2018 Beaufort Branch Ancestry Classes

All Beaufort classes are held at the Santa Elena History Center, located at 1501 Bay Street, Beaufort, SC 29902, from 10:30am-12:30pm unless stated otherwise.

All classes are $10 for Heritage Library members and $15 for non-members. 


Genealogy 101

Instructor: Mary Sommerville

Saturday, February 3, 2018

If you are just starting family research, this class is for you!   Some people have very specific reasons for tracing their family tree. Others jump into family history research without giving it much thought. Knowing why people research their ancestors can be a source of inspiration and support for genealogists.

Genealogy can provide a doorway to the past. This workshop introduces the first-time family researcher to the fascinating field of genealogy, its unique nomenclature, and suggested research technique and avenues.  It may also be of value to researchers with limited experience who wish to refresh their skills.  

Advance registration (by following the link below) is strongly recommended.


What Can Census Records Really Tell Us?

Instructor: Amanda Hughes

Thursday, February 15, 2018

Do you deduce everything you should out of the census records?  Trace your family tree every ten years from 1940 to 1790 and see the wonderful things you can learn about them. The lecture will review the information which is unique in each census year and why it is important to find your family in every census including 1940 and those before 1850. The experience level is beginner through intermediate.

Advance registration (by following the link below) is strongly recommended.


African American Genealogy

Instructor: Amanda Hughes

Saturday, February 17, 2018

This class is designed to offer techniques and resources of special interest to those researching African-American family history. The class begins by describing the methods basic to all family research regardless of ethnicity.  It then offers suggestions for moving beyond the 1870 brick wall which complicates most African American research. Examples will highlight resources found in Beaufort County but will be of value to anyone looking for African- American ancestors as the nation celebrates African American History Month this February!

Advance registration (by following the link below) is strongly recommended.


Looking for German Ancestors?

Instructor: Barbara Friis

Thursday, March 8, 2018

Were your German ancestors really German?  A unified nation called Germany did not exist until 1871, so you may have to extend your search to include Dutch, Danish and Swedish records.  Learn how to identify your ancestor’s “Heimat” and discover the importance of the “Ortsippenbuch”.  Identify resources that will help you further your research beyond ancestry.com. Compare German “Fraktur” to modern handwriting as a helpful tool for translating documents.  A packet including a brief German history, historical maps, German genealogy terms, occupations, “Fraktur” charts,German family history websites and a bibliography will be distributed to all participants.

Advance registration (by following the link below) is strongly recommended.


Researching Military Records in Fold3

Instructors: Peter Somerville and Philip Cromer

Thursday, March 22, 2018

Fold3, formerly Footnote, advertises itself as “The web’s premier collection of original military records.” The website has records from the Revolutionary War, the War of 1812, the Mexican and Indian War, theCivil War, World War I, World War II, and the Vietnam War, as well as some non-military collections.

Fold3 is a subscription website if used from home, but it is available at the Heritage Library for our patrons.

Advance registration (by following the link below) is strongly recommended.


Free Research Sites

Instructor: Amanda Hughes

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Sources such as Google, Find-a-Grave, state archives and many more can add valuable data to your family’s past — and the best part is that they are FREE!  By learning how to utilize these sources, a family researcher can possibly fill in some of the missing links of their family story or even discovering something brand new!  This class is appropriate for all levels of genealogists, including beginners.

Advance registration (by following the link below) is strongly recommended.