Saturday, May 29, 2010

Memorial Day at La Vista Memorial Park

The La Vista Memorial Park and Mausoleum are having their fifth annual Memorial Day Celebration from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. on Monday, 31 May. The Park is located at 3191 Orange Street in National City CA, 91950.

The flyer announcing this event is below:

There will be food, beverages and entertainment for the whole family to enjoy. As a special treat, dignitaries (I wonder who?) will be rolling up their sleeves and serving up the refreshments.

There will be the unveiling of a monument dedicated to the "Gone but not Forgotten" by La Vista Memorial Park and the San Diego County Administrator, Public Guardian.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Genealogy 101 Beginner's Workshop a Success!

After the PBS television show, Faces of America, and the NBC television show, Who Do You Think You Are?, in the first four months of 2010, many genealogical societies were surprised by a sudden upsurge in interest by people who had not pursued their ancestry or family history before.

The Chula Vista Genealogical Society had planned ahead, and was ready to offer a Genealogy 101 -- A Beginner's Workshop during the month of May 2010. There were four two-hour sessions on Tuesday evenings, with former CVGS President, Randy Seaver, as the instructor.

The curriculum included segments on:

Class 1:
* What is Genealogy?
* Step 1 - The Treasure Hunt
* Step 2 - Organize Your Information
* Step 3 - Find Records and Resources
* Step 4 - Share Your Information
* Step 5 - Join Genealogical Societies

Class 2:
* Genealogy Education
* Vital Records
* Census Records
* Effective Online Searches

Class 3:
* Genealogy Software
* Book Resources
* Military Records
* Immigration and Citizenship Records
* Demonstrating Websites in Computer Lab

Class 4:
* The Genealogical Proof Standard
* Online Family Trees
* Newspaper and Directory Records
* Land and Property Records
* Probate and Court Records
* Parting Thoughts

We had 19 attendees in this class - nine were beginning genealogists, five were new CVGS members with little research experience, and five were longer term CVGS members with some research experience. All were enthusiastic to learn about how to pursue genealogical and family history research. Seven of the nine beginners joined CVGS in the past two months. Randy prepared a class syllabus that totalled almost 70 pages to cover the subjects listed above, and used Powerpoint to teach the class, including many examples from his own research.

At the end of the fourth class, we had a graduation ceremony with each attendee receiving a certificate of completion and a name tag with a golden G affixed to mark their course completion. We also had a class photograph taken:

Back row, from the left: Carol Thomas, Janice Nevills, Karyn Slade, Jane Dale, Pauline Johnstone, Anita Harman, Kris Harman, Mary Patterson and Jean Moss (with Kevin Brown in back of Anita and Kris, and instructor Randy Seaver behind Mary).

Front row, from the left: Billie Cosby, Marta Brown, Marian Wertz, Olive Lenane, Neva Bridwell and Nancy Yates.

Unfortunately, Ruth Himan, Kirk Rodriguez and Cheryl Van Cleave were absent when the picture was taken.

CVGS President Gary Brock introduced the classes, helped with the projector, and led the graduation ceremonies. CVGS Member Services Director Ruth Himan helped Randy with class attendance, handing out syllabus materials, setting up the computer lab, and bringing in refreshments (cookies, cupcakes, coffee and water) for each class. Thank you, Gary and Ruth!

We've started a waiting list for the next Genealogy 101 - A Beginner's workshop classes - if you want to be on the list, please contact Randy at

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Bobbie Lane's "Where in the World is Acadia?" Presentation Summary

Chula Vista Genealogical Society member Bobbie Lane presented "Where in the World is Acadia?" talk today in the CVGS Program Meeting. Bobbie's CV was presented in "Where in the world is Acadia" by Bobbie Lane on Wednesday, 26 May.

The 30 attendees heard about the history of Acadia from first European settlement in 1605 to present times, and how Bobbie's ancestral families lived through one of history's tragic deportations inflicted on a settled people.

She used a history timeline to discuss important events from settlement of various places in Atlantic Canada (the current provinces of Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Prince Edward Island) through the many wars between England and France, with the native Indians usually helping the French settlers. And then, in the 1750's, the deportations of French-speaking Acadians to English Colonies, to Louisiana, to England, and to France. Some of those deported to these places eventually migrated to Louisiana and other French colonies. Some of the Acadians escaped and ended up in Quebec and New Brunswick.

Bobbie explained how Longfellow's poem, Evangeline, energized interest in the plight of the Acadians, and led to a resurgence in pride in Acadian heritage.

As she explained each era of Acadian history, Bobbie related how her ancestral families fared - where they settled, resided and eventually migrated. She had two families that fled to Quebec and one that was deported to France but was lost on a sunken ship during the trip. Someone in her line has had a mtDNA test done that indicates that Ann Marie, who married Rene Rimbauld, was a native Indian.

Bobbie used overhead slides of maps and photographs to illustrate her talk. She and her husband travelled to Nova Scotia in 2009 on vacation and learned the history, geography and culture.

Here is a photo of Bobbie speaking and Gary Brock helping by putting up the overhead slides.

After the talk, Susi Pentico presented a certificate of appreciation to Bobbie with Gary looking on:

Bobbie's son videotaped her talk so that her relatives back in Illinois could see and hear about their Acadian relatives.

Sunday, May 23, 2010

"Where in the world is Acadia" by Bobbie Lane on Wednesday, 26 May

The 26 May 2010 program meeting of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society (CVGS) will be at 12 noon at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street in Chula Vista) in the Auditorium.

The program speaker will be CVGS member Bobbie Lane, who will present "Where in the World is Acadia?"

Bobbie (Titus) Lane began her family research in 2004 after she had retired and began to write her memoirs about growing up on a farm in Illinois. It was then she realized that she had very little information about her ancestral roots.

In researching her paternal side of the Titus family, Bobbie discovered the location of her great-great grandparents’ graves. This information was incomplete and incorrect in her hometown, genealogy library, so Bobbie brought it to the attention of the president of the local Lake County (Illinois) Genealogical Society, of which she is a member . The president of the society invited Bobbie to write an article about her findings in the society’s quarterly newsletter, which she did for the fall issue of 2007. Bobbie has also been invited to donate a copy of her memoir, Growing Up On A Farm, to their library.

She was a member of the recent San Diego German Research Group, at which she gave a presentation on her successes in researching her German ancestry. She is a current member of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society and the San Diego Genealogical Society.

Bobbie alternates most of her research time between her father’s German heritage and her maternal grandmother’s French Canadian lineage. She has ancestors, who came from France to the Quebec Province in the early 1600’s. That entitles her to apply for membership in the Society of the Daughters of the King and Soldiers of Carignan. Bobbie has a special place in her heart for her other French-Canadian ancestors, who lived in a place once called Acadia, which she visited in the fall of 2009.

She will discuss the history of Acadia, her ancestors in the area, and some of her resources.

All persons interested in genealogy and family history are invited to attend all CVGS programs, which are offered free of charge.

Please enter the auditorium through the Conference Room door so that you can register your attendance, pick up the program and the speaker's handout, buy an opportunity ticket, and have a snack.

For more information about this, and all other CVGS programs, please contact Barbara by email ( or telephone (619-477-4140).

Friday, May 21, 2010

Larry Schultheis (1926-2010), RIP

One of the longtime members of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society died this week. His obituary was in the Thursday, 20 May 2010, edition of the San Diego Union-Tribune newspaper on page B5.

The text of the obituary reads:


Lawrence W. "Larry" Schultheis passed peacefully at home surrounded by his family on May 14, 2010, after a battle with cancer.

Born on April 26, 1926, in Memphis, TN, he was raised in Marietta, OH. He enlisted in the Navy in 1944 and graduated from Marietta College. A Naval Aviator, he served in World War II and the Korean Conflict and was a fixed wing and rotary pilot, retiring from the Naval Reserve as a LT Commander.

An educator, he taught math and science for 25 years in the Sweetwater Union H.S. District and served as ASB Advisor at Southwest Jr. High School.

The list of service organizations and associations that benefited from his commitment included Knights of Columbus, Alhambra, Boy Scouts, VFW, Elks, Fleet Reserve Assoc., San Diego Opera, St. Rose of Lima Parish, Hammer Club, MOAA and MOWW.

A 54-year resident of Chula Vista, he is survived by his wife of 64 years, Mary (Nina), and children Larry (France) of Chula Vista, Susie (Bob) of Colorado Springs, CO and John (Kathy) of Layton, UT, eight grandchildren and six great-grandchildren.

Visitation will be Thursday, May 20th, from 4:00 to 8:00 p.m. at Greenwood Mortuary, Funeral Mass on Friday, May 21st, at 9:00 a.m. at St. Rose Of Lima Church in Chula Vista, followed by interment at Greenwood Mortuary. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made in his memory to San Diego Hospice.

Rest in Peace, dear friend.

Saturday, May 15, 2010

New or Updated Genealogy Databases - Early May Report

A number of free and commercial genealogy database sites have released new or updated collections in the past month, including:

1) New England Historic Genealogical Society ($$) -

o Vital Records of Hallowell, Maine to 1892
o See list of all document sets at NEA

2) ($$) --

o Civil War Subversion Investigations
o See list of all document sets on at

3) World Vital Records ($$) --

o See list of all document sets on World Vital Records at

4) Genealogy Bank ($$) --

o Revolutionary War Soldier Burial Records
o 166 Newspapers from 42 states added
o See list of all available newspaper titles at

5) --

o All Obituary Collections updated
o New York Passenger Lists, 1820-1957, Updated
o Queensland, Australia Passenger Lists, 1848-1912
o Many Family History books in French
o 1920 U.S. Census Updated
o Selected U.S. Census Non-Population Schedules, 1850-1880
o Western Australia Post Office Directory, 1910, 1925
o Many Family History books in German
o See New and Updated Ancestry databases at

6) FamilySearch Record Search (Free) --

o See complete list of new databases in New FamilySearch Record Search Databases - 300 million names!

Thursday, May 13, 2010

CVGS Research Group Summary - 12 May 2010

There were only eight hardy genealogists at the 12 May CVGS Research Group at the Civic Center Library, but they had some interesting research stories to tell.

* Randy led off by noting the new FamilySearch Record Search databases, mentioned the non-indexed databases, and passed around the QuickSheets for source citations.

* Ruth was excited to be named to the MyHeritage Top 100 Genealogy Sites list for her Genealogy is Ruthless Without Me blog.

* Gary is still working on his Roff line - he found a militia record for Philip Roff in New York.

* Helen is trying to prove or disprove family stories, especially one that her grandfather helped build the Brawley (CA) Canal in 1930, and died of spinal meningitis in Missouri after an auto accident in California. Her aunt said that the family lost the farm and her mother was left with nine kids and $40. We suggested looking for land, probate and newspaper records to see if the stories can be substantiated.

* Phyllis finished the family history book for her grandson, who was very appreciative. She included family photos, obituaries, stories and an ahnentafel list back to colonial times.

* Virginia's sister is writing down the early family stories she remembers.

* Jaye's cousin is also doing research, and found a newspaper article about her grandfather's death in 1939. The man left his family of eight kids in 1930 and disappeared from Hutchinson, Kansas. Ruth is going to Hutchinson, Kansas this summer on a research trip - serendipity strikes here!

* Dick's cousin's ex-wife called from New Jersey saying that a Viet Nam veteran who served with the cousin wants information to help him get a Silver Star. The man sent military records to support his case, but needed information from the cousin. The cousin died near Tucson, Arizona and is buried at Fort Huachuca Cemetery. Dick has photos of the cemetery and the grave to send to the man.

* Randy described his trip to Salt Lake City, including his day at the FHL and the NGS Conference. He discussed finding and copying the 1637 English will of Thomas Page on microfilm, which he passed around the table, that disproves about 200 online family tree entries for the parents of Susanna Page (1611-1691).

The next CVGS Research Group meeting will be Wednesday, June 9 at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library.

Friday, May 7, 2010

2011 is Chula Vista's Centennial Year

This article was written by CVGS Member Susan Zimmer and appeared in the May 2010 issue of the CVGS Newsletter:

The year 2011 will be a big year for the City of Chula Vista as it will celebrate its 100th year centennial. Many events are in the planning stages and will be of interest to Chula Vista Genealogical Society members.

As Centennial Committee liaison, Susan Zimmer would like to call your attention to some of those events. If you have a special interest in being involved or helping out with any event, please contact Susan and she will pass your name along.

o October 9, 2011 the Tall Ship California will be docking in Chula Vista. Look for more information about visiting the bay that day.
o The historic Home Tour will take place April 30, 2011.
o The City will participate in the Spirit of '45 project, in which interviews will be done with senior citizens about what they experienced and felt on the day peace was declared (Aug. 14, 1945). Some interviewing will be done as projects for students, but experienced genealogical researchers might like to participate, especially if you know of someone, a neighbor or relative, who could recall that important day. The results will be gathered and placed on an Internet "wall".

In addition, a young citizen will be putting together a film documentary of city history. A coffee table book of Chula Vista history is also being put together.

Our society came up with a suggestion to honor Chula Vista residents who are 100 years old.

Other events tentatively scheduled are Chula Vista Night at the Padres, a goal of 100 minutes of physical activity for students, movie night (they hope to show The Attack of the Killer Tomatoes), a Bike-the-Bay event, a bigger and better Fiesta de la Luna, a film festival, a series of art shows, wine tasting, and battles of the bands. Chula Vista churches and businesses will be included in the history and encouraged to have some recognition of the centennial. A specially-designed tee shirt is being planned and marketed.

Researchers are needed to explore some aspects of Chula Vista history. If you know something about a family, a memorable event, a well-remembered business, or a historic moment or someone you know does, please tell Susan.

As more dates are finalized, Susan will alert you to how and when you can join in the fun.

The Chula Vista Centennial Website is at

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

28 April Program Summary - Myrna Goodwin on Land Records

Chula Vista Genealogical Society Member Myrna Goodwin was the speaker at the CVGS Program Meeting on 28 April at the South Chula Vista Library. There were 38 in attendance. Myrna's talk was "Find Your Roots: Dig Up the Dirt!! Researching Land Records." This review was written by CVGS Secretary Ann Stevens and published in the May edition of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society Newsletter:

Who would have ever thought that hearing about land records could be so interesting?? And who would have ever thought that anyone could get so excited about this topic??

Well, one of our members, Myrna Goodwin, showed us that, while land records often get “no respect”, they can indeed be a valuable resource for us to examine . . . and after hearing Myrna’s presentation, we can all get excited about what we too can find when we “Dig Up the Dirt!”

Myrna began by giving a brief overview of all the information land records can yield: Land records have been around longer than the census has (going back to the early 1600’s); they are more frequently recorded than the census (the census being on a 10-year cycle); and they often provide information about where our ancestors were before they bought the land being recorded. Myrna also explained some of the basic land terms, but she encouraged us not to wait until we understood all the terms before jumping into the dirt to make our discoveries!

Once Myrna gave us the basics, she demonstrated why she is so enthusiastic about using the land records in her research. Similar to the show Who Do You Think You Are? , but without the budgetary constraints, Myrna took us on a virtual trip as she traced her ancestors back multiple generations, taking us to the properties they owned, to the homes in which they lived, and to the cemeteries where they currently reside. She showed us how she started by placing an ancestor in a specific place, and how, through land deeds and local maps, she discovered not only where they moved and who moved with them, but also where they were before and the families in the area. She also noted that frequently family members are listed in the land records, thus giving additional clues about married names, maiden names, and relatives in the area.

By the end of her talk, Myrna had all of us excited whenever she was able to go back another generation, simply by using the available land records often stowed away in those dusty courthouse basements. Needless to say that by the end of the meeting, thanks to Myrna’s enthusiastic presentation, we were all ready to get out there and look up the dirt surrounding our ancestors!

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Genealogy Days in Chula Vista - May 2010

The Chula Vista Genealogical Society events for May 2010 include:

** Wednesday May 12, 12 noon to 2 pm, Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) -- CVGS Research Group meets in the Library Conference Room, led by Randy Seaver. We will review the latest genealogy news, share success stories and information, and discuss members research problems, and potential solutions, based on the collective knowledge and wisdom of the group.

** Wednesday, May 19, 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m., Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) -- CVGS Computer Group meets in the Library Computer Lab, led by Shirley Becker. We will visit some helpful genealogy web sites. This is an opportunity for those members who haven't used computers for genealogy research to practice with a mentor to guide them.

** Wednesday, May 26, 12 noon to 2 p.m., Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) -- CVGS Program Meeting in the Conference Room. After a brief business meeting, the speaker will be CVGS member Bobbie Lane, speaking on "Where in the World is Acadia?"

** Monday mornings (11 a.m. to 1 PM) - May 3, 10, 17, 24 - Genealogy Table Talk with John Finch in the Family Research section of the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library. They are ready and willing to help people with their research, discuss a research problem or success, or just tell stories.

** Wednesday evenings (6 p.m. to 8 p.m.) - May 5, 12, 19, 26 - Genealogy Help with CVGS members in the Family Research section of the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library. They are ready and willing to help people just starting on their genealogy research, discuss a research problem or a success.

** Sunday afternoons (2 p.m. to 4 p.m.) - May 2, 9, 16, 23, 30 - Genealogy Help with CVGS members in the Family Research section of the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library. They are ready and willing to help people just starting on their genealogy research, discuss a research problem or a success.

** Tuesday evenings (5:30 p.m. to 7:30 p.m.) - May 4, 11, 18 and 25 - Genealogy 101 Beginning workshop in Conference Room, taught by Randy Seaver. This class is FULL!

The Chula Vista Civic Center Library is located at 365 "F" Street in Chula Vista - between Third Avenue and Fourth Avenue, midway between I-5 and I-805 (take the "E" Street exit from the freeways).We welcome guests and visitors to our CVGS programs and events - if you are in the greater San Diego area and want to attend our events - please come and introduce yourselves.