I went to a genealogy conference and found my family tree! Not exactly, but the Nebraska State Genealogical Society Conference held May 1-3 in Lincoln, Nebraska was rewarding and fun. The featured speaker, Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak was excellent. Be sure you take in her lectures if you are where she is lecturing.
While I did not find my family tree, I did find information to assist me with my research. That is also the fun of attending a conference. My sister-in-law and I planned our conference trip to go to cemeteries, libraries and archives ... no courthouses on this trip. I created a notebook with directions, including which exits to take, back roads that would get us to cemeteries along with the hours and directions to the libraries and archives. This is easy to do with Google Maps. I drove and she directed!
At Topeka, Kansas we visited the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library. Unfortunately the day we selected for research was the day the Kansas Historical Society was closed. The public library made up for it. On the second floor, they have a very inviting genealogy section which includes state of the art equipment, moving shelves and a Victorian appearing Topeka room for research. It's not huge, but comprehensive with a lot of good books and maps, plus more. If you are passing through Kansas, take a jaunt to the library ... you will be glad that you did.
Conferences also mean laughing, telling a year's worth of genealogy stories, meeting old friends and making new friends. I enjoy being around people who speak my language which is the language of genealogy.
For those of you following my blog along with that of my daughter, Growing up Genealogy, you will be interested in knowing that my car was full in the back seat, trunk and around my sister-in-law's feet in the passenger seat. I took three bags and she took six. I took five pair of shoes and wore all of them. She took five pair of shoes and wore one pair. By the time we got home we had a lot of purchases in the way of books as well as memoirs from an ancestral home in Nebraska. The next time we travel together, I'll make certain she leaves half the bags at home!
Next week I'm heading out again, this time going west and north to do research and decorate graves for Memorial Day. I may not find my family tree, but I'll have fun trying.