San Mateo County Genealogical Society's Blog featuring society events, projects, meeting notes and other items of relevance to genealogists.

Sunday, January 14, 2018

Pay Back time?

The National Archives instituted a "Citizen Archivist Week of Service" for January 15-19.  Click here to join them in the Citizen Archivist Challenge to tag or transcribe 2018 pages in the National Archives Catalog.


This is one of many ways you can pay it back to the genealogical community for all the wonderful information you find online.  Another national possibility is to work with FamilySearch on one of their many Indexing Projects. With over 100 projects there is something of interest for everyone.




On the local level the San Mateo County Genealogical Society has numerous opportunities to contribute.  You could join the indexing team onsite at the Colma Historial Museum as  they index the Mortuary Books of Valente, Marini, Perata and Co. Or, if you'd rather work in the southern part of the county, there are a couple projects that we'd like to start at the San Mateo County Historical Association Museum.  We also have an opportunity to work on a project from home.  Contact publications@smcgs.org if you would like to volunteer.


Another alternative is share your genealogy online.  Whether it is in a blog or on a website, a family tree or a story or just a great genealogical find, sharing with others is not only satisfying but also a great way to pay back the genealogical community that shares with you.



Wednesday, January 10, 2018

SMCGS Databases: Obituary Update

The latest update to the SMCGS Obituary Index has been uploaded to the website.  It includes the San Mateo county obituaries from the San Francisco Examiner from 1906 into the 1950s.  Those were the obituaries donated to SMCGS by the Colma Historical Association.  Those of you wondering about the obituaries for individuals who were not connected to San Mateo County,  will be happy to know that the San Francisco group of CGS collected the remains of the papers when we were done and have them stored while they contemplate their future.

Also new in the index are obituaries from the San Mateo Times from the 1920s.  Unlike most of the entries in our index, these obits are not in our digital collections, but they are available on Ancestry.

The index now includes over 76,000 names of individuals who either died in or were connected in some way to San Mateo County.

You can access it here.

Also be sure to check the Obituary Daily Times Index for San Mateo County.  The societies digital collections include obituaries from the San Mateo County newspapers indexed there.

The first page of the index gives information on the collections and names the many volunteers that have contributed to the index over the years.

2018 - Updated Obituary Index

To obtain copies of obituaries contact 
the SMCGS Research Team

Wednesday, December 27, 2017

California Statute Abstracts by Sheri Fenley

Cath Madden Trindle

Over the years I've been fortunate enough to meet some really wonderful genealogists.  Sheri Fenley of Stockton is one.  Her blog, The Educated Genealogist, is a reflection of her effervescent personality, always fun and interesting.

Recently she has been abstracting the early California Statute books.  These are the books that contain all of the laws passed in each session of the California Legislature. While many laws were passed to govern the "masses" the volumes are sprinkled with laws passed for the benefit of individuals and specific neighborhoods. 

In my California genealogy classes I always mentioned these session books. They can provide fascinating details of the lives of family members.  But access was cumbersome, so few delved into the records.

Sheri's abstracts provide a new means of access.  To date she has abstracted records from a variety of years between 1850 and 1913, and it looks like she will continue.  Each year includes a link to the Statute volume, where you can read the entire proceedings.  Be sure to read the posts where she lets the stories unfold, using newspapers and other records to fill in the details not included in the Statute books, and following it forward through the years.

Sheri attributes her interest in the Statute books to  The Legal Genealogist, Judy Russell.  Judy had posted about them on her blog prior to a visit to California, so thank you Judy as well as Sheri for this magnificent addition to our California research resources.