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2014 Family History Conference and Book Fair

is proudly co-sponsored by

The Genealogy Society of Southern Illinois
and John A. Logan College

28 countiesSaturday, August 9, 2014  John A. Logan
 8:00 A.M. - 4:00 P.M.

Ray Hancock Conference Center
John A. Logan College
Route 13 & Greenbriar Road, Carterville, IL

Featured Speaker

Thomas MacEntee

Founder of High-Definition Genealogy

Thomas MacEntee

As a genealogist specializing in the use of technology and social media to improve genealogical research and to interact with others in the family history community, Thomas MacEntee relies upon his 25 years of experience in the information technology field.

Thomas was introduced to his ancestry in 1993 when he discovered a published copy of his family’s genealogy from 1916. Working with a detailed accounting of his Dutch ancestry, Thomas has continued to trace the other roots and branches of his family for the past 20 years.

After graduating from The George Washington University in Washington, D.C., MacEntee went to work for the  U.S. Department of Agriculture, where he was asked to learn all about a new-fangled machine called the IBM Personal Computer and then teach others in his department. Thus began a fascination with desktop computer technology and training and a career as trainer, technical writer, applications analyst and project manager for the next 22 years in some of the world's largest global law firms including Skadden Arps and Latham & Watkins.

Thomas now shares his knowledge of technology and experience as a genealogist with others through various forms of social media and speaking engagements. Through his business High-Definition Genealogy, he provides consulting services in the genealogy industry covering such areas as market research, education, technology and more. After spending close to 20 years in Northern California, Thomas currently lives in the Andersonville neighborhood in Chicago.

Habits of Highly Frugal Genealogists

     Just as in any other industry, there are some tricks to getting the best deals and bargains in the genealogy marketplace. With 7 Habits of Highly Frugal Genealogists you’ll learn the tricks and also how to think like a savvy frugal genealogist! You’ll not only find a list of key resources but more importantly you’ll learn how to embrace the “mind set” of finding the best ways to save money while researching your ancestors.

Got Illinois Ancestors? A Guide to Prairie State Genealogy

     Learn the basics of Prairie State research as well as some unusual resources! While Illinois genealogy research is no easier or more difficult than other states, there are special resources with which many genealogists are unfamiliar. Learn about the history of the Prairie State and its migration patterns to understand how your ancestors lived and how to find them!

Internet Archive: A Gold Mine for Genealogists

     The Internet Archive ( is a free, on-line repository rich with genealogy source documents including census images and e-books. Learn how to navigate the Internet Archive and leverage the best search strategies to download a variety of materials including archived web pages, e-books, video, audio and more.

10 Ways to Jumpstart Your Genealogy

     In this session attendees will learn how to energize their genealogy research and will be ready to hit the ground running. Whether stuck in a rut with genealogy research for the past year or just wanting to expand the ways in which family history can be pursued, follow these 10 touchstones and you’ll be surprised at the results. Covering every aspect of genealogy and even those you never considered, your genealogy research will not just jump, it’ll leap!

Conference Registration FormRegister on Line



Buffet Lunch (Meat Lasagna, Italian Salad, Vegetable Medley, Garlic Bread, Cookies or Brownies, Tea and Water) is included with your paid registration if received prior to July 25th.


JOHN A. LOGAN COLLEGE is located on Illinois Route 13 in Carterville, mid-way between Marion and Carbondale. All conference activities will take place in the Ray Hancock Conference Center on the JALC campus. The facility is handicapped accessible with all activities on one floor without steps. If you have special needs, please indicate on the registration form.

Turn north off Route 13 at the Greenbriar Road traffic signal one mile west of the Carterville crossroads. From the College entrance follow posted signs to the conference or to the Ray Hancock Center. Parking is available in Lot D, directly adjacent to the conference center, with overflow parking in Lot A.


Conference Registration is not necessary to attend the Book Fair.  It is FREE and open to everyone.  There will be vendors with books, forms, maps, and genealogical supplies of all kinds. GSSI and many local genealogical and historical societies will have tables with their books and membership information. Book exhibits and all conference sessions will be held in the Ray Hancock Conference Center at John A. Logan College.


 Will you be staying overnight? Need motel information? If you have these or other questions, please contact one of the following:

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Last Update: May 21, 2014