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SCGS's Genealogy for Beginners: Kickstarting a Family Tree

A few years ago, I gave a relative a six-month membership to Ancestry.com for a milestone birthday, thinking it was the perfect gift since he was recently retired and had more time on his hands. He'd taken a DNA test to see just how Italian he was and seemed excited about the results. I was disappointed to learn he never used the membership but understood—not everyone shares the same level of interest and enthusiasm as diehard family history researchers. What probably would have helped him and other newcomers is a basic beginner's class to learn how to use Ancestry and other online databases and sites for starting a family tree.

On Saturday, September 23, from 1 to 2 p.m., 15 lucky participants will learn the basics in the class "Finding the Rest of Me: How Do I Start?" Presented by Southern California Genealogical Society (SCGS) education chair Charlotte Bocage at the Glendale Central Library, the workshop is an introduction to kickstart that family research you've been putting off because you're unsure where to begin. While Charlotte has decades of genealogical experience, she explains things in easy-to-understand terms that will assist attendees in figuring out the most useful genealogy sites, learning how to search, and pitfalls to avoid. If you've started family trees but abandoned them out of frustration, this course is a perfect opportunity to help resume your research. Genealogical sites are constantly updated, making search and tools more user-friendly. It's always worth diving back in to see what's new—you may be pleasantly surprised.


If Charlotte's class is filled, register to be added to the waiting list if a spot opens. Better yet, join the Southern California Genealogical Society to get first dibs when the next beginner's class is offered.


Registration is required. You must be 18 or over to participate. Please email glendalehistoryroom@glendaleca.gov with your name, email, and phone number. The Glendale Central Library is located at 222 East Harvard Street, Glendale, CA 91205

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