Johnson County Genealogical Society
Johnson County
Genealogical Society
and Library, Inc.
Portraits from Stanley, KS only identified by
Preserving KANSAS genealogy and its rich history at the crossroads of the Santa Fe, California and Oregon trails.

November Meeting: Preserving Your Collection

Have you accumulated lots of photos, letters, papers and other items from your family members and ancestors? Are they hidden away in cardboard boxes and plastic bins in your basement, closets and attic? If so, it’s time to do a little organization and provide some TLC for future generations.
Join us at our November general meeting and learn how to properly store and  preserve your family’s heirlooms, photographs and documents from an expert, Anne Jones, the Curator of Collections at the Johnson County Museum.
Ms. Jones has a graduate degree in American History and Museum Studies and 34 years of museum experience. She served as Curator of Collections for the Johnson County Museum from 1987 to 1999; she was employed at Union Station Kansas City from 1999 to 2006 in a variety of roles, including Manager of Collections and Exhibits. Between 2007 and 2011 she worked with Smith Kramer Traveling Exhibitions, where she created and marketed exhibitions for small and mid-size museums. Ms. Jones returned to the Johnson County Museum in 2011 to be a part of the Museum’s move to King Louie.
Saturday, Nov. 25, 2017 at 10 a.m.
Johnson County Central Resource Library, Carmack Room
9875 W. 87th St., Overland Park, KS

Using Amazon Smile to Benefit JCGS

Amazon Smile BannerWe are unveiling a great new idea for JCGS. With no extra effoert at all you can now have AMAZON
donate money to our society.
We have created a tech tip for you to follow in order to set this up. No gimmicks, just free money for us. It's like picking up loose change. It works exactly like your regular Amazon account but you must log in at We will show this at the July meeting but you can try this now. 
Go to the tech tip area found under members here to view the directions.

New JCGS Community Alliance for Education

Task Force for Education   A new community alliance has been formed involving Shawnee Town 1929 (formerly Old Shawnee Town) and the Johnson County Genealogical Society. President Char Mitts, 1st VP Cathy Lawrenz, Education Chair Darlene Jerome from JCGS met with Sharron Uhler of Shawnee Town 1929 on July 12.
   For many years JCGS has been a presence at the Old Shawnee Days event but this year things have changed. Shawnee Town 1929 has remodeled the physical setup at the museum and there was no longer a place for some of their participants like JCGS.  This led them to ponder a new venture with JCGS in producing a school curriculum and using our genealogy expertise and presenters on Family History.  It turned out to be a fortuitous move as JCGS was wanting to make a move in the same direction with youth programs a new focus of our outreach. Darlene is also going to be working on classes to help Girl and Boy Scouts with Family History badges. We are growing our future JCGS members and genealogy experts. 
   First priorities have been set out and a meeting in September will follow. Careful consideration is going to be made regarding the many new cultural issues we are facing in our communities. This is going to be an all inclusive program with something each child can grasp for their own regardless of their heritage.  We hope to roll out our beta version by late 2018 - spring of 2019.
l to r Lawrenz, Uhler, Mitts, Jerome

JCGS Quarterly Wins Award

JCGS Quarterly AwardJCGS received a very nice present in the mail some time ago. Out of the blue, the Kansas Council of Genealogical Societies awarded Our Quarterly, The Genealogist, and Darlene Jerome, the editor, with an "Outstanding Genealogy Quarterly" award.
Kudos to our Quarterly crew, Darlene, Joyce Mitchell, and new Co-Editor, Marsha Bennett.

You Made My Day!

You Made My Day Volunteer Appreciation Card
JCGS has the best volunteers around.  Every aspect of our operation is created, designed, and carried out by volunteers. On the Genealogy Desk at the Central Library sits a neat new box with little cards on the side for recognition of those volunteers.  We do this work because we love it and community service is our middle name but, you know, it's always a delight to hear a nice word or two for the effort.  Next time you are in the Genealogy area maybe go look for the box and if someone has really made your day - let us know so we can let THEM know.  You can also just drop us a line. Happy genealogy hunting! 

Avoid a Grave Mistake!

It seems like we often run across a story of people ruining gravestones. Sometimes it's on purpose but sometimes folks are meaning to do a good thing but, alas, they are not. Folllow this link to one such story from the L.A. Times.  You can then check out the 2017 March JCGS Quarterly publication to read all about how to correctly care for these precious pieces of history. It is now available on the members secure download page. 

Videos Available From Roots Tech 2017

The Roots Tech conference was another smashing success this last February. Did you know that many video recordings are now ready for you to watch at home and they are free. Hop on over to and look for the content that you would like to see.

Skill Building Classes for 2017

                                            little girl at desk writing
JCGS is now offering skill building classes on a monthly basis. The classes will be held at the Central Resource Library on 87th and Farley.  All classes will be presented by JCGS members.  These classes are in addition to our regular 4th Saturday general meetings and will be held on the same day as the general meetig except for October and November - those skill building classes will be held on the THIRD Saturday not the fourth. 
Contact Education Chair, Darlene Jerome for more information.  These classes are listed on our events page. 

FGS Announces Upcoming Venues

Save the dates! 
The FGS 2019 National Conference will be held August 21-24 in Washington, D.C., and the FGS 2020 National Conference will be held September 2-5 in Kansas City, Missouri.
“We are extremely excited for all our upcoming conferences and look forward to visiting Washington, D.C., and Kansas City in future years,” says FGS President D. Joshua Taylor. “From 2016 to 2020, our conference venues are steeped in both history and research resources and make perfect settings for genealogists and family historians.”
This announcement extends the upcoming FGS conferences schedule to the year 2020 and includes:
FGS 2017 National Conference in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
FGS 2018 National Conference in Ft. Wayne, Indiana
FGS 2019 National Conference in Washington, D.C.
FGS 2020 National Conference in Kansas City, Missouri
Each conference will be joined and hosted by a local genealogical organization. The Illinois State Genealogical Society will welcome FGS this year in Springfield and the Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society in 2017. Local hosts for future conferences will be announced at a later date.

New Initiative to Digitize Records

Reclaim the Records is a not-for-profit group of genealogists, historians, researchers, and open government advocates. These concerned folks are filing Freedom of Information requests to get public data released back into the public domain. They are collecting information about archivally important data sets that are not available online or on microfilm, and they are using state and Federal FOI laws and Open Data initiatives to get copies of this information released back to the public.

reclaim the records
They are starting work in archives in New York City and New York State, and will be expanding into different parts of the country, based on demand from people like you. Along the way, they will be documenting everything they have learned about filing Freedom of Information Act requests, and creating a Do-It-Yourself guide for genealogists, open data fans, and others who want their state, local, and Federal records made more available. 
The goal is to get these record sets put online, for free, for everyone. Want to learn more? Read their  Frequently asked Questions.

Certified, Accredited, Professional?

It is overwhelming. Looking at all those initials after their names. Many folks are confused about the differences between genealogical credentials and those who offer professional services. Debbie Wayne Parker, CG and CGL, has a discussion which covers the credentialing and professional organizations in the U.S. governing the field of genealogy.  The discussion is aimed at those interested in becoming credentialed genealogists, those considering hiring a professional, and genealogical event planners who need to understand the many of initials following a name. Click here to read more about credentialing.

RR Retirement

Be one of the first to use the Midwest Genealogy Center’s Quick Look! This new and exciting feature provides online access to some of MGC’s resources. One of the resources you can search is inactive pension claims from the U.S. Railroad Retirement Board, which contains over 1.5 million records. Search the index by name and/or date. If you locate a resource, you will have an opportunity to request it from the source organization. In addition to the Railroad Retirement Pension Records, you can also find obituaries from newspapers like the Kansas City Star and Independence Examiner. Records currently indexed include obituaries, vital records, indexes for books within MGC’s collection, and more.

What can you expect after a search? Searches will yield an index that will allow you to request a full record. For U.S. Railroad Retirement Board Pension Claims, you will be directed to the National Archives. For all other collections, MGC staff will fulfill your request. The link to this great new feature is found on MGC’s main web page here. Have fun searching and watching MGC’s digital collection grow!

Using the Library of Congress Online

The Library of Congress (LOC) is a dream destination for many U.S. genealogy researchers, but most of us can’t get there in person. Here are 4 ways–all online–to access the mega-resources of the Library of Congress for genealogy. From our 2016 Annual Seminar speaker Lisa Louise Cook:  LOC Online

What Can WORLDCAT Do For You?

Take a few minutes and visit the genealogy orientation page for Worldcat, the online, worldwide library catalogue. WorldCat provides information about library materials, where they are available and links to digitized versions of library materials. WorldCat is the world’s largest bibliographic database. It contains information about more than 210 million items owned by 10,000 libraries around the world. Constant growth makes WorldCat a rich resource for genealogists who seek primary source materials.

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FGS Events Listing
Want to know what's going on where? The Federation of Genealogical Societies has a listing of member events. JCGS is one of the member societies of FGS. Go take a look on our links page under NATIONAL listings.

Mailing List
If you are a current member or are joining JCGS you will automatically receive the email notices and do not have to sign up here. This sign up is for visitors.
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Relatedness Calculator
Ever wondered how you're related to your half-cousin? How about your great uncle? And what is a second cousin twice removed, anyway? Ask the relatedness calculator. Check it out under RESOURCES on the LINKS page.

Genealogy in Time Magazine
Link to the Most Recent Genealogy Records for the United States. Go to the LINKS page on the left menu and look for it under RESOURCES

Go to our LINKS page and find a new section on DNA. If you have more suggestions let us know.

Need Forms?
The Midwest Genealogical Library has pdf forms that you can download and fill in on your computer. Most of the forms that you find out there are just downloadable forms that you print out and write on. Go look under RESOURCES on our LINKS page.

Great Value!
Ever want to know what $1,000 in 1860 is worth today? Go check out MEASURING WORTH under RESOURCES on our LINKS page.

On the EVENTS and LINKS pages you can easily sort the listings. At the top of each page is a drop down box. Open the box and you will find the categories from which to choose! You can find what you are looking for quickly.

Need Help?
You may contact us at any time for help with the website.
JCGS web team