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March 8, 2023 By: Jana Jenkins
Using PERSI to Find Family Stories
Have you ever heard of PERSI?
PERSI stands for the "Periodical Source Index". Almost every genealogy and some historical societies produce a "quarterly" publication aka periodical. If you are a member of SAGHS, you will be very familiar with our quarterly, The Stalkin' Kin in Old West Texas or, as we call it, Stalkin' Kin. Many of you may have had an article ot two  published in it - and if you haven't, get crackin'! We always welcome stories about ancestors or how information on ancstors was found....
What you may not be aware of, is that libraries often join these various societies in order to get the periodicals for their patrons to use. The Allen County Public Library, located in Fort Wayne, Indiana, has an entire floor dedicated to genealogy, with county and town histories, family histories, genealogy books and a large selection of periodicals (and more). They collect these periodicals from genealogy societies, ours included. The ACPL has indexed certain information found in these publications and put it all online in a searchable database under the acronym PERSI. You can search this database by suranme, location or a keyword.
Why would you want to do this? 
Why, to see if you can find a published story about your ancestor or the place they lived, of course! 
If you do find something that looks interesting, you can fill out an order form (up to 6 requests per form), and mail it in for the low cost of $7.50 . There will be a "click here" on the search results page to get the order form.  The librarian will print the story/stories of interest and send it back to you.
To begin your search in PERSI, go here:
Family Search has also published a page in their Wiki about how to access and order from PERS, found here:
February 18, 2023 By: Jana Jenkins
Using the Internet Archive for Genealogy
The Internet Archive is a San Francisco–based nonprofit digital library with the stated mission of “universal access to all knowledge.” It provides free public access to collections of digitized materials, which includes websites, software applications, games, music, movies, videos, moving images, and tens of thousands public-domain books. The Internet Archive’s collection is growing daily and best of all, it is FREE. Go ahead and create a user name and password. If you log in, it makes it easier to download books, save books and mark "favorites".
The Internet Archive has a dedicated section just for genealogy, family history, and local history books. You can search that collection from this link:
Find the box labeled “Search this Collection” (on the left) and search for an ancestor’s full name, just the surname or a place – counties seem to return the most results.
The books that will come up for you to choose from are generally books that contain that ancestor’s name, books about that family’s genealogy or local history books that have that name someplace within the book. Sometimes it will show books written by authors with that surname. If you search for a location you are likely to see county histories which often contain “sketches” about people and/or towns.
The search seems to work best for surnames of families that have been in North America for a century or longer. It does not does not work well for recent immigrants. The reason for that is because the books on this site are out of copyright, which means they were published before 1923. So, don’t look for recent immigrant families in this collection.
Once your search term has returned a page of selections, you can hover your pointer over the book cover to see a short description about the book. There is also a highlighted area (usually in orange) that will show the name or place you searched for.
One a book of interest is located, click on it to "read" it. It will open to show the cover of the book. The blue pointers across the bottom show which pages contain the name or place originally searched for. Hover over the blue marker to see what is contained on each page.
Use the controls along the bottom right to zoom in or out, turn the page either direction or have it read out loud if you want. Hover your pointer over them to see that they do.
If there are a multitude of blue markers, try clicking the far right edge of the book to get to the last page and then use the navigation arrow on the bottom left to page back to an index – hopefully there will be one. Additionally, along the left side there will be a listing of the name found and the pages it is on. You can go down the list and click the page that insterest you.
It is possible, in many cases to download the whole book. Go to the white section below the book and page down. If you are allowed to download the book, on the left you will see choices – PDF, Kindle, etc. Chose what suits your needs and click on that choice. It might be handy to have to book on a local computer for quick reference – especially if you are lucky enough to find a family tree going back many generations.
You can go back to the original page of books that met your search criteria by clicking on your “browser’s back arrow” (top left).
If you do not find what you are looking for you should also search at the overall resource, There will be a much larger selection and many will not pertain to genealogy or history.
February 4, 2023 By: Jana Jenkins
Have you tried Linkpendium? Clicking the link below will open in a new window and closing that window will bring you back here.
 Linkpendium is a 10,000,000+ resource directory to find info about families worldwide and genealogically-relevant information about U.S. states and counties. They cover both free and subscription sites, with a strong emphasis upon free resources provided by libraries, other government agencies, genealogical and historical societies, and individuals.
There are some instructions that explain how to search, or you can just dive right in with the city, county or surname and state - that is found on the right side of the screen. You can also just fill in a name and location at the top. They will point out if a record is found on a free site or a "pay" site. It is an extremely fast search engine, so you can go thru quite a few names in a very short time!
Give it a try and see what information you can find!

May 25, 2022 By: Jana Jenkins
Welcome to our blog!
We are celebrating the 50 year anniversary of SAGHS in 2022-2023 and with that in mind, we will adding tips and ideas to our blog "50 Ways to Celebrate Genealogy." Watch for blog posts starting in 2023 with our ideas of how you can include genealogy and family history in your life. We are so excited to be a very active group after 50 years, and plan to continue on for another 50! Join us on our journey!