Florida Genealogical Society (Tampa)

Serving the Needs of the Genealogical Community for Over 50 Years

May Day! May Day!

Join us on May 6th from 11:00 am to 12:30 pm for our annual May Day! May Day! meeting where you will be able to discuss research resources and strategies in different areas of the U.S. and abroad with experts and librarians.  This meeting will be held in our excellent Florida History and Genealogy Library on Floor 2 West of the John F. Germany Public Library located at 900 N. Ashley Blvd, Tampa.

Family History Survey - Your Help Needed!

Survey-Image Thomas MacEntee, GeneaBloggers, is conducting a survey to help determine how the genealogy industry can better serve the needs of genealogists and family historians.  If you have a minute, click here to complete the survey with just 11 easy questions.  Thomas stated:

Did you know that it isn't always easy to determine what's going on in the genealogy and family history market? What do genealogists and family historians want most when it comes to products and services? What issues matter to genealogists with different skill levels?

You have often heard statements such as "Genealogy is a $2 billion industry" or "Genealogy is the second most popular hobby," right? Since there are no public companies in our industry, it isn't always easy to determine whether these statements are valid. Completing surveys like the one below is one way to better understand the genealogy industry.

Your email address WILL NOT be collected and you WILL NOT be contacted with any offers!

Thanks for your participation.


Monthly Meeting Handouts

The handouts for many of the presentations made at our monthly meetings are available for a limited time in the Secure Download area of the Members Only area of our website. These are made accessible through the generosity of many of our speakers, and are typically available for 90 days following the meeting. Login to the Members Only area, click on the Secure Download link, and click on the Mtg. Handouts link. Please do not share these with non-FGS Members. This is one of our own members' benefits.

Ancestry DNA Test Kit Discount

Ancestry DNA is pleased to offer our society's members a 20% discount on DNA test kits. Get the details and the coupon code in the Members Only Area of our website!


Members Only - Facebook Groups

The Genealogy & Historical Groups/Pages on Facebook is a vast compendium of Facebook pages created by Katherine R. WIlson thatprovides links on Facebook where you can connect with other researchers who share an interest in a specific topical area. This includes the US and all its states and territories, many foreign countries, and a wide array of specialized topics. You must have a free Facebook account in order to use Facebook. Some of these groups are closed
 access and may require you to request to join the group. All of these sites are in English.
The list is a copyrighted document by Ms. Wilson and is made available to our members by her permission. You can find it in the Members Only area of our website. 


Members Only - RootsMagic Software/Book

Our society members have another new member benefit. RootsMagic has made available to our society members several great discount pricing offers on their software and a bundle including the book, Getting the Most Out of RootsMagic, by Bruce Buzbee, the creator of RootsMagic software.
Here are the ordering options:
  • Order the electronic version of the RootsMagic Ver. 7 software and the PDF version of the book - $19.95
  • Order the RootsMagic Ver. 7 software on disk - $19.95 
  • Order the RootsMagic Ver. 7 software on disk and the softcover version of the book - $29.95
Visit the Members Only area of our website, select Secure Download, and click on the RootsMagic Software Discount box. The PDF document there describes the offer and provides the code to use to obtain the discount pricing.

Members Only - Findmypast Discount

Our society has just acquired one more benefit to add to the long list of reasons to be an active member. Findmypast.com has partnered with us to provide our members with a 50% discount for a twelve-month world subscription on findmypast.comFindmypast is a constantly growing resource, and offers a unique and diverse collection of genealogical records. They currently have more than 850 million U.S. records, and more than 1.8 billion records in their global collection. One of the many strengths of their holdings are extensive record collections for the UK, Ireland, Canada, and Australia. A world subscription will give you access to their entire online collection of material, including the incredible British Newspapers collection, which spans from 1710-1953, and includes thousands of local and regional publications from England, Wales and Scotland. The subscription will give you access to immigration and naturalization records as well as the PERiodical Source Index (PERSI), now exclusively housed at Findmypast. These are just a few titles that are available that span a global history, reaching back to the year 1200.
 Findmypast.com has issued FGS a unique registration code for use on findmypast.com. When you register for a world subscription and enter the code, the 50% discount will automatically be applied to your subscription. It’s that easy!  Learn more in the letter in the Secure Downloads area of the Members Only section of our website.

Volunteer Projects with the FHGL

The Florida History and Genealogy Library (FHGL) in the John F Germany Public Library in downtown Tampa is one of the largest and finest genealogical collections in the Southeastern United States. On Saturday, August 6, 2016, a presentation was made to our society by George G. Morgan and Bill Harris to discuss new volunteer project initiatives.
Bill is the Manager of the FHGL and George is chair of a committee of the Friends of the John F. Germany Public Library to publicize the excellent collection to the public. They have been collaborating to identify collections of unique materials in the FHGL that can be digitized, indexed, and added to the library system's online digital collections. The first two projects on the extensive list have been identified and were presented to the FGS members. 
Project 1: The Burgert Brothers Photographic Collection needs to be inventoried to determine if all of the images have been digitized, if all of the images have been indexed, and if all of those images are currently online. Volunteers will work with the collection in the library, and will scan and index missing images so that they can be added. This is a potentially high visibility project in that it will identify unique historical images of interest to many people in the community. The project begins in August 2016 and is anticipated to be completed by year end with he help of enough volunteers.
Project 2: Funeral Home Books for the Lord and Fernandez Funeral Home and the J. L. Reed and Son Funeral Home are in the possession of the library. The bound books will be scanned by volunteers using a professional book scanner and can then be indexed either on-site at the library or from home. The project begins in early 2017.
Other projects will follow and will combine the genealogical knowledge and skills of our society members to preserve and make these and other unique materials available to the world.
Seventeen FGS Members volunteered at the meeting and others took information to consider their interest and availability. If you are interested in one of these projects or others, please email George at aha@ahaseminars.com or Bill at Bill HarrisWD@HillsboroughCounty.org. You can be a part of these exciting projects to expand other people's research into previously unavailable materials!


Friends of the John F. Germany Library

The Friends of the John F. Germany Public Library is a very active group, and they support the community in many ways. One very important thing they do is fund and arrange programs for people of all ages throughout the year. That includes the annual Family Heritage Festival held in October that provides free genealogy presentations and many other activities.
The Friends of the John F. Germany Public Library launched a Facebook page on May 16th. It will include information about the Florida History and Genealogy Library, announcements of programs and events at the downtown library, and more news that you can use!


Burgert Brothers Photographic Collection

Nearly 15,000 images in the Burgert Brothers Photographic Collection chronicle the history of the Tampa Bay area as it faced wars, natural disasters, economic booms and busts. The collection presents a pictorial record of the commercial, residential and social growth of Tampa Bay and Florida's West coast from the late 1800s to the early 1960s. The images offer a view of a community at work, from cigar factories, sponge docks and strawberry fields, to grocery stores, service stations and bank lobbies. Many of the photographs also depict a community at leisure, enjoying a day at the beach, participating in local celebrations, attending the Florida State Fair, or playing favorite games such as golf, tennis, shuffleboard or checkers.

This extraordinary archive - a visual link with our past and our heritage - is preserved at the John F. Germany Public Library for the public to view and use. The Library has made reference prints for public examination. A photocopier/scanner is available for reproductions of the reference prints or customers can bring their own photographic equipment to make digital images of the materials. Reprints of the photographs from our negatives are also available through a photography studio.

Visit  the Burgert Brothers Photographic Collection at the Library's website at http://hcplc.org/hcplc/research/burgert/ to browse or search this remarkable collection. And visit our Society's Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/FGSTampa/ as we showcase images on that page over time.


Tampa-Hillsborough Library Programs

The Tampa-Hillsborough County Public Libraries present a wealth of educational programs throughout the county. We are pleased to announce and help promote these programs on our website. Please visit the Upcoming Events area of this website to see major programs scheduled, and be sure to visit the THPL Events Calendar at http://hcplc.evanced.info/signup/eventcalendar.aspx?&et=9 to locate educational opportunities near you.

Hillsborough County Century Families

The Florida Genealogical Society of Tampa (FGS Tampa) is pleased to announce the Hillsborough County Century Families program. The Hillsborough County Century Family designation is available to applicants who can document that they are descended from a family who lived within the modern-day boundaries of Hillsborough County more than 100 years ago.  As part of their research and application process, applicants are encouraged to use family documents, research materials available within the Florida History & Genealogy Library (located at the John F. Germany Public Library), research materials available within the USF Tampa Library’s Special Collections, and source documents found in online databases.
More details about the application and documentation process are available in the Public Downloads area of the FGS Tampa website at http://fgstampa.org/fileDownload.php?cid=26&sid=1.


Visit Our Facebook Page

Our Facebook page is updated almost every day, and is filled with excellent links and tips. You can find it at https://www.facebook.com/FGSTampa. If you're a Facebook user, visit the page and Like us. Our Facebook page will then become part of the regular news feed on your page, and you won't miss a thing.  
Gasparilla ship on Hillsborough River : TampaFlorida in 1935.