Saturday, March 31, 2012

CVGS Program Review - Joel Weintraub

Joel Weintraub, PhD, was the presenter at the Chula Vista Genealogical Society meeting on Wednesday, 28 March at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library.  The 40 attendees saw an excellent 90 minute presentation on "Here Comes the 1940 Census."  Joel's talk had two main parts:

1)  An Overview of the 1940 US Census:.  Joel provided  a description of the different census schedules, and particularly the population schedule, which is the only one that was microfilmed and will be available as digital images on 2 April 2012.  The schedule is two-sided, and has 40 lines per side for all persons to answer 34 questions, and then two of those 40 persons had to answer 16 more questions.  Joel described each of the columns on the population schedule, and how the enumerators were instructed to fill them out.  

2)  Online 1940 Resources:  The 1940 U.S. Census digital images will be available at 6 a.m. PDT on Monday, 2 April 2012 at the National Archives website.  There is NO name index for this census at the present time (FamilySearch, and will have different indexes later in 2012).  

In order to find families in the NARA census page images, users will have to know the location (town in rural areas, street address in larger towns and cities) of their families in 1940, and then have to find the Enumeration District (ED, two numbers, like 62-180) for that address.  Enumeration District maps and boundary descriptions are available on the NARA Online Public Access (OPA) website at  When you are on the NARA site, and input the state and ED number, you will see the first page of the census page images for that ED.  The user can browse the pages one-by-one or can download the entire ED (it may be 50 or 60 images or more) to their computer hard drive.  

The Steve Morse One-Step website has a 1940 Census ED Finder tool at   Researchers can use this tool to determine the Enumeration District for rural areas and towns, and for large cities if they know the address, the cross street and back street of the block the family lived on.  Joel and his team have defined the streets in each ED for over 80% of the urban areas in 1940.  The ED Finder identifies one ED number, which the user can then input to the NARA image site.

Joel recommended these steps for finding the 1940 U.S. Census entry for your families:

*  Identify the location of your families (town and county in rural areas, street address in larger towns and cities) using information in other records.  See How Can I Find Out Where My Folks Lived in 1940? for ideas.  Find the address on the NARA ED maps or on a Google Map, and note the cross and back streets for the block the family resided.

*  Use the Steve Morse 1940 Census ED Finder tool to identify the Enumeration District.  For larger towns and cities, input the street name, cross streets and back street to identify the ED.

*  Go to the National Archives 1940 U.S. Census site (, input the state and ED number, and see the first page of census images for that ED.

*  Download the entire set of census page images for the Enumeration District to your computer hard drive.

*  Review the census page images on your hard drive to find your family in the records using your image program.  

*  Shout Eureka! when you find them.  

This was an excellent presentation and the audience appreciated Joel's expertise, humor and information.

Friday, March 30, 2012

CVGS Spring Seminar is Saturday, 31 March 2012

The theme of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society Spring Seminar is: 

British Isles To America And Migrating West
Special Spring All-day Saturday paid Seminar
Saturday, March 31 2012, 9:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Chula Vista Golf Course
4475 Bonita Road, Bonita, CA

There are four talks, two each by nationally known speakers Leland Meitzler and Bill Dollarhide. They are:

1)  Bill Dollarhide:  "The Main Migration groups from the British Isles to America prior to the Revolutionary War"

2)  Leland Meitzler: "Migration Routes of Our Ancestors"

3) Bill Dollarhide: "The Scots-Irish Invasion of America"

4)  Leland Meitzler: "Newspaper Research in the 21st Century"

This is an all-day paid event with many exciting features. The registration fee is $35 through March 20. After, and at the door, is $40. This fee will include morning refreshments, a keynote address, two main sessions, a fully catered lunch, afternoon light refreshments, opportunity drawings, door prizes and a silent auction.

Our speakers will have books and CDs on sale throughout the day.

The registration form can be downloaded at

Family Roots Publishing at CVGS Seminar on Saturday

The Spring Seminar of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society is tomorrow, Saturday, 31 March, at the Chula Vista Golf Course (4475 Bonita Road in Bonita).  The announcement of the "British Isles to America and Migrating West" was highlighted in CVGS Spring Seminar is Saturday, 31 March.  The program features Bill Dollarhide and Leland Meitzler.

Leland is bringing his book selling business, Family Roots Publishing, to the seminar.  Attendees are encouraged to buy books of interest at the seminar and save the shipping costs.  Over 2000 great genealogy guidebooks can be found on the website, including:

*  Regional guidebooks for most countries, American states, and Canadian provinces
*  Guides on writing, and recording genealogy, photography, DNA research, genealogy dictionaries, computer use, immigration, migration, and more

The company publishes many books, and also sells books published by others.  Leland's blog, GenealogyBlog, features book summaries every day - see    

I don't know exactly which books Leland is bringing, but I recommend that attendees buy books that interest them, and also consider the QuickSheet and Genealogy at a Glance series of laminated folders that are introductory summaries to complex subjects. 

Monday, March 26, 2012

CVGS Meeting on Wednesday, 28 March: Joel Weintraub on 1940 census

from 12 Noon to 2 p.m.

at Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street in Chula Vista) in the Auditorium

“Here Comes the 1940 Census” by Joel Weintraub, PhD  

Joel Weintraub's presentation is “Here Comes the 1940 Census.”  He will discuss what's in the 1940 United States census and how to search the census for family members by location, since there will not be a name index when it becomes public on the website. 

Joel is a past National Archives volunteer and an emeritus Biology Professor.  He has produced census tools since 2001, and in 2002 teamed up with Stephen Morse. These utilities, for searching federal and NY State censuses by location, are freely available at in the census folders.

If you want a head start on the talk, use

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

"My Trip to Illinois - March 2011" by John Finch

This article was written by CVGS member John Finch, and appeared in the March 2012 CVGS Newsletter:

     Last year, in March, I had an opportunity to travel to the Chicago area. Our eldest grandson had enlisted in the Navy and was graduating from Recruit Training, more commonly referred to as “Boot Camp”, at Great Lakes, Illinois.

     This event was of special interest to me as it marked almost 50 years to the date of my own, nearly identical, rite of transition.  As a retired Chief Petty Officer, I was filled with pride.  

     Of further interest to me was that two of my family lines could be traced to an area near Chicago, in Lee County.  Traveling to this region of the country seldom presents, so I had every intention of taking advantage of this trip.

     I set about planning my trip to include genealogy research.  I contacted the Lee County Genealogical Society ahead of time and advised of the family lines of interest to me.  I wondered if I wasn’t expecting too much for the time I had allotted or if I could accomplish the many tasks that I hoped for. 

     I arrived at the town of Dixon, in my rental car at about noon.  Dixon is the County seat for Lee County and the location of the Lee County Genealogical Society office and library. I met with librarian, Rita Welsh, who had prepared several references of the very surnames that I had requested.

     Nearly all my questions were either answered at the Lee County Genealogical Society or in the marriage records I was able to copy at the old courthouse.  I spent some time walking in the cemetery and found the graves of several ancestors. I located the tombstone of my Emmanuel Depue, a GAR headstone.  He had died 20 November 1865.  I couldn’t help thinking that he had survived the Civil War only to die here at his home just a few months after the war had ended.  Although the marker was yet in very good condition and readable, it had been tilted to near toppling from the roots of a nearby tree.  I thought to myself that the stone should be righted and resolved to make it happen.

     I returned home.  Now with a wealth of new information to sort through, analyze and add to my family history data base.  Old history blended with new as I developed photographs of that graduation ceremony at Great Lakes.  I contacted the Lee County Genealogical society and told them of my project to right the monument of Emmanuel Depue.  They referred me to a local Monument Company and I contacted them for arrangements.  A couple of months later I received both an invoice and the before and after pictures showing that a new concrete base had been poured and the stone reset, straight as can be.

     I cannot begin to tell you of the wonder, the fulfillment and the rewards that this trip yielded.   I could not have imagined how very much can be accomplished, simply by being there. 

Sunday, March 18, 2012

March 2012 Issue of CVGS Newsletter is Online

The March 2012 issue of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society Newsletter is online at in PDF format:

The Table of Contents includes:

page 1 - March 28th Program Meeting 
page 2 - President’s Message
page 2 - Escondido Family History Fair Report
page 3 - Spring Seminar Announcement
page 4 - Research Group News

page 4 - Computer Group News
page 5 - February 29th  Program Review
page 5 - CVGS Members Can Help Index the 1940 Census
page 6 - Who Do You Think You Are? On NBC 
page 6 - Finding Your Roots on PBS

page 6 - CVGS Library News
page 6 - Lemon Grove Research Group News
page 6 - CVGS April  Workshop Program
page 6 - May Beginners Class
page 7 - Online and Offline Resources  for Genealogy  Research

page 8 - My Trip to Illinois, by John Finch 
page 8 - Seminar Speaker Biographies
page 9 - CVGS Society Information
page 9 - San Diego Genealogy Events
page 10 - Genealogy Days in Chula Vista

Friday, March 16, 2012

CVGS Research Group Summary - 14 March 2012

Seventeen researchers attended the CVGS Research Group on Wednesday, 14 March in the Computer Lab at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library.

In the first hour, Randy discussed the 1940 U.S. Census - highlights from the Joel Weintraub talk at SDGS, the Unified 1940 ED-Finder tool on the Steve Morse One-Step website, and FamilySearch Indexing of the 1940 Census.  CVGS has only five members signed up to do indexing, and several others said that they would do it.

In the second hour, the attendees discussed their research challenges, asked questions, and shared some of their successes.

*  Delores noted that her second-great-grandfather from Minnesota served in the Mormon Battalion.  She mentioned it on Facebook, and a friend knew the story, and recommended a local society in Utah with information about the Mormon Battalion.

*  Gary asked where he might find New York information about Albany militia from the 1790 to 1815 time frame.  The group suggested Town Council meeting minutes (town clerks office, town historian, possibly FHL microfilms) and to check the Beekman Patent books (at Carlsbad Library).

*  Shirley found that her Thomas Graves, and a John Graves, enlisted in Minden NY in the War of 1812.  The 1800 and 1810 census records show a John Graves in Montgomery County, which may be the same John.  Thomas may be his son.

*  Virginia explored a "shaky leaf" on her Ancestry Member Tree and found information on several lines that add 6 to 13 generations to her genealogy.

*  Pam asked about how to best use the book Evidence! Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills.  The group said it's especially useful for online resources, and to use the source templates in genealogy software.  Randy passed around the "Citing Online Historical Resources" QuickSheet as an example.  Shirley noted that she will present a "Citing Sources" workshop on 15 April.

Susi highlighted the National Institute for Genealogical Studies classes that will be prizes at the CVGS Seminar on 31 March.

Finally, the group shared stories of how their parents and grandparents met each other.

The next meeting of the CVGS Research Group will be on Wednesday, 11 April in the Computer Lab at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street in Chula Vista).

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Program Details for CVGS Spring Seminar on 31 March

The CVGS Spring Seminar is Saturday, 31 March from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Chula Vista Municipal Golf Course (4475 Bonita Road in Bonita).

The program theme is "British Isles to America and Migrating West" featuring tow outstanding nationally-known speakers, William Dollarhide and Leland Meitzler.

The program session descriptions are:

1)  Session 1 (Dollarhide):  The Main Migration Groups from the British Isles to
America prior to the Revolutionary War
     Group 1. The Puritans: East Anglia Puritans to New England, 1629-1648 (about 21,000 immigrants). Counties where they lived in Britain, and where they came to settle in America.
     Group 2. The Cavaliers: Cavaliers and their Servants from Southwest England to the Chesapeake, 1641-1675 (about 45,000 immigrants). Counties where they lived in Britain, and where they came to settle in America.
     Group 3. The Quakers & Palatines. The North Midland English Quakers and Palatine Germans to the Delaware Valley, 1675-1725. (About 23,000 immigrants).  Counties where they lived in Britain, and where they came to settle in America.

2)  Session 2 (Meitzler): Migration Routes of Our Ancestors
     Our ancestors often migrated within the United States, and territories. How can we ascertain where they came from? Why did they move? What routes did they take, and what records are available? The lecture covers a period dating from the 1600s until about 1880, covering the entire continental U.S.A.

3)  Session 3 (Dollarhide): The Scots-Irish Invasion of America
     Group 4. The Scots-Irish. The Borderers of Scotland and England, many of whom had been earlier transported to Northern Ireland, and their migration to the American Appalachian backwoods, 1717-1775 (about 250,000 immigrants). Where they lived in Britain and Ireland, and where they came to settle in America.
     Summary of the Four Groups: A comparison of the cultures and folkways of the four British groups, such as four different styles of worship, folk dances, clothing,  food, inheritance, naming patterns, etc.

4)  Session 4 (Meitzler): Newspaper Research in the 21st Century
     Newspapers have long held information that genealogists can use. Learn a bit about newspaper history; where to quickly find papers, and what to look for, once found. An amazing amount of genealogical information is located in the papers, even papers from the colonial period in America. Learn to locate the papers you need, both online and off. Also learn what guides and finding aids are now available and how to use them

This seminar costs $35 (before 20 March, $40 after 20 March), and registration includes a catered luncheon and door prizes.  There will be opportunity drawings and a silent auction also.  The Registration Form is online at: or see Susi Pentico or Virginia Taylor to get a printed registration form.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Saturday Workshop Summary - "Maximizing"

CVGS member Myrna Goodwin presented "Maximizing" to 26 attendees on Saturday, 10 March at Bonita-Sunnyside Library.

She had three main topics:

a)  Getting more out of -- by paying for it (even for only a month at a time), having a public Ancestry Member Tree as "cousin bait," attaching records and photos to persons in your tree, syncing your Family Tree Maker (FTM) file with your Ancestry tree, and using mobile apps on readers, tablets or smart phones in order to update Ancestry Member Tree data and create interest with relatives.

b)  Research your ancestors -- especially in online Newspapers (announcements, obituaries, human-interest articles, etc. - glimpses into your ancestor's life), Directories (find residences, occupations, relatives, living persons) and Maps (farm/home locations, see neighbors) on  This information can provide "breakthroughs" and add "family history" information to ancestral families.

c)  Collaborate with others -- Invite others to see and contribute to your tree as a Guest or Contributor, use the Ancestry MemberConnect and "confidential" message features.

Myrna noted that she has been contacted many distant family members because of her Ancestry Member Tree, and has found many photographs on the Trees of distant cousins.  She noted that a benefit of using the Family Tree Maker sync to Ancestry Member Trees is that the user has the attached document images in their FTM file, and can create reports and charts.  They can also standardize locality data, merge duplicate persons, and correct other data errors easily in FTM, then sync it back to the Ancestry tree.

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

10 March Saturday Workshop - "Maximizing"

The March Saturday Workshop provided  by the Chula Vista Genealogical Society is on 10 March from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m, at the Bonita-Sunnyside Library (4375 Bonita Road in Bonita) in the Community Room.  

The workshop leader will be CVGS member Myrna Goodwin, who will discuss "Maximizing"  In her presentation, Myrna will discuss the issues concerning public and private trees, syncing with Family Tree Maker 2012 software, plus apps for tablets, readers, and phones will be covered first. Then, there will be a more in depth discussion on finding newspaper articles, using city directories, and utilizing land maps. Successes when connecting with other Ancestry researchers will also be included.

This workshop is free for anyone to attend.  

Monday, March 5, 2012

Program Review - "Key Moments in Chula Vista History"

There were 42 members and guests at the February Program meeting on 29 February featured Dr. Steven Schoenherr speaking on "Key Moments in Chula Vista History."  Dr. Schoenherr is the author of the recent book Chula Vista Centennial: A Century of People and Progress written to celebrate Chula Vista's Centennial.

Steve had an impressive set of slides that showed the physical and business development of Chula Vista from the first land development in 1886 by Colonel Dickinson as a "railroad town," through becoming a city in 1911 (by a vote of 121 to 88), up to the annexation of Montgomery in 1985.  He showed pictures of many of the orchard homes built on 5 acre lots before 1911, and Fredericka Manor in 1913.  The first school buildings, libraries and churches were shown.  The economic development of Chula Vista from 5,000 acres of lemon groves to a thriving community that welcomed Rohr Aircraft to the waterfront in 1940, and the growth of the city south and then east, was described.   Pictures of downtown Chula Vista, then and now, were shown.   Steve highlighted the growth spurts with maps dating from 1894 when the town was laid out, and then showing additional land developments in later years.  

This was a fun and informative brisk visual walk through our home town.  Steve has an amazing knowledge of the places, people and events gleaned through thorough research in the available historical collections and the local newspapers published over the past 120 years.  The best part is that all of the pictures and maps are in the Centennial book!  He signed and sold Centennial books for attendees also.

Saturday, March 3, 2012

Genealogy Days in Chula Vista - March 2012

The Chula Vista Genealogical Society events for March 2012 include:

** Saturday, 10 March, 1 3 p.m., Bonita-Sunnyside (County) Library (4375 Bonita Road) -- Outreach Workshop meets in Community Room. Myrna Goodwin  will present "Maximizing"

** Wednesday 14 March, 12 noon to 2 p.m., Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) -- CVGS Research Group meets in the Library Computer Lab, 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, 21 March, 12 noon 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. Sharpen your computer skills and investigate online genealogy resources.

** Wednesday, 28 March, 12 noon to 2 p.m., Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) -- General Society Meeting meets in the Auditorium. Joel Weintraub will present "Here Comes the 1940 Census."  There will be a society business meeting before the presentation.

**  Saturday, 31 March, 8:30 a.m. to 3 p.m., Chula Vista Golf Course (4475 Bonita Road) -- "British Isles to america and Migrating West" CVGS Spring Seminar will feature William Dollarhide and Leland Meitzler.  Reservations required - $35 before 20 March, $40 after 20 March, includes a catered luncheon, light refreshments, door prizes, opportunity drawings and a silent auction.

The Chula Vista Civic Center Branch 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). 

The Bonita-Sunnyside (County) Library is located at 4375 Bonita Road in Bonita - just west of the Otay Lakes Road intersection with Bonita Road, on the north side of Bonita Road. The Chula Vista South Library is at 389 Orange Avenue (southeast corner on Fourth Avenue) - parking lot is off of Orange east of Fourth.

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.