Thursday, November 16, 2017

Meet Author A. J. Jacobs, Thursday, 30 November

StLGS is proud to be a co-sponsor of an exciting author event at the end of this month. Teaming with Meet Me St. Louis and the Kirkwood Public Library, we are delighted to introduce you to A. J. Jacobs, author of It's All Relative, Adventures Up and Down the World's Family Tree.

A. J. is a contributing editor to Esquire magazine and National Public Radio and the author of a New York Times best seller called The Year of Living Biblically. His new book tells of his quest to build the largest family tree in the world and to understand just what makes up family. Told with great humor and enthusiasm for his research, the book crosses the world, ethnic groups, and social classes. It has been described as a "fascinating look at the bonds that connect us all."

What: Presentation, Q and A, and book signing
Where: Kirkwood Public Library, 140 East Jefferson Avenue, Kirkwood, MO 63122
When: Thursday, 30 November 2017, 7:30 p.m.

Advance Tickets: $35 (Includes presentation and book)
General Admission and Tickets at the Door: $20 (Book not included; entrance only if space permits)
Students with Valid ID: $10 (Book not included)

For more information on Meet Me St. Louis, click here.

To purchase tickets, click here.

For directions to the Kirkwood Public Library, click here.

Monday, November 13, 2017

Loss of StLGS Volunteer, Doris Eshbach, and Upcoming Steamboat Talk

In Memoriam: Dr. Doris Eshbach

It is with great sadness that we report that longtime volunteer, researcher, and exuberant StLGS member/supporter, Dr. Doris Eschbach, passed away suddenly on Wednesday, 1 November 2017. Doris was passionate about her German heritage, traveling with us numerous times on our annual research trip to Salt Lake City and to Europe with her family. She volunteered at the Family History Conference each year, came to every meeting she could, was an ardent participant in the German Special Interest Group, and attended classes and workshops regularly. Doris had been a teacher and university professor before her retirement and then pursued her interest in and devotion to genealogy, traveling, and her family. All of us who knew her will miss her bright smile, her bubbly personality, and her unfailing enthusiasm for the things she loved.

We extend our deepest sympathy to Doris's husband, Leonard, her children, grandchildren, and great-granddaughter.

For Those with an Interest in Steamboats . . .

The Bridgeton Historical Society invites you to hear Porsche Schlapper, the new curator of the Herman T. Pott National Inland Waterways Library located in the Mercantile Library at UMSL, give a talk on "Traveling by Steamboats on the Mississippi."
Tuesday, 14 November from 7:00 p.m. until 8:30 p.m.
Bridgeton Recreation Center, 4201 Fee Fee Road, Bridgeton, Missouri

The talk is free and needs no pre-registration. For directions to the venue, click here.

Monday, November 6, 2017

Archeology in St. Louis and a Treat for Illinois Residents

From the Old Trails Historical Society in St. Louis County:
You are invited to their November general meeting, 8 November 2017, at 7 p.m., at the West County EMS and Firehouse, Henry Road, in Manchester, Mo.
“New and Amazing Archaeological Discoveries in St. Louis at the Site of the new St. Louis-Based National Geospatial Intelligence Agency” is the topic.
Preparation is underway for the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency on ninety-seven acres in the City of St. Louis. So before it was too late and the ground was bulldozed and prepared for construction, Joe Harl, archaeologist, regional expert, and co-founder of the Archaeological Research Center of St. Louis, Inc., conducted extensive investigations throughout the large parcel of land, knowing that important data would certainly be obtained there. This neighborhood was occupied by immigrants from Germany and Ireland and their families for many generations and went through dramatic changes in the mid-twentieth century. Recovery was made of more than 300 historical features dating back to the Victorian Era in the late 1800s and through the early 1900s. Joe Harl will share the importance of these findings about life in St. Louis between the 1850s and 1950s.
This meeting is free and open to the public. No need to pre-register; just be there!
(Thanks to Viki Fagyal for forwarding this information.)

Try-It Illinois is a collection of databases available to Illinois residents for a free trial until 30 November. Fold3, Newspaper Archive,, and the Historical Chicago Tribune are just a few of the resources on the site that will appeal to genealogists. To get access, you must live in Illinois and request the username and password on the Try-It Illinois website (right side of the home page in a pale yellow box) or contact your local Illinois public library. You can find Try-It Illinois at

(Thanks to the Illinois State Genealogical Society Blog for this information.)

Monday, October 30, 2017

Catch Up with the New Season of Finding Your Roots

Are you a fan of Henry Louis Gates's interesting genealogy show called Finding Your Roots? Do you know that the fourth season is in full swing? If you have missed the first few shows, you will be happy to know that you can still watch them online at, one of the many ways that public television brings quality programs to all of us.

Just go to and choose the episode you want to view on your computer. All of the first four are currently available.

The season began on Tuesday, 3 October 2017 with Larry David and Bernie Sanders. The second episode was on 10 October with Fred Armisen, Carly Simon, and Christopher Walken. Episode three, on Tuesday, 17 October, featured Ted Danson, his wife Mary Steenburgen, and William H. Macy. Episode four aired on Tuesday, 24 October, with Ta-Nehisi Coates, Ava DuVernay, and Janet Mock.

Tomorrow night, Tuesday, 31 October, will focus on immigrants and stars Scarlett Johansson, Paul Rudd, and John Turturro. Seven more episodes will round out the season, which concludes on Tuesday, 19 December. Tomorrow night's show airs on PBS, Channel 9, KETC, at 7:00 Central Time. Check your local listings if you are not in the St. Louis viewing area.

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Legacy Family Tree Free Webinar: Sunday, 29 October 2017

We have received word about another free webinar that might be of interest to many of you. Legacy Family Tree, which is widely known for providing excellent quality webinars, is hosting an all-day event this Sunday sponsored by the genealogy website

The day's online classes begin at 6 a.m. (Central time) with two one-hour sessions focusing on Jewish genealogy. These are followed by two classes on autosomal DNA, one on using MyHeritage's special features, and one on preserving your genealogy (not in that order).

Each class is free but you must pre-register. You can learn more about the webinars by clicking here. which will take you to the Legacy Family Tree website. When you get there, click on any of the black "Register" buttons to read full descriptions, biographies of the presenters, and exact times for each class.

(Thanks to Phyllis Faintich and Kay Weber for alerting us to this webinar.)

Monday, October 23, 2017

National Archives To Host Virtual Free Genealogy Fair

For the fifth year in a row, the National Archives will host a live, virtual Genealogy Fair via webcast on its YouTube channel at

Wednesday, 25 October
10 a.m. (Eastern time) until 4 p.m.

Everyone is invited to participate in their biggest genealogy event of the year! Sessions offer advice on family history research for all skill levels. Topics include federal government documents on birth, childhood, and death; recently recovered military personnel files; Japanese Americans during World War II; nineteenth century tax assessments; and a “how to” on preserving family heirlooms. Two of the sessions will feature the National Archives military records located in St. Louis. Sessions will be led by Archivist of the United States David S. Ferriero and records experts from National Archives’ facilities nationwide.

For the schedule, videos, handouts, and participation instructions, visit the Virtual Genealogy Fair web page at
You can participate during the Fair while it is live-streamed on the U.S. National Archives’ YouTube channel or watch the video, which will continue to be online after the 25th, at your leisure.

Live captioning will be available online. If you require an alternative or additional accommodation for the event, please send an email to or call 202-357-5260 in advance.

The National Archives holds the permanently valuable records of the federal government. These include records of interest to genealogists, such as pension files, ship passenger lists, census, and Freedmen’s Bureau materials. See “Resources for Genealogists and Family Historians” for much more information on how the Archives’ can help you with your research:

Saturday, October 7, 2017

Have You Got Genealogy Questions?

One of the events that has been most successful for StLGS in the past is our "Ask Your Questions Day." With that in mind, as we plan our 2018 calendar, we have decided to kick off the year with an "Ask Your Questions" open forum at our January monthly meeting. So that we can best choose our "volunteer expert" and be sure to have answers for you, we need your questions.

If you have a question that is puzzling you about genealogy, please jot it down and send it to our vice president for programs, Viki Fagyal. She will compile the questions and consult with genealogists who have expertise in your areas of concern. Please try to keep your questions fairly general such as "Where can I find divorce records in St. Louis?" rather than "I need to know when John Smith and his wife Mary divorced." The more general your questions, the more people we can help with the answers.

Please send your questions to and then plan to attend the 13 January 2018 StLGS monthly meeting to hear the answers and learn from others.