Wednesday, September 29, 2010

FGS Accepting Applications for FORUM Editor

For Immediate Release
Austin, Texas - September 30, 2010

The Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) today announces that it is accepting applications for the position of editor of its electronic quarterly magazine, the FGS FORUM.

The Federation is a non-profit organization founded in 1976 for the purpose of helping genealogical and historical societies and family associations strengthen and grow. The FGS FORUM is an important publication that supports the organization’s mission. The magazine is accessible in PDF format by individual subscribers and by two officers of each FGS member organization.

Requests for details about the editor position are available via email. Requests should be sent to Applicants may then submit a detailed résumé for consideration, along with several examples of publications for which they have been responsible as editor. These should be sent electronically to

Submissions should be received no later than November 1, 2010.

Contact: George G. Morgan
     (813) 205-3032

Monday, September 27, 2010

Florida Genealogical Society of Tampa Issues War of 1812 Challenge

The Florida Genealogical Society of Tampa, a member of the Federation of Genealogical Societies, held its annual Fall Seminar on Saturday, September 18th, 2010, featuring speaker Curt B. Witcher, the Federation's Vice-President for Development.  At the conclusion of Witcher's presentation on the use of military records for genealogical research, Witcher explained the War of 1812 "Preserve the Pensions" fund-raising project, and and its importance to the preservation and access of these tremendous, genealogically rich materials. He encouraged the audience to donate.

Drew Smith, President of the Florida Genealogical Society, responded by surprising Witcher with a check for $700 from the Florida Genealogical Society, representing $5 for every member of the Florida Genealogical Society.  Smith pointed out that the Florida Genealogical Society has, among the society's objectives, "to preserve historical records" and "to support access to public records."  As part of the presentation of the donation to the "Preserve the Pensions" fund, Smith challenged all other U.S. genealogical societies to make a comparable donation. 

The Federation of Genealogical Societies, in partnership with the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA), has a goal of raising $3.7 million to digitize the War of 1812 pension files and make them freely available to the general public at the NARA website.  Societies and individuals are strongly encouraged to donate to the fund.  More information can be found here.

Is your society up to the challenge? It's simple to donate to the "War of 1812 - Preserve the Pensions Fund." You can learn much more and see examples of these important records at You can learn more - and donate - at that page. Your society can simply write a check to "FGS-1812 Fund" and mail it to the Federation of Genealogical Societies, P.O. Box 200940, Austin, TX 78720-0940.

Help us get the word out! We invite you to view examples of the rich War of 1812 Pension files at and to help spread the word about this very important project by visiting images will be digitized and indexed, and they will be made available for free at ational Archives and Records Administration website for everyone to access.

You can help! Take the challenge back to your society, and make your personal donation today. Every donation helps make access to these great genealogical and historical records available to everyone!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Fall 2010 Issue of Forum is Available

The Fall issue of the FGS FORUM is now available to subscribers and to to FGS Member Societies. This issue contains articles about the following subjects and more:

  • Locating Living Americans
  • Estate Planning for Genealogists
  • Your Society and Genealogy’s Primetime Debut
In addition, there are new columns with book reviews, news about family associations, Genealogy 2.0, and reports from the Records Preservation and Access Committee.

Get your latest copy of the FORUM today! Not a subscriber? You can still take advantage for a limited time on a great subscription deal: one year for $15 or two years for $25. Visit for more information and to order your subscription to this great magazine!

Sunday, September 19, 2010

Is Your Society Missing Out? (Check Your Society's Contact Info!)

The Federation of Genealogical Societies is quickly moving into the world of technology and away from the "on paper" world. The recent change of the FORUM to an online version, online balloting, the FGS Voice blog, the FGS Voice email newsletter, downloadable Society Strategy Series Papers, as well as the newly revised downloadable FGS Membership Handbook, allow us to make better use of funds and get current and important information out to member organizations much more quickly and efficiently.

But We Need YOUR Help!

The August 30, 2010 email announcement of the re-launch of Society Hall and the FGS Members Only area of the FGS website generated a high percentage of bounced emails. A whopping 16% of the emails sent to member contacts were returned as undeliverable.

Every FGS member organization should have received the email that was sent to the organization’s main contact and the listed delegate and therefore received the Login ID and Password for both the Members Only area of the FGS website and the newly re-launched Society Hall site.

A few days later, FGS sent another email with the link to the new electronic voting so that members could vote for FGS officers. Again, the numbers of bounced email was high.

Membership renewals will be sent out on or about October 1, 2010. If we do not have correct contact information for you, you may not receive your society's renewal notice, your society's membership might then expire, and you will no longer have access to the great benefits of FGS including the Members Only area of the website. You also may no longer be able to maintain your Society Hall entry, a valuable publicity facility for your society.

What YOU Can Do!

Please, check your contact information by going to the Members Only area of the FGS website at Please log in using the Login ID and Password sent to you recently. Then click on Update your society’s information. Check to make sure the email addresses and other information is correct. This will help us to make sure any correspondence FGS sends out will get to the right person. Are you an officer of your organization? If so, make sure the valuable information about FGS, including ID and password, is passed along to new officers when they are elected.

Don’t let your organization miss out!

FGS is actively working to improve the existing membership benefits and to develop new ones. Please keep your society's membership current and we can keep in touch with you!
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