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Second annual family history conference set Tom Mooney Out on a Limb


March 16. 2013 7:08PM
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A STELLAR LINEUP of speakers will highlight the second annual family history conference sponsored by the Northeast Pennsylvania Genealogical Society and the Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania.


Entitled Finding Our Ancestors at Home and Abroad, the daylong event is scheduled for 8 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. on April 20 in the Educational Conference Center on the campus of Luzerne County Community College. The center is just off Prospect Street, Nanticoke.


Speakers include writer and genealogist Lisa A. Alzo, Archives Director at the National Archives in New York City, Patrick Connelly, Reference Archivist at the Pennsylvania State Archives Aaron McWilliams, genealogist James M. Beidler, Luzerne County Historical Society Executive Director Anthony T.P. Brooks and Misericordia University Library Archivist Jessica Reeder.


We will learn about traditional and online immigration resources, discover the history of the early inhabitants of Northeastern Pennsylvania, discuss individual ethnic groups and why they immigrated to the Northeastern Pennsylvania region and learn about research resources in their countries of origin, the state genealogy society has announced.


For a full discussion of the individual speakers' topics, a schedule of the day's events, travel directions and information on special hotel rates as well as the registration form, go to www.genpa.org. Many of the day's events will run concurrently, so when you register you will be asked to choose which events you would like to attend.


Early bird registration, postmarked by March 1, is available for $45. After that, registration is $55 until April 11.


I will join Northeast Pennsylvania Genealogy Society board member Roseann Kebles and Genealogy Society of Pennsylvania board member Michael Krasulski in the Living Library Lounge to meet with conference-goers, who will also be able to network with the speakers there. Vendors' tables will be available in the main hallway.


A continental breakfast for registrants will begin at 8 a.m., with lunch served at 11:15 a.m.


Genealogy Class: I will offer the first of my Getting Started in Genealogy classes for the year in April. The session will be held 10:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. on April 13, a Saturday, at the West Pittston Library. It's free, but seating is limited. The library is at 200 Exeter Avenue. Call (570) 654-9847 to reserve a seat. This will be my first appearance at West Pittston since the library was refurbished after it suffered extensive damage in the 2011 flood. I expect to offer an additional class at the Osterhout Free Library in Wilkes-Barre at a later date.


News Notes: Congratulations to the brand new Kingston Historical Society, which held its organizational meeting last month. Under the leadership of Andrea Petrasek and Borough Council Chairwoman Sandra Kase, more than 35 people showed up on a blustery January night to make some preliminary plans for organizing and developing goals. Kingston, with 13,000 people, is the largest community in Luzerne County without its own history group. Watch your Times Leader for date and time of the next meeting.


I've received emails praising the new online genealogy magazine Irish Lives Remembered. It's free. Go to www.irishlivesremembered.com for information on downloading the free publication. Among articles in the February issue is one on the Rev. Theobald Mathew, whose anti-alcohol crusade sparked the international Father Mathew Society, to which thousands of young people in Wyoming Valley belonged decades ago.


Another is on tracing Irish ancestors from County Louth, the ancestral home of many 19th-century immigrants to this area.


Tom Mooney is a Times Leader genealogy columnist. Reach him at tmooney2@ptd.net.




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