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Bob Velke

Announcing the 7th Annual Genealogy Conference and Cruise!

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The 7th Annual Genealogy Conference and Cruise is sailing to Aruba and Curacao, 13-20 Nov 2011, aboard the ms Westerdam of the Holland America Line.


Please join us for the fun and educational event of the year! Our annual conference always sells out because it follows a proven formula: three days of presentations by expert genealogists alternating with three days of vacation on tropical ports, plus great food, evening entertainment, and the companionship of family researchers from around the world -- all for less than you'd pay for a week at the local Holiday Inn.


Our annual conference is the largest on the seas because of its tradition for offering a first-class lineup of genealogical speakers – and this year is no exception. We'll learn how to be better researchers, to break through our brick walls, and to take full advantage of records, finding aids, and technology from these experts:


  • John Humphrey, CG, is an award winning author who specializes in German and Pennsylvania research. He has lectured throughout the United States and in Germany. He is past president of the Mid-Atlantic Germanic Society, a past vice president of the Genealogical Society of Pennsylvania, the former director of the National Genealogical Society Learning Center and a faculty member at the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) at Samford University.
  • Audrey Collins was a professional genealogist for many years before taking her current position as a Family History Specialist for The National Archives (TNA) in the United Kingdom. A Scot herself, she is the author of many books and magazine articles about English family research. She is also a blogger, hosts podcasts for TNA, and is a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG).
  • Richard Sayre, CG, is a professional genealogist with a special interest in urban research methodology, technology and mapping tools for genealogists, military records, immigration, the Ohio River Valley, and Western Pennsylvania. Rick is the coordinator for the "Land Records: Using Maps" course at the Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research at Samford University (IGHR). He has also lectured at IGHR in the Advanced Methodology, Advanced Military, Research in the South, Techniques and Technology, and Land courses.
  • Pamela Boyer Sayre, CG, CGL, is a professional researcher, writer, and genealogical lecturer specializing in records of the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) and computer tools. She is a coordinator and instructor at Samford University's Institute of Genealogy and Historical Research (IGHR) and the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG). She is the former Director of Education and Publications for the National Genealogical Society (NGS) and co-author of "Online Roots: How to Discover Your Family's History and Heritage with the Power of the Internet" (2003) and "Research in Missouri" (1999). She is a former board member of the National Genealogical Society (NGS), a former director of the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), a former board member of the Genealogical Speaker's Guild, and a life member of St. Louis Genealogical Society. She is also the former FGS FORUM Digitools columnist and past editor of the Association of Professional Genealogists Quarterly.
  • Craig Roberts Scott, CG, M.A. (HRM), is the CEO and President of Heritage Books, Inc., a genealogical publishing firm. He is a nationally-known educator and very popular lecturer because he has been professional genealogical and historical researcher for more than twenty-five years. Although an authority on many research topics, he specializes in the records of the National Archives, especially those that relate to the military. He is past director and treasurer of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG), coordinator of the Advanced Military Course at Samford University (IGHR) and teacher in the Advanced Methodology and Evidence Analysis course, the Writing and Publishing for Genealogists course and the Virginia Course. He also coordinates the American Military track for the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG). Craig is the current custodian of the Association of One-Name Studies and was the Clan Scott Genealogist (1985 - 2000). He is a member of the Board of Directors of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG), a member of the Editorial Board of the National Genealogical Society Quarterly, and a former board member of the Virginia Genealogical Society and the Maryland Genealogical Society.
  • Richard Eastman is a well-known technology expert and publisher of the Eastman Online Genealogy Newsletter, the most popular online genealogy newsletter in the world. He is always the guy in the room with the coolest electronic toys and keeps the rest of us up-to-date with the ever-changing technology issues that affect family researchers, including digital archives, databases, search engines, scanners, blogs, and podcasts, among many others. Dick is a longstanding member of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG).

The conference schedule also includes opportunities for one-on-one consultations with the speakers, shared meals with professional genealogists, several late-night roundtable chats, and two cocktail parties to catch up with old friends and to meet new ones, among other events.


Although the daily lecture schedule has not yet been published, the presentations will not overlap so, unlike many traditional conferences, you won't have to make difficult choices and miss some of the lectures. Likewise, no lectures or events are scheduled during port time so you'll be free to wander the tropic port towns, go shopping, lounge on the beach, or partake of the many available guided shore excursions in Aruba, Curacao, and Half Moon Cay.


While the hosting company, Wholly Genes, Inc., makes family history software, all of the events and lectures with expert researchers are software-neutral and relevant to every family researcher who wants to improve their skills. Users of The Master Genealogist (TMG) will have the opportunity to hear several additional non-conflicting presentations about how to make the most of that software and its companion products.


Prices begin at just $870 per person (double occupancy), including the 7-night cruise, food, evening entertainment, port fees, taxes, cabin steward service, and all conference events. Bring your family, friends, and fellow researchers. A roommate matching service is available.


Where else can you get group lessons, one-on-one consultations, and elbow-rubbing time with some of the foremost genealogy experts in the world while someone else handles all the food, housekeeping, entertainment, and transportation on an exotic Caribbean vacation? Come prepared to sit back, relax, and enjoy the most educational vacation of your life!


For more details, please see:


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