Reader questions are the best!
I always enjoy readers’ questions. In fact, each post you read here on Are You My Cousin? is the result of your questions. Today’s post is no different.
Take a look at Linda’s question (It might be yours as well!):
Now that I’m retired I’d love to attend a big genealogical conference but I have no idea which one or what’s even out there. Please consider writing a detailed post on options for people like me. – ~ Linda F.
Attending a genealogy conference – big or small- is a great way to further your genealogy education. As you learn new strategies you will sharpen your research skills and make steady progress toward tearing down your genealogical brick walls.
Know What You Want To Know
Before signing up for a conference, what is it you want to know? Are you looking to understand DNA and genetic genealogy better? Search for a conference with a focus on genetic DNA.
Are you looking for a more general type of genealogy education? Study a conference’s brochure to determine of the types of classes offered are of interest.
Are you particularly interested in a specific location and the genealogy records unique to that area? Seek out regional conferences in that area. For example, if you have Virginia ancestors and need to learn more about genealogy research in Virginia, start by looking at the educational offerings of the Virginia Genealogical Society.
The Big Genealogy Conferences
Attending a large genealogical conference is well, thrilling! (and exhausting 🙂 ) Three of the more well known “big” conferences are:
- The NGS Family History Conference – In 2018 this conference will be in Grand Rapids, Michigan.
- The Federation of Genealogical Societies – 30 Aug – 2 Sep 2017 in Pittsburgh, PA
- Rootstech – 28 Feb – 3 Mar 2018 in Salt Lake, UT. This really is the BIG one! [This one is on my genealogy bucket list!]
Ethnic Groups Family History Conferences
Conferences on specific ethnic groups will be of interest for those researching specific ethnic or cultural groups. Below are a couple of examples:
- Foundation of Eastern European Family History Studies (FEEFHS) – 17-21 July 2017 in Salt Lake, UT.
- International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies (IAJGS) International Conference on Jewish Genealogy 23-28 July 2017, Orlando, FL.
Regional Genealogy Conferences & Workshops
Regional workshops single or multi-day events. Below are just a few examples. To find one in the area where you research (or where your ancestors lived), use a simple google search to find what is offered. Your search may look something like: North Carolina + Genealogy + Conference + 2017. By adding the year you will narrow down your search results!
- Fairfax Genealogical Society Annual Spring Conference March 31 – April 1, 2017, Falls Church, VA.
- Southern California Genealogy Jamboree 9-11 June 2017, sponsored by the Southern California Genealogical Society. Burbank, California.
- 2017 Virginia Genealogy Society Fall Conference – 27-28 Oct 2017 in Norfolk, VA
- Maryland Genealogical Society – Find upcoming genealogy workshops here.
Intensive Multi-day Institutes
Are you ready to dig really deep into genealogy research? You just might be ready for a multi-day or week long genealogy intensive. Yes, these are intense, and geared toward an advanced researcher. Tip: These fill up very quickly. If interested, be ready to sign up the minute (literally) registration opens.
- The Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG) in Salt Lake, UT
- Genealogical Research Institute of Pittsburgh (GRIP)
- Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) 23-28 June 2017, sponsored by the Georgia Genealogical Society.
Have you found a conference you are interested in? The number of conferences are too numerous to list all conferences and workshops out there. Use this list as a guide to finding a genealogy conference that best suits your needs.
Know a great conference you want to share? Share in the comments below!