Genealogical Webinars and Staying Sane during the Pandemic

Coffee cup and the word Webinar

Being a genealogist requires a lot of learning – what records exist and where they are squirreled away, what certain terms mean, how to interpret DNA results, and the like. I started quarantining on March 12. Between that day and the end of March, I watched 22 webinars. Most of them live, because they’re just more interesting when you can ask questions.

Image by Foto-Rabe from Pixabay

I attended Legacy Family Tree Webinar’s 24-Hour Webinar Marathon, well, 10 of the 24 webinars anyway. They are a subscription site, but when the webinars are first recorded, they’re free to attend. I got my 12-month membership while they were on sale, for about $25. They’re also offering one webinar a day for the month of April, which you can view without a subscription.

In fact, all the webinars I attended in March were free, but if you wanted to watch the video at a later time, you needed to be a member of a group or have some form of subscription. Sometimes you cannot get the syllabus unless you’re a member or a patreon patron.

Image by TheDigitalWay from Pixabay

For the rest of March, I watched webinars hosted by groups all over the place; Minnesota to Florida, California to Ontario, Massachusetts to Utah, and next week I may go to one in Scotland.

The New York Genealogical & Biographical Society hosted webinars many of the days in March – something they threw together when the whole quarantine thing got real.

The Association for Professional Genealogists also hosts monthly webinars, and the older version of their website had a whole library. I’m certain that will show up eventually on the new incarnation.

Irish flag on a fingerprint
Image by Kurious from Pixabay

I actually attended two different webinars about Irish immigration to Canada (important to me, because the Sparks family was from Ireland!), one hosted by Kathy Hogan of Genealogy with a Canadian Twist and one by the Minnesota Society of Genealogy’s Canadian Interest Group.

There have also been a lot of online hang-out sessions for genealogists. Maureen Taylor, the Photo Detective has been hosting us on Facebook Live for a while now, but Genealogy Gems started hosting “elevenses,” the New England Association for Professional Genealogists hosts weekly “lunch bunch” sessions, and Mondays with Myrt has blossomed into quick daily check-ins.

We’re all working together to keep ourselves sane.