The March-April Newsletter is out

Rand is related to 5% of RootsTech attendees !

Check it out below on page 2

Just added for your reading pleasure

BN Newspapers from the 1800’s

Just Added for Members

Indexes for McLean County Marriages 1833-1911

Join and Login to view !

Got a couple minutes?  Free Videos worth your time !

Jack Keefe’s

Back in the Day

 Happy St. Pats !


Normal Public Library

“Passenger Lists” by Suz Bates on YouTube


Normal Public Library

“Bio-Parents for Peg & Donna: A Genetic Genealogy Case Study” April 5th at 6:30 pm


Debra Dudek, author of “World War I Genealogy Research Guide”, presents

Researching your Irish Ancestors Online

Program is in the member’s area until April 21, 2023

Check out her book on Amazon

Check out our selection of Newspapers

Are You related to George Washington or Elvis?

Rand learns from FamilySearch he is related to
George Washington !
You may be too.
To try out this free feature at familysearch:
Open an account at
or login your existing account.
Enter your family tree with yourself at the root. As you enter
relatives going back, look for a suggested match from that has
an identification number. Try to get enough entered that each
branch of the tree ends in a person that is already in the database.

Then open a new tab while still logged in and goto:

(P.S. George and I are only cousins, I am not a direct decendent)

Today, March 15, is the Ides of March, which was supposedly the date of Julius Caesar’s assassination. That said, the newsletter contains nothing about that historic event.

But – this is still a timely read because we are only two days away from St. Patrick’s Day. This edition contains a great piece about Irish observance of past years in Bloomington, plus an account of a book I read about St. Patrick this past year. Notice the use of the word “great.” That particular story is the work of Pantagraph writer James Hart in 1938. Hart’s work goes a long way toward keeping us aware of Irish celebrations of the past and the locals behind them. A tip o’ the Irish top hat to him for writing it.



<Preview Jack Keefe’s book on Google Books>

Preview in the Stevenson-Ives Library in the McLean County Museum of History

Purchase in the gift shop – first floor

Online Store –  Huge sale on our publications  !! Members get 25% off!

Members can view prior presentations at their convenience – see below !

Members have immediate access to all past Gleanings from 1967 – present – Indexes are on the site

Members have access to The History of the Illinois Conference of the Evangelical Church 1837-1937. This searchable .pdf has information on hundreds of ministers !

Everyone has access our Gleanings indexes to research their relatives.

New book online – Harry Waite’s Veterans of the Spanish American War Interred in McLean County


General Meetings Open to Everyone <click for Zoom and event info>
February 15, 2023 – Normal Public Library – click link above for youtube
March 21, 2023 – Researching Irish Ancestors Online – Members Presentations
May 16, 2023 – My Ancestry DNA Results – What do I do Now ? 6:30 Suz Bates
September 19, 2023 – To be announced
November 21, 2023 – To be announced

Board Meeting Zoom Links and Forms <Click>
January 10, 2023
March 14, 2023
May 9, 2023
September 12, 2023
November 14, 2023

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How to Use this Site

For research, we have made our Gleanings indexes availble to the general public.  Search them for surname and other information, noting the Gleanings Issue.  Then Join or Log in, as members are given access online to all Gleanings issues.

Many FREE resources are available to all.  They include: Ancestral chart, family record, street name fun, popular links, our cemetery guide publication with directions and descriptions of McLean County cemeteries !

The McLean County Museum of History offers many attractions and events – some via ZOOM.  Click here or on the photo for more information.

The MCGS Genealogy Library is on the 2nd floor and offers books and journals from around the country, computers set up with Ancestry and Family Search, and often a volunteer to assist you.  Hours of operation are here (

On Demand Programs available to Members – Sign up and learn today !

Tina Beaird Presents “Illinois Digital Resources”

    Tina Beaird is owner of Tamarack Genealogy and is a history librarian in the Chicago area.  

    This program is a “fire hose” of information.  Fortunately you can pause the presentation anytime to make notes on the two handouts provided.  So much of what is available is digital and Tina shows us where to look to find information that does not automatically pop up as a hint. Two handouts are available.  Log in or join now to view this program in the member’s area.   

If you missed Tina Beaird’s presentation “Becoming a Census Sensei”, please login or join now to view it in the member’s area under Presentations!  

It is a wonderful program and has so much information.  I love being able to pause the video to make notes on the handout when I need to process  something.

  Tina is an author, lecturer, and owner of Tamarack Genealogy.  She holds an MLS with a specification in archives preservation and often lectures at conferences both local and national.

   National, State, Special, Education, and Indian censuses are discussed !

Susan Kaufman Presents “Unusual Sources”

    Susan Kaufman is Senior Manager  at the Houston Public Library.  

    This interesting program presents unusual sources of information that you will not find easily.  Have an interest in History?  Check out the listing of all Civil War soldiers to receive an artificial limb.  This is just one of the many sources Susan illuminates.  A downloadable handout is available.  Log in or join now to view this program in the member’s area. 

Mimi Davis Presents “New Databases at BPL”

    Mimi Davis is the Electronic Resources Librarian at the Bloomington Public Library (BPL).  Learn about the new Genealogy Databases available.

    BPL has two new databases “Heritage Hub” and “Black Life in America” that are rich with genealogical information.  BPL cardholders can access these information sources from home. The slide program is available as a downloadable file.   Log in or join now to view this program in the member’s area.  


Non-members can preview the Gleanings here

    Click image to left to open preview edition with Table of Contents & Surname Index.

    McLean County Poor Farm – new information with a spreadsheet available in the members area.

    An article by McLean County Museum of History librarian Bill Kemp on McLean County auctioneers.

    We remember Ruth Carpenter, a life member who contributed extensively to MCGS, by reprinting her nursing story.  This story highlights the excellent content in past issues of Gleanings.

    A look at research methods to add someone to Find a Grave.

    Researching a poem written for a local family.

    Special thanks to Susie Pope and others for their work on this issue.

    Please join and then access thru Members tab.