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Join the fun! Information on ISGS events including conferences, webinars, and ISGS member societies can be found on our calendar of events.

All ISGS webinars are free and available to the public when presented live. After the live broadcast, ISGS members can access the archived webinar from the Members Only section and enjoy a replay of it as many times as they'd like! View previous webinar topics and consider joining ISGS to enjoy this great member benefit.

Save the date - ISGS 2019 Fall Conference

2018 Fall Conference | October 25 & 26, 2019
Chicago Marriott Naperville- Special Conference rate of $89.00 plus tax
Featuring Paul Woodbury, M.Ed. & Michael D. Lacopo, DVM

Vendor/Exhibitor information and registration is now available!

Upcoming Webinars 

July 2019

Online German Church Registers, Duplicates and Substitutes
  • Presenter: James M. Beidler
  • Date:  July 9, 2019
  • Time:  8:00 PM Central
  • Description:   No genealogist with German-speaking ancestors avoids using church records, and the good news is that many more of them are coming online in digital form. It's important, however, to know whether you're looking at originals, duplicates or extracts from these records – this presentation will explain the differences.
  • Registration:

August 2019
The Great Lakes and the Role They Played in the Years of Prohibition
  • Presenter: Jean Wilcox Hibben
  • Date:  August 13, 2019
  • Time:  8:00 PM Central
  • Description:   During Prohibition in the United States, a great many people obtained alcohol from Canada, then moved it to big cities in the U.S. (e.g., Chicago, Detroit, Minneapolis, etc.). This program will focus on Chicago's illegal importation of booze. If your ancestor lived in or near the Windy City (or any other large cities around the lakes) during the 1920s, there is a possibility that he/she was involved in bootlegging, on some level.
  • Registration:

September 2019
Telling the Story with Maps: Maps of Early Illinois and Where to Find Them
  • Presenter: Ginger Frere
  • Date:  September 10, 2019
  • Time:  8:00 PM Central
  • Description:   As the saying goes, "A picture is worth a thousand words." This is also the case with maps. From simple hand-drawn sketches to intricately detailed masterpieces, maps can convey immense detail. They can provide the names of places, distances, topography, geographical features, migration routes, land ownership, boundaries and political jurisdictions. Maps allow us to see the physical relationship between places. Maps can help us answer questions – how did our ancestors get from one place to another?
  • Registration:

October 2019
Researching Your Illinois Catholic Ancestors
  • Presenter:  Lisa Oberg
  • Date:  October 8, 2019
  • Time:  8:00 PM Central
  • Description:   Since Father Jacques Marquette first visited the area that is now Chicago in the late 17th century, Catholic immigrants have been drawn to Illinois. Germans, Poles, Bohemian/Czechs, Italians, and more recently immigrants from Central and South America, have all settled in significant numbers in Illinois, in addition to other ethnic groups. Catholic records can provide invaluable clues for genealogists. This webinar will provide insight into how Catholicism shaped history and discuss how to locate parish records, what you can expect to find, and how to interpret records when you do find them.
  • Registration:

November 2019
Chicago Research: Planning is the Key to Success
  • Presenter:  Jeanne Lazalere Bloom
  • Date:  November 12, 2019
  • Time:  8:00 PM Central
  • Description:  Learn how to prepare for research in Chicago, where to locate online points of entry for Chicago records, and how to plan for onsite research. A case study demonstrates how to apply these techniques.

December 2019
Illinois Servitude and Emancipation Records
  • Presenter:  Anita Boyd
  • Date:  December 10, 2019
  • Time:  8:00 PM Central
  • Description:  A friend of John Brown, her husband's activities in the Abolitionist Movement were legendary but Louisana Bell's own tale of freedom was extraordinary. With a series of case studies, attendees will be given an overview of this database which contains a wealth of genealogical information for anyone researching Free People of Color. Hidden among these gems is one remarkable Queen City family.
  • Registration:

The 2019 ISGS Webinar Series is sponsored by Family Search.