Genealogical Getting (and Giving)

I’ve seen some wonderful, thoughtful lists of genealogy gift ideas this holiday season.

Not that I need them, because of course the only gift I really want this Christmas is family togetherness (and for all my relatives to send me scans of all their ancestral photographs). Little things like that.

All right, I confess I wouldn’t mind getting a DocuPen, but I wouldn’t mind hitting the MegaMillions jackpot, either.

Back down to earth, now.

For those of us with simpler tastes and budgets, a membership to a regional or ethnic genealogy society that focuses on a specific area of interest is a terrific buy. Plus, you get the added bonus of supporting people whose research projects have direct bearing on your own family search.

There are hundreds of ideas out there, but here are just a few examples involving my own regional interests:

The German Genealogy Group:  It’s based in NY but welcomes members from anywhere. A membership is $15/yearly for US citizens; $25/yearly for citizens of other countries.

The Italian Genealogy Group: Individual membership $25/year, $27/year for families and non-US residents.

Both groups are members of the Genealogy Federation of Long Island, whose volunteers spearhead the massive New York City Vital Records indexing project, a truly monumental effort that has resulted in genealogy joy for many, many people, including me.

If you’ve read some of my previous posts, you’ll have noticed my profound admiration for the Troy (NY) Irish Genealogy Society. They’re a prime example of a vigorous and productive regional society, doing valuable preservation work and research. If you know somebody researching Troy roots, you can’t go wrong at  $10 per year, individual membership.

And in the spirit of giving as well as receiving, do consider a donation to any volunteer group whose projects have benefited your research in the last year. I know that the NYC vital records project can always use the support. (Donations can be made payable to the Italian Genealogical Group and sent to John Martino, Project Coordinator, 49 Brookhill Lane, Huntington NY 11743.)

What are your favorite ideas for genealogical getting – or giving?


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