Tuesday, January 27, 2015

SLIG 2015 - Part I

It's been ten days since we returned from SLIG (Salt Lake Genealogical Institute) 2015. The intense week in Salt Lake City, Utah was a little wearing on me. It was worth the extra effort and challenges faced in being able to attend the track on Diving Deeper Into New England Research. On arrival Saturday we took a cab to the Family History Library and worked all afternoon on research. It was amazing how much information was found within the collection of books, mostly for New England towns. We did one break in the lunch room and then went to dinner at JBs after leaving the library. Then we decided to walk back to the Hilton Hotel where we were staying. Even though it was four blocks (about a mile) it was not a good decision for me. With neuropathy in my feet it was a bit too far.

The following day we had a leisurely morning in our room, me letting my feet try to recover. We went next door for lunch at Olive Garden and had a very nice meal. Then we took a cab to Harmon’s to do some grocery shopping. The goal of the week was to eat meals in our room and only eat one meal a day out. It is so fun to shop at Harmon’s and we brought back some great food. We used another cab and then had the hotel staff assist us to our room. The plan worked very well until our refrigerator would not cool anything. The maintenance man came and adjusted it, but the next morning all of our food was frozen, including an entire gallon of milk. Eventually it was regulated and worked fine, but we lost a lot of food in the process.

That night we had the meet and greet, with some very yummy appetizers. It was fun to see many of our Oregon friends and other acquaintances from previous genealogy events. We received our notebooks, nametags and gift cards for using at Starbucks. We were allowed $6 a morning for drinks, baked goods, fruit, etc. After the first day they added more staff and the lines were much shorter. It worked well for me and we were able to try some things we would not normally eat.

On Monday we were off to classes. My room partner's classes began at 8am and mine at 9am, so we enjoyed our own time for getting ready. It is wonderful to stay in the conference hotel because if the weather turns bad one could just stay there the entire time. Gratefully we had wonderful weather and often walked outdoors without coats. The first day for Diving Deeper Into New England we had four classes by D. Joshua Taylor, the track coordinator.
The classes were:
New England Is It All Done?
New England Catch-up, Part I: Sources and Publications
New England Catch-up, Part II: History
Connecting the Oceans: English Origins of New England's Colonists

His syllabus material is very good, so there was only limited note taking. He answered questions during the classes which was very helpful. There was a lunch break after the second class and I took the opportunity to rest and snack in our room. We had dinner at Olive Garden with a new acquaintance.
In the evening we heard Elizabeth Shown Mills present, What's the Evidence? Following her talk there was a preview of the Genealogy Roadshow with a follow-up Q and A. Even though we were all very tired our time at these two presentations was well spent.

On Tuesday we had three classes:
Massachusetts: From Colony to Commonwealth by D. Joshua Taylor
Migrations within New England by Diane Florence Gravel
New Hampshire Research: When the Trail Turns Cold by Diane Florence Gravel

This day my friend from SLC met me at Olive Garden for lunch. We had a nice visit and a great lunch.
After the third class we had consultations at the library. My consultation with D. Joshua Taylor was very helpful in focusing better on my four projects. This was also the first day of the shuttle bus to the library. That service made it so one could access the library without the long walk and was critical for me. This day’s research was more of the books, some time on the computer reviewing the catalog and then some time on microfilms. When we needed a break we went to the lunch room and purchased things from the vending machines. We stayed there researching until evening and then returned to the hotel in the shuttle.

On Wednesday we had four classes:
The Ins and Outs of Connecticut Research by D. Joshua Taylor
New England's Courts: 1600s to 1800s by Cathi Demarais
Lunch break was in our room this day
New England's Universities and Private Archives by D. Joshua Taylor
Rhode Island From Planation to State by D. Joshua Taylor

After class this day my friend from SLC picked me up and we went to her home north of SLC. It was fun seeing her family and going to dinner. They graciously put me up for the night.

On Thursday we had a nice drive back into town, arriving just in time for me to prepare for going to classes. This day we had three classes, but two of the three teachers were sick. There were changes made to the schedule.
The classes were:
Vermont: New England's Last Frontier by Cathi Demarais
Neither Online Nor on Film: New England Sources You Are Missing by D. Joshua Taylor
Case Study: Hazen P. Day's Neighbors Bring Him Home to Vermont by Cathi Demarais
Then we were off to the library for more research time. That evening we had dinner at the Lion House with some of our Oregon friends. This time we walked, crossing Temple Square and going through the Joseph Smith Memorial Building. It was a challenge for me, but it was worth the effort. After dinner the others went to the library, but I called for a cab as I was too tired to work anymore. There comes a time in researching when one must determine if there is need for a break!

On Friday we had one class and a Q and A session before receiving our certificates. The class was:
New England’s Town Records: Advanced Strategies for Success by Diane Florence Gravel

It was great that all of the instructors were able to attend that day. Sickness seemed rampant among the attendees and many had to miss sessions. We had a nice lunch at Spencer’s restaurant, which is in the hotel. My friend from SLC joined us and it was great to see her again. Then we were off to the library for a bit more research. For this day the focus was on microfilm and scans were made to my flash drive, but some do not appear to have been saved. My plan is to order the films for our local center as the deed records were very old and difficult to read. There were many types of records within the films which were discussed in our classes during the week.

In the evening was the completion banquet. We had a great group at our table, many of the Oregon group. There were about a dozen from Oregon in SLC, some attending SLIG and others just researching.
Part II will be my next blog post.

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