Tuesday, August 24, 2010

FGS Conference in Knoxville

This Blog will be dedicated to the wonderful time I had in Knoxville at the FGS Conference, Aug 17th - 21st.  It was the first time I ever attended a national genealogy conference and I'm not sure why.  I've been to state and local conferences many times and attended IGHR seven times.  I believe I'm a convert now.

Conference Headquarters

Although it's some 600 miles or so, it's almost easier to drive from northeast Florida to Knoxville than to fly, so that's what I did.  I visited friends in north Georgia, and spent a day and a half in Nashville at the Tennessee State Library & Archives, so it was a multi-purpose road trip.  Oh, how I loved driving through Tennessee - I know now why so many of those who left Tennessee settled in Arkansas.  Much of the northwest quarter of Arkansas where my family settled for four generations looks much like Tennessee.  I felt at home.

The classes were a mixed bag with some absolutely wonderful and others, well, not quite on that level.  All were good - it's just that the course notes did not necessarily indicate whether or not the class would be for beginners [which I'm not] or for more experienced researchers.  As always some of the handouts were better than others - I always hate it when there are no maps in the handouts and then the presenter shows wonderful maps on the overhead - especially when the topic is migration patterns!  You should see some of my quick sketches  .....not good, not good at all.

You had to be there at just the right time to see this!

I so much enjoyed the exhibits - I used to attend trade shows with my husband.  So nice to see the great stuff and talk to vendors.  I met several people that I felt I should know through blogs, etc.  I was in the hall early and received an invite from Ancestry to attend a small luncheon limited to 12 persons about how we use the Ancestry website and what we like to find on the homepage.  Was a fun group - all of us in agreement that although we don't like everything about Ancestry, we certainly cannot get along without it!

I saw a dear friend, Elizabeth Wells, who is coordinator of the Special Collection Department of the Samford University Library in Birmingham, Alabama, at the booth for IGHR - the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research.  I have not been able to attend since 2006, and I realized how much I have missed the experience.  I credit IGHR with inspiring me to be as accurate and thorough in my research as possible.  Perhaps going back to Birmingham next June is a possibility.

There were great prizes at the Conference.  I put most of my prize entries in the box at Worldwide Cruises, hoping to win.  I went on the RootsMagic Cruise last February and it was a great experience I'd love to repeat - both the genealogy education, and the fun and excursions that had nothing to do with genealogy.  However, as a "single" the cruises are a bit out of my price range - at least annually.  I won no prizes, however.  I did meet and talk to Lynn Polgar, the representative from Worldwide Cruises.  Very nice lady, and a new friend, I hope.  I did promise her I'd put in a good word for the genealogy cruises next year, so here it is.  You can visit the website at Worldwide Cruises and at the top right corner is a banner and link for the Exploring Your Roots Cruise.  There are two cruises scheduled for next year.

Dreaming about the Caribbean ...here's one last picture....

RootsMagic Valentine Cruise 2010

1 comment:

  1. Kay - I heard similar comments about some of the beginner-level classes from other attendees; I think a lot of people would like for the schedule to indicated Beginner/Intermediate/Advanced/All levels.