Tuesday, February 06, 2007

The Top "Ten" Genealogical Websites

I'm a little behind in blogging about this, but I wanted to share a bit about the January 20th computer class. Every third Saturday (except in December) the Eastern Washington Genealogical Society offers a free computer class to its members only in the Gates Computer Lab of the downtown public library in Spokane. We have three hour-long sessions: one at 10:15 AM; one at 11:30 AM; and one at 1:30 PM. Each session can seat 15 people; 10 at computer stations, and five either sharing stations or simply taking notes at the back of the room. Our classes are generally booked solid, with names on standby. We take turns teaching the classes. Some of the instructors didn't really know much about the topic they chose, and educated themselves in order to help the group as a whole.

January's topic was the Top Ten Genealogical Websites, presented by our very own Donna Potter Phillips, a name recognized by many, I'm sure, as the author of numerous articles from various genealogical magazines. Although our area was hit with a nasty winter storm that day, we still had an average of eight students per session show up, regardless of the bad weather (that's how much we enjoy our classes!). I was expecting a review of the top ten websites that I'm familiar with (Ancestry, RootsWeb, Find A Grave, etc.), but was pleasantly surprised (with Donna, I often am!) that she had expanded the title to the following: The Top "Ten" New-Interesting-Fantastic-Exciting-Wonderful "New" Websites to Expand YOUR Online Research!

The "ten" websites (there are actually eleven) are listed below. Of course, to have attended the class and received the benefit of Donna's great tips, pointers, and enthusiasm, as well as a detailed syllabus, one must be a member of EWGS. I don't think Donna would mind for a moment, however, that I shared the URLs of the following sites with you.
Now, if you are an EWGS member and took Barbara Brazington's class on doing Boolean searches back in January 2006 (repeated by popular demand in September 2006!), you would know how to use Google to benefit your research.

Our society has found that these educational classes not only benefit us in our research, but have increased our membership. Flyers posted in the library have caught the eyes of many potential members, and they are only too eager to join in order to learn more about Internet genealogy! We've booked classes through the end of 2008, with a growing list for our 2009 program. If your society is dwindling in membership, perhaps you ought to try offering something similar. For a list of past, present and future classes, check out our Special Classes page.
Post a Comment