Thursday, November 27, 2014

"Heirloom Discovery Day" Program Summary

Georgie Stillman conducted her eighth annual "Heirloom Discovery Day" for the Chula Vista Genealogical Society program on Wednesday, 26 November.  In this program, CVGS members presented some of their heirlooms to Georgie for her expert evaluation and appraisal.

She noted that markets reflect what people will buy, and that values of heirloom items have changed in recent times.  She said that "Insurance companies now pay for replacement market costs, not for new item costs, and places like eBay, AmVets, and Goodwill Industries are sources for heirlooms and antiques."  She also said "for wealthy people now, old things don't signify class and wealth."

For each item, each person provided a brief summary of what they brought for appraisal and its' known provenance. Georgie then described what the item was, the approximate time it was created, and its approximate value.  The CVGS members who had their heirlooms evaluated included:

*  Helen described her father's green cigarette case from the 1940s.  Georgie noted that it was made of aluminum, a collectible, and was worth $10 to $15.

*  Helen also presented a dented copper oil can that was used by her father in the 1910 time frame.  Georgie noted that it was heavy, well made, used in an industrial setting, and worth $25 to $35.  She noted that "Americana things are not selling well."

*  Jane had an oil lamp cap with the words "Imperator" and "Caligula" stamped on it - the family story was that it was from Roman times.  Georgia said that wasn't that old, was made of clay and not metal or terra cotta, and had some corrosion due to dissimilar materials.

*  Karen S. presented her aunt's small doll - a "bisque doll" - with jointed arms and legs, found in a trunk.  Karen made the clothing.  Georgie said it was from the 1890 time period, was not especially valuable, perhaps $50 to $70.

*  Carol had three linen and lace garments from the 1920s.  Gerogie said they were machine made, have some value (perhaps $60 to $70 each) because collectors, museums and historical societies have an interest.

*  Debbie brought a Carnival glass dish and a beautiful copper enamel candy dish, both from the 1950-1970 time period.  The latter was probably bought in Spanish Village in Balboa Park and is worth about $35.

*  Maryvette's friend's grandmother made a large quilt with butterflies.  Georgie said it was from the 1920-1940 time frame, was stitched by a machine, and was worth $45 to $65 because the market is low at this time.

*  Susan had four barber bottles of her husband's grandfather and great-grandfather, who migrated from Germany to Chicago in the late 19th century.  Georgie noted that these bottles probably held colognes and other liquids used in the late 19th century by barbers.  They may have been from Bavaria or England, and had a value of $300 to $500.

*  JoAnn presented an antique bowl found in a trash can by her son in Fresno.  Georgie said it was carnival glass, with a design that was not rare.  It may be worth $35 to $50.

*  JoAnn also had three framed San Francisco scenic prints by Don Daly, a well known artist.  They might bring $35 on eBay.

*  Gerry brought her father's green shaving mug, made of bone china.  

*  Gerry also brought some old school books from the late 19th century.  Georgie referred her to an old book dealer.

*  Diane described her large tray with actual butterfly wings, and she thought it might be from Brazil.  Georgie said it was from the early 20th century, perhaps from Asia or Central America.  There are now laws about items like real butterfly wings being sold.  She thought it might be worth $50.

*  Carol presented an 1850 era framed drawing done by her ancestor, who was born in Germany and came to San Diego in the 1880s.  Georgie noted that the market probably doesn't care, but the family cares, and a local historical institution might care because of the important family associations.

*  Sandy brought an encased Ax that belonged to Chet Norman, an early Chula Vista landscaper and parks director.  Again, Georgie noted that a local historical institution might be interested.

As always, the time went very quickly, and Georgie displayed her ability to assess and discuss a wide variety of heirlooms.  Georgie's style is informal, enthusiastic and interesting - she really enjoys seeing these types of artifacts and "stuff" because they are, in the main, from middle-class homes from the Victorian era and later. She is used to appraising high-end items for collectors and estates. It is fascinating to see an expert appraiser at work - the words seem to flow effortlessly and I am awestruck by the knowledge level. 

Friday, November 21, 2014

CVGS Program on 26 November is "Heirloom Discovery Day" with Georgie Stillman

from 12 noon to 2 p.m.

At Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library Auditorium (365 F Street)

Georgie Stillman, ASA – “Heirloom Discovery Day”

      Our November 26th program will feature Georgie Stillman, ASA,presenting an “Heirloom Discovery Day.” Georgie will evaluate, provide some historical background and estimate a value of family heirlooms brought in by CVGS members. Her expertise is in evaluating and appraising silver, china, glass ware, furniture, artworks, quilts and samplers.

     Georgie Stillman ( has worked as a professional appraiser in London, England, Phoenix, and San Diego since 1971. She has served as president of the American Society of Appraisers (ASA), vice president of the San Diego chapter, and was founding director of the International Society of Appraisers. Georgie has received numerous awards for her outstanding service, including Appraiser of the Year. Besides being a professional instructor at various colleges, she has made many radio/TV guest appearances and written articles for many publications, teaching audiences about antiques and art.

     If you would like your heirloom to be evaluated by Georgie, please contact Ralph Munoz (619-421-7251, or email Munoz1951@ to get on the evaluation list -- there are a limited number of spaces on the list. Ralph has a form for you to complete and return by November 19th.

Monday, November 17, 2014

CVGS Computer Group Meeting - November 19, 2014

The November Computer Group Meeting for the Chula Vista Genealogical Society (CVGS) is on Wednesday, 19 November 2014 at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) in the Computer Lab.

     Shirley will make a short presentation on Email Scams and Phishing, followed by discussion.  The meeting will also find online websites to research our own genealogy, if at all possible without subscribing to the provider.  This is getting harder to do so, please attend and bring any new websites you have found or used for your research. 

Saturday, November 15, 2014

November CVGS Research Group Review

The monthly Chula Vista Genealogical Society Research Group meeting on 12 November had 10 attendees.  

1)  In the first hour, Randy discussed:

*  Requesting and receiving two Find A Grave photos from Pennsylvania and Ontario.

*  Requesting a microfilm image from the Family History Library in Salt Lake City - see

*  Finding useful books published by local genealogical societies - in this case, San Diego Genealogical Society books at the San Diego Central Library.  Historical and genealogical societies all over the country may publish books like these.  See

*  Answering a reader's question about finding online records on websites for free - it just takes some effort sometimes.  See

*  Finding green leaf Hints in a specific database (e.g., the 1940 U.S. census) for persons in your Ancestry Member Tree - video and directions in

2)  In the second hour, the attendees asked questions or described research problems, including:

*  Gary demonstrated how the new website for CVGS on Wild Apricot would look and work.  You can see the temporary site at  There will be a members only section for access to the membership list, seminar reservations, member surnames, etc.  

*  Linda could not find some family members born in the 1920s in Los Angeles in the California Birth or Death Index.  One name was Eduvijes Acosta or Valdez.  A search on Ancestry in the meeting did not find them.  There were other given names that she recognized in the databases, but not the specific one she was looking for.

*  Jane is planning a trip next summer to New England (for a nephew's wedding), to Nova Scotia (for research) and the Troy, New York area (for research).  She asked how much time should she plan on in each location, what to ask about before the visits, etc.  She hopes to visit public libraries, state archives and local historical or genealogical societies.  The group suggested that she contact each repository in advance concerning open days and hours, what can be brought into the repository, camera/photo policies, copy charges, etc.  Shirley offered to help with the New York State Archives which may provide Jane with death records of her DelVecchio ancestors.  

The next CVGS Research Group meeting will be Wednesday, 10 December, at 12 noon in the Conference Room at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street in downtown Chula Vista).  

Wednesday, November 12, 2014

November 2014 Issue of CVGS Newsletter is Available

The November 2014 issue of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society (CVGS) Newsletter was published this week.  You can read it online, in a PDF format - use the Newsletter link at

The Table of Contents lists:

page 1 -- November 26th Program Meeting 
page 2 -- President’s Message 
page 2 -- Elections for 2015-2016 Officers
page 2 --  Membership Dues for 2014
page 3 -- 2014 Season of Finding Your Roots Coming
page 3 --  December 11th Holiday Luncheon

page 3 -- December 6th Workshop
page 3 -- Lemon Grove Research Group News
page 4 -- June 2015 Global Family Reunion
page 5 -- 2014 Season of Finding Your Roots
page 5 -- Requesting a Microfilm Image from the FHL

page 6 -- October 8th Research Group Review
page 7 -- October 29th Program Review
page 7 -- RootsTech and FGS 2015 Registrations
page 8 -- PERiodical Source Index (PERSI)
page 8 -- CVGS Member Kevin Brown Passes Away

page 9 -- CVGS Society Information 
page 9 -- San Diego Genealogy Events 
page 10 -- Genealogy Days in Chula Vista

Sunday, November 2, 2014

Genealogy Days in Chula Vista - November 2014

The Chula Vista Genealogical Society events for November 2014 include:

**  Saturday, 1 November, 12 noon to 3 p.m., Bonita-Sunnyside Library (4375 Bonita Road) -- Saturday Workshop:  Susi Pentico will lead a workshop on "Maryland Genealogy Research." 

** Wednesday, 12 November, 12 noon to 2 p.m., 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, 19 November, 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. Bring your laptops to sharpen your computer skills and investigate online genealogy resources.

** Wednesday, 26 November, 12 noon  to 2 p.m., Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street).  CVGS Program Meeting meets in the Auditorium.  The speaker will be Georgie Stillman on "Heirloom Discovery Day." Refreshments before and after the meeting.

**  Saturday, 6 December, 12 noon to 3 p.m., Bonita-Sunnyside Library (4375 Bonita Road) -- 
CVGS Workshop.  Susi Pentico will moderate a discussion on "TBD" 

**  Wednesdays, 5, 12, 19, and 26 November, 10 a.m. to 12 noon, Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) --Research Assistance in the Family Research area.  John Finch will help you with your research problems.  Bring your laptop if you want to do online research.

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 - turn north on Billy Casper Way, just west of the Otay Lakes Road intersection with Bonita Road, on the north side of Bonita Road.

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.  All CVGS events are FREE to attend, except for some seminars and picnics.