Category Archives: Upcoming Events

A Soldier’s Story

Richard Carlton, author of “When is Daddy coming home?”, will be presenting his story on Sunday, November 5, 2017 at the Town Bank Meeting Room, 15815 Hwy 81, Darlington, WI. Please us the lower level entrance on the back side of building.

When is Daddy Coming Home Book Cover-blogWorld War II was coming to a close in Europe and Richard Haney was only four years old when the telegram arrived at his family’s home in Janesville, Wisconsin. That moment, when Haney learned of his father’s death in the final months of fighting, changed his and his mother’s lives forever.

In this emotionally powerful book, Haney, now a professional historian, explores the impact of war on an American family. Unlike many of America’s 183,000 World War II orphans, Richard Haney has vivid memories of his father. He skillfully weaves together those memories with his parents’ wartime letters and his mother’s recollections to create a unique blend of history and memoir. Through his father’s letters he reveals the war’s effect on a man who fought in the Battle of the bulge with the 17th airborne but wanted nothing more than to return home, a man who expressed the feelings of thousands when he wrote to his wife, “I’ve see and been through a lot but want to forget it all as soon as I can.” and Haney illuminates life on the home front in small-town America as well, describing how profoundly the war changed such communities. At the same time, his memories of an idyllic family life make clear what soldiers like Clyde Haney felt they were defending.


Don’t miss this opportunity to hear Richard Haney and his story this coming Sunday at 1:30. This presentation is sponsored by the Lafayette County Genealogical Society and the Lafayette County Historical Society.


Upcoming Events

Below are some genealogy events from our society and other area societies. So mark your calendar and plan to attend some of these.

Saturday, February 4 – “WHO ARE THE AMISH?” (Green County Genealogical Society)

who-are-the-amish-webMark Louden, Max Kade Institute co-director, a Mennonite and fluent speaker of Pennsylvania Dutch, will be the speaker for the February 4 meeting of the Green County Genealogical Society. He will speak on the Old Order Amish, one of America’s most familiar yet widely misunderstood religious groups. Professor Mark Louden will address the central aspects of Amish life and the Christian faith that anchors it, with a special emphasis on Amish communities in Wisconsin, which has the 4th largest population of any U.S. state. He will clarify a number of misunderstandings about the Amish, as well as their close spiritual cousins, the Mennonites.

The Green County Genealogical Society meeting will be held in the second floor meeting room of the Monroe Public Library at 10 am, Saturday, February 4. Visitors are always welcome and there is no cost to attend.

Sunday, March 26 – “FRONTIER MEDICAL DISEASES AND TREATMENTS”  (Lafayette County Genealogical Society & Lafayette County Historical Society)

Dr. Gordon E. Dammann, renowned Midwestern and Eastern historian speaker of Lena, Illinois, will be talking on “Frontier Medical Diseases and Treatments”. Dr. Dammann was an Army Post Dental Surgeon and Captain (1969-70) and is now retired from private dental practice (1971-2011). He is also the Founder of the Lena Area Historical as well as the National Museum of Civil War Medicine. Gordon is credited as the author or editor of several publications of Historical and Civil War subjects and events, as well as early medical histories. He also has held a long time listing of Historical Society Affiliations and has received several awards from them in appreciation for his active participation within numerous historical functions and events. Gordon or “Gordy”, as he also answers to, stays quite busy as a Certified Guide at the Antietam National Battlefield in Virginia during his summer months, along with his high in demand requested lectures.

The combined Genealogical and Historical Society meeting will meet on Sunday, March 26 at the Town Bank Meeting Room, 15815 Hwy 81, Darlington, WI. Use lower level entrance on the back side of building. Visitors are welcome and there is no cost to attend.

Sunday, June 25 – “GENEALOGY SOURCES ANYWHERE AND EVERYWHERE”  (Lafayette County Genealogical Society & Lafayette County Historical Society)

lori-bessler-1-2Lori Bessler, Reference Librarian and Outreach Coordinator at the Wisconsin Historical Society Library Archives in Madison, will talk on “Genealogy Sources Anywhere and Everywhere”. Lore Bessler has worked at the Wisconsin Historical Society Library Archives since 1988 and has lectured throughout Wisconsin and the Midwest on genealogical topics for over 30 years. Lori also has the experience of researching family history for over 40 years and specializes in breaking down brick walls and finding hard-to-find resources.

The combined Genealogical and Historical Society meeting will meet on Sunday, March 26 at the Town Bank Meeting Room, 15815 Hwy 81, Darlington, WI. Use lower level entrance on the back side of building. Visitors are welcome and there is no cost to attend.


Saturday, March 18th – “Genealogy and Technology” by Thomas MacEntee

Saturday, April 22nd – “German American Genealogy” by James Biedler

Saturday, May 6th – “Italian Genealogy” by John Colletta, Ph.D.

Saturday, June 17th – “Digging Deeper Into DNA” by Mary Eberle, JD

Click here to register

These workshops will be held at the Memorial Library on the UW Madison campus. These are all day events where a box lunch is provided.

Workshop Fee:  Regular: $30;     Members of the WHS & WSGS: $27


A Chance Meeting

This last Sunday we were invited to a family gathering – only it wasn’t our family but the family of my husband’s high school buddy. It’s always fun to gather with old friends as we weren’t the only non-family. One of the gentlemen at the gathering lived on Trotter Road. That turned the conversation to genealogy since my husband’s grandmother was a Trotter. We knew the William Trotter farm was somewhere along that road. We started asking questions about the history of property in his area since his family farm was on Trotter Rd also. Were our ancestors neighbors??  More research is to be done.

My husband and I had driven Trotter Rd several times trying to figure where the Trotter farm was located. Was the farm still there or has it disappeared and been swallowed up into other farms? One thing we did not take into consideration was how the road had changed with the new Highway 81 between Monroe and Argyle. Part of what is Trotter Road now used to be West Duncan Rd. A large section of Trotter is now closed and not used. A farm (the former Scott farm – they married Trotters, too) sits at a dead end on Trotter Rd. From that dead end to Highway 81 is the unused portion of the old Trotter Rd. Now we had new information to use to figure out the location of the farm.

At home, I pulled out my Trotter family information and the land information I had. We studied the information and the map alongside the new information we had about Trotter Rd……and the joke was on us. The farm was actually located on the southeast corner of Lewis Rd and Duncan Hill Rd – not on Trotter Rd as we thought. The farm is gone but we had driven by it many times and each time my husband has been drawn to the piece of property and has made the statement, “That’s a piece of land I would like to own.” It may be the call of the ancestor.

One chance meeting and it led to the discovery of the farm property. On the next trip by the Trotter land I will have the camera.

Don’t forget that Green County Genealogical Society is offering free workshops on Thursday mornings. This week Elder Wright will be sharing many aspects of Family Search.

Throwback Thursday July 23

Throwback Thursday Genealogy

The Green County Genealogical Society is holding Thursday morning genealogy classes on a variety of subjects starting on July 16 to October 29 from 10:00 am – 12:00 noon. The first hour will include teaching and time for questions. The second hour will give attendees the opportunity for application with assistance or time for some research. Subjects will include Youth Genealogy, Family Search, Find A Grave, Sanborn Maps, Computer File Management, Sharing Family Stories, Court House Research and much more.

The Green County Genealogical Society not only has holdings for Green County but also Lafayette and Rock County and other surrounding areas. This is great opportunity to get together with fellow genealogists who may be able to help you open a difficult family tree brick wall. A schedule can be found at the Green County Genealogical Society website at Upcoming Events.

Throwback Thursday Genealogy will be held at the Research Center on the lower level of the Monroe Public Library, 925 16th Ave from 10:00 am – 12:00 noon (take the elevator to the lower level). The classes are open to the public so bring a friend.

Throwback Thursday

Scanning Tips

Elder & Sister Riley, missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints in Monroe, WI will be sharing in our second part presentation on Sunday, August 24 at the Johnson Public Library in Darlington, WI at 1:30 pm. In the first presentation they helped us to get started building our family tree on FamilySearch. The second presentation will include how to upload your photos and documents into your family tree and how to source your family tree. There will be plenty of time for some hands on work with FamilySearch. In preparation you will want to have some photos and documents ready on your laptop or a USB drive.

We, as genealogists, are well-known paper-lovers. All I have to do is take a look at all the notebooks in my genealogy cabinet! But paper can be damaged from water, fire or age. Making digital copies of our precious photos and documents can help protect them for the long haul. It also makes them easy to share with your newly discovered cousins.

Professional archives recommend using a flatbed scanner with scanning resolution of 600 dpi for most family photographs. The TIFF format is best for quality retention but is a large file. I like using the TIFF format for photos that I plan to touch up or restore. But for uploading to your family tree the jpg format is the most used.

Step by Step Scanning

  1. Prepare your Scanner
    • Clean the glass scanning bed with a dry or slightly damp microfiber cloth.
  2. Prepare your photo
    • Use a soft brush to dust your photo if necessary.
    • Use clean hands or wear white cotton gloves
    • Handle the photos by the edges
    • Place the photo in the upper corner (usually indicated by an arrow), right side down.
  3. Turn on the scanner and start the software – Make your selections. With different scanner models you will find these selections in different places. I have an Epson and have to choose “Professional Mode” before I find these selections.
    • Reflective
    • Photo
    • 24-bit color
    • 600 dpi
    • Original Size
  4. If you wish, you can open the File Saving window now and change the Prefix and Number to start a new project. But this window will open after you select scan and the changes can be made at that time. This is also where you choose you file type: jpg or TIFF.
  5. Preview your scan by clicking the Preview button. A Preview window appears. If your photograph is not selected by a dotted line (marquee), click the Marquee Tool. A dotted selection line should appear around the image. If necessary, adjust the marquee to fit your image by grabbing a corner or side and dragging to include the entire photo.
  6. When you are satisfied with the selection, press Scan. The image will be scanned and saved to the destination folder with the filename we set earlier. Depending on the speed of your scanner, this may take several seconds.

Have some pictures scanned and ready to be uploaded to FamilySearch on Sunday, August 24 at the Johnson Library. Hope to see you there!

Welcome to our Blog

Welcome to the Lafayette County Genealogical Society Blog. My name is Ginny Gerber and my husband and I live in Monroe, WI. My ancestors immigrated from Norway and Germany and settled in Lafayette County. I became interested in genealogy when I found a hand written family tree in my Dad’s estate, but I will save that story for another time.

The LCGS has an exciting event coming up on Sunday, July 27 and Sunday, Aug 24. Elder and Sister Riley, missionaries of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints, will help people interested in furthering their family research by learning how to access the billions of records available through FamilySearch, Puzzilla, Fold3, FindMyPast, and Ancestry. and are free websites for researching your ancestors. This is an opportunity to let Elder and Sister Riley show you how to use these sites and access the greatest amount of records!

Elder & Sister Riley

Elder & Sister Riley

LCGS will be holding the two part special presentations on Sunday, July 27 at the Johnson Public Library, 131 E. Catherine Street, Darlington, WI at 1:30 pm and the follow up session on Sunday, August 24 at the same time and location. Bring your own laptop, if you have one as the library has a limited number of computers available. If you do not already have an account at you may want to do the initial login process to register and create a username and password ahead of time. Remember it is free! Otherwise, the process can be done at the presentation.

This is a one time opportunity you do not want to miss. Post if you have any questions or comments. I hope to see you Sunday!