Monday, January 30, 2017

February 4th Saturday Worshop is on MyHeritage

The February 4th Saturday Workshop will be from 1 p.m. to 4 p.m. in the Community Room at the Bonita-Sunnyside Library (4375 Bonita Road).  

The subject will be the “MyHeritage” website with record collections and separate family trees, presented by Susi Pentico. 

This event is free for all to attend. 

Monday, January 23, 2017

January 11th Research Group Summary

There were 16 CVGS members at the 11 January 2017 research group meeting at the Chula Vista Civic Center Library Branch.

In the first hour, Randy discussed:

*  The new book, Stranger in my Genes, by Bill Griffeth.  Bill found out that he was adopted from a Y-DNA test.  The book describes his search for his biological father.

*  Living DNA ( is a new autosomal DNA testing service.  At present, it provides only ethnicity estimates, and they are focused on the British Isles.

*  Family Tree Maker announced their long-promised Update for FTM 2014/Mac 3 users - it's free to download.  The update permits synchronization to an Ancestry Member Tree.There is also an upgrade coming in the next months.  

*  A "2017 genealogy industry benchmark" post about online genealogy sites was posted at

In the second hour, the attendees discussed:

*  Shirley is working on the Greene family in Rhode Island and New York.  She has about 3,000 persons in her database now, but is having computer problems.

*  Karen S. downloaded the Family Tree Maker Mac 3 update, but her latest Ancestry tree didn't sync with the FTM update.  The group said that she needs to download the Ancestry tree from Ancestry, then merge it into the existing FTM tree, merge duplicate profiles, and then sync it to a new Ancestry tree.

*  Gary is reviewing his 23andMe autosomal DNA matches.  He has a second cousin match with 3.8% in common.

*  Susi put some Jones information on her blog, and a distant cousin provided more Jones data.

*  Bobbie is trying to get started again.  She has three goals for the next two years to research her German, English and French-Canadian ancestors.

*  Mary N. belongs to a German society, where a member said that sometimes when you contact a cousin family in Germany that they think you're trying to claim an inheritance.

*  Bette is a new member with ancestry in Messina, Italy.  She found the naturalization record for her grandfather in 1904 in Boston.

*  Helen S. received an email from Wales on her son's DNA line saying that 3rd great-grandfather John Williams (1805-1851) may be from Wales.

*  Virginia received an email from a FamilyTreeDNA match on her Erdman line from PA, perhaps a 4 or 5th cousin.

*  John is helping Bea each week.  They found family information in the Mexico Civil Registry, and a family member had written a book about the family.  John has had some contact with a few of his over 400 DNA cousins;  one said "none of your business."  Another match said they were related to John Allen and Priscilla Mullins of the Mayflower.

*  JoAnn is working on her father's ancestry in England, and found great-great-grandfather John Sadler on MyHeritage and Genes Reunited trees.

*  Sam is working on sourcing the collected material from his Tennessee research trip.

The next meeting of the Research Group will be on Wednesday, 8 February at 12 noon in the Conference Room at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street, Chula Vista, California).  

Friday, January 20, 2017

CVGS General Meeting on 25 January Features Randy Seaver on FamilySearch Digital Microfilm

Wednesday, 25 January 2017, 12 noon To 2 p.m.
General Meeting
“UaingFamilySearch Digital Microfilm to Find Genealogical Records”
 by Randy Seaver
Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library Auditorium 
(365 F Street, Chula Vista, CA 91910)

 FamilySearch has over 2,180 record collections, and many of them are not indexed and cannot be searched using search fields. They are digitized from Family History Library microfilms. Think of them as "digital microfilm" - you have to browse these records (look through them, not search them). There are finding aids to help the researcher find records for their ancestors - waypoints, lists of volumes, volume indexes, etc. 

This presentation will demonstrate how to find records for your ancestors in probate, land, town, tax and other unindexed records, using several record types – probate records, land records, town records, and Italian civil registry records.

 Randy Seaver has been pursuing his elusive ancestors for 29 years, and has been a member of CVGS since 1993.  He is a CVGS Past President, and is currently the Newsletter Editor, and the Research and Queries chairman.  He is also a member of NGS, NEHGS, SCGS and SDGS.  Randy blogs daily at and also on the Chula Vista Genealogy Cafe (

This program is free to attend.  There will be a short business meeting after the presentation, followed by refreshments provided by CVGS members.

Monday, January 16, 2017

January 18th Computer Group Meeting

The next Computer Group meeting will be on Wednesday, 18 January 2017 at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street in downtown Chula Vista, Calif.).  

Class will start at 10:15 a.m. in the Conference Room and go until 11:45 a.m. when we will break for lunch. It is called a “Beginning Computer Genealogy” group. If you have a laptop, you should bring it. Shirley Becker and Gary Brock will be demonstrating very basic computer tasks such as how to find tutorials and use them. We will move to the Computer Lab at 12:30 p.m. and stay until 2 p.m.  

This month,  Shirley and Gary will teach the attendees to copy text and images from websites and paste the text and images into documents or save them on their computers.  

Please register for this event at the CVGS website -- -- and clck on the "Events" tab to register.

Sunday, January 15, 2017

January 2017 CVGS Newsletter is Available

The January 2017 newsletter of the Chula Vista Genealogical Society was published last week.

Society Members can read it online, in a PDF format - use the "Members" link (roll over "Members," and click on "Newsletters") at  Non-members can read CVGS Newsletters two months after publication, per Board of Directors direction (on, roll your mouse over "News" and click on "Newsletters").

The Table of Contents lists:

page 1:  January 25th Program Meeting 
page 2:  President’s Message  
page 2:  Register for Meetings on CVGS Website  
page 3:  February 4th Saturday Workshop 
page 3:  Next Research Group Meeting 

page 3:  Next Computer Group Meeting 
page 3:  Lemon Grove Research Group News 
page 3:  New CVGS Nametags Available
page 4:  2017 Hospitality Hosts Needed 
page 4:  Educationally Speaking 

page 4:  CVGS Email Issues 
page 4:  January Family Tree Webinars 
page 5:  Annual Holiday Luncheon Review
page 7:  Family Tree Maker News 
page 7:  A Little Genealogy Humor

page 8:  Write Your Life Story 
page 8:  Some Blogs You Should Read 
page 9:  CVGS Society Information 
page 9:  San Diego Genealogy Events 
[age 10:  Genealogy Days in Chula Vista

Thursday, January 12, 2017

January 7th Saturday Workshop Highlights

The January 7th Saturday Workshop featured CVGS member Randy Seaver presenting "Finding Your Elusive Ancestor: The Genealogical Proof Standard and Doing a Reasonably Exhaustive Search."

There were 27 members and guests in attendance for this two part presentation.  

In the first part, Randy described and discussed the five elements of the Genealogical Proof Standard (GPS):

1) Conduct A Reasonably Exhaustive Search for all Pertinent Information.
2.) Make a Complete and Accurate Citation of the Source of each Item Used
3) Analyze all of the Collected Information’s Quality as Evidence
4) Resolve any Conflicting or Contradictory Evidence
5) Arrive at a Soundly Reasoned, Coherently Written Conclusion.

The GPS deals with information, sources, evidence, analysis and proof, and was developed by the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG).  It is the "standard" methodology for professionals answering research questions and for drawing conclusions using assertions of genealogical events.  

Using examples from his own research, Randy described the quality measures for Sources, Information and Evidence, and defined terms such as facts, assertions, conclusions, proof, and more.  

The first element of the GPS is "to do a reasonably exhaustive search."  In the second part of the presentation, Randy took a whirlwind tour through traditional and online resources that should be included in a search, discussed his favorite search strategies and techniques, and described several Case Studies of his still elusive ancestors that illustrate the concepts of the GPS.

Suggested reading included:

*  Thomas W. Jones, Mastering Genealogical Proof (Arlington, VA : National Genealogical Society, 2013)

*  Elizabeth Shown Mills, Evidence Explained: Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace, Third Edition (Baltimore Md. : Genealogical Publishing Company, 2015).

*  Genealogy Standards, 50th Anniversary Edition (Washington, DC : Board for Certification of Genealogists, 2014).

*  Christine Rose, Genealogical Proof Standard: Building a Solid Case, 4th Edition Revised (2014)

The six page handout for this presentation is available for CVGS Members in the "Members" section of the CVGS website -  Members should login to the website, click on the "Members" tab and then on the "Handouts" link and then on the "Workshop Handouts" link.

Friday, January 6, 2017

January 11th Research Group Meeting

The next meeting of the CVGS Research Group will be on Wednesday, 11 January 2017, at 12 noon in the Conference Room at the Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street).

This meeting is moderated 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.  

 If you have a research question, a research problem, or a research success, please come and share it with the group.  

This meeting is free for everyone to attend. Please register on the CVGS website - -- click on the "Events" tab, pick this event, and register so we can plan the room seating.

Monday, January 2, 2017

Genealogy Days in Chula Vista - January 2017

The Chula Vista Genealogical Society events for January 2017 include:

 ** Saturday, 7 January, 
1 p.m to 4 p.m., Bonita-Sunnyside Library (4375 Bonita Road) -- 
CVGS Workshop in Community Room.  Randy Seaver will present "Finding Your Elusive Ancestors: The Genealogical Proof Standard and Doing a Reasonably Exhaustive Search."  Saturday Workshops are to discuss and demonstrate genealogy and family history topics, especially related to computers, software and websites, etc.

** Wednesday, 11 January, 12 noon to 2 p.m., Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) --  
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, 18 January, 10:15 a.m. to 2 p.m., Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) -- 
Bring your laptops to sharpen your computer skills and investigate online genealogy resources.

** Wednesday, 25 January, 12 noon to 2 p.m., at Chula Vista Civic Center Branch Library (365 F Street) -- 
CVGS General Meeting meets in the Auditorium.  The program speaker will be Randy Seaver on "Using FamilySearch Digital Microfilm to Find Genealogical Records."  The business meeting will be after the presentation.  Refreshments after the meeting.

**  Wednesday, 4, 11, 18 and 25 January, 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.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

December 14th Annual Holiday Luncheon Highlights, by Karen Yarger

Twenty-seven members and guests gathered at the Chula Vista South Branch Library on Wednesday, December 14, for our annual Holiday Luncheon.  As tradition, it was a potluck, with members bringing a delicious selection of salads, side dishes, condiments and desserts. The Society provided the baked turkey and ham and beverages (thank you Jo Ann Bonner and Ana Castro!).

 Members were also asked to bring canned goods and unwrapped toys for the Salvation Army drive, and the overflowing boxes were a testament to our members’ generosity.

 The party’s theme was “Ugly Sweaters”, and members came in wild, but not necessarily really ugly attire.    The four finalists – Virginia Taylor with a cat motif, Ceasar Castro sporting a Star Wars holiday shirt, Gary Brock in an indescribable black and maroon sweater, and Karen Yarger, who wore a 1950’s mink scarf (the animals sported little Santa hats as they appeared to chase each other around her neck). Gary Brock took the prize, though, coming closest to the theme.

 The party began at 11:30 when outgoing President Virginia Taylor welcomed the attendees and then asked for a moment of silence for two of our members who passed away this past year: Betty Hampton and Wanda Hartson. A  Life Membership was to be awarded, but will be announced at a later date. 

One order of business:  The installation of the Society’s officers, voted in at the November general meeting.  Randy Seaver installed Ceasar Castro as the new President, Virginia Taylor as the new First Vice President/Program Chair, and Karen Yarger as Secretary. Sam Seat, who will be the new Treasurer, and Karen Smith, the Second Vice President/ Membership Chair, were unable to attend and will be sworn in at the next board meeting.  Board members for this past year received certificates of appreciation and a hearty round of applause.

 Gary Brock provided an entertaining slide show of the Society’s various events this past year.  The pictures are also posted on our website.  Door prize and raffle drawings were next – a Santa figure, a pretty angel, and twelve poinsettia plants, which had decorated the tables, went to the winners. The raffle netted a whopping $174 for our Scholarship Fund.

The day’s final activity was the optional gift exchange. Those who wished to participate brought a wrapped gift, with a value of no more than $10. The lovely and practical gifts caused smiles all around.  

President Virginia Taylor ended the party at about two o’clock, but many stayed to chat and help with the clean up.  Another fun party, and it helped get us into the holiday spirit, didn’t it?

Photos were provided courtesy of Patricia Diane Godinez.