Every year, millions of people around the world comb through books, scour newspapers, and thumb through manuscripts searching for information about their family’s history.
What starts small often becomes enormous. Many now-avid genealogists recall their humble beginnings – the discovery of a trunk full of photographs in the attic, or a question about a great grandparent’s country of origin.
For many, these humble questions blossom into a lifelong pursuit connecting them to a growing community around the world.
The success of television programs like Who Do You Think You Are?, the Genealogy Roadshow, and Finding Your Roots reflects the growing popularity and mass appeal of family history – some reckon it to be only slightly less popular as a hobby than gardening in the US.
These programs are wonderful for capturing the amazingly diverse stories of Americans across the country. While this is all very exciting, there is no mention of the techniques and skills involved in the genealogist’s research.
As anyone who has researched their family can tell you, these programs may have accurately captured the joy of family history - but certainly not the work!
The Historical Society of Pennsylvania, Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania, and the Association of Professional Genealogists are here to help.
As one of the largest family history centers in the country, HSP is hosting Family History Days this Friday and Saturday, March 6-7. Designed for beginner and seasoned genealogists alike, this two-day conference will help you learn new ways to discover and celebrate your family history, taking your research further than ever before. Attendees will be immersed in HSP’s historic library and archive.
Throughout both days, expert genealogists will discuss how to locate and access different records throughout the mid-Atlantic. Please click here for a full description of lecture topics and speaker bios.
After learning new techniques and new places to look for information, head to the Reading Room to sign up for a library orientation and conduct your own research in our collections. During your time in the Reading Room, volunteers from the Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania will be available to help answer your research questions.
Take a break from lectures and research with behind-the-scenes tours of HSP. Travel to that forbidden zone of the Closed Stacks and take a sneak peak at our vaults – where we store over 21 million items.
Many of our collection items are hundreds of years old, yet accessible by researchers in the library. Learn first-hand how materials are repaired and protected with a demonstration by Tara O’Brien, HSP’s Director of Conservation.
For those new to genealogy and family history, volunteers from the Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania will present a lecture discussing the best ways for starting your family history over light breakfast and coffee. This lecture is offered on both Friday and Saturday at 8:00 a.m., wrapping up before the official opening of the event so you don’t miss out on anything!
Purchase tickets for individual days or as a pair and receive a $10 discount. $20 each day, $30 for both days for HSP and GSP members. $30 each day, $50 for both days for nonmembers.
Brush up on old skills, learn new tricks, and network with fellow travelers this weekend at HSP. We hope to see you there!