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For upcoming meetings of other genealogical organizations, see our latest Newsletter
Middlesex Genealogical Society Middlesex Genealogical Society
Darien Library
Darien Library, 1441 Post Road (at Hecker Avenue), Darien, Connecticut 06820. Phone: 203-655-1234


The Middlesex Genealogical Society holds five program meetings a year in conjunction with the Darien Library. Speakers make presentations on various topics of interest to all genealogists. Periodically, informal member discussion groups are scheduled for an hour before the presentations.

Meetings are in the Community Room on the first floor of the Darien Library, 1441 Post Road (at Hecker Avenue), Darien, Connecticut. Phone: 203-655-1234.

Meetings are held on Saturdays. Presentations start at 2:00 pm. Informal member discussion groups, when scheduled, start at 1:00 pm. Meetings are free and open to the public.

Vice President-Programs Len Christie welcomes ideas for future meetings.

Upcoming Meetings

November 15, 2014, 1:00 pm. Come Talk About Your Work. This is an informal one hour discussion session/round table where all members are invited to participate. Think of the most important question or issue that you have about your genealogy. It may be a brick wall that you are facing with one of your ancestors, a question of wanting to know where to find a particular resource, or a success that you are dying to share with the rest of us. The goal is to share your experiences and to help your fellow genealogists and hopefully gain new insights.

November 15, 2014, 2:00 pm. "Discover Your Polish, Ukrainian, and Eastern European Ancestors." Presented by Prof. Jonathan Shea and Matthew Bielawa.

In this program, Jonathan Shea and Matthew Bielawa will show you how to research your ancestors in Poland, Ukraine and the neighboring countries of Eastern Europe. They will introduce you to a variety of sources to compile information about your family. In this program you will learn to:

  • Determine your family’s place of origin using the many documents and sources available in the United States.
  • Determine what records were generated for your ancestral village and where they are to be found.
  • Know where to look depending on the event date and who had jurisdiction, since these countries’ external and internal borders changed frequently in the last 300 years.
  • Know which language the records were recorded in and which publications and tools are available for translating these documents of genealogical value.
  • Learn about the naming conventions and surname distribution in the country.

Jonathan Shea is a professor of foreign languages in the Connecticut Higher Education System. He has over twenty years of experience in the field of genealogical research, documenting his own family (with roots in the former provinces of Lomza and Grodno, Poland, and Counties Offaly and Mayo, Ireland) as well as the families of others. He is founding President of the Polish Genealogical Society of Connecticut and the Northeast.

Matthew Bielawa is the Associate Registrar at Central Connecticut State University in New Britain, Connecticut. His research specialization is in Eastern Galicia and Western Ukraine. He is webmaster of Genealogy of Halychyna/Eastern Galicia, a site devoted to Polish and Ukrainian genealogical research in Eastern Galicia and Western Ukraine.

January 24, 2015, 2:00 pm. "Intermediate Genealogy." Presented by Tony Lauriano.

March 14, 2015, 2:00 pm. "Putting Flesh on the Bones of Your Ancestor." Presented by Toni McKeen.

May 16, 2015, 2:00 pm. "Civil War Research." Presented by Laura Congleton.

Past Meetings

October 4, 2014, 2:00 pm. "Googling for Genealogy." Presented by Phil Hayes. Handout. Slides.

August 19, 2014. A Tour of the Godfrey Memorial Library.

May 17, 2014. "Case Study: Searching for Persons of Color." Presented by Virginia Banerjee. See summary on page 3 of the MGS Newsletter for September 2014.

March 15, 2014. "Finding Elusive Females." Presented by Toni McKeen. See summary on page 4 of the MGS Newsletter for May 2014.

January 25, 2014. "Fire Up Your Research...The Digital Genealogist Is Here." Presented by Philip Hayes. See summary on page 4 of the MGS Newsletter for March 2014.

November 16, 2013. "Difficult Case Studies." Presented by Tony Lauriano.

David Mordy
October 5, 2013. "Find Your Fabulous Ancestor." Presented by David Mordy.

May 18, 2013. "Blogging Your Genealogy." Presented by Philip Hayes. Handout.

March 16, 2013. "Cruising Long Island Sound—Tracing Its Early Families with a Regional View." Presented by Fred Hart. Handouts: Some Resources for Long Island Sound Region Families; Political Affiliations of Towns in the Long Island Sound Region.

January 26, 2013. "Military Records Research." Presented by Tony Lauriano. See summary on page 4 of the MGS Newsletter for March 2013.

November 10, 2012. "Probate Records." Presented by Virginia Banerjee. See summary on page 3 of the MGS Newsletter for December 2012.

October 6, 2012. "Review of the 1940 Census, and Using the Steve Morse Website to Research Difficult Cases." Presented by Toni McKeen.

May 12, 2012. "Family History for the Whole Family." Presented by Virginia Banerjee. Handout 1. Handout 2.

March 17, 2012. "Exploring the 1940 Census." Presented by Christopher Zarr, Education Specialist at the National Archives facility on Varick Street in New York City.

January 21, 2012. "Letting the City Directories Work for You." Presented by Toni McKeen.

November 19, 2011. "Sources for Irish Records." Presented by Donna Moughty, a former president of the Middlesex Genealogical Society.

October 1, 2011. "Effectively Using in Researching Your Family." Presented by Toni McKeen.

May 14, 2011. “Genetic Genealogy." Presented by Nora Galvin.

March 19, 2011. "Beyond Names and Dates: Uncovering Your Ancestors' Stories." Presented by Leslie Albrecht Huber. See summary on page 6 of the MGS Newsletter for May 2011.

January 29, 2011. "A Walk Through the New " - new and improved with images and new technology. Presented by MGS President Lloyd Sturgis.

November 20, 2010. "Research That Makes My Eyes Cross." Presented by Toni McKeen. See summary on page 4 of the MGS Newsletter for December 2010.

October 2, 2010. "How to Test Your DNA and Why." Presented by Peter Biggins. See summary on page 3 of the MGS Newsletter for October 2010. Slides. Handout.

May 15, 2010. The Story of DARIEN Connecticut. Presented by Kenneth M. Reiss. About the book

March 20, 2010. "Maximizing the Use of the Census." Presented by Virginia Banerjee. See Joan Rinaldi's summary on page 3 of the MGS Newsletter for May 2010. Handouts

January 23, 2010. "Uncle Sam Wants You! - 20th Century Military Research." Presented by Larry Fermi. Outline

November 21, 2009. "Navigating Ship Manifests: Researching Immigration Records Like a Pro." Presented By Toni McKeen. See Joan Rinaldi's summary on pages 4 and 5 of the MGS Newsletter for December 2009.

October 3, 2009. "Getting the Most Out of HeritageQuest and Ancestry." Presented by Toni McKeen.

May 16, 2009. "Crossing The Pond: Finding Your Immigrant Origins." Presented by Larry Fermi. Outline

March 21, 2009. "Effective Use of the Internet for Genealogy." Presented by Kathy Lenerz, Ph.D., Genealogical Lecturer. Slides

February 21, 2009. "Getting Started in Genealogy." Presented by Virginia Banerjee and Pete Kenyon, both members of MGS. Banerjee article