizabeth Shown Mills, the previous editor of NGSQ. The twenty nine chapters of ProGen, as it is called, cover Ethical Standards, Problem Analysis and Research Plans, Evidence Analysis and more. ProGen study groups work together on-line over about eighteen months covering the 600+ page book. Successful completion of ProGen is sometimes a precursor of genealogy certification. After Richmond, I applied for an upcoming ProGen class. I hoped for a fall class, but knew some people where waitlisted up to a year. While in Scotland, the ProGen coordinator sent me an email about an open spot for a study group starting June 1st. So in the week between the Scotland/England trip and IGHR, I finished my IGHR pre-work and did the reading for my first ProGen study group session held that same week.

Over the next eighteen months, my time will be balanced between genealogy research and training, focusing on the ProGen study group while still allowing time for an on-line NGSQ study group, which reviews one article from that periodical each month. For more details on NGSQ study groups, see Michele Simmons Lewis’s excellent description on her Ancestoring blog.  I’ve followed Michele’s blog and was especially pleased to meet her in the IGHR writing class.

With any luck, I’ll get back on track with weekly blogs, probably not posting 52 ancestors this year, but posting a few more as my research allows.

 Copyright © 2014 Andrea Musgrove Perisho

About Andrea Musgrove Perisho

Genealogy research on my own ancestors is a new focus. Posts will include information about those ancestors including the social and economic issues, along with techniques for research.
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