No, say it ain’t so! The end is here (at least for the 2018 NGS conference). And my mind is officially overflowing with information, new things to try, and previous goodies to revisit! So what was on the schedule for today, you ask?
- Traffic Violations, Criminal Complaints and Marriages: Records of a Justice of the Peace with Adam Oster
- Trace Your 18th and 19th Century Midwest Ancestors Back to New York with Terry Koch-Bostic
- Finding Value in Meeting Minutes: the Records of Fraternal Organizations with Jen Baldwin
- NGS Luncheon: Good Migrations in the Midwest with Mary Tedesco
Casting the Net: Denominational, Ethnic and Specialized Newspaper Research with David Ouimette— ??? Squeezing Every Drop out of Polish Parish Registers with David Ouimette ???
- Dear Me: Writing Research Reports to Yourself with Yvette Hoitink
Adam Oster’s session on Justice of the Peace records was interesting but I completely missed that it was in the Michigan track and, of course, it focused on records in Michigan. I’m not researching in Michigan and haven’t discovered any Michigan ancestors so the specific records discussed may be less helpful for me but you never know what gems you might glean from something that doesn’t seem applicable to you. I’ll sit down with the handouts and my notes after I’ve finished my post-con decompression and see what I can apply from that session.
Now Terry Koch-Bostic’s session on Midwest ancestors was right up my alley. I’ve got a couple of ancestors who’s census listings indicated birth in New York. I haven’t come close to tackling them yet but I couldn’t pass up the opportunity to hear this session. Jen Baldwin’s session on meeting minutes was very interesting. The amount of data she was able to glean from the first 5-6 pages of some annual meeting minutes was astounding. Plus the individual she followed through the series of minutes had a really interesting story that she carried the session attendees through. Mary Tedesco was, of course, engaging and entertaining. I loved hearing about her good, and bad, migration discoveries.
The afternoon sessions I was very excited about. I haven’t done any research in ethnic newspapers and wanted to learn more about them. So I was a bit disappointed to discover the session being presented wasn’t on ethnic newspapers but was about Polish parish registers. It wasn’t until after the session when I passed the room sign that I saw a different session name had been pasted over the original session name. I really wish that had been better publicized. The session was interesting but not what I was looking for right now.
The gem of the day was Yvette Hoitink’s research report writing session. There was so much detail there and so many wonderful tips and tricks she uses. She completely blew my mind with an advanced Microsoft autocorrect hack she used. It never occurred to me to use the autocorrect feature to insert blocks of text that you type over and over. I learned so much from that session but that autocorrect hack just tickled me pink.
It was nice to finish on a high note. After Yvette Hoitink’s session it was time to head home. It’s a long drive to Kansas City and Monday morning is coming quicker than I’d like! Thanks to NGS and their volunteers for a wonderful conference. As with any conference I’m sure there were hiccups here and there but I heard good comments from many people. And I’m already looking forward to the 2019 conference!
Greetings from Grand Rapids…and thanks for the memories!