Sunday, February 17, 2008

CVGS in the News - 02/16/08

I had a telephone interview with David Berlin of the San Diego Union-Tribune South County staff on Wednesday. We talked for about 30 minutes, and he published an article in Question and Answer format on Page 1 of the Our South County section of the paper on Saturday, 16 February 2008. They just started publishing a special section for South County news in the past month or so, and often have human interest stories about local people.

The article (it is online now here, I don't know for how long, without the picture) reads:

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QUESTIONS AND ANSWERS CHULA VISTA GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY

[Picture] Richard Seaver, 64, is the president of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society He is also a retired aerospace engineer who formerly worked for RohrIndustries and Goodrich Tires in Chula Vista. Like a good genealogist, Seaver has confirmed that he is a tenth cousin of Hall of Fame pitcher Tom Seaver. The Chula Vista Genealogical Society has several meetings each month and has its own blog: www.technorati.com/blogs/cvgencafe.blogspot.com.

QUESTION: What is genealogy?

ANSWER: The definition of genealogy is the names and dates and places of your ancestors births and marriages and deaths. Genea in Greek means family and ology means science. So it's the study of family. But most people want to go the next step and define the family history or what happened to the family. The names, dates and places are kind of like a tombstone. "1919-2002" is what my mother's tombstone says but the dash between the 1919 and the 2002 are what's really important.

QUESTION: What kinds of things does the society do?

ANSWER: The society promotes interest in genealogy and family history. We acquire research materials and organize them for the Chula Vista Public Library. We have a couple thousand books on the shelf down at the library in a family research area that we contribute to. We buy maybe 20 or 30 books a year.

QUESTION: When was the society founded?

ANSWER: It's about 20 years old and it started just in peoples living rooms. We have about 90 members and some of them have been with us from the very beginning and quite a few have joined it just in the last couple of years.

QUESTION: Are there any cultures that are harder than others to trace back?

ANSWER: They're all fairly difficult. Some are easier than others. Scandinavia is easier than Eastern Europe, for instance. England can be easy, although there are gaps in the records in the late 1700s. Germany is easy if you can get back into the church records before 1900 that are still available. Parts of Germany were destroyed in the wars and the records were destroyed. Many family lines you can trace back to the 1500s. Some you can't because the records just aren't there.

--David Berlin.

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Other than the fact that the reporter got my name wrong [big grin, eh? I told people at church that it was my evil twin brother who was interviewed], and the aerospace company, Goodrich, is no longer "Goodrich Tires," I thought he fairly reported what I said in my typical "stream of consciousness" style. I much prefer to have email interviews where I can think logically and more completely, and edit my thoughts before they are published for all to see. I would answer every question a bit more succinctly and more completely. I thought he said "countries" and not "cultures" on the last question - I would have mentioned African American, Native American and Irish research as more difficult if I had the chance to do it over again.

The good news is that this double exposure of CVGS in the newspaper has already resulted in three phone calls from people interested in attending our meetings and perhaps joining CVGS. A little publicity always helps, and I appreciate the effort by David Berlin and his editor in publishing these two articles about CVGS.

1 comment:

Harold said...

LOL, Richard -- I mean, Randy. Just goes to show there's no such thing as bad publicity. Keep spreading the word!