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  • Scratching Up Sources with WorldCat

    Thursday, Mar 28, 2013

    by Delia

    We're genealogists. We always want more. More information about our ancestors. More details. More maps, more cemetery records, more church histories. And when we run across a vague reference to another source, we want that, too. WorldCat (World Catalog) may be just what you need.

    WorldCat is part of OCLC. OCLC, the Online Computer Library Center, was founded in 1967 as the Ohio College Library Center, and was intended to aid Ohio libraries by sharing cataloging records and to facilitate interlibrary loans. By the 1990s, it was used by libraries all over the world and the first public access catalog, WorldCat, was made available through libraries. Now, WorldCat is available online from any computer. It not only allows you to search for books, computer resources and select articles by author, title, subject and keyword, but allows you to limit to language, date published, and format. The result will let you know in what library or archives the material is located, but also how far it is from your location.WorldCat also allows you to create your own free account, which will allow you to create lists of material you've used or plan to use.

    If you haven't tried WorldCat, now is the time. Have Fun!

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Familiar Faces at the FGS 2013 Conference

    Monday, Mar 25, 2013

    by Dawne

    The Genealogy Center is anticipating this summer’s Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference that will be here in Fort Wayne the 21st through the 24th of August, with a special Librarians’ Day pre-conference event on the 20th of August. When FGS comes to town, The Genealogy Center always gets involved in a big way, from hosting some conference-related events – like Librarians’ Day – onsite, to offering extended hours for genealogists to do research early in the morning before attending sessions, and late into the night after the day’s lectures.

    When Fort Wayne is the locality of the state or a national conference, The Genealogy Center’s staff usually gets directly involved, and not just during the days of the event, but in the earliest planning stages. This year, several Genealogy Center staff members are participating in the conference planning and execution.

    Genealogy Center Manager Curt Witcher is on the FGS 2013 Conference Committee as the representative of the Allen County Public Library, one of the two local co-hosts organizations of the conference. The Allen County Genealogical Society of Indiana is the other local co-host organization. Curt also will be delivering four lecture sessions and speaking at the Indiana Genealogical Society-sponsored luncheon. Curt’s topics are “SOS! Saving Our Societies & Thriving in the 21st Century,” “Your Society Wants You! Effective Recruiting Strategies for Genealogical Societies,” “Being the Outstanding Leader Your Society Needs,” “Digital Lincoln: Access to an Incomparable Collection of Abraham Lincoln Materials,” discussing the library’s Lincoln Financial Foundation Collection, and “The Indiana Genealogical Society: A Case Study in Thriving,” at the IGS luncheon.

    Genealogy Center Assistant Manager of Public Services Melissa Shimkus is serving on the 2013 Program Committee as co-chair from the local area. The Program Committee has put together a fantastic conference that is full of engaging, knowledgeable speakers on a wide variety of topics! You can read about the individual sessions at the conference website. In addition, Melissa is presenting three lectures, “Researching at The Genealogy Center,” “Researching Indiana Digital Collections Online” and “Why Should I Look at Revolutionary War Pension Records?” In addition to her other duties, Melissa will be coordinating ACPL staff who want to volunteer for various duties during the conference.

    Delia Bourne, Genealogy Center librarian, is co-chair of Librarians’ Day. She is also presenting three lectures at the conference: “Beginning Kentucky Research at The Genealogy Center,” “Researching Your Confederate Ancestor at The Genealogy Center” and “Researching Your Union Ancestor at The Genealogy Center.”

    Dawne Slater-Putt, Genealogy Center librarian, is National Conference Co-Chair, and Aaron Smith, Genealogy Center Assistant Manager of the Materials Handling Unit, is co-chair of the Audio-Visual Committee. Kay Spears, Genealogy Center Department Assistant and graphic artist, designed the conference logo and other publicity pieces for the event. During the week of the conference, all of The Genealogy Center staff will be on hand to help visitors to The Center, and don’t be surprised to see some familiar smiling faces from elsewhere in the ACPL system pitching in as well.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Remembering the Flood of 1913

    Friday, Mar 22, 2013

    by Dawne

    In late March of 1913, the Ohio Valley experienced one of the most devastating floods of all time. Especially in river towns like Peru, Logansport and Fort Wayne, Indiana, and Dayton, Ohio, the water was all-consuming. Fort Wayne is home to the Maumee River Basin, one of the eight major watersheds in the state. The confluence of the Maumee, St. Joseph and St. Marys Rivers is in the heart of town, and the Basin also includes the Trier, Junk and Fairfield Ditches and Spy Run Creek.

    Locally, the rivers crested at 26.1 feet before the flood waters receded. Some 5,000 acres were flooded in the Fort Wayne area and 15,000 were left homeless for more than a week. The property loss was estimated at $25 million.

    The devastation in the Midwest began with deadly tornadoes in Nebraska and Iowa on Easter Sunday, March 23. The storms moved eastward across Illinois and into Indiana. Northern Indiana already had experienced a heavy rainfall on Good Friday, March 21. Between the morning of March 23 and the night of March 25, 4.75 inches of rain fell. As many as 2000 homes were underwater in Fort Wayne by Tuesday, March 25. Before the rivers crested at 26.1 feet on Wednesday night, the Lakeside dikes of the St. Joseph River broke in two places. The electric light plant was submerged, casting Fort Wayne into darkness for two nights. The three pumping stations stalled, leaving the town vulnerable with no fire protection.

    Six people are reported to have lost their lives in Fort Wayne during the Great Flood of 1913, including four young girls from the Allen County Orphans Home who drowned when their boat capsized during an attempt to move children from the home to a safer location. In other cities, the loss of life was even greater. In Peru, on the Wabash River, twenty people died. And in Dayton, Ohio, 150 died.

    In Peru, the winter quarters of the Hagenbeck-Wallace Circus were flooded with six feet of water. Joseph Leiethel, one of the circus managers, reported that the elephants panicked, pulled their stakes from the ground and began to fight with one another in their fear. Five elephants were killed in the fighting, three were drowned and one died of exhaustion. Three escaped and were roaming the countryside. “Most of the monkeys went floating down the crest of the flood huddled on pieces of wreckage,” Leiethel said.

    The storms raged on eastward, all the way to Vermont, leaving citizens in their wake to pick up the pieces of their lives and their communities.

    Sources:

    Drinker, Frederick E. Horrors of Tornado, Flood and Fire. Phildadelphia: National Pub. Co., ca. 1913.

    Griswold, B. J. “The Flood of March 1913.” The Pictorial History of Fort Wayne, Indiana. Chicago: Robert O. Law Co., 1917. Page 549.

    Shoaff, John H. “Fort Wayne’s Floods.” History of Fort Wayne & Allen County, Indiana, 1700-2005, Vol. 1. John Beatty, ed. Evansville, Ind.: M.T. Publishers & Co., Inc., 2006. Pages 415-419.

    Wright, George T. “Water USA: Resources, Conservation, Demand.” Paper prepared for the Quest Club. 17 Dec. 1965. Quest Club Papers; digital image viewed online at www.acpl.info in the Quest Club Papers collection in Community Album. Click to view.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • 411 on Our Catalog on 4/11!

    Tuesday, Mar 19, 2013

    As you plan your trip to The Genealogy Center, are you lost when using our Catalog? Once you're here, does it still seem complicated that you just end up browsing the stacks, missing some material? Here is the opportunity to learn how to locate the more than a million items in The Genealogy Center collection. In this virtual tour of the catalog systems, instructors Melissa Shimkus and Aaron Smith will demonstrate the different features of the system, including special notes and making lists.

    The class will be 2 PM to 4 PM on Thursday April 11, 2012, in Meeting Room A.

    For more information, see the brochure.

    To register for this free class, send an email or call 260-421-1225.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Researching Irish Ancestors

    Sunday, Mar 17, 2013

    by John

    Today is St. Patrick's Day. For many places it is an unofficial early rite of Spring and it affords many people a chance to think about Ireland, whether or not they actually have any Irish heritage. In the last census more than 36 million Americans claimed Irish heritage - 11.9 percent of the population, while another 3.5 million (1.2 percent) claimed specifically Scots-Irish heritage. These numbers are actually small, and the number of Americans with at least one ancestor of Irish blood, whether Catholic or Protestant, is undoubtedly much higher. Even President Obama claims Irish heritage on his mother's side.

    Family historians wishing to trace their Irish heritage face a number of obstacles. The biggest problem that most encounter is not knowing the exact place in Ireland where their ancestor was born. Scots-Irish settlers who arrived in the eighteenth century usually came from parts of Ulster (the counties of Down, Londonderry, Tyrone, and Antrim), while those arriving later in the 1840s during the Potato Famine came from all over Ireland, especially the western provinces of Connacht and Munster. Passenger lists from the period typically list just "Ireland" for a passenger's birthplace.

    Here are some steps for researching one's Irish heritage. First, identify the immigrant as completely as possible from American sources. Use census records, church records, cemetery records, mortuary records, city directories, newspaper obituaries, and even fraternal lodge records.

    Second, look for other identifying information about the immigrant in American sources. If your Irish ancestor got married in America, there is a chance that the birthplace or at least the county of birth was recorded in the church record. The amount of detail preserved varied greatly from church to church, depending on the interest and record-keeping practices of the pastor or priest. Look also for the burial and cemetery record of the immigrant. Sometimes specific birthplace information was recorded in the church burial register or on the tombstone. Look for the obituary. If he or she died in a city with a sizable Irish population, there might have been specific information recorded about the place of birth. If a family arrived with children born in Ireland, seek out records for the whole family, including marriage and burial records for every sibling. It only takes one such record to provide the necessary clue.

    Sometimes notices were published in newspapers by relatives in Ireland looking for lost family members who had immigrated. Those published in the Boston Pilot between 1831 and 1920 have been gathered in a set of books titled, Search for Missing Friends 974.402 B65sea.

    If you can identify the town and county, a number of tools exist, both in Ireland and in The Genealogy Center, to go further back in time. Ireland has suffered a great deal from record destruction, including a 1922 fire in the Public Records Office that destroyed many census, court, and probate records, as well as some church records stored there. Many records have survived, however, and there are guidebooks available to show what kinds of sources may exist for a particular place.

    The task of bridging the genealogical divide between America and Ireland can be challenging. But persistence and tenacity can sometimes pay off.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Music Celebrates Heritage

    Friday, Mar 15, 2013

    by Delia

    Music has played a big part in my life, from the hymns drilled into my head in the children's choir, to rock and roll that grew as I did, to learning about the earlier music - classical, big band, jazz and blues. I have recently been exposed to blue grass music, an American style with Celtic roots.

    On Siriusxm Radio's Bluegrass Junction, I was listening to the Track by Track show recently, and the album being discussed was "God Didn't Choose Sides, Volume 1 - Civil War True Stories About Real People"written and performed by well-known Country and Blue Grass artists. This project focuses on the common men and women, North and South, who were affected by the war. During the show, one of the participants described going into museums to study photographs and other items, then researching the stories behind the artifacts. I found the whole idea fascinating since Civil War politics and the statistics of battles and troop movements don't interest me nearly as much as the personal stories of the people involved. The project's website has a section for each song which includes lyrics, historical background of the story that inspired the lyrics, with specific names, photographs and other historical information.

    My husband purchased this first of three volumes of the project and the songs are beautiful. What does all this have to do with family history? In this era of when family historians are participating in the sesquicentennial of the Civil War, it's good to know that non-genealogists also feel the pull of history and the urge to tell the stories of those who were involved.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Easter Holiday Closing

    Sunday, Mar 10, 2013

    We want to remind everyone that The Genealogy Center, like the rest of the Allen County Public Library's Main Branch, will be closed Sunday March 31, 2013. We are open our regular hours, 9A to 6P, on Saturday, March 30th, and on Monday, April 1st, 9A to 9P.

    Whether they celebrate the holiday or not, many families have traditionally gathered that day, sharing stories of childhoods and ancestors.This year, if your family gathers, listen and record (audio, video or with pen and paper) the stories your relatives wish to impart.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Houses Can Tell Family Stories

    Thursday, Mar 07, 2013

    by Melissa

    Our homes have been witnesses to our everyday lives, as well as to the great events that shape our families. For future generations, our houses might tell part of the story but can our homes be used to document our family history? Viewing my childhood home, one might question who played with the basketball hoop that still hangs over the driveway? Or what family events, besides barbecues, took place in the lanai and pool area? Using aerial maps, someone might question the disappearance and reappearance of an oak tree that appears one year in the back yard and the next in the front yard.

    If someone were to gut my childhood home and examine the framework, they would see another part of the story. When the house was being built, my father had my sister and I write our names, ages, and heights on one of the beams. Years later, my dad began a tradition that with every home repair or renovation project that exposed a beam, each child's name, age, height, and a message would be written and preserved. Our family is chronicled within the walls of this house. This idea to document our lives within the structure had been passed down through my father's family.

    My grandfather, who served in the Pacific during World War II, returned home after being missing in action for more than two years. Due to his time in the War, he was familiar with nuclear fallout so at the height of the Cold War, he built a house that featured a basement and an underground bunker. My father helped him with the construction and electrical work on the building which has numerous notes inscribed within its structure.

    My grandfather grew up in a farmhouse that is a patchwork of each prior generation's development. It was originally a one room abode, but over the years, rooms were added in a haphazard fashion. These rooms are incongruent yet shape a story, such as the second floor staircase, which does not appear strategically placed, except for the fact that it is built over a hidden hallway that would allow the family to hide or escape should the need arise. Among the numerous exposed beams in this house are written notes concerning family members who have lived on the farm in previous and current generations.

    Using aerial maps, plat maps, Sanborn maps, and historic photos, we can witness the varying construction and external markings on a structure, which tell us a family story. And who knows what other interesting tales may be residing within the walls of our homes and what they might tell future generations.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • March 15: Australian Research Tips!

    Monday, Mar 04, 2013

    Register soon to attend "Researching Australian Family History, with Additional Tips for Finding Your American Ancestor in Australia," presented by Liz Pidgeon, Local and Family History Librarian at Yarra Plenty Regional Library, in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia. She will provide an introduction to research in Australia, and an overview of sources, including archives, genealogy and family history societies, convict research, military resources, and libraries, including the National Library's Trove website, and she will also be available for research questions after the lecture.  This one-hour class starts at 2:00 PM and will be held in Meeting Room A.

    For more information, see the brochure. To register for this free event, send an email or call 260-421-1225.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Telling Your Story - March Madness, Genealogy style Programs

    Friday, Mar 01, 2013

    The Genealogy Center's version of March Madness is next week, Monday March 4th through Saturday March 9th. This year, we are concentrating on the stories of our and our ancestors' lives. Classes include:

    Monday March 4, 2013, 2P-3P, Meeting Room A
    Gathering & Writing the Stories of Your Life -- Beginning Steps
    Curt Witcher

    Tuesday March 5, 2013, 2P-3P, Meeting Room A
    Did It Really Happen That Way? Documenting Oral History
    Delia Bourne

    Wednesday March 6, 2013, 2P-3P, Meeting Room A
    Insuring Our Story: Recording & Transcribing Oral History
    Melissa Shimkus

    Thursday March 7, 2013, Heirlooms & Artifacts – Meeting Room A
    11A – 12N: Tracking Heirlooms & Telling Their Stories
    Dawne Slater-Putt
    2 P – 3 P: Beyond the Family Bible: Making the Most of Heirlooms and Artifacts in Genealogical Research
    John Beatty

    Friday March 8, 2013, 10A-11A, Meeting Room A
    Writing Personal History
    Dawne Slater-Putt

    Saturday March 9, 2013, 10A-11A, Meeting Room A
    Creating a Family History Storybook
    Cynthia Theusch

    For more information, see the March Madness brochure. To register for any or all of these free events, send an email or call 260-421-1225.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Well, Yes, We ARE Busy....

    Tuesday, Feb 26, 2013

    by Delia

    As you enter The Genealogy Center, you are greeted by a staff member and stop to ask a few questions before starting your research. Or maybe, when you enter, there are several people already asking questions at the desk, so, anxious to start, you bypass the crowd and begin on your own. Either way, later on, you have questions and you look over, and there are a couple of staff members tapping away at a keyboard or examining a book or some papers. No one is asking them any questions, but they look so busy that you don't want to "bother" them.

    Well, first, and most importantly, we are never "too busy" to answer your questions and guide you in your research, so you must just overcome that hesitance and ask away. But, yes, we are busy, doing many things that, we hope, will add to our collections and enable you to search more efficiently.

    So, just what are we doing?

    One staff member peruses book catalogs and periodicals, seeking announcements of new books that are being published, books that we'd like to add to our collection. Another staff member is keeping track of the film that has been borrowed from the Family History Library. Someone else may be organizing material that has been donated or loaned to us for our Photocopy Exchange Program. That person is creating an addition for our Free Databases, and this one is editing something for publication, while I am making additions or corrections to our Fort Wayne and Allen County, Indiana Area Obituary Index, and yet another colleague is devising a schedule that will allow our small staff to provide reference assistance at all times.

    Then there are things that all of us do on a regular basis, including planning and preparing programs and classes, preparing for Consultations, writing guides and articles for Genealogy Gems, and updating this blog, as well as our Facebook and Twitter accounts. And this year, we are also planning for the Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference, on August 21-24, 2013.

    And then there are the smaller tasks that pop up on a regular basis, so, yes, we are busy improving The Genealogy Center for you, our visitor. But remember, we are never too busy for you to ask us a question!

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Free Databases Keep Growing

    Friday, Feb 22, 2013

    More than 4,000 cemetery records for Jay County, Indiana, have been added recently to The Genealogy Center's Free Databases, as well as 4,000 entries into the Evangelical Messenger Obituary Index. Thanks to the many volunteers and donors who make this a rich and growing website for genealogical researchers!

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Another African American Collection Is Growing

    Tuesday, Feb 19, 2013

    Recently, additions have been made to the Marsha Smiley African American Collection! This wonderful collection, gathered by Fort Wayne African-American historian and researcher, Marsha Smiley, includes area African-American fraternal organizational material and memorial cards, and is hosted on The Genealogy Center's Free Databases website. Our appreciation to Ms. Smiley as she continues to add to this material, creating a growing collection for those searching the African-American community in Fort Wayne!

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Bread Upon the Water

    Saturday, Feb 16, 2013

    by Delia

    Back in the mid-1990s, when The Genealogy Center was still the Genealogy Department, staff members were trying to add material to our collection. We realized that there were some areas in the United States for which we had very little -- or nothing at all -- as research sources. So my colleagues and I began writing letters (before email!) to various archives and societies, seeking information about sources they had, for donation, if possible.

    We received some really nifty stuff in return. Some we had to purchase, but many were gifts from different locales, schools, churches, historical societies and businesses.

    A few days ago, there was a package addressed to me, and inside were two volumes for us as donations, a very nice letter telling me that the archives to which I'd sent a request more than 15 years ago was now able to send material, and a copy of my original letter! It was great to know that the requests I had sent then were still bearing fruit!

    And, of course, this is also a reminder that we are still looking for those local items that make our collection such a great resource: church directories and histories; school yearbooks of any year or location; business, town and neighborhood histories; and, naturally, family histories. If you're not sure we'd want it (though undoubtedly we will), just email us.

    And thank you, to all who have donated in the past. We couldn't do it without you.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Announcing Additions to the Genealogy Tracers Database

    Tuesday, Feb 12, 2013

    The Genealogy Tracers of Cleveland, Ohio, have added more to their Obituaries and Memorial Programs database, hosted by The Genealogy Center. These documents add a wealth of information for the subjects of each item, as well as family and community members. The Genealogy Tracers continue to gather and add more items on a regular basis, expanding this database so that it is beneficial to those in Ohio and other states. The material is available on our Free Databases page!

     

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • And, Yes, We're Open!

    Saturday, Feb 09, 2013

    by Delia

    The Uniform Monday Holiday Act of 1968 created Washington's Birthday on the third Monday of each February. Washington was born February 11, 1731, but due to Great Britain's change from the Julian to the Gregorian Calendar in 1752, which not only moved the calendar forward eleven days, but also made January 1st the start of the new year, instead of March 25th, he switched his birthday to February 22, 1732, to reflect this change. His birthday became a holiday for Federal workers in the District of Columbia in 1879, then expanded to all Federal workers in 1885. Lincoln's birthday (February 12) has never been an official holiday, but businesses began using the term Presidents' Day, and several states made their official holidays "Presidents' Day."

    Whatever you call it, The Genealogy Center will be open its regular hours, 9A to 9P, and staff members will be here to answer questions and guide you in your research. Presidents' Day has traditionally been a great day for researchers, so come on in!

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Finishing Our Shift

    Tuesday, Feb 05, 2013

    Good news! The shift is over! To provide room for expansion in our book stacks, a project was undertaken to shift material, creating room for growth. A great deal of planning to streamline the process was done before a single book was moved, and the result is amazing! In just two and a half months, our staff moved almost 75% of our book collection!

    Books for Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri and Wisconsin (977.4 thought 977.8) joined the Western state books in the compact shelving, and the rest of general United States material and Eastern states spread into the space created, leaving top shelves and some bottom shelves free for future expansion.

    To create space in the compact shelves for these Midwestern states books, European material was moved from the south set of compact shelves to the western part of the north set of compact shelves.

    Click to view the new Genealogy Center layout.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Getting Back to Basics: Hitting the Books

    Wednesday, Jan 30, 2013

    by Delia

    Recently, I had a customer ask what The Genealogy Center has on the computers. She said she always comes for the extensive collection of books, some of which are one of a kind, and the microfilm collections, but she was noticing more people coming in and spending the whole day on the computer, so she wondered what we had that she couldn't get at home.

    We have an excellent collection of subscription databases, including Ancestry, Fold 3, American Ancestors, Origins Network, Slavery and Anti-Slavery Archive, and Archives Unbound. I showed her their location on our On-Site Databases page and explained each of them. She was happy to know what we had and said she'd try them on her next visit.

    But her question made me think. We all love having information instantly, just sitting at the glowing screen and pulling data from various wide-flung archives and databases. But we need to be careful about neglecting the book and microfilm collection as we research. Yes, Ancestry does have all of the Federal Census online and it's searchable. But sometimes it's just better to browse the pages using microfilm. Yes, Fold 3 does have many military records, but not everything. And, yes, some of our books have been digitized and are available at Internet Archive or Family History Archive. But those constitute only a small part of the collection.

    So the next time you visit, be sure to spend some of your time curling up with a good book or two or a hundred. We receive new volumes of local and regional records and histories, military and family histories every month. Take a few minutes to search the catalog before you arrive. There is a great deal of information awaiting you between the covers!

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Before We Open....

    Sunday, Jan 27, 2013

    By Dawne

    When the doors of the library open at 9 a.m. (or noon on Sunday) and you enter The Genealogy Center, you will see one or two librarians seated at the Ask desk, working on projects and waiting to welcome patrons. Guest passes are there for you to collect and the librarians are ready to answer your questions about where to find materials, the layout of the department, and where to begin your research. Computers, copiers and printers are humming and ready to go. Have you ever thought about what goes on before the library opens in the morning to get the area ready for you to do your research?

    An Environmental Services housekeeper is the first to begin the day’s preparations in The Genealogy Center, dusting and cleaning counters and around computers and starting to turn on machines. This starts before 8 a.m.

    The day-shift librarians “clock in” at 8. They continue the task of turning on lights in the catalog and copier alcoves and powering up the machinery, including copiers, printers, catalog stations, the registration computer, public service computers, print station computer, microtext scanners and Ask desk computers and printers. Currently, the public service computers are left on overnight to receive updates, but this has not always been the closing routine. If everything in the department needed to be powered on, there would be somewhere in the neighborhood of 120 buttons to press!

    One of the first tasks of the librarians is to print the day’s guest passes. These are sheets of paper that have temporary library card numbers for our non-ACPL-cardholding patrons to use to log into the computers. If we are running low on copy/print cards, one of the librarians might prepare a stack of cards. Occasionally someone takes some old guest passes or other paper and cuts it into quarters to make scrap paper for customers who come into the department on a whim without bringing supplies. We also restock the boxes of golf pencils that we keep for the same reason, and the handouts that we have at the Ask desk.

    A full-time shelver comes on duty at 8:30 a.m. and begins cleaning the glass on the copiers and the digital sender, and adds paper to all of the copiers and printers. This is also the time for routine maintenance on microfilm and fiche readers and printers. Service is no longer available on some of the old readers, and the Allen County Public Library's Maintenance staff have been trained to repair them.

    Once or twice a week, The Center staff, those who are familiar faces and the behind-the-scenes crew who process and catalog the collection, gathers for a 30- to 40-minute meeting during the 8 a.m. hour to touch base on public activities and events, library issues and other topics.

    If there is time left, the librarians start cleaning the spam messages out of the Ask a Librarian email queue and answering the questions that have come into that mailbox overnight. Then the door locks click, the elevator bells ring and the sound of footsteps coming up the stairs can be heard – it’s time to welcome the day’s patrons to The Genealogy Center!

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center

  • Plug-In Your Armchair Genealogy: Researching from Home

    Thursday, Jan 24, 2013

    This session takes the armchair research of the past - letters, queries, Interlibrary loan and phone calls - and gives it a modern twist. There's so much that can be found through the Internet to advance your research, even if you do not subscribe to a single commercial (for-pay) database!

    Meeting Room A, 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM.

    To register for this free class, send an email or call 260-421-1225.

    For more information, see our WinterTech brochure.

    Posted by: ACPL Genealogy Center