Friday, February 29, 2008

AMTRAK Convention Fare Request Form


Riverside, CA 92508


Please note: Requests for Convention Fares may not be accepted more than 11 months in advance or less than 14 “business days” prior to the convention.

Attn: Convention Sales
FAX number: 800-872-3298

ALL REQUESTS MUST BE IN WRITINGand forwarded by E-mail, Fax or US Mail
(Please TAB to each field and complete requested information)

Today’s Date:
















TRAVEL DATES: _____________________________
APPROVED BY: ______________________________
DATE APPROVED: ____________________________


If approved, the Convention Fare Authorization will be forwarded by either E-mail or US Mail to the Organizer/Marketing with the date of activation.

Afraid of Flying ~~ Take the Train!

Group Sales Department
7920 Lindbergh Drive, Riverside, CA 92508


You may present this information to the Amtrak Ticket Agent or your
Travel Agent to assist them in providing you with this discount

Fare Code Number: X07S-933
Valid For Travel: May 8, 2008 – May 21, 2008

Amtrak Agents please refer to: (G/TAR/TA9/P33) -Arrow
~F12, Option 2, TAR, TA9, Page 33- Rail Res

NGS Convention & Conference

Amtrak offers a 10% discount off the lowest available rail fare to Kansas City,MO between the above dates. Includes travel up to three days prior to the convention start date and three days following the last day of the meeting. To book your reservation call Amtrak at 1 (800) 872-7245 or contact your local travel agent. Please refer to Convention Fare Code X07S-933 when making your reservation a 10% discount has been approved. Conventions cannot be booked via Internet. This offer is not valid on the Auto Train. Offer valid with Sleepers, Business Class or First Class seats with payment of the full applicable accommodation charges. Fare is valid on Amtrak Regional and Acela service for all departures seven days a week, except for holiday blackouts.

If you have any questions or need any further assistance, please feel free to contact us at 1-800-USA-1GRP (1-800-872-1477) Monday through Friday, 6:00am-4:30pm Pacific Time.

We look forward to having your group travel with Amtrak.

Dolores Zamora
Group Sales Representative

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Researching for your ancestors in the Kansas City Area

In one of the earlier blogs, I told you about historical societies and state archives in the Midwest. If you don’t have that much time you might want to research in the Kansas City area. There are lots of libraries and genealogical societies in the area that have great resources.

1. Midwest Genealogy Center: Although it is not yet open, this brand new state of the art genealogy facility is slated to open during the 2008 NGS conference. It is part of the Mid-Continent Public Library, which has had a genealogy collection for over 35 years. For more information about the types of materials available at the Mid-Continent Library visit their website.

2. National Archives and Records Administration – Central Plains Branch: This branch of NARA contains lots of information that is helpful to genealogists. They have a complete set of the U.S. census records on microfilm, military records and the Freedman’s Bureau records, censuses of the Northern Plains Indians and the Five Civilized Tribes, passenger arrival lists and naturalization records and much more. You can learn more about their holdings by reading their brochure.

3. Kansas City, Missouri Public Library located in downtown Kansas City has a large reference and genealogy collection. For information about their holdings visit their website.

4. Kansas City, Kansas Public Library houses the Kansas Collection. For information about the Kansas Collection check the website.

5. Northwest Missouri Genealogical Society in St. Joseph, Missouri: Less than 60 miles from the conference venue you will find the NWMGS library. This repository houses resources for the 9 Platte Purchase Counties in Missouri and adjacent Kansas Counties: Atchison, Nodaway, Worth, Gentry, Holt, Andrew, DeKalb, Clinton and Buchanan Counties in Missouri and Brown and Doniphan Counties in Kansas. They are also the official archive of Buchanan County, Missouri and have original court and marriage records.

6. Johnson County Genealogical Society – the society’s holdings are located at the Johnson County Public Library located in Shawnee Mission, Kansas.

7. University of Missouri at Kansas City houses some of the Western Historical Manuscript Collection. See this website too!

8. Jackson County, Missouri Historical Society in Independence: Be sure to contact them in advance to arrange time for a visit.

9. Church of the Nazarene World Headquarters Archive is located in Kansas City. For more information about their holdings check their website and it may be advisable to contact them in advance to make the best use of your time.

10. Don’t forget the local county courthouses. You will be in close proximity to the following courthouses in Missouri: Jackson, Johnson, Cass, Clay, Lafayette, Ray, Clinton, Platte and Buchanan and in Kansas: Doniphan, Atchison, Leavenworth, Wyandotte, Johnson and Miami.

These are only some of the places where you might find your Missouri / Kansas ancestors.

Wednesday, February 27, 2008

Kansas City Public Library - Missouri Valley Room (Local History & Genealogy)

Kansas City Public Library's Missouri Valley Room (Local History & Genealogy) invites you to come visit, use our collections, and see our beautiful new/old Central Library at 10th and Baltimore, downtown. The MAX (express) bus leaves from Crown Center every fifteen minutes. Get off at 12th and Main and you will be two blocks from the Library. The Library is a five minute taxi or car ride from Crown Center. For more information or to arrange for a tour call: 816-701-3427 or e-mail

Monday, February 25, 2008

New Midwest Genealogy Center in Independence, Missouri

I have been getting some questions about the new facility that is part of the Mid-Continent Public Library system-----
It is going to be a fantastic place to do genealogical / historical research. The new facility will have over 50,000 square feet of space devoted to genealogical records.
The plans are that the facility will be opening for the 2008 NGS conference and the old facility will be closing this spring to move the materials at the present location to the new facility. For more information it is best to contact the staff at Midcontinent. The contact information and more details about the new facility are on their website:
Be sure to check all the links listed on the Midcontent Public Library site regarding the new facility.

Sunday, February 24, 2008

Exhibitor Spotlight: New England Historic Genealogical Society

The New England Historic Genealogical Society, founded in 1845, is the country's oldest and largest non-profit genealogical organization. With more than 20,000 members nationally, NEHGS collects, preserves, and interprets materials to help make accessible the histories of families in America. Located in Boston, the NEHGS research library houses more than 12 million books, journals, photographs, documents, records, and microfilms, and boasts one of the largest manuscript collections in the country, covering more than four centuries of local and family history.

Thursday, February 14, 2008

2008 BCG Education Fund Workshop at Kansas City

Evidence Evaluation -Barbara J. Mathews, CG

Students in the Hands-on workshop on evidence evaluation will have the opportunity to support different points-of-view based on analysis of documents supplied in the syllabus. We will investigate situations in which all evidence is in agreement, in which some evidence is in conflict, and for which only indirect evidence is available. After supporting their points of view in small group discussions, students will plan proof summaries.

Genealogical Documentation: What, Why, and How - Thomas W. Jones, Ph.D, CG, CGL

Participants in this hands-on workshop will learn the principles of documenting compiled genealogies, reports, lineages, and other written genealogical products. The session will cover when and what to document and the formats for documenting different kinds of sources.
Register for the workshops at the NGS website, Attendance is limited to 60.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Special Guest to Welcome Conference Attendees

Harry S. Truman, portrayed by Niel Johnson, will be on hand to welcome conference attendees at the Tuesday evening, May 13, Wine & Cheese Reception sponsored by the Missouri State Genealogical Association [MoSGA]. You can register for the reception at

Niel M. Johnson is a retired archivist and historian at the Truman Presidential Library & Museum and a Truman re-enactor. He has re-released his book "Power, Money and Women: Words to the Wise from Harry S. Truman," published by Leathers Publishing.

Niel began portraying Truman following his retirement in 1993. Since then he has portrayed Harry S. Truman for service organizations, and veterans, church, school and social groups. In 1994 Niel portrayed Truman at a re-enactment of the Democratic convention of 1944 in Chicago and in 1996 he participated at a banquet preceding the christening of the aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman at the Newport News shipyard in Virginia.

Make plans now to attend the MoSGA Wine & Cheese Reception where you can speak with 'Harry Truman' and learn his views on women in politics and how he might view the current political arena. The event runs from 5:00pm to 7:00pm.

Martha Henderson
MoSGA President

Speaker Spotlight: David W. Jackson

David W. Jackson's childhood hobby of genealogy became the catalyst for his career path. He was graduated magna cum laude with a Bachelor of Science degree in historic preservation in 1993. He is director and archivist of "The Orderly Pack Rat," an historical research and consulting service he founded in 1996 (
Since 2000, he has served as Archives and Education Director for the Jackson County (Mo.) Historical Society, in Independence, Missouri ( David is also author and publisher of, "Direct Your Letters to San Jose: The California Gold Rush Letters of James and David Lee Campbell, 1849-1852;" and, "Recipes of Our Past: Morsels from Our Grandmothers' Recipe Boxes."

Monday, February 11, 2008

Don't want to fly to Kansas City -- Take the Train!!

For anyone who would rather take the train to NGS 2008 --- A special discount is available!!

Our travel agent, Nancy Mettes, has arranged a special discount on Amtrak for our conference attendees to travel to Kansas City, MO. Anybody interested should contact Nancy Mettes at

The discount is for 10% on Amtrak to Kansas City, Valid for travel 8 -21 May 2008.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

Speaker Spotlight: Jeanne Bloom

Jeanne Larzalere Bloom, CG(SM) is a full-time professional researcher specializing in Illinois (particularly Cook County), problem solving, and compiling multi-generational family histories. As a case manager for the American History Company, she works for the Repatriation and Family Affairs Division of the Army Casualty and Memorial Affairs Operation to determine the Primary Next of Kin on to identify eligible family members that can provide Family Reference Samples (mtDNA) to aid in the possible identification of unaccounted for soldiers from World War II, the Korean War, and the Vietnam War of the soldier. Her other clients include authors, professional genealogists, heir-search firms, and family researchers in the United States and internationally. She is a member of NGS, BCG, APG, GSG, ISFHWE, is a multi-year alumnus of IGHS at Samford, and an alumnus of NIGR.
Contact information: Jeanne Bloom, CG;2666 East 73rd Street; Apartment 11-W; Chicago, IL 60649-2732; 773-221-4545; fax 773-768-8034;

Exhibitor Spotlight: Jamestowne Society Kansas-Missouri Company

The purpose of the Jamestowne Society is to honor the early settlers, who have been documented as having lived on Jamestowne Island between 1607 and 1699, either as land owners or as members of the House of Burgesses or as other officials.

The objects of the Kansas-Missouri Company along with all the other Jamestowne Companies are: "To discover and record the names of all living descendants of those early settlers who made great sacrifices to establish our English speaking nation; and to unite these descendants to honor the memory of their settler ancestors, to record their deeds, and to do homage to the birthplace of Virginia and the Nation."

Jane Burrell - Past GovernorJamestowne Society - Kansas-Missouri Company

Saturday, February 2, 2008

What is there to do in KC ???

Is there anything else to do in Kansas City? The answer to that question is YES!!!! There is so much else for those of you, who want to spend time doing something other than genealogy. In case you are not familiar with the area here are some ideas that might not come to mind.

· Powell Gardens – a perfect place for those of you who love flowers, trees and other plants
· Nelson – Atkins Art Museum – you should not miss this if you are an art enthusiast
· Kemper Museum of Contemporary Art – new and unique art
· Kansas City Blues and Jazz – for evening entertainment you may want to find a local night spot to listen to some great music. There is an article in Wikipedia that lists some of the favorite spots
· For those bringing children
o Science City – this is a fun place for children and adults
o Kansas City Zoo
o Oceans of Fun and Worlds of Fun
· History Buffs - the National Agricultural Hall of Fame is in the Kansas City metro area and has interesting things for adults and children or how about a drive 75 miles NE to historic Jamesport, Missouri and visit the Amish. If you don’t have time to drive that far, St. Joseph, Missouri is only 45 miles from Kansas City and has several interesting museums including the Pony Express Stable, the Patee House Museum and the Jesse James home as well as the Robidoux Row Museum.
· Antiquing – if you like to shop for antiques there are many great stores in the area. One of the best places to go is the historic town of Weston. Much of this historic town has been turned in to antique stores. Another great place is the River Market Antique Mall.
· Sports – If you are interested in sporting events you might consider checking schedules for the Kansas City Royals, Negro Leagues Baseball Museum, Woodlands Racetrack, NASCAR or spend some time at one of Missouri’s lakes for fishing and water sports.
· Theater / Concerts – The Broadway musical Wicked will be playing in Kansas City, MO or check out the schedules at some of the other local theaters including Starlight Theater, Kansas City Repertory Theater, New Theater Restaurant or the Unicorn Theater.

Watch the blog for information about places to eat and shop in Kansas City.

Speaker Spotlight: Edwin F. Bailey, Jr.

Edwin F. Bailey Jr. began his professional career as an elementary teacher in the St. Louis Public Schools. After seven years of teaching, Bailey moved into the higher education arena, first with the University of Missouri-St. Louis where he served for four years as a financial aid administrator, and later with St. Louis Community College where he continued his career in financial aid administration. In 1991, Bailey became Dean for Student Development Services at the Meramec Campus of the College where he served until his retirement in June of 2006.
Bailey’s interest in the Buffalo Soldiers spans over two decades. Since first learning about their legacy, he has been on a continuing quest to engage in research, and to share with others the richness of the African-American presence in U.S. military history. Over the last fifteen years, Bailey has presented for elementary, high school and college classes, church groups, civic and community groups, military organizations and the Missouri History Museum. He holds a Bachelors Degree in Education from Harris Teachers’ College, a Master’s Degree in Guidance and Counseling from the University of Missouri-St. Louis and a Ph.D. in Public Policy Analysis and Administration from Saint Louis University.