GSSI Newsletters

GSSI Newsletters

Volume 45 #4

May 2017

Chester Public Library


Saturday June 10, 2017

1:00 to 3:00 p.m.

Chester Public Library

Chester, IL

Randolph County Research 

Emily Lyons, retired educator and community leader, will discuss Randolph County history and the many resources there, for genealogical research on June 10 at the Chester Public Library. The 1:00 p.m. program will be sponsored by the Genealogy Society of Southern Illinois. Lyons is a descendant of early French settlers in Kaskaskia, and has long been involved in planning the annual historic Fourth of July celebration on the island. Active in many heritage groups, she has an Award for Outstanding Work in Historical Preservation from the National Society Daughters of the American Revolution. Her great knowledge of historical records makes her “the go to source” for genealogists and those who which to learn about early Illinois history. In addition to the charm of the beautiful Chester Library, Reid’s Restaurant and other attractions offer entertainment for those who take the scenic route to Chester to hear Ms. Lyons.

Chester Public Library, 733 State St., Chester, IL 62233. Phone: 618-826-3711


Submitted by: Dorothy Rudoni

2017 Family History Conference and Book Fair

 co-sponsored by

The Genealogy Society of Southern Illinois and John A. Logan College

Saturday, August 12, 2017  8:00 A.M. - 4:00 P.M.

Ray Hancock Conference Center John A. Logan College Route 13 & Greenbriar Road, Carterville, IL

Featured Speaker:

Mark Lowe, CG, FUGA

According to his website, "J Mark Lowe describes himself ad a lifelong genealogist.  He is a full-time professional genealogist, author, and lecturer who specializes in original records and manuscripts throughout the South.  Mark lives in Robertson County, Tennessee just north of Nashville near the Kentucky border.

Mark enjoys opportunities to share what he has learned over the years.  He serves as the Course Coordinator for 'Research in the South' at IGHR (Samford University), and also directs a Southern Course of the Salt Lake Institute of Genealogy (SLIG).  Mark has worked on several genealogical television series including African American Lives 2, Who Do You Think You Are? and UnXplained Events.

Mark has published in the Association of Professional Genealogists Quarterly (APGQ), National Genealogical Society Quarterly (NGSQ), the Genealogical Speakers' Guild SPEAK!, The Longhunter (So. KY Genealogical Society), The Middle Tennessee Genealogical Society Quarterly and local society publications.  His own publications include Robertson County Tennessee Marriage Book 2 1859-1873.  He formerly was the President of the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG), President for the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), and Vice President of the Genealogical Speakers Gild (GSG).  He is the former President of the Southern Kentucky Genealogical Society.  Mark is a Certified Genealogist and a Fellow of the Utah Genealogical Society, and was awarded the Graham T. Smallwood award by the Association of Professional Genealogists."

You can now register on the GSSI website!

Hurry, space will be limited with this popular speaker!

Notes from the May DNA Seminar 

I hope you were able to attend! A large group had pen-in-hand, writing helpful notes from the great information presented by Joy Whitson Upton.

If you have had a DNA test done, or are considering doing a test, this seminar helped to explain the process. From choosing a testing company to explaining DNA terms. Keeping a DNA pedigree chart, Y-DNA haplogroup Migration, mtDNA, and X-DNA Inheritance Chart – Female Focus Person were just some of the topics discussed.

Our sincere thanks to Joy for a great and informative afternoon, on such an interesting subject!

GSSI Website Publications 

In the late 1990’s GSSI published a ten-volume set of 2000 Ancestor Charts submitted by members of the Society at that time. We are proud and excited to announce that surname indexes to each of the ten volumes are now published on line. The 61 pages of surnames added to this website list more than 12,500 individuals associated with Southern Illinois families. Anyone researching an ancestor who lived in one of the twenty-eight southernmost counties of Illinois should be sure to consult this invaluable resource.

To access and browse the indexes go to the Publications page and scroll down to Genealogy Society of Southern Illinois Ancestor Charts. Members may purchase any of the volumes at only $5.00 each. Non-members are asked to add $4.00 postage and handling for each volume ordered.

Submitted by Ed O’Day, Webpage Manager

GSSI Collection, JALC Library, Carterville

Genealogy Society of Southern Illinois Library 

Have you taken advantage of the GSSI Genealogy Library, within the library at John A. Logan College?

The genealogy library contains information on New England, West Virginia, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Kentucky, Ohio, Indiana, Jackson Purchase, and Missouri. In Illinois, we have books covering the counties of Alexander, Bond, Edwards, Effingham, Fayette, Franklin, Gallatin, Hamilton, Hardin, Jackson, Jefferson, Johnson, Lawrence, Macom, Macoupin, Madison, Massac, Perry, Pope, Pulaski, Randolph, Richland, St. Claire, Taswell, Union Washington, White, and Williamson.   There Is also books on Illinois Census’, Illinois County History, Ancestor Charts, and Family Histories.

The GSSI Genealogy Library is open during John A. Logan College hours.

The Summer hours are:

Monday – Thursday: 7:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m.

Friday – Sunday: Closed

Summer is a great time to get out and explore the cemeteries and research facilities, for those elusive family members!  If you are a GSSI member and you get stuck or have a research question, feel free to contact our GSSI Genealogist, Rhonda Hagston. Email her at


Genealogy:  Where you confuse the dead and irritate the living - Unknown

Earlier Newsletters may be found on the Newsletter Archive page