Monday, April 8, 2013

Saturday in Lafayette

Tami Pelling and Barbara Fitzpatrick put together a nice one-day genealogy gathering called "History Begins with You" in downtown Lafayette this past weekend. Ron Darrah of Indianapolis (and of the IndyGenealogy blog) alternated giving talks. The audience had lots of thoughts and questions.

Ron totally persuaded me to spend more research time on fraternal and similar organizations that became especially common after the Civil War. After church and school, they were often the main thing in small towns and ethnic neighborhoods, and even those groups that no longer exist left many traces in obituaries and on tombstones. Their records, if you can find them, are not just context-providers but potential alternative sources of vital records -- especially since many of these gruops were insurance organizations as well.

Do catch Ron's talk ("The Fraternal Order of Everyone") if you get a chance. And if you don't, check out Kay Haviland Freilich's article in The Source on "Business, Institution, and Organization Records."

Harold Henderson, "Saturday in Lafayette," Midwestern Microhistory: A Genealogy Blog, posted 8 April 2013 ( : accessed [access date]). [Please feel free to link to the specific post if you prefer.]

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