Land Records & Genealogy Symposium

Date: Friday, July 10 & Saturday, July 11, 2015.

Homestead National Monument of America, a unit of the National Park Service, and the Beatrice Campus of Southeast Community College are proud to partner to bring this Land Records and Genealogy Symposium to Beatrice, NE. Participants will gain a greater understanding of the uses of all different types of records and strategies for successful historical and genealogical research.

Click Small green HERE to view or download the program and registration form.

* 2015 Spring Genealogy Classes *

To sign up, call: 402-706-1453  -or-  email:
Classes are held at the Mormon Trail Center, 3215 State St. Omaha.
Doors open at 9:00 am.  All classes are free!
Click HERE (green) to view or download the flyer.
Jan 17
Introduction to family history: When I’ve recorded the ones I know, then what?
Feb 21
Part I: Vital Records for the vital events of their lives
Part II: Substitutes for vital records
Mar 21
Making Sense of the Census: Using US & International censuses to map a family’s progress.
Apr 18
-Family Search & Family Tree: becoming the world’s go-to place for family history.
-Uncle Sam wants you: finding & using US military records, with clues to such other things as land acquisitions.
May 16
-Web sites: Just a few of our favorites before you start Googling your ancestors.
-What’s Black & White & Read all over?  Finding & using historic newspapers.
Jun 20
-What’s in the Court House besides vital Records?
-Breaking Down Brick Walls.

Members Only page

The password has now been changed on the “Members Only” page. Please email if you have any questions.

Pottawattamie County Oral History Project needs volunteers

The PCGS is embarking on a joint project with the Historical Society of Pottawattamie County:  Oral History interviews of Pott. Co. veterans, in compliance with the Veterans History Project of the Library of Congress.  Volunteers will also conduct oral history interviews of older Pott. Co. residents who were not in the military. Interview training will be provided.  Just think—besides preserving our elders’ important historical recollections, this experience can help you collect information from your own family members.  If you’re interested, contact Merrily at 402-706-1453 or, or Bob Anderson at

Indexing help needed for Omaha Bee

This can be done from home through Chronicling America!  The index will go on our website (since we also have these newspapers on microfilm at the library). Contact Merrily at 402-706-1453 or

See us on Facebook!

We have finally added a facebook page. You can find it under “Greater Omaha Genealogy Society”.
Come check it out.

PAL: A New Tool for Genealogists

When researching for ancestors, what do you do when you come across a name you think may be an ancestor, but are not certain? Do you add it to your genealogy data base anyway? Do you write it down in a note book? Do you just pass it by?

Terry, our society “techie”, has developed a handy Microsoft Excel spreadsheet, formatted especially for situations like that. Now you can keep all your “maybe/maybe-not” names in one place, without cluttering up your genealogy database or keeping a list of them in a note book. Functional and attractive, the spreadsheet is very simple to use. In it you list the name of the suspected ancestor, pertinent information such as birth, marriage, and death date, and who in your genealogy database you suspect this person might be related to. The database also accepts whatever notes you may wish to enter about the suspected ancestor. The system is named PAL, short for Potential Ancestors List. Each potential ancestor you enter into your PAL database will have a “PAL number”. In your genealogy database, you will keep track  of which of your ancestors might possibly be related to someone in your PAL database by indicating the PAL #  (or the PAL # and the name of the suspected ancestor), in the notes section of that ancestor in your genealogy database. This essentially ties the two databases together. You can list all your “possibles” in PAL, keeping your main genealogy database clutter-free. And if you do prove a suspected link, the information is right at hand in PAL and easily transferred to your main genealogy database.

PAL has room for 2,000 name entries. Instructions for using PAL–should you need any–are located on the same Excel worksheet to the right of where you enter information about possible ancestors.

PAL is a FREE download from this website–just scroll down to the blue download box in the right sidebar.  There are two versions of PAL—one for Microsoft Excel 2007-2010, and one for earlier Excel versions.  All the column headings, etc. in PAL are protected so that you can’t change any of them by accident. However, if you are knowledgeable in Excel and think you’d like to tweak PAL to suit your own needs, the “unprotect sheet” command does not require a password, so have at it.