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Wednesday, May 7, 2014

NGS 2014: Day 1

Today was the first day of the National Genealogical Society's 2014 Family History Conference. And what a busy day it was for me! In the opening session, Sandra Gioia Treadway, Librarian of Virginia and State Archivist, talked about the Library of Virginia and its modernization. I then went to the Exhibit Hall and found many books that I needed to add to my collection. At 11:00, I heard Eric Grundset speak about the challenges of researching early Virginia ancestors and possible ways to break through those brick walls. I then attended the Virginia Genealogical Society luncheon. Conley L. Edwards shared some of the experiences he had had working with genealogists over the years. At 2:30 PM, I heard Kathy Huber speak about the records of the Southern Historical Society. She mentioned some of the articles that were published in the Southern Historical Society's papers. One was on Rock Island Prison. My 3rd-great-grandfather's brother John G. Gatlin was imprisoned there. I will have to track down that article. At 4:00, I heard Nathan W. Murphy speak about colonial ancestors who arrived as transported convicts. With all the black sheep in my family, I would not be at all surprised to find out that one or more of my ancestors arrived as a transported convict. I then visited the tables of some Virginia genealogical and historical societies. Some of them, such as the Augusta County Genealogical Society and the Goochland County Historical Society, focus on areas where my ancestors lived. Finally, I headed to the Library of Virginia. The library had special late hours and was open until 9:00 PM. I found an indenture for an apprenticeship for a Chapman Gordon who may be my ancestor. I found an estate appraisal for Andrew Corn; I wonder if he was the father of my ancestor Elizabeth Corn. I also found my ancestor William Isbell's estate inventory, an account of guardianship for my Mayo ancestors (my 5th-great-grandfather was guardian of his children with my 5th-great-grandmother Ann Isbell, because they had received bequests from William Isbell, their maternal grandfather). I found my ancestor Edward Lucas' will and estate appraisal. I found deeds for land transactions involving my ancestors Russell Blakely and Abel Gower. It was a long but very productive day!

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