Sunday, August 25, 2013

The Vance Family Association's Reunion - Aug 19-20, 2013

VFA members on tour at the Allen County Public Library

Officers and members of the Vance Family Association met on August 19-20 last week in Fort Wayne, IN for the Association's biennial meeting and reunion.   Thanks to everyone who made it out this year!  The sessions were well-attended and discussions were lively.  After the obligatory reviews of the by-laws and new officer elections, the group got down to some serious sharing of genealogy stories and techniques... and let me tell you this is a great group of people with a LOT of energy and experience in Vance family research across many family lines and DNA groups!  There should be a lot more about the reunion activities in upcoming VFA newsletters.

More of the VFA group on the Genealogy Center tour

But undoubtedly the highlight of the reunion was the tour and research time at the Allen County Public Library in Fort Wayne, which to my view is probably the best genealogy research facility in the US after the LDS archives in Utah.   The Genealogy Center in Fort Wayne has miles of collected reference works and stacks of microfilms, and every librarian there is a certified genealogist ready to help point you in the right direction.  Well-worth a visit if you are in or come through Fort Wayne!

One of the prize collections in the Genealogy Center is over 55,000 family history works collected over more than 50 years from past genealogists and associations.   Included in this collection are all the past Vance Family Association newsletters and bound copies of many family histories from past Vance researchers with all the details and pictures of their research.  The picture below shows them all on the library shelves.  I copied down the titles, authors and family lines and plan to share the list in a future blog post!

Books in the Allen County Genealogy Center related to Vance family history

The VFA reunion was planned this year to coincide with the FGS (Federation of Genealogical Societies, of which the VFA is a member) conference which was held for the rest of last week in Fort Wayne - sorry, I wasn't able to stay on myself but I'll be very interested to hear from the VFA members who did.

One more time - thanks again to all who made this year's VFA reunion a huge success!

By the way, you can find the Allen County Public Library's Genealogy Center website at for more information and their complete card catalog available online.