Six-part genealogy series on tap at Brighton District Library

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Katherine Willson, professional genealogist and researcher, will discuss DNA testing, locating living relatives, creating a genealogy checklist, finding maiden names, printing family history, and naturalization rules, records and repositories in a free, six-part series at the Brighton District Library, 100 Library Drive. The series runs March through May, and while attendance at all six sessions is not required, it is encouraged. Register by calling (810) 229-6571 ext. 227.

Introduction to DNA Tests in Genealogical Research  – March 14, 3 pm
Curious about DNA testing? Professional genealogist and researcher Katherine Willson will discuss the basics of DNA genealogical research, including the various types of DNA tests currently available, the means by which applicants take these tests, which tests will provide information about your direct male or female ancestral lines (or both), the companies that are currently offering these tests (and their costs), and the likelihood of matching someone with shared ancestry. Part 1 of a 6 part series.

Locating Living Relatives (Reverse Genealogy): Where, Why & How – March 28, 3 pm
Katherine Willson, professional genealogist and researcher, will show us how to step away from researching our deceased ancestors and attempt to locate living relatives who might be in possession of Great-Great-Grandma’s family Bible, photos of Civil War ancestors, or letters written from the home country.  We’ll discuss online sites that allow us to look for potential living relatives at no cost and methods for contacting them without sounding like a scammer or a phisher!  Handouts provided. Part 2 of a 6 part series.

The Genealogical Checklist – April 11, 3 pm  
When you hit a brick wall, hit the Genealogical Research Checklist. Professional genealogist and researcher Katherine Willson will show you how to create a timeline, compare it to the comprehensive genealogical research checklist, consult your correspondence logs and locate gaps in your research to help you focus on the steps that can break down your brick wall.  Samples of all forms provided. Part 3 of a 6 part series.

Which Way Did She Go? Finding Those Elusive Maiden Names – April 25, 3 pm
Finding the maiden names of your female ancestors can be very problematic. Katherine Willson, professional genealogist and researcher, will show us how to use a comprehensive checklist (provided) to locate the documents most likely to contain a female ancestor’s maiden name.  Search tips for locating the listed documents is included in the discussion.  Handouts provided. Part 4 of a 6 part series.

Printing Your Family History – May 9, 3 pm
Genealogists often quip, “The worst thing you write is better than the best thing you didn’t write.”  It doesn’t matter that you’re not done – we’ll never be done!  Join professional genealogist and researcher Katherine Willson as she shows us how to take the materials you already have in your possession and put them in an order that will allow you to print copies for family members.  You can always add pages later!  Handouts provided. Part 5 of a 6 part series.

Naturalization Rules, Records & Repositories – May 23, 3 pm
Are you wondering why your female American-born ancestor became a naturalized citizen?  Curious about the rules regarding your immigrant ancestor’s naturalization process?  Katherine Willson, professional genealogist and researcher, will discuss the general rules regarding naturalization during specific time periods, as well as which courts hold the paperwork, and how to order these records.  Handouts provided. Part 6 of a 6 part series.

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The Livingston Post is the only locally owned, all-digital information and opinion site in Livingston County, Mich. It was launched by award-winning journalists who were laid off from the Livingston County Daily Press & Argus by Gannett Co. Inc. in 2009.