Florida Genealogical Society (Tampa)

Serving the Needs of the Genealogical Community for Over 50 Years

3rd Annual Family Heritage Festival

The Florida History & Genealogy Library hosts the 3rd Annual Family Heritage Festival.
Genealogy society tables will be open from 10:15 a.m. to 2:30 p.m.  Renowned genealogists George Morgan and Drew Smith led presentations on MyHeritage database and the latest news on DNA research and organization of your results.  MyHeritage was recently added to the Hillsborough County Public Library collection.  Enjoy our family friendly events including a theatrical production by the Atlantic Coast Theatre and learn about prehistoric Florida from the Florida Public Archaeology Network.  Participate in Genealogy activities that include presentations by nationally known genealogy experts, free photo and document scanning, and Q&A with local lineage, history and genealogy societies.
All of the programs are listed with descriptions at our events page.  A quick list of the genealogy programs with times is as follows:
Free Scanning with E-Z Photo Scan 
10:15 AM - 2:30 PM
MyHeritage Library Edition: Search for Your Ancestors in This Internationally Diverse Database 
 10:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Family Photo Restoration with Photoshop 
 11:30 AM - 12:15 PM
Organizing Your DNA Testing 
 1:00 PM - 2:00 PM
Read All about It! Your Ancestors in the News 
 2:30 PM - 3:30 PM
DNA Testing in Late 2017: What's New? 
 3:45 PM - 4:45 PM
3rd Annual Family Heritage Festival
Funded by the Friends of the John F. Germany Public Library.

Field Trip to Ybor City State Museum - Nov 4th

The Florida Genealogical Society - Tampa invites you for a field trip to the Ybor City Museum State Park.  Join us as we explore our city's culture and history -- all important facets for genealogists to understand.  Furthermore, this a wonderful lead in to our 60th Annivversary starting in January 2018.
FGS-Tampa is paying admission for the first 50 members.
Please contact Susan Jones at programs@fgstampa.org to register. 
Ybor City State Museum
 Here is a short description of the Ybor City State Museum:
Don Vicente Martinez Ybor came to an area of pine scrub and swamp to build what became the "Cigar Capital of the World."  From the opening of the first cigar factory in 1886 until the 1930s, Ybor City flourished. This urban park is dedicated to the preservation of Ybor City's unique cultural heritage. The museum, housed in the historic Ferlita Bakery, traces the rich cultural history of Ybor City and the cigar making industry. The museum has self-guided exhibits, with written and audio information, and a video presentation. La Casita, a restored cigar worker's house, is open for viewing 10:00 a.m.-3:00 p.m. Guided tours are available Wednesday through Sunday. The ornamental garden can be rented for events after regular park hours. Located at the corner of 9th Avenue and 19th Street in Tampa.
To read more on the Ybor City State Museum, please follow this link:   https://www.floridastateparks.org/parks/ybor-city-museum-state-park
The museum address is:  1818 E. 9th Avenue, Tampa, FL 33605.  Please see map below for location and directions.
Parking is available on-street, or in the Ybor City Lots located along 8th Ave, a short walk from the museum.  Parking is at your expense.

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.


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.

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!


Members Only - Facebook Groups

The Genealogy & Historical Groups/Pages on Facebook is a vast compendium of Facebook pages created by Katherine R. WIlson that provides 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. 


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.


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!


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.

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.