Fee: Pre-registration $20 members of Friends of the Thomas Balch Library; $25 non-members; $35 at door; Lunch on your own
Seating is limited; pre-registration and pre-payment will guarantee a place.Handouts for all presentations will be available.
The seminar will consist of four sessions:
• Contrasting German Migrations: 18th Century vs. 19th Century Waves: 1700s Pennsylvania Germans were a different from the Germans who immigrated in the 1800s. This presentation shows the differences in geography, economic class, religion, and aspirations of – as well as sources about – the two great waves of German immigration.
• Zigzagging Through German Church Records will explain the methodology of using baptismal, confirmation, marriage and burial records from German church registers most effectively. By utilizing different bits of information found in each, researchers can zigzag their way to adding centuries to a pedigree.
• German for Genealogists a skills course going over the basic vocabulary and formats to enable the participants to read tombstones, church records and simple documents of German-speaking people.
• What’s a Palatine Anyway? So many immigrants hailed from the Palatinate area of southwest Germany in the 1700s that Palatine became a nickname for all Germans coming to America. Learn about the origin of this name, the history of the area, its people and records as well as why it was an emigrant hotbed for three centuries.
James M. Beidler, author of The Family Tree German Genealogy Book also writes for several genealogical publications. He wrote the chapter on genealogy for Pennsylvania: A History of the Commonwealth, published jointly by Penn State Press and Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission. He is an instructor for online Family Tree University. As a lecturer, he was a part of the Pennsylvania Humanities Council’s acclaimed Commonwealth Speakers program from 2002 to 2009, and has been a presenter at numerous conferences. He has been a member and officer of numerous genealogical and historical societies. Beidler was born in Reading, PA, and raised in nearby Berks County, where he currently resides. He graduated Phi Beta Kappa from Hofstra University in Long Island, NY, with a BA in Political Science.