Western Massachusetts Genealogical Society, Inc

Western Massachusetts Genealogical Society, Inc


I originally posted this on Face book but many of you might not know I also have a Weatherwax Genealogy page there. I offer a bit of my life experiences during this most trying time in our nations history and culture. For some of you who may not know me bear with my short history. When I was 9 yrs old my family moved to St. Petersburg,FL from rural Enfield,CT. I had never experienced Racism. Jim Crow laws were in effect there. St. Pete was divided north to south by Central Avenue. If you were Black you lived south of 1st Ave. S. All avenues ran east to west, streets North to south. I remember my Mom taking us the the 5&10 store on Central Avenue. I went to get a drink of Water and the water fountain said "WHITE ONLY" there was no fountain for Blacks! My treat was getting an Orange sherbert Seltzer float. While sitting there I noticed a black person in a small window at the back of the lunch counter. If you were black you had to go into the alley to get fountain service. You could not go into the store. Same with a Restroom. On buses Blacks had to sit in the last row. In School from Elementary until to High School we never played any scholastic sport with a black team or had Black students in our schools.. This had a profound impact on me from a young age. Over the years I watched and learned as my parents conformed to a more racists point of view. Later on at age 17 I joined the U.S. Navy and again saw overt Racism. If you were black you had to work on the deck force or engine room. If you were a Philippino you had to be a Steward. No other career choices were available. In the 1967-1969 era we were living in Millington TN. My wife was 2 blocks from Dr. King when he was killed. I had to go to downtown Memphis and pick her. We then went through weeks of Martial Law which include us in the Military being under Martial Law. In the early 1970's Adm Elmo Zumwelt became CNO and huge changes were made to the U.S. Navy. Changes I was glad to see including the opening of Career paths in all specialities for all. I was finally proud to see the Navy pave the way to the future. Then in the mid 1975 era Race riots broke out within the U.S. Army and Navy like at Ft. Hood and Great Lakes Naval Training center. DOD then undertook massive training and education in establisihng the DOD Race Relations Institue at PAFB FL. I was one of the early volunteers to leave my Logistics specialty to train to be an "Equal Opportunity Program Specialist." For the next 3 years I worked at various commands providing education to all ranks and grades on the SecNav programs. I served in Alaska,Norfolk Va, and at other commands educating all on the existing and new regulations on Race Relations. I did receive a Flag commendation and promotion for my work. So when say I am a Liberal I wear the title with pride not shame. I stood up for what I saw as injustices both within and out of the U.S. Navy. Lest you judge me harsly you havent had my life experiences and history. I stand proud today to the same oath to the Constitution I took on Feb 27,1962 when I enlisted in the U.S. Navy, I will die keeping that oath.”
Getting Into Genealogy webinar - Tuesday April 21 at 7 PM. FREE and open to the public! Just how does one get started researching their family tree? This program is meant to answer that question and provide additional information on local resources for that research. This webinar is free and open to everyone; it is not limited to society members only. Register at the Massachusetts Society of Genealogists, Inc. page (use the tickets link found on the event).
For those of us who can't go
Hello - happy new year! Will this evening's talk be recorded?
Today, Wednesday, October 30 at 3pm there is a free talk about how to publish your Family Genealogy stories at the Chicopee Public Library at 449 Front Street. Sara Campbell, an author and genealogist, will share her wealth of knowledge and get you started in your publishing journey. There is no need to register, just come and join us for this free event.
Every year, the National Archives hosts a free, virtual Genealogy Fair via live webcast on YouTube. The sessions offer family history research tools on Federal records for all skill levels. Handouts will be available. It's a fun way to find out more about genealogy topics you're interested in. Save the date for the live event on Wednesday, October 23, 2019, 10 a.m.-4 p.m. eastern!
Today the 2020 Census arrived at my door. Census taker had a sholder bag and badge identifying her as a Census official as well as a laptop. Today was part of the address verification prelude to the census. dropped off the 2020 Census confidential info sheet. All in all less than 5minutes and she was on her way. Good to see the visibility of Census personnel.
Wondering if there is a monthly meeting this Wednesday August 7th. If there is, is it at the museum/library in Springfield or is it at the regular agawam location. I would like to attend but for some reason cannot get the meeting dates and locations straight. Thx in advance.
Is there anyone in the area with extensive knowledge of or that has access to information with regard to Saint Aloysius Cemetery in Indian Orchard? Saint Michael's inherited their records but I was told that there is no real "office" at Saint Aloysius after speaking to someone yesterday.
Register today for the Swedish American Genealogical Conference coming up on 5-6 October 2018 in Sturbridge, MA. Select the blue "VISIT GROUP" option on SARA's page (https://www.facebook.com/SWEDEGEN/) for program and registration information. ... or select GROUPS at the left to find the group page with program, schedule, and registration form (preview documents and print). Message us on Facebook with questions.
Thanks to all the WMGS members who came for a field trip to the Wood Museum library and archives in Springfield last night.Great group. Glad to see new members. Thanks for your interest and support.

We meet year-round on the first Wednesday of the month from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm. Membership is $30 for singles, $45 for couples of the same household.

The Western Massachusetts Genealogical Society, Inc is incorporated as a 501(c)3 non-profit organization, founded in Springfield, Hampden County, Massachusetts in 1972. We are devoted to the research and documentation of our family ancestry and history. We also assist others in the pursuit of discovering their ancestry.

Membership is open to anyone with interest in genealogy and family history. WMGS offers monthly meetings feature locally and nationally known experts in genealogical research, history, and other related interests. Research clinics are offered free of charge to members and $10 per session to non-members. Annual membership is $25 per individual, $15 per full-time student, $40 per couples in the same household. Lifetime memberships are also available for $500 per individual with an occasional reduced rate for special events.

Mission: Our goal is to assist everyone in learning how to effectively research their family and their family's roots employing both on-line and off-line strategies.


Maine Historical Society opens bicentennial exhibit and hosts conversation about Acadian history on YouTube

genealogyalacarte.ca The Maine Historical Society (MHS) in Portland is celebrating its state’s 200th anniversary with an exhibit, called State of Mind: Becoming Maine, that tells


Revolutionary War Records for Genealogy Research - Part Two

Here is Part 2.

Part 1 was posted on Friday, July 3. Scroll down to see it.

In this video we’re talking about the Revolutionary War Records available online for your genealogy research, where to find records at websites for the DAR, ...

Genealogy Tip of the Day

Our goals are to get you to think about your research, think about how you research, think about what you find, contemplate how something should be interpreted, and find out about new sources.

With that in mind it is important to remember that's what is new to one person might not be new to someone else. And we all have gaps in our knowledge.

And remember, bigger trees are not always better.



The Archive Lady: Researching African American Ancestors in Local Archives - Genealogy Bargains

genealogybargains.com Melissa Barker, aka The Archive Lady, explains how to research African American ancestors in archival records with these tips and tricks!

Gjenvick-Gjønvik Archives

Interesting collection of material on the immigration experience.

What's Next? We review comments and suggestions made on our page for input on future projects.


Free access to one billion birth records on MyHeritage

genealogyalacarte.ca During the week of July 10 to 16, MyHeritage is offering free access to all birth records on its site. We'll be able to search through 104 collections cont


Best trick EVER to read old Gravestones given by a stone carver!

The Mirror Trick - impressive!

We are all guilty of trying every trick in the book to read old gravestones. Almost all of these methods can over time harm the stone. This is a hands off ap...


HOW TO AVOID GETTING STUCK ON YOUR ANCESTOR'S NAME | Avoiding this Common Genealogy Mistake

Is your genealogy research stuck? Are you finding your ancestor (and recognizing him/her) in the historical records? You might be missing them because of a n...

Abundant Genealogy

Got Scots? Plans are well under way for the next FREE Scottish Indexes Conference, which will be held ONLINE on Saturday 11 July 2020. https://genealogybargains.com/free-stuff/ #ad #genealogy #free


New Free Historical Records on FamilySearch: Week of 6 July 2020 - Genealogy Bargains

genealogybargains.com View over 3.5 MILLION new, free, indexed records added to FamilySearch.org this week including over 2 Million indexed US Obituaries!


Watch it! - Your Ancestors on FamilySearch.org

In this tutorial, Connie Knox from Genealogy TV shows how to “watch” your ancestors and get email notifications with this very simple, yet powerful tool on FamilySearch.org.

Whether you’re on FamilySearch or not, you’ll want to “watch” your ancestors on FamilySearch for changes and updates to your ancestors profiles for new clues and information put up by other members.

FamilySearch is a totally free genealogical resource.

Watch Your Ancestors on FamilySearch! Ancestry.com, MyHeritage, FindMyPast, and all other users, YOU’LL WANT TO SEE THIS TOO! In this tutorial, I’ll show you...


Free Legacy Family Tree webinar weekends

Two weekends in July with free webinars.

genealogyalacarte.ca In July, Legacy Family Tree is taking us back to basics with two webinar weekends: Foundations in DNA (5 full-length classes by Blaine Bettinger)Family

Abundant Genealogy

NEW! Legacy Family Tree Webinars: FREE WEBINAR Turning dry facts into exciting narrative presented by Carol Baxter, Wednesday 8 July 2020,8:00 pm Eastern / 7:00 pm Central / 6:00 pm Mountain / 5:00 pm Pacific. The literary world condemns most family histories as ‘fact-driven and tedious’ because they are usually little more than prose timelines. Yet the phrase ‘family history’ communicates the three ingredients needed to produce a piece of prose that is interesting to read: ‘family’ (the facts about the family), ‘history’ (the historical context) and ‘story’. This seminar focuses on the first two ingredients and shows how we can weave our facts together in such a way that the reader is keen to keep on reading. Visit http://legacy.familytreewebinars.com/?aid=5579 to register for FREE - via Legacy Family Tree Webinars #ad #genealogy #free #webinar


FREE ACCESS United States Revolutionary War Records at Fold3! -

genealogybargains.com To commemorate Independence Day, Fold3 offers free access to its United States Revolutionary War Collection July 1–15, 2020 - don't miss this opportunity!


FREE! Family History Library Online Classes July 2020 -

genealogybargains.com The Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah, announces free ONLINE family history classes for July 2020 featuring Germans from Russia and US Probate Records!


Florida becomes first state to enact DNA privacy law, blocking insurers from genetic data

thecentersquare.com (The Center Square) – Florida on Wednesday became the nation’s first state to enact a DNA privacy law, prohibiting life, disability and long-term care insurance companies from using genetic tests


The Best Free Family Tree Templates for Microsoft Word and Excel

blog.eogn.com Want to create your own printed Family Tree reports? Do you have Microsoft Word and Excel or any word processor or spreadsheet program that can handle Word and Excel documents? If so, you will be i…


Finding Family Photo Clues

sassyjanegenealogy.com Finding family photo clues is an important skill for any genealogist. Clues usually lie inside family photos every genealogist possesses. Learn about resources for family photo clues using the main image (above). Hann family on the porch of 324 Marshfield Avenue, Chicago, about


Dutch Genealogy News for June 2020

dutchgenealogy.nl Here is an overview of the new sources, projects, and news about archives that were announced last month. Sources The National Archives launched a beta version of their new presentation of archives, which includes millions of new scans.

Happy Independence Day!

Happy 4th! Until the 1960s, when fireworks became safer and cheaper, communities in New England often celebrated with giant, controlled bonfires. Months of planning went into the spectacles. This 1946 photo is from the Brearley Collection at BPL.


Indigenous or a French colonist? How the fight over this 17th-century woman's identity could affect tens of thousands of her descendants

Is anyone else a descendant of Catherine Pillard? I am - she is my 8th Great Grandmother! This is an interesting article.

nationalpost.com A debate about one woman’s shifting identity reveals less about her than it has about the value, both political and sentimental, of being Indigenous


Revolutionary War Records for Genealogy Research - Part 1

In this video we’re talking about the Revolutionary War Records available online for your genealogy research, where to find them on Ancestry.com, FamilySearc...


Revolutionary War Documents on Fold3

“To commemorate Independence Day, Fold3 is providing free access* to its Revolutionary War Collection July 1–15. "

go.fold3.com Discover details about individual soldiers, read letters penned by the Founding Fathers, view documents from The Revolutionary War.

Federation of Genealogical Societies

You won’t want to miss the final FGS Conference virtual-style!

We have a variety of learning sessions to meet every genealogist’s needs, including DNA, Ethnicity & Nationality, Methodology & Skill-building and so much more!

Registration is now open! https://fgs.org/annual-conference/


3 Things to Know About Ancestry's Hints

amyjohnsoncrow.com Ancestry's hints - those shaky leaves - have some limitations for genealogy research. Here are the limits and how to work around them.

Abundant Genealogy

View over 4 MILLION new, free, indexed records added to FamilySearch this week including 2.5 MILLION New York Land Records, 1630-1975 https://genealogybargains.com/new-free-historical-records-on-familysearch-week-of-29-june-2020/ #free #genealogy #newyork

The Ancestor Hunt

In honor of Canada Day, here are all the links from The Ancestor Hunt website for Free Canadian Genealogy resources:

- Online Historical Newspaper Links - http://bit.ly/2M2Kwey
- Obituary and Obituary Index Collections - http://bit.ly/2SkXPbs
- Free Online Historical Photo Archives - http://bit.ly/2XPCSr1
- Birth, Marriage, and Death Record Collection Links - http://bit.ly/2q3Zuoe
- Free Canadian Yearbooks - http://bit.ly/2Mz2mTm
- College and University Historical Student Newspaper Links -

The Ancestor Hunt

Latest Update just Published- Check out the 3,515 recently updated Free Online Photo Archives and Collections from the U.S. There are 965 new links to these very useful genealogy research tools! Maybe you'll find an ancestor photo or a building that they lived in, worked in or owned, or something else useful for you! https://bit.ly/2NItUrZ

Abundant Genealogy

The Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah, announces free ONLINE family history classes for July 2020 featuring Germans from Russia and US Probate Records! https://genealogybargains.com/free-family-history-library-online-classes-july-2020/ #free #genealogy

Great opportunity to learn about VividPix with Thomas MacEntee! You might want to stay around after our monthly presentation tonight for a special announcement!

Need help scanning old family photos? Join us for SCANDEMIC on Friday, July 3rd, 2020! A LIVE Photo Scanning Event! sponsored by Genealogy Bargains and Vivid-Pix RESTORE! https://genealogybargains.com/scandemic-a-facebook-live-photo-scanning-event/ #ad #genealogy #photos #scanning #free #webinar


Social Media Day 2020 - FREE DOWNLOAD Staying Safe Using Social Media -

We've downloaded our free copy. Great advice in this article. Thanks, Thomas!

genealogybargains.com Celebrate Social Media Day 2020 at Genealogybargains.com with this FREE DOWNLOAD Staying Safe Using Social Media by Thomas MacEntee


TONIGHT! Season Finale of The Genetic Detective: The Hot Case -

genealogybargains.com Don't miss the season finale of The Genetic Detective tonight! Catch "The Hot Case" featuring genetic genealogist CeCe Moore and her work with DNA technology

The Ancestor Hunt

NEW Update - 206 new/updated free collections from FamilySearch announced during the period of June 1-30, 2020, and available now and in the future to search and browse. These free records, from many countries, include Denmark, England, Peru, and most U.S. states. https://bit.ly/3dMswyX


FREE WEBINAR Finding a Father for Molly - Using DNA -

genealogybargains.com FREE WEBINAR Finding a Father for Molly - Using DNA presented by Jill Morelli, CG, Wednesday 1 July 2020 via Legacy Family Tree Webinars


John D. Reid to talk about Canadian genealogy resources on MyHeritage in Canada Day webinar

genealogyalacarte.ca Canada Day will be much quieter than usual this year, so it will be an ideal time to research our Canadian ancestors and watch a genealogy webinar. Otta

Our Story

We are a non-profit, 501(c)3 organization. Membership is open to anyone with interest in genealogy and family history. WMGS offers monthly meetings featuring locally and nationally known experts in genealogical research, history, and other related interests. Research clinics are offered free of charge to members and $10 per session to non-members. Annual membership is $30 per individual, $15 per full-time student, $45 per couples in the same household. Lifetime memberships are also available for $500 per individual with an occasional reduced rate for special events.

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954 Main St
Agawam, MA

General information

Monthly Meetings: We meet on the first Wednesday of each month, September through June from 6:00 to 8:00 PM at the Agawam Senior Center, located at 954 Main Street in Agawam, Massachusetts. We welcome non-members and beginning genealogists. Please join us at our next meeting. Local speakers meet with us at the Center while national or international speakers visit with us live in a virtual webinar format. Any recorded meetings are archived at the members-only tab at www.westmassgen.com. Computer Workshops: Our genealogy computer workshops are offered on the third and fourth Thursday of the month from 6:00 to 8:00 PM at the Agawam Senior Center. The cost of the computer class is $10 for non-members; free for members of the Western Massachusetts Genealogical Society, Inc. Be sure to view our website for: - Monthly Newsletters - Calendar of Events - Historical Pictures - Surname List Mailing Address: WMGS, PO Box 418, West Springfield, MA 01090
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