This week, I will be conducting a free Wednesday Genealogy Work Session at the Brecksville Human Services Center between 1 and 3 pm, the first of a series.
I floated the idea for this activity a few weeks ago with Ted Lux, Human Services Director. He thought it was a great idea. This past Wednesday, I conducted a trial work session with him and constructed a Lux Family Tree on Ancestry.com. He provided me with the names of his parents and his paternal grandparents. When we entered these names into this starter database, Ancestry quickly added "leaves" to the names indicating that there were possible record matches. In checking them out, we found records to extend his paternal line back to his great grandfather who immigrated from Prussia. He was pleased to learn where in Europe his great grandfather came from. Ted was favorably impressed with the experience and he is enthusiastically spreading the word about the work sessions to potential participants. I plan to conduct them every Wednesday through June 8.
The format will be informal, with only six participants at a time, using the three public-access computers available at the Human Services Center. I will ask them to fill out an ancestor chart with information that they know, hopefully getting information about ancestors who will be listed in the 1930 census. In addition to Ancestry, I plan to use local Internet sources such as the Cuyahoga County Historic Marriage Index, the Cleveland Public Library Necrology File, the Cleveland City-Owned Cemetery Index, and the Cuyahoga County Naturalization Index to find information about the ancestors of participants.
If participants are interested in pursuing their family history, I plan to direct them to several other sources of information, ranging from the Brecksville Historical Association, the Cuyahoga Public Library Genealogy Department at Fairview Park Library, the Western Reserve Historical Society Genealogy Center, the Cuyahoga County Archives, and the Cleveland Public Library. And they will always be able to access Ancestry Library Edition at the Brecksville Public Library.
Hopefully, we may also line up some new members for the Cuyahoga Valley Genealogical Society, chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society.
It should be interesting!