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Richmond conference pivots to online

The National Genealogical Society announced yesterday that its May 2021 conference will be all-virtual, including five days of live events and presentations and a wide variety of on-demand talks.

The absolutely-expected-by-everybody announcement explained: “Due to ongoing mandates in Virginia in regards to COVID-19 and our concern for the well-being of our attendees, exhibitors, volunteers, and staff, NGS is unable to host an in-person conference in Richmond, Virginia in May 2021.”1

NGS 2021

The NGS 2021 Conference website simultaneously rolled out the programs for the conference components and opened registration for the conference.2

The week-long offerings include:

Monday, May 17: The Delegate Council Kickoff Workshop for NGS member organization delegates.

Tuesday, May 18: The SLAM! Idea Showcase for society leaders, librarians, archivists, and museum staff who serve genealogists, in which yours truly is serving as one of a panel of judges.

Wednesday, May 19: Day 1 of NGS Live! including the Opening Session, with Barbara Vines Little-Beyond the Blue Mountains, and individual presentations by Elizabeth Shown Mills-Elusive Ancestors: Never Too Poor to Trace; Dani Shapiro-Family Secrets; Thomas W. Jones-Writing About and Documenting Genealogical Conclusions Using DNA Test Results; and Craig Scott-Establishing Identity and Kinship with Military Records.

Thursday, May 20: Day 2 of NGS Live! with Crista Cowan-AncestryDNA: Putting Your DNA Results to Work to Further Your Research, and including breakout sessions with Eric G. Grundset-Virginia’s Anglican/Episcopal Church Parishes and Their Surviving Records; Janice Lovelace-Going Offline: Finding African American Resources; Cheri Hudson Passey-Ancestors in Southern Claims Commission Records; Elizabeth Shown Mills-Finding Females: Wives, Mothers, Daughters, Sisters, and Paramours; Judy G. Russell-Wilde Beasts, Sabbath Breakers, and Incorrigible Rogues: Early Virginia Laws; Colleen Robledo Greene-After the Fire: Reconstructing a US World War I or II Military Service Record; Julie Miller-Alien Registrations Records; David McCorkle-Easily Find Your North Carolina Ancestor’s Land History and Neighbors Using; Angie Bush-Leveraging Genetic Networks to Break Down Brick Walls; Mary Kircher Roddy-Flying Under the Radar: Discovering Charles Olin’s Alias; Vic Dunn-Scotch Irish from Pennsylvania Through Virginia and the Carolinas; and Shelley Viola Murphy-Virginia Burned Counties: So What? Plus Ric Murphy-The Story of Virginia: Arrival of the First African Americans and wrapping up with Marquis de Lafayette-Hear stories about America’s fight for independence from the young general Marquis de Lafayette.

Friday, May 21: The Focus on Societies day with lectures centered on sharing best practices, building leadership, attracting new members, planning online meetings and events, developing newsletters and other publications, and more.

All the costs and program details are set out on the website, and there’s an early bird discount for NGS Live! registration before 15 March.

Check it out — and “see” you in May.

Cite/link to this post: Judy G. Russell, “NGS 2021 goes virtual,” The Legal Genealogist ( : posted 2 Feb 2021).


  1. See “Virtual 2021 Family History Conference Registration Opens 1 February 2021,” UpFront with NGS blog, posted 1 Feb 2021 ( : accessed 1 Feb 2021).
  2. See “Virtual National Genealogical Society 2021 Family History Conference,” National Genealogical Society ( : accessed 1 Feb 2021).
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