March 3, 2018’s educational presentation will be Migration Through the South

Please join us for our March 3, 2018 meeting. Hospitality begins at 10:30 am, and the business meeting starts at 11:00. Our speaker’s presentation starts around 11:30.

Our meetings are held in the 1st Floor Auditorium of the J. Erik Jonsson Central Library, 1515 Young Street, Dallas, TX 75201, unless otherwise noted. For times and dates, check the events calendar.

Jim Thornhill will look at what motivated our ancestors to come to America, how travel developed in the United States, focusing on the south, and how we can use that information to identify the means our ancestors might have used to get to where we live today.

Jim Thornhill

Jim Thornhill has been researching his family’s history for 15 years, three of those as a professional genealogist. Jim is chief researcher for Heroes of the Past, a company that seeks to delight clients, provide context in our ancestor’s lives, and show how we all have Heroes in our Pasts.

Jim is a graduate of the ProGen professional genealogy course, the Genealogy Proof course, and has been awarded the Birdie Monk Holsclaw Scholarship to IGHR in Athens, Georgia. Jim is an active member in the Association for Professional Genealogists, the Texas State Genealogical Society, the Dallas Genealogical Society, where he serves as IT Administrator, and the Rockwall County Genealogical Society, where he serves a Vice President in Charge of Programming.

Jim is a native Texan who has been living in the Dallas area his entire life, and has roots in pre-civil war Texas. Both his and his wife’s family came to Texas in the same ways he will discuss in his presentation.

Consortium of family history organizations to host genealogy conference

Seven family history organizations are partnering to sponsor “Treasure Your Roots” genealogy conference from 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at St. John Missionary Baptist Church, 5700 N Kelley Ave. The conference fee of $10 includes a box lunch.

Keynote speaker is Thom Reed, global outreach manager for FamilySearch International. A former communications professional, Reed now has oversight of the FamilySearch International work in Africa and the Pacific.

Conference participants can choose up to four sessions from the 20 classes offered. They can also get one-on-one help with FamilySearch in the computer lab and visit vendor booths.

Lectures include instruction on probate and wills, DNA testing, passenger lists, beginning family history, beginning African-American family history and beginning Native American research.

Other classes include African-American military records, using Google for family history research, using the federal census, the African-American Freedmen’s Bureau Project, using newspapers for research and writing a family history. Genealogists of all experience levels, including people with no experience searching for their ancestors, can find classes to match their skill levels.

To register and for a complete list of classes, go to

Bill Covington recounts Black Courage on Feb 3, 2018

Our February 3, 2018 monthly presentation, Black Courage, will be made by Bill Covington

African-Americans served as soldiers and in other capacities during the course of the American Revolution. Their contributions were vital to the winning of the war for the patriot forces. But, an equal number of them served in the British forces and fought hard in their service. Both sides had various reasons for recruiting African-American troops and individuals had widely differing reasons for taking up arms in the conflict.

Bill Covington

Bill Covington is a public school teacher by profession having spent 28 years in the classroom where he has taught Social Studies and English as a Second Language (ESL). He has taught in Dallas ISD as well as Waxahachie ISD. Currently, he is an instructor of Dual Credit US History, World History and Government/Economics at Waxahachie Global High School in Waxahachie, Texas. He is also an adjunct instructor of Western Civilization, US History, Texas History and World History at Navarro College, also located in Waxahachie, Texas. He is married to June Renee Jacobsen Covington and they both reside in Cedar Hill, Texas. They have three grown children and two grandchildren.

Bill was the TXDAR State Winner of the 2017 Outstanding Teacher of US History Award.

DGS gift inspires additional donation to Dallas Public Library

Upon learning of the Dallas Genealogical Society’s donation of 157 Hispanic genealogy books for the Dallas Public Library’s Genealogy collection, the Rios Family has been inspired to match this gift. They have chosen to donate to the Dallas Public Library 152 Hispanic genealogy books from their personal collection. This donation will be made in honor of HOGAR de Dallas.

For more information, contact Gayla Bush, Senior Librarian, Genealogy & History, 8th Floor.

Spring 2018: Michael L Strauss, AG – Revolution to Reconstruction: Seeking Those Who Shaped America

Saturday, March 31, 2018

Michael L. Strauss, AG, is a professional Accredited Genealogist and a nationally recognized genealogical speaker. A native of Pennsylvania and a resident of Utah, he has been employed as a Forensic Genealogist for 25 years. Get more details»

  • Session 1: Revolutionary War Genealogical Research
    This lecture will focus on a variety of materials covering the War for Independence. Some records to be covered include Compiled Service Records, pensions, and bounty land.
  • Session 2: Manifest Destiny: Researching Your Mexican War Ancestors
    The Mexican-American War of 1846 marked the first U.S. conflict mostly fought on foreign soil. It would serve as a training and breeding ground for both officers and men who would fight each other in the Civil War fifteen years later.
  • Session 3: Refugees, Claims, and Conscription: Researching Your Ancestors during the Reconstruction Era
    Discover little known military and civilian records and resources from this unique period of history. Records from the Freedmen’s Bureau to the Amnesty Papers are only a small portion of the genealogy records existing today.
  • Session 4: More than Just Politics: Genealogical Research in Washington, DC
    Planning a research trip to our nation’s capital? Discover your ancestors in several key facilities located inside the District of Columbia.

Dallas Jewish Historical Society presents “Memory Lane: How My Research Led to a Family Reunion & Summer Research Trip”

Please join the Dallas Jewish Historical Society (DJHS) and the Dallas Genealogical Society’ Jewish Special Interest Group (DGS-JSIG) for our quarterly series of Genealogy workshops. Each workshop will feature a speaker on some aspect of genealogical research, followed by opportunities to work in small groups on your specific needs. All levels are welcome, from “just thinking about it” to “I’ve reached a brick wall and need help moving on.”

Our next speaker is Meyer Denn on Tuesday, January 30, 2018 at 7:00pm @ The Aaron Family JCC. Join DJHS, DGS, and Meyer Denn, Executive Director of the JFGD’s Center for Jewish Education as he tells the story of how his genealogical research led to a family reunion and an invitation to return to Eastern Europe to honor his family.

For more information on reserving a spot, visit the Dallas Jewish Historical Society website.

1890 Census Substitutes: Bridging the Gap on Jan 6, 2018

Please join us for our January 6, 2018 meeting. Hospitality begins at 10:30 am, and the business meeting starts at 11:00. Our speaker’s presentation starts around 11:30.

January’s educational presentation, 1890 Census Substitutes: Bridging the Gap, will be made by Bill Buckner from the Waco-McLennan County Library.

The story behind the 1890 Census starts out like so many of those burned courthouse tales of gloom and doom. Yes, there was a fire and yes it is true that the 1890 Census was destroyed. Its destruction left a 20-year gap in the decennial chain of census records for researchers. How are we to cross this abyss back through time from 1900 to 1880 and connect to our ancestors with any degree of certainty? One strategy is to look for census substitutes or alternative sources. Remember the goal should be to identify an ancestor in a geographic place and time and define family relationships. A variety of substitutes from reconstructed 1890 Census to other types of enumerations will be presented. Additionally, clues that can be found in a score of familiar records that can help researchers gain knowledge about their ancestors and bridge the gap will be highlighted.

William D. “Bill” Buckner

Bill Buckner is the Genealogy Supervisor of the Genealogy Center of the Waco-McLennan County Library for the past nineteen years. In addition to teaching a quarterly Genealogy Beginners Class, Bill has had numerous speaking engagements with various organizations. Some of his recent presentations include: Retro Genealogy Resources Still Viable in Today’s Online World; The Digital Public Library of America: Another Tool for Family Historians; and Extra! Extra! Extra! From the Headlines to the Classifieds, Newspapers Deliver Genealogical Gems.

Bill heads up the McLennan County Cemetery Interest Group (MCCIG). Formed in 2002, this volunteer organization of the Center seeks to identify and inventory McLennan County cemeteries. In 2012, the results of 35 cemetery inventories were published by the Central Texas Genealogical Society (CTGS) as McLennan County, Texas Cemetery Records, v. 9.

Bill initiated and co-hosts with the Central Texas Genealogical Society the very popular annual Genealogy Lock-in. This event has helped bring together the organizations and individuals that use, support, and have an interest in the Genealogy Center collection. In 2011, Bill started a movement to connect libraries that had similar events through the use of technology to share programming and resources. Twenty-eight Texas libraries participated in the 17th annual Lock-in October 2017.

Bill is District 12 Representative for the Texas State Genealogical Society (TxSGS), and serves as the TxSGS Chair of the Book Awards and serves as the overall TxSGS Awards Chair. In 2011, Bill received the President’s Award from TSGS for his contributions. He also has served on various genealogy/history committees with the Texas Library Association and American Library Association.

Bill received his BS from Southwestern University, and his MS in Library Science from UNT. Bill is a fourth-generation Texan and lives in Temple, Texas with his family.

Private Wine Class for 20

DGS has received a delightful donation to give away at our 2017 Awards Banquet:
Treat your friends, family, and fellow wine lovers to a private wine tasting for up to 20 people
in the classroom of a Total Wine & More store.
A $500 Value!

Total Wine & More will host an event that is certain to impress you and your guests. Taste eight premium, hand-selected wines and discover hidden treasures from the wine region of your choosing. The recipient’s guests will enjoy a “tour of the land” and learn about the famed appellations and grape varietals that make each region so unforgettable. One of our wine experts will be on hand to present and discuss each delicious wine during your two hour tasting, which can be arranged as a seated class-style or more casual walk-around event. Total Wine & More will provide all necessary stemware and educational handouts for tasting notes.

The Recipient can choose one of three popular themes.
California Dreaming
Three outstanding white wines and five sumptuous red wines will delight your palate in this tasting. From Pinot Noir and Chardonnay produced in the cooler climates of Carneros and the Russian River Valley, to the famous Cabernet Sauvignon appellations of Stags Leap and Spring Mountain one of these outstanding selections is certain to become a favorite.
An Inspiring Taste of Italy
Stimulate your senses with the mesmerizing bouquets of sparkling, white, and red wines from Italy. Refresh your taste buds with Prosecco and crisp whites from the north and then dazzle them with bold and captivating reds from the south. Two Italian wines you will never forget, Barolo and Brunello di Montalcino, complete our inspiring tasting.
Tour De France
Travel with us through the most famous appellations from France. Taste Grand Cru Champagne before sampling two stunning and food-friendly wines from the Loire Valley and Provence. Five elegant reds such as prestigious Chateauneuf-du-Pape and Margaux will follow the white wine selections and show you why this is a wine tour of France like no other.

Redemption Notes for Recipient:

  • It is important for the recipient to be given the original certificate to ensure they understand the redemption policy for the Private Wine Class.
  • To redeem certificate, please visit Under What type of event would you like to host? select “Private Class” and answer the subsequent questions.
  • Classes cannot be held on holiday weekends or the last six weeks of the year.
  • Three weeks notice required from request date.

Early Texans DNA Project

The Early Texans DNA Project incorporates data from tests taken at Family Tree DNA when the test-taker joins the Texas State Genealogical Society DNA Project (TxStateGS Project) at Family Tree DNA. Data from other testing companies can be incorporated when the data has been uploaded to Family Tree DNA or to

The project is a geographically-oriented project focused on analyzing the DNA of those with ancestors who settled in Texas before 31 December 1900:

More information is available on the TSGS website….