Tag Archives: Societies

FGS 2014 Off to a Great Start – Wednesday


Focus on Societies lunch on Wednesday at FGS 2014.

So much going on today:  Focus on Society sessions started in the morning with David Rencher and Ed Donakey, then continued following lunch with choice of 18 sessions geared toward society management for society members and leaders.

Exhibitors are busy getting read for the FGS 2014 Exhibit Hall to open on Thursday, August 28, at 9:30 a.m.

Exhibitors are busy getting ready for the FGS 2014 Exhibit Hall to open on Thursday, August 28, at 9:30 a.m.

At the same time, registration was open in the lobby and the Exhibit Hall was buzzing with organizations getting everything ready for the grand opening of exhibits on Thursday morning at 9:30 a.m.

Before the exhibits open, attendees will hear the keynote address, Riders on the Orphan Train, by Phillip Lancaster and Alison Moore at 8:00 a.m. in Ballroom B.

So excited for another great day!

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Society Showcase: Texas Wendish Heritage Society

The Texas Wendish Heritage Society highlights their history, museum and library in the Society Showcase in the FGS 2014 Exhibit Hall.

Society Showcase: Booth S

“In December of 1854, an English sailing vessel, the Ben Nevis, docked in Galveston harbor loaded with some 500 immigrants from Lusatia, an area in Germany comprising parts of Saxony and Prussia. These immigrants were not the typical lot of Germans, Swedes, Czechs, and Poles who flocked to Texas in the 1850’s seeking cheap land and economic opportunity. This group was different.”

So begins the brief history of the Texas Wendish Heritage Society. It is a fascinating story of Slavic pioneers who settled in Lee County in search of religious liberty and the right to speak their Wendish tongue. In the latter part of the 1800s, many of these settlers headed to other parts of Texas. Through the years, the Wendish language died out.

The Texas Wendish Heritage Museum preserves the history of the Texas Wends, Salvic immigrants from Lusatia, an area in eastern Germany. The Texas Heritage Museum is located in Serbin, Texas, near the St. Paul Lutheran Church, school and cemetery. Exhibits include two log buildings and farming equipment. The Lillie Moerbe Caldwell Memorial Library specializes in the history and genealogy of the Wendish people.

The 26th Annual Wendish Fest will be held September 28, 2014, and features traditional Wendish activities on the church grounds, exhibits and crafts at the Museum and exhibitions an demonstrations preserving the Wendish heritage.

Today, thousands of Texans and other Americans can lay claim to the “courageous and fascinating heritage of the Wends.”

In October 2013, the New York Times published an article entitled The Joys of Being Wendish, Festival and All, written by Corrie Maclaggan (The Texas Tribune) featuring the society.

Visit the Texas Wendish Heritage Society in booth S in the Society Showcase in the Exhibit Hall at the FGS 2014 Conference to learn more about their activities, scholarship program, and collections.

FGS 2014 Society Showcase Exhibitors List

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Society Showcase: Williamson County Genealogical Society

Williamson County Genealogical Society is part of the Society Showcase in the FGS 2014 Conference Exhibit Hall.

Williamson County Genealogical Society is part of the Society Showcase in the FGS 2014 Conference Exhibit Hall.

Society Showcase:  Booth H

The Williamson County Genealogical Society (WCGS) was founded in 1981 in Round Rock, Texas. Their purpose is to create and foster an interest in genealogy, to gather and preserve genealogical and historical data, to aid individuals in their genealogical research and in compiling family histories, to establish and maintain a genealogical library through purchases, contributions, and donations; and to provide educational opportunities.

WCGS is a partner with the Round Rock Public Library, which houses and maintains a joint collection of genealogical materials. This collection provides resources for both beginning and experienced family researchers. Visit the RRPL website to view the catalog.

WCGS holds ten regular meetings each year, hosts an annual day-long seminar, conducts genealogy classes and is involved in special projects, such as FamilySearch Indexing. They sponsor a Brick Wall Special Interest Group and a DNA Special Interest Group that meet throughout the year. Each year WCGS publishes ten issues of their newsletter, “The Roundup,” and four issues of their quarterly publication, “The Chisholm Trail.”

WCGS offers a Pioneer Family of Williamson County certificate to those people directly descended from any person who resided in Williamson County, Texas on or before December 31, 1880.  A list of Pioneer Certificates issued to date, sorted by ancestor, can be viewed here: Pioneer Certificates Issued

Visit the WCGS at Booth H in the Society Showcase in the FGS 2014 Conference Exhibit Hall to learn more.

Directory of Society Showcase Exhibitors


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Society Showcase

Registration will open soon for the FGS 2014 Conference in San Antonio. With our local hosts, the San Antonio Genealogical and Historical Society and the Texas State Genealogical Society, we are truly excited about this outstanding genealogical event!

FGS invites all member societies to reserve a table in the FGS 2014 Society Showcase. Society Showcase’s strategic location adjacent to the FGS booth in the exhibit hall will draw plenty of visitors to your table.

Each society is encouraged to decorate their table with an attractive theme to be eligible to win a one-year membership in FGS for their society.

This year, Society Showcase participants can also opt to host a table at the FGS Luncheon on Wednesday. Society members and leaders can combine networking, learning, socializing, eating, marketing, and fun all in one neat event!

Contact Polly Kimmitt at societyshowcase@fgs.org for more information.

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