Members of the Chautauqua County Genealogical Society met recently for a monthly business meeting and program at the Barker Library in Fredonia.
Guest speaker was Norman Carlson of Busti, who is in charge of collections at the Fenton Historical Society in Jamestown. Carlson said that he helps many people with their family and business genealogy, and discussed some of the artifacts which he uses to associate information with families. He said that many of the artifacts help people trace down their family members.
One of the first is a collection of old wedding dresses. He said the historical society has more wedding dresses than any other garment. Using family photographs and comparing the dress often give a date and name to people. People are always looking for family history, he said.
Norman Carlson of Busti, who is in charge of collections at the Fenton Historical Society in Jamestown, spoke to the Chautauqua County Genealogical Society at a recent meeting.
Other items in the historical society which are used in genealogical research are military items such as uniforms, bars and pins. Diaries are a great source of research, along with packages of letters.
To bring information to the public, many of their volunteers dress in period clothing and speak to local students about family history. Cemetery tours are very popular, and these include walking and horse drawn wagon tours. Often times, family information is found in census reports and city directories. Each week, he said, an historical artifact is featured in a newspaper article. A round of applause was given to Carlson for his discussion.
Visitors and new members are always welcome.