Live Sessions

Here is a list of the live sessions planned for 8 April.  We are very grateful to those making the presentations and hope you will support them.  You are able to attend 3 sessions.  We hope that there will also be some video sessions from Rootstech 2017.  The Family History Centre will be open all day except lunch hour, and you have the opportunity to sign up for a one on one session in Coaches’ Corner.

Don’t forget to register!   Click Here

1a. “Genealogy Research in Ireland and Northern Ireland”. by Mary Joan Cornett

This is a presentation on how to trace your Irish ancestors. Specific topics covered will be based on the most important Irish genealogy collections: civil registration, church records, census records, census substitutes, land records, and court records. Examples will be given on how to use the records and where to find them.

1b. Successfully Navigating FamilySearch by Roxanne McCue

Do you know how to use FamilySearch Family Tree? What is the “Memories” section all about? Have you ever searched for your ancestors among the 325,000 plus digitized books? Do you know you can watch live webinars from the Family History Library in Salt Lake City? Many of them are recorded and they are later made available to watch in the comfort of your own home. Do you know how to effectively search the historical records, both those that have been indexed and those that have only been digitized? We will cover these topics and more…as time permits during this class.

2a.  “Danish Research 101 for Beginners” by Annette Ellingson

This session will provide information for people beginning research on Danish ancestors.  This will include discussion of the best sites on the internet to help begin your research in Denmark.

2b.  Comparing the Big 4…Ancestry, FamilySearch, FindMyPast & MyHeritage” by Roxanne McCue

Each of these websites have tools and records to help you with your family history work. Do you really need to use more than one of these sites? This class will compare some important features of each site.  We will discuss subscription and free access options, family tree options within each site, searching strategies and some hidden gems.

3a.  “Who Were the Germans From Russia?”  by Diane Lewis

Do you know why your German-speaking ancestors came to North America from Russia over 125 years ago? It is definitely puzzling when one realizes that your German great great-grandparents actually lived in Russia during the 18 and 19th century.  WHAT historical events were happening in Europe in the 1700’s to cause a massive migration from their homeland eastward to an unknown country?  This power-point presentation will help answer some of the questions of WHO, WHEN, HOW, and WHY.  It will also cover many aspects of an ancestor’s life in Russia, and why many emigrated again, looking for a better life in USA and Canada, whether they were Catholic, Protestant, Mennonites or Hutterites.  A major aspect of this talk will also reflect on a number of genealogy records available on the Internet and introduce you to a number of German/Russia genealogical organizations and websites in Canada and United States

3b.   “ Getting the Most from the Wiki at FamilySearch – and other hidden gems at FamilySearch”  by Peter and Linda Darby

What records are there for my ancestor in that country? Where can I find them? Did you know that there is a free online encyclopedia on how to do family history research? This session will show you how to get the most from the FamilySearch Wiki, and then share with you other hidden gems from FamilySearch.

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Family History Fair Registration is Open

The Red Deer Rootstech Family History Fair will be held on 8 April 2017 at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, Bower building, 3002 – 47th Avenue, Red Deer from 9.30 to 2.15 pm.  The registration desks will open at 8.45.a.m.  Please come early especially if you would like a 20 minute one on one in Coaches’ Corner  – the sign up sheet will open at 8.45 am.

There is no cost for registration or lunch.

So we can plan for seating, lunch, and handouts we ask you register online.  Click Here to register.  You should receive an email confirming your registration.

There will be no registration for individual sessions which will be on a first come basis.

In each time block there will be a choice of a two live session or two video sessions plus look for a bonus live session “Getting Started with Your Family History”, and – new this year – sign up for a 20 minute session to discuss a genealogical roadblock or brick wall in Coaches’ Corner.

8.45 a.m.  Registration desk opens

9.30 a.m.  Opening session in the chapel

10.00 a.m. Session 1

11.00 to 11.10  Break

11.10 a.m.  Session 2

12.10 p.m. Lunch

1.10 p.m. Session 3

2.10 End of day – please hand in your evaluation forms

The Family History Centre will be open all day – come and use the free access to premium sites, and get help with your research questions.

Details on topics and speakers to follow.

We are grateful to the many people who make this event possible including the Red Deer Stake of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints and the Red Deer Branch of the Alberta Genealogical Society

Click Here to register

If you have a problem registering – for any reason – send an email with details to

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News about the 2017 FH Fair

We are working hard to be ready for 8 April.  Watch this website for a link to the online registration once it becomes available.

Coaches’ Corner – Are you hitting roadblocks in your family history? Drop by the new Coaches’ Corner at the FH Fair for some one-on-one mentoring. Sign up for a time to meet with a coach – the sign up sheet will be available starting at 8.45 a.m.on 8 April at the Registration Desk.  Each individual session is 20 minutes so space is very limited.

Planning the schedule is well underway. We have decided reduce the length of the day.  We will be ending at 2.15 pm.  In each hour you will have the choice of two live sessions, two video sessions, and of course working with help in the Family History Centre – and maybe you’ll have an appointment in Coaches’ Corner? After the opening session you can select 3 sessions with lunch served after the second session.  There will no cost for attending – so please come, and invite your friends.

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Get Ready for Red Deer Family Fair 2017

The date is set for the 4th Annual Red Deer Family History Fair:  Saturday 8 April from 9.30 to 4 pm – the sign in desk will open at 8.45.  There is no cost for registration.

The location:  LDS Church, 3002 – 47th Avenue, Red Deer  – at the south end of Red Deer – same as last year

Watch this space for information on sessions and how to register.  There will be online registration so plans can be made for seating, lunch, and handout.

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Time to Say Farewell . . . for another year!

Thank you to everyone who was able to attend the Family History Fair on 19 March – there were 204 in attendance plus all the helpers and presenters.  Wasn’t that lunch amazing?

To us Saturday was a very busy but happy day.  Thank you.

We were grateful to get 112 completed evaluation forms.  Thank you for all of your positive and encouraging comments about the day.  We are analyzing your suggestions for improvement. 

This will probably be the last information we put on this site for a long time.

If you want more information on Family History you could try Peter’s Family History Notes by clicking here 

We hope you have lots of new things to try.  Don’t forget to use the handouts posted on this site.

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Handouts from 19 March 2016

Click on the link to download the handout or go to the location of the handout

Session 1a    Deanna Bullock  FamilySearch

Session 1b Social Media can help you not just take your time – Lianne Kruger  SocialMedia4Genealogists HandOut

Session 1c  Using the Genealogical Proof Standard for Success – James Ison  Ison Using GPS outline-syllabus

Session 1d  Beginner’s Session – Peter and Linda Darby  Getting Started

Session 2a  Ancestry Tree  Deanna Bullock

Session 2b  Organizing, Preserving and Sharing Photos and Documents – Lianne Kruger

Session 2c   Proven Methodology for Using Google for Genealogy  – Lisa Louise Cooke  Proven Methodology for Using Google

Session 2d  Brick Walls session  Peter and Linda Darby and distinguished helpers  Brick Wall Session Handout 2016

Session 3a  Find My Past – Deanna Bullock

Session 3b  Using Maps and Gazetteers – Peter and Linda Darby  Using Maps and Gazetteers

Session 3c  Become a Master Searcher on Ancestry – Anne Mitchell  – 2 – Mitchell-Become a Master Searcher on Ancestry – Mitchell   and   Become a Master Ancestry Searcher

Session 4a  Ancestry Tips & Tricks for finding & searching their databases – Deanna Bullock  AncestryTipsandTricks

Session 4b  British Research Strategies  – Peter and Linda Darby  BritishResearchStrategies

Session 4c  Finding Elusive Records on – Robert Kehrer  Finding Elusive Records on FamilySearch

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Plan Your Sessions for 19 March

There is still a chance to register – but not for much longer – at  – once you complete registration you will get a message on the screen notifying you that it is complete – we need to know how many people are coming.

The Family History Centre will be open throughout the day (except for 1/2 hr during lunch). See the online resources available (including premium FH sites), find your ancestors, learn about FamilySearch Indexing, learn about new features at,  and have your questions about FH answered. 

Remember that seating is on a first come first served basis – you may not always get into your first choice session.

Here is the hour by hour schedule so you plan your day – you don’t need to print this out – we will be giving you a handout with additional information when you arrive.  Note that the handouts for each session will be posted on this website – so everyone will have access to all the handouts – and every presenter has indicated that they will have a handout!

Opening Session – 9:30 to 9.:50 – in the Chapel

Session 1 – 10.00 to 11.00

1a.    Deanna Bullock – in the Chapel

Getting more out of your experience.  Become familiar with Research Helps, editing data, fixing unknown spouses, finding help when you need it, working with memories and lists and more.

1b. Social Media can help you not just take your time – Lianne Kruger – in the Relief Society Room

Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube, blogs, Instagram and Flickr can be a great asset in genealogical research. We will discuss how each Social Media items can help you in the following four areas:

  • Specific research for your family,
  • General research helps & training,
  • Share information with others, and
  • Meet distant relatives

Items such as finding groups, research and location helps, and connecting with others all over the world who are doing genealogy in your same areas. 

1c.  Using the Genealogical Proof Standard for Success – James Ison (Video Session from Rootstech 2016) – in the Triple Room (south side of building)

Life is good when records with direct evidence exist, like a marriage license that gives the birth dates and places of both bride and groom and lists the full names of each set of parents. Typically that doesn’t last long. At some point, one finds only bits and pieces of indirect or conflicting evidence and progress often comes to a screeching halt. This class examines a case study prepared for application to the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG) where direct evidence was non-existent in identifying the family of Jesse Roberts of Greenville County, South Carolina. Key strategies are presented to piece together strands and threads of evidence from disparate sources using the Genealogical Proof Standard.

1d. Beginner’s Session – Peter and Linda Darby – in the Glass Room

Are you just starting to do your family history?  Don’t know what to do?  This session is for you!  While some general hints will be shared it is hoped that this will be an interactive discussion of ways to get started.

Session 2 –  11:10 to 12:10

2a. Ancestry Tree  Deanna Bullock – in the Chapel

Ancestry is a partner program for  Its tree feature has both powerful hinting features and the ability to compare and sync to FamilySearch.  Learn how to use these tools and why you would want to.

2b. Organizing, Preserving and Sharing Photos and Documents – Lianne Kruger – in the Relief Society Room

Photos and documents are the backbone of Family History. We will discuss different ways to preserve and organize your photos and documents with documentation. Once they are all organized we need to share them with family members. We will discuss different ways to share these items for all to enjoy. 

2c. Proven Methodology for Using Google for Genealogy  – Lisa Louise Cooke (Video Session from Rootstech 2016) – in the Triple Room (south side of building)

As genealogist we follow a process, so why do we Google so haphazardly? Bring method to the madness of millions of results with this tried and true methodology for using Google for your genealogy research. Google expert and author of The Genealogist’s Google Toolbox, Second Edition Lisa Louise Cooke will walk you through the process, provide you with the tools and WOW your socks off with real- life examples of Googling success. You will leave this class inspired to revisit using Google for your online searches, and armed with the latest strategies to do so successfully. Not everything is online by any stretch, but even offline sources are more efficiently discovered and accessed when you start online. And the fastest and most effective way to locate online data, whether it resides on a university website or the blog of a distant cousin you’ve never met, is Google!

2d. Brick Walls session  Peter and Linda Darby and distinguished helpers – in the Glass Room

Everyone runs into brick walls sooner or later.  Bring examples of your best brick walls to this session and see if our panel can give you some suggestions to overcome the obstacles.  We don’t promise we can solve all problems but we’ll try our best!

Lunch – 12:10

Session 3 – 1:10 to 2:10

3a. Find My Past – Deanna Bullock – in the Chapel

FMP is a partner program for and while it has primarily had a focus towards British sources, it is expanding rapidly into the United States.  Learn how to use this powerful database and tree features to search for your ancestors.

3b. Using Maps and Gazetteers – Peter and Linda Darby – in the Relief Society Room

Why use maps and gazetteers?   They can help us add to our knowledge of the lives of our ancestors, and help us analyze data. How far away from the rest of the family is that potential ancestor?  Can we access these tools online?

3c. Become a Master Searcher on Ancestry – Anne Mitchell (Video Session from Rootstech 2016) – in the Triple Room (south side of building)

There are over 16 billion records on Ancestry in over 30,000 data collections. Are you finding your ancestors in all of them? Spend some time with us and we will show you what you need to know to get the most out of Ancestry. Whether you are trying to answer a specific question or just trying to find everything you can about a specific person, we will show you how to achieve your goal.

Session 4 – 2:20 to 3:20

4a. Ancestry Tips & Tricks for finding & searching their databases – Deanna Bullock  – in the Chapel

Ancestry is a partner program for  Its primary database focus is the United States with excellent databases existing for Canada, England, Wales and a growing number of additional countries.

4b. British Research Strategies  – Peter and Linda Darby – in the Relief Society Room

Have you found you have British ancestors?  Now what do you do?  What are the major record types and where can you access them? How do you find information for your parish? Terminology such as the difference between a registration district and a rural deanery.

4c. Finding Elusive Records on – Robert Kehrer (Video Session from Rootstech 2016) – in the Triple Room (south side of building)

What do you do if your ancestor’s records doesn’t come up in your initial search? A significant portion of the records on FamilySearch are not indexed and can’t be searched using the form. For a number of historical, technical or genealogical reasons, an ancestor’s record may be challenging to find. This session will walk through some of the common difficulties confronted by researchers and demonstrate how to use the FamilySearch systems to find that elusive record.

Concluding Session – 3:30 to 3:50 in the Chapel

Please complete an evaluation form at the end of the day – we appreciate your suggestions.  You will see a change in room locations this year as a result of feedback we received.

We look forward to seeing you on 19 March.

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