Thursday, August 19, 2010

FGS 2010 - Day 1

Since I'm not much of an early morning person, I almost skipped the Keynote Session. That would have been a mistake. J. Mark Lowe (representing Tennessee) and Kent Whitworth (representing Kentucky) entertained the crowd with (what else) Tennessee vs Kentucky. Wearing coon skin caps, they debated the differences between the two states, including who was greater - Davy Crockett or Daniel Boone. They ended by leading the crowd in singing My Old Kentucky Home and Rocky Top. (I should note that as a long time University of Kentucky football fan, being subjected to Rocky Top before 9:00 AM could actually be considered torture.)

The Exhibit Hall opened immediately after the Keynote Session and several GeneaBloggers got together there. Thomas MacEntee passed out Blogger beads and ribbons to everyone. (Thanks Thomas.) We posed for a group photo which you can see at Greta's Genealogy Bog now and later at The We Tree Genealogy Blog. I probably shouldn't try to list everyone in attendance because I'm sure to miss someone (apologies in advance) but here goes anyway: Amy Coffin, Missy Corley, Brenda Joyce Jerome, Tonia KendrickGreta Koehl, Tina Lyons, Thomas MacEntee, Kimberly Powell, Jennifer Trahan, Paula Stuart-Warren

The remainder of the day was filled with sessions covering a wide variety of topics. I attended the following four. 

"Wanted Dead or Alive! Looking for Southern Vital Records" presented by Russell P. Baker:
I learned that Civil War records for both the Union and Confederacy should be checked for southern ancestors. Now, I knew that was the case for Kentucky and Tennessee but it had never occurred to me to search Union records for my Alabama and Georgia ancestors.

"Exploring Our Maternal Ancestries with Mitochondrial DNA" presented by Terry Barton:
I definitely have a better understanding of mtDNA.

"Southern States Immigration Research" presented by David G. Dilts: 
I picked up some tips for identifying the origins of southern ancestors.

"The Genealogy Guys Podcast" presented by George G. Morgan and Drew Smith: 
This was a real treat since I've listened to every one of their previous 207 podcasts.

It was nice to run into fellow GeneaBloggers throughout the day and after the last session Tonia Kendrick, Jennifer Trahan and I enjoyed a relaxing dinner at Market Square.

I'm looking forward to tomorrow.

See GeneaBloggers for a compiled listing of posts about FGS 2010.


  1. It was nice to finally meet you yesterday.

  2. I added myself to your followers. You have a great blog! I will be looking out for any postings you make on "Wanted Dead or Alive! Looking for Southern Vital Records". I am really having a difficult time with my gggrandmother and gggrandfather's records in Arkansas and Louisiana. Great job!

  3. Thanks AFW. The session on southern vital records really just explained the basics on using other types of records (deeds, wills, probate, court records, etc.) to prove relationships and narrow down dates when birth, marriage and death records aren't available. Bottom line - look at every kind of record that is available for the areas where the person lived and hope you find something useful.