Leavitt Family Reunion

The National Association of Leavitt Families (NALF) will hold this year’s annual reunion in Hampton NH June 25-26, 2010.

We trace all the descendants of John Leavitt of Hingham MA and Thomas Leavitt. Hampton is the home of the immigrant Thomas Leavitt born 1616 who settled there about 1637. Descendants are scattered throughout Maine, but Leavitt strongholds are or were York, Buxton, Standish, Scarborough, Portland, Bridgton, Bethel, Acton, Limerick, Cape Elizabeth, Windham, Newport, Lincolnville, Hallowell, Eastport, and Thomaston, Maine.

Registration deadline is June 10.

See our website for all the details www.Leavitts.org and come join in on the fun and meet your cousins. Open to all.

Chandler Family Association Newsletter Honored

The Chandler Family Association Newsletter received the First Place, Family Newsletter award at the recent National Genealogical Society meeting in Salt Lake City, Utah. The coveted award was presented April 28 in front of a large crowd of enthusiastic genealogists. Accepting the award on behalf of the Association was Charles Chandler, a resident of West Jordan, Utah, and CFA member. Editor of the award-winning newsletter is Claudia Chandler Brocato of Brandon, Mississippi, who was appointed editor of the publication in 2006. Brocato also serves as webmaster for the CFA website, which scored 84% in a recent marketing effectiveness evaluation of 2.3 million websites.

In announcing the award, C. M. Chandler, president of the Chandler Family Association, stated “We are very pleased and honored that our newsletter was judged the best family newsletter in this year’s competition. Our members look forward to receiving their newsletter as each issue is packed with a variety of informative articles and documented genealogies contributed by our members. Each issue generally includes articles by members of our Executive Board, who are involved in various research projects throughout the year. The newsletter provides an excellent vehicle for updating our more than 400 members worldwide about the progress of these efforts. While our peer review board double-checks all genealogical articles for accuracy, Mrs. Brocato has full charge of the final product. We are extremely pleased with the professional appearance she has given our newsletter. This prestigious award from NGS, America’s leading genealogical association, is a reaffirmation of our members’ appreciation of the work Mrs. Brocato performs for our Association.”

The NGS Family Newsletter competition is held annually to recognize the hard work, long hours, and creativity by editors of family newsletters, most of whom are unpaid volunteers. Newsletters entered in the competition are judged by a three-member panel and must meet certain preset criteria, such as material interest, variety and originality, writing quality, readability, and overall attractiveness of presentation. The 2010 competition is the first time the Chandler Family Association has submitted an entry, which adds to the pride the CFA membership has at large for its publication.

To view one of the award-winning issues, visit the group’s website at http://www.thecfa.org/. The website also carries full details about the Chandler Family Association, membership details, and information about the group’s upcoming Annual Meeting, open to all who are interested in Chandler genealogy, September 17-18 in Hampton, Virginia.

MGS Member Discount at Footnote

Maine Genealogical Society is always looking for ways to provide value to our members. We are pleased to announce that we have worked on a a special offer with Footnote.com, the premier history website featuring over 66 million records.
For a limited time (June 1st -July 31st, 2010), Footnote.com will offer Maine Genealogical Society a 50% discount off an annual Footnote.com subscription. For only $39.95 you will have full access to original images of records including:

  • Military Records – Revolutionary War, Civil War, WWI, WWII, Vietnam War
  • Historical Newspapers – Dating back to the 1700s
  • Naturalization Records – Petitions and Declarations dating to the early 19th Century
  • City Directories – From major U.S. Cities
  • And more

Find the details in the upcoming issue of the MGS newsletter.

Already a Footnote All-Access Member? Add a year to your membership with this special offer.

Chandler Genealogical Database to be Released

Represents 400 Years of Chandler Family Research Data

Richard Chandler, vice-president of the Chandler Family Association, announced plans for unveiling the group’s long-awaited new database. It will be presented for the first time at the group’s annual meeting September 16-18 in Hampton, Virginia.

The new genealogical tool will be an easily-searchable, computer-based resource for Chandler researchers. Initially, the database comprises more than 80,000 records of Chandler individuals from around the world; it will grow as more Chandler descendants participate in the group’s research efforts.

The database is the culmination of more than 20 years of data collection by founding member and past vice president James Reeves of Glen Burnie, MD. The impetus for converting these paper-based records into a computer database came about some years ago. VP Chandler along with DNA expert Dr. John Chandler and CFA’s Chief Genealogist Joseph Barron Chandler, Jr. were heavily involved with the startup of the Chandler DNA Project. This project compares the DNA “fingerprints” of male Chandler participants, enabling them to be grouped into genetic families. This has helped dismantle “brick walls” encountered in traditional paper-based genealogy. It has also revealed that some of the participants previously believed to be descendants of John Chandler, who arrived in Virginia on June 10, 1610, were in fact related to other Chandler ancestors. This discovery led the three men to conceive a database containing genealogy records of Chandler descendants, whether connected to the 1610 immigrant John Chandler or to one of sixty other distinct Chandler lines currently identified.

As a starting point, Dr. Chandler converted the years of CFA print data into a format accepted by today’s computer technology. Then VP Chandler took over to present the data in a uniform style and update the source information, gathered from the widespread membership of CFA.

The two-tier design involves a high-level database which will ultimately hold records of all the world’s Chandlers. The second tier will consist of a separate database for each genetically distinct family, including descendants of female Chandlers in collateral lines.

VP Chandler will present the database to members of the CFA in several 45-minute sessions throughout the day of Friday, September 17. He will also answer questions on how the CFA will utilize and add to this unique resource, which uses existing genealogical software technology. It will significantly improve the CFA’s ability to help Chandler researchers navigate through 400 years of family-linked history.

This will be but one of the highlights of the September meeting. Chandler descendants from throughout the United States will share their personal research and connect with new family members. All attendees will have access to the extensive CFA Library, including unpublished manuscripts, out-of-print genealogical books, and other materials.

In addition, the group’s Chief Genealogist Joseph Barron Chandler, Jr. will be present to answer lineage questions. As Group Administrator of the Chandler Family DNA Project, he will field inquiries about genealogical DNA testing and the results of the project to date.

Anyone interested in Chandler genealogy is invited to attend. Thursday, September 16, is a day reserved for CFA members, who must pre-register by August 6. The Friday meeting, open to all, begins at 8:00 a.m. September 17, 2010, at the Hampton Roads Convention Center, Hampton, Virginia. There is a $15.00 fee for attendees who are not members of the CFA; however, this includes a one-year CFA membership and subscription to its award-winning newsletter.

More information about the annual meeting and the Chandler Family Association is at http://www.thecfa.org.

Maine Tartan Day Celebration

Hello! On behalf of The Scots In America and the Maine Military Museum, I would like to invite you to attend and participate in our Maine Tartan Day celebration.

Place: The Maine Military Museum and Learning Center, South Portland, Maine
Date and Time: Saturday, April 10, 2010, 1PM to 3PM

In addition to the reading of the Governor’s Proclamation of Maine Tartan Day, we will be hearing from South Portland Mayor Tom Coward and Lee Humiston, Director of the Maine Military Museum. There will be re-enactor displays provided by the Soldiers of Scotland, a Color Guard from the Scottish-American Society, pipers and, of course, a Clan Parade. After the ceremonies, Director Lee Humiston will be leading a tour of the new facilities of the Learning Center.

This event is free and open to the public.

I do hope to see you there, and if you should have any questions at all, please feel free to contact me by email at dianne@thescotsinamerica.com or by cell: 207-239-1118.

Slainte Mhath,

Dianne Bergstedt FSA Scot
The Scots In America
President, Landrum Family Association

Aroostook County Genealogical Society Now Online

We are happy to report that our northernmost chapter, Aroostook County Genealogical Society, is now online with a new website. Visit them at http://www.ac-gs.org.

The website is still undergoing some tweaking and they are working diligently on adding additional content, but it is already a great resource.

Surf over and check them out and welcome “The County” to the Internet!

New Genealogy Group to meet in Greenville

Roxanne Moore Saucier reported in her Family Ties column in Monday’s Bangor Daily News that a new genealogical group will meet at 10 a.m. Saturday, Feb. 20, in the carriage house by the Moosehead Historical Society on Pritham Avenue in Greenville.

Candy Russell will share some resources that are available through the historical society.

To quote Roxanne, “Here’s hoping Saturday’s meeting will draw lots of interest so that more can be done to preserve the heritage of the Greenville area.”

To read her complete column, visit: http://bangordailynews.com/2010/02/14/living/new-genealogy-group-to-meet-in-greenville/.

Get Ready for the New “Who Do You Think You Are?” Television Series

Stock up on the popcorn and get ready for the new NBC hit show “Who Do You Think You Are?” The family history-focused series will lead seven celebrities on a heart-warming journey back in time as they discover more about the ancestors who came before them. Lisa Kudrow, who executive produced the show will be featured in the episodes, along with Sarah Jessica Parker, Spike Lee, Matthew Broderick, Susan Sarandon, Emmitt Smith, and Brooke Shields. Ancestry.com is a partner with NBC on the show

The idea for “Who Do You Think You Are?” originated from a show that has been phenomenally successful in the UK for several years. Since the show aired in 2004, the UK has seen a surge of interest in family history, and we hope and expect the same reaction from “Who Do You Think You Are?” in the United States.

Typically, celebrities play the role of someone else, however in this show they play no one but themselves. Because of this, “Who Do You Think You Are?” really shows the human side of these individuals, who experience a myriad of emotions as they learn their family history. Viewers can’t help but feel inspired and intrigued as they watch the episodes. Naturally, the show will lead viewers to begin thinking about and asking questions around their own family history.

What is wonderful about the show is that, with the celebrity appeal, the genuine emotion they experience, and the family storytelling nature of the show, “Who Do You Think You Are?” is perfectly poised to appeal to the masses – not just professional genealogists or family history experts.

Tune into NBC Fridays 8/7c beginning March 5. For more information about the show, go to: http://www.nbc.com/who-do-you-think-you-are/.

The potential is great! You and your friends have an important role in making “Who Do You Think You Are?” the next biggest family history phenomenon since Roots! Please help spread the news!

Lou Szucs, Vice-President of Community Relations

Largest Gathering of Family Historians in Canada

The Ontario Genealogical Society’s next annual provincial Conference will take place in Toronto from Friday, May 14 through Sunday, May 16, 2010 at the Doubletree by Hilton – Toronto Airport. Toronto Branch is gearing up to host an event that promises something for every family historian.

The Conference 2010 theme is: “Essentials, Innovations and Delights”. A carefully-selected roster of top-rated speakers will deliver a content-rich program that is packed with relentlessly practical lectures and workshops and sprinkled with inspiring case studies.

Thomas W. Jones, one of North America’s most highly respected and honoured genealogists, will lead off a special full-day lecture stream on Friday for the professional genealogist or advanced researcher, and will deliver the keynote Houston Memorial Lecture that evening.

The weekend programs will feature a full-day stream for the novice genealogist and two added specialized streams on the essentials of researching Dutch and Italian ancestry, and much more.

Saturday’s banquet speaker will be Karolyn Smardz Frost, the 1997 winner of the Governor General’s Award for Non-Fiction for her book I’ve Got a Home in Gloryland. Learn not only about Karolyn’s research subjects, the indomitable fugitive slaves, Thornton & Lucie Blackburn, but also about Karolyn’s own 20-year research odyssey.

New this year will be a closing plenary lecture, to be delivered by John Philip Colletta. People are still buzzing about his 2008 appearance at an OCAPG event in Toronto. Now we can all get to hear one of the most entertaining and informative family historians on the planet.

Extra options will include a pre-Conference “Hands-on Research” excursion, and a “Toronto’s Irish Heritage” bus tour exploring the Irish connections in Toronto. And the ever-popular Marketplace will be back, with a full 10,000 square feet of display space.

For more about Conference 2010, visit www.ogs.on.ca/conference2010, and subscribe to the Conference blog to stay on top of the latest developments.

The Ontario Genealogical Society’s three-day annual conference is the largest gathering of family historians in Canada. Conference 2010, hosted by the OGS Toronto Branch promises to be inspiring, delightful and a lot of fun. You won’t want to miss it!

NERGC Call for Papers

The Third Librarians’ and Teachers’ Day will be held on April 6, 2011 in conjunction with the 11th New England Regional Genealogical Society Conference in Springfield, Massachusetts.

“Librarians’ and Teachers’ Day” provides the opportunity for professionals to learn how genealogy can serve them in their dual roles as curators of their unique collections and as ambassadors of genealogy resources for their schools and libraries.

Lecture proposals are now being accepted for the series of sessions entitled “Throughout the Ages and Throughout the Curricula: Genealogy as a Pursuit for all Learners.” Presentations are sought in the following categories: 1) elementary educations; 2) secondary; 3) undergraduate and beyond; and 4) continuing education and lifelong learnings.

Ideal paper proposals will suggest strategies for how to optimize the human, material, and online resources that can assist students’ and community borrowers’ inquiries in addition to enhancing program development to attract all prospective patrons who might otherwise be unaware of local educational and archival resources.

Each session will last one hour. This includes a question and answer period.

Please include the following information with each one-page proposal:

  • a brief comprehensive lecture outline or abstract demonstrating the relationship to Librarians’ and Teachers’ Day theme;
  • a short lecture summary (50 words or less) for the Conference brochure;
  • audio/visual requirements (NERGC supplies a screen and microphone; speakers must supply their own LCD projectors);
  • each speaker’s full name, address, e-mail address, telephone and fax numbers;
  • a brief speaker biography (75 words or less) for the conference brochure;
  • a resume of previous lecture experience

The deadline for submissions of lecture proposals is March 1, 2010. Lecture proposals may be submitted at any time prior to that date by e-mail to or by regular mail to:

Sherry E. Gelbwasser, ED.D.
NERGC2011 Librarians’ and Teachers’ Day
51 Van Deene Avenue, Apt. E5
West Springfield, MA 01089

Mary B. Young

Last week we lost a good and dear friend. It is my understanding that she was the 1st President of the Greater Portland Chapter of MGS.

Mary B. Young, 94, of South Portland, died Friday, Oct. 30, 2009, at the Gosnell Memorial Hospice House. Mary was born in South Portland, the daughter of Sidney J. and Mae (Willis) Young, where she was educated and a graduate of South Portland High School. She was also a graduate of Wellesley College in Massachusetts and Simmons College as a graduate of Library and Information. She was a member of the Maine Genealogical Society, Maine Society of Mayflower Descendants, Maine Old Cemetery Association, Appalachian Mountain Club and the American Notaries. Mary worked as a librarian in the Portland Public Libraries until her retirement. She is survived by her sister Laura A. Matz of Westbrook; a niece Martha V. Wright of Cumberland, and a nephew S. John Young of Ayer, Mass.

A graveside service was held November 4, 2009, at Forest City Cemetery, South Portland. Memorial contributions may be made to: The Portland Public Library, 5 Monument Square, Portland ME 04101

SOURCE: Portland Press Herald, Nov. 1, 2009.