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… consider your genealogical society…

The Legal Genealogist has no idea where the whole GivingTuesday thing began.

Yes, even Wikipedia says it got its start in 2012 as “the brainchild of Henry Timms at the 92nd Street Y in New York” with a “co-founding organization,” the United Nations Foundation.1

And that’s the story on the About page of the website of the organization by that name.2

And that sounds good to me; I just haven’t verified it.


What sounds even better?

Doing something — almost anything — tomorrow to give back to the genealogical community.

Like contributing to or even just plain joining a genealogical society working in an area where we’re researching.

If we’re Americans, we can take this to the top, and add to the push at the National Genealogical Society, where a gift right now will be matched (up to a total from all donors of $20,000). If we live elsewhere, we can look to the donation pages of our national or regional societies.

And there are so many other societies we can consider, too.

The state societies that publish periodicals that teach us so much about the records and research methods that apply in those states.

The regional societies that do the same on a broader or more regional scale.

And all those local societies that keep genealogy alive and records accessible in all those courthouse and archival nooks and crannies around the world.

Whenever and wherever GivingTuesday began, it’s a great opportunity.

We can take a moment today or tomorrow from our Black Friday and Cyber Monday and other commercial ventures… and give instead.

We can even think of it as giving ourselves a gift.

The gift of community and continued vitality of the societies on which our research success so often depends.

Cite/link to this post: Judy G. Russell, “On GivingTuesday…,” The Legal Genealogist ( : posted 29 Nov 2021).


  1. Wikipedia (, “GivingTuesday,” rev. 27 Nov 2021.
  2. See “About GivingTuesday,” ( : accessed 29 Nov 2021).
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