If you're researching German ancestors you won't want to miss the Northeastern Pennsylvania Genealogical Society's German ancestry round table next month.
The presentation, which will focus on finding and documenting German ancestors, is set for the society's Family History Library 11 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Jan. 19. Entitled Ein deutsche Kreis (a German circle), it's the latest event in the society's round table series focusing on the various ethnic groups in Northeastern Pennsylvania.
The library is in the caretaker building at the Hanover Green Cemetery, Middle Road, Hanover Township. If you're coming from the south, drive along the Sans Souci Parkway and turn left at the traffic light at the Hanover Area School District campus to intersect Main Road. The cemetery will be just a short distance to your left. If you're coming from the north, make a right turn at the light.
Topics include German names and place names, immigration and the society's library holdings for German research. Other subjects will include records from three Wilkes-Barre German churches and deciphering old German writing.
The presenter is Norman D. Nicol, Ph.D., professional genealogist and family historian. Reservations are required. To ensure a spot, call (570) 829-1765 or email [email protected].
Don't delay. This fall a similar presentation keyed to Polish genealogy proved so popular that many people who wanted to attend could not be accommodated in one session.
Update: There is no firm date when historic Ellis Island, badly damaged in the Hurricane Sandy disaster, will resume operation.
Today, the National Park Service is working heroically, in awful conditions, to assess and repair the damage, the National Trust for Historic Preservation said recently on its website.
While much of the impact was to several vacant buildings on the site, The grand Main Building had basement flooding, destroying the island's mechanical systems and most other parts of its infrastructure, says the website. However, the immigration hall and most of the exhibits were unaffected.
Early in December park service officials removed all documents and artifacts from Ellis Island to avoid possible damage resulting from continued lack of power for preservation, Digital First Media reported. The materials are being stored in Maryland.
Ellis Island processed millions of immigrants from the 1890s to the 1950s. The only official projection is that it will reopen to the public sometime in 2013. Nearby Liberty Island, home of the Statue of Liberty, is also closed until further notice. For continued updates, go www.nps.gov/elis and click on the storm link.
Photos of the damage to Ellis Island are posted on Page 10 of the National Park Service's Flickr site.
Resources: There's a new Irish genealogy magazine, and it's available free online. It's called Irish Lives Remembered Genealogy. Go to www.irishlivesremembered.com and open the magazine by clicking on the picture of its cover. The current issue contains a section on researching ancestors in County Clare. There's also plenty of information on available genealogical resources in Ireland and on the National Archives of Ireland. One useful feature is a county-by-county list of historical and genealogical societies. Back issues are available on the website as well.
Thanks to Managing Director Eileen Munnally for bringing this promising looking resource to my attention.
News Notes: A tip of the hat to the Luzerne County Historical Society, Anthony Brooks, director, for its annual tours of the Swetland Homestead and the Denison House. The costumed re-enactors and guides at these two buildings from Wyoming Valley's earliest days make a holiday-time visit a truly interactive and enlightening experience.
Tom Mooney is a Times Leader genealogy columnist. Reach him at [email protected].