Law and the NGS conference

NGS opens!

It’s Day 1 for the National Genealogical Society’s annual conference, this year in Las Vegas, Nevada.

And for anybody like The Legal Genealogist who’s interested in the law and its impact on genealogy, it’s the start of four days packed with opportunities to learn and to share.

For those of us interested in knowing more about how the laws of the past impacted the records we have to work with today, the options for presentations are dazzling: everything from the legal histories of our families today to a full day of law-related presentations on Saturday.

And for all of us, deeply concerned about access to those records and the impact of today’s laws on our access rights, there are many options as well.

Yesterday’s Laws

Presentations focusing on yesterday’s laws and the records created by them include:

Wednesday, May 8

• The Treasure Trove in Legislative Petitions, 11 a.m., Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL

• Legal Histories of Families, 2:30 p.m., David S. Tanenhaus

• Divorce Records in Genealogical Research, 4 p.m., Pam Sloane Eagleson, CG

Thursday, May 9

• Finding Ancestors through their Lawsuits in English Chancery Courts, 9:30 a.m., Ronald Ames Hill, PhD, CG, FASG

• Chinese Exclusion Act: A Genealogical Goldmine, 11 a.m., Trish Hackett Nicola, CG

• Feme Covert or Feme Sole: Women and the Law, 11 a.m., Barbara Vines Little, CG, FNGS, FVGS

• Blackguards and Black Sheep: The Lighter Side of the Law, BCG luncheon, 12:15 p.m., Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL

Saturday, May 11

• Guilty as Charged! Strange and Unusual Punishments in Early America, 8 a.m., Diane Florence Gravel, CG

• When Our Ancestors Met the Law, 9:30 a.m., Kay Haviland Freilich, CG, CGL, FNGS

• Child of No One: The Law and Your Illegitimate Ancestor, 11 a.m., Sharon Tate Moody, CG

• From Blackstone to the Statutes at Large-How Knowing the Law Makes Us Better Genealogists, 2:30 p.m., Judy G. Russell, JD, CG, CGL

• Ours and Theirs: Tax and Land Laws, Debbie Parker Wayne, CG, CGL

Today’s Records Access Laws

Wednesday, May 8

• It’s Not Just SSDI: How We Can Advocate for Genealogy While Still Practicing It, APG luncheon, 12:15 p.m., Harold Henderson, CG

• Advocacy for Records Access, 2:30 p.m., Melinde Lutz Byrne, FASG

• RPAC Strategies in a Changing Environemnt: Fraud Protection v. Access, Jan Meisels Allen, Jan Alpert and Federick E. Moss, JD

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2 Responses to Law and the NGS conference

  1. I’m so glad that you are on the case with Records Access, Judy!

    Is there anything that local/national DAR can do? I just got in a local chapter. Would it help to have DAR support?

    • Judy G. Russell says:

      All genealogical societies — DAR, SAR and the like included — should be deeply concerned about records access, and addressing the issues within their organizations and with each other.

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