A Recipe for Well-being: Health and Illness in Colonial New England
Have you ever wondered what British colonists in New England used for medicine? Learn about some of the popular theories of the causes of illness as well as some common illnesses and treatments, including the roles of food, herbs, bleeding, cupping, blistering, purging, religion, astrology and superstition. Examples of some of the treatments will be presented and their efficacy discussed. This talk will help genealogists place the role of health and medicine in their colonial ancestor’s life into perspective.

A Terrible Malady: Disease and Epidemics in New England
Epidemics of smallpox, measles, yellow fever, diphtheria and other illnesses were common ailments in New England from colonial times up through the 19th century. Learn more about these diseases, why they were so greatly feared by your ancestors, and remedies they may have used.

Beginning Genealogy: Climb Your Family Tree
This two-hour interactive lecture is a comprehensive beginner’s guide to genealogy that will give you the tools to begin building your family tree. We will cover basic research forms, documentation, file organization, and using the U.S. Federal Census. We will conclude with a discussion of the top 5 list of websites and repositories that will help you begin your research.

Bring your Ancestors to Life: Connect via Social History
Transform your ancestors from names and dates on a piece to paper to people who led full and interesting lives through social history. Learn how to incorporate local history and other sources of social history, such as occupation, military service and war, daily life, and recreation into your genealogical research to gain a greater understanding of your ancestors.

From Beginning to Advanced: The Expanding World of Genealogy Education
Come explore all the free and for-fee educational opportunities for genealogists with all levels of experiences. We will cover education via books and magazines, online classes and programs, in-person seminars at the local level, and blogs and podcasts.

Genealogy in your Pajamas: Put your Library Card to Use
Did you know that as a Massachusetts resident you have free access to the Boston Public Library’s online resources? If your town library is associated with the Minuteman system, you can also access some of their online resources from the comfort of your own home. We will cover the electronic genealogical resources available through the Boston Public Library and some of the more popular resources that might be available through your local library (each library decides which databases they will carry).

Mining Town Records: A Treasure Trove of Information|
Town records can contain gems of great interest to genealogical researchers. In addition to vital records, town histories, annual town reports, newspapers published in the town, superintendent circulars, and town websites may contain information that specifically mention your ancestor and/or provide historical context to bring your ancestors to life. This presentation will talk about some of the types of records that may be available and the gems that can be found therein.

Oral Interviews: Connect with the Living Past
This guide to conducting successful oral interviews designed to obtain genealogical information and family stories will focus on lessons the speaker learned through both successful and unsuccessful oral interviews with her grandfathers. We will focus on preparation for the interview, including how to approach the subject you wish to interview, deciding which questions to ask, and choosing the appropriate equipment. We will discuss briefly how to handle situations that may arise during the interview, interview etiquette and transcription of the completed interview.

Impact of the 1918 flu epidemic: A civic records-based approach
The 1918 flu pandemic killed up to 100 million people worldwide in less than a year, disproportionately taking healthy young adults. Everyone was affected in some way. This case study of Boston and two suburbs showcases a variety of resources that can be used to evaluate the local impact of the 1918 flu epidemic. Resources covered include local newspapers, a wide variety of town records including town minutes, annual reports, superintendent circulars, internal memos or newsletters, and hospital records.  

Impact of the 1918 flu epidemic: A personal stories-based approach
The 1918 flu pandemic killed up to 100 million people worldwide in less than a year, disproportionately taking healthy young adults. The personal impact was devastating and wide-ranging, including immigration, families split apart, and openings for women in the workforce. This talk draws on stories and newspaper articles to explore the multi-faceted ways the 1918 flu epidemic impacted families, sometimes for generations.

Was Great-Grandma a Suffragist?
Debuts April 4 2020

This talk explores the multi-faceted suffrage movement from the 1830s to 1920. Tips for researching suffragist ancestors will be provided.