View Family Showcase:   Andrew Octavius Allen
Submitted by:   Lynn Bancroft, Charlotte, NC

The Family Research Center is
CLOSED
During the Pandemic
  
Monthly Meetings Occur Online Only!
 
The Charlotte Museum of History - and Olde Meck's Family Research Center (FRC) - remain closed at this time. But our staff is able to access our collection. If you have any questions or research inquiries, please email info@oldemeck.org.  
 
We hope you and your family will be safe during these difficult days. Check this website for current status of the FRC.
 

The History of Scots-Irish Immigration to America

 
A great turnout greeted John Miles for our October Zoom meeting, where we learned Why the Scots-Irish Immigrated to America. A long-time scholar of all things related to Scottish and Scots-Irish history, John related the background and social situation that faced many who lived in Scotland during the 17th and 18th century. He identified four main components of the massive movement of families to this country:
  1. Agricultural improvements in the Highlands, resulting in less need for workers.
  2. More law and order, reducing the need for a paid militia.
  3. Religious freedom sought by Presbyterians.
  4. Voluntary and Involuntary Indentures.
Olde Meck members may view this presentation behind the Member Login tab on this website. Members and visitors also contributed to the discussion after Mr. Miles presentation and added some helpful tips for those researching their Scottish and Irish ancestors:
  • The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland (https://www.nidirect.gov.uk/proni) may be helpful.
  • James Leyburn wrote an excellent book The Scots Irish In America that describes the Scot immigration down the Great Wagon Road in Virgina. 
  • Researching Scots-Irish Ancestors: The essential genealogical guide to early modern Ulster, 1600-1800 2nd New edition by William Roulston was also recommended.
  • Researching Presbyterian Ancestors in Ireland by William J. Rouston.
  • The Scots-Irish http://www.scotch-irishsocietyusa.org/ can provide help and hosts pertinent events.
  • You can search by family name, county, and parish at http://www.askaboutireland.ie/griffith-valuation/.
  • Records such as Hearth Money Rolls, religious censuses, and estate records are also available.
​​For more information about John Miles, go to his website.
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Melungeon Heritage Association Offers Podcasts

Olde Meck board member, Heather Andolina, is also the president of the Melungeon Heritage Association (MHA) and has shared a series of podcasts featuring speakers who are of interest to genealogists.
 
The Melungeon Heritage Association presents its 2020 Annual Melungeon Union Meeting lineup of speakers through this new podcast due to COVID-19. This seven-episode series brings the extraordinary stories and insights from an array of diverse voices, each with their own fascinating glimpse into mixed-ancestry and cultural evolution.
 
The episodes are hosted by Heather Andolina, President of MHA, and Lis Malone, Podcaster and Diversity Inclusion Advocate. Produced by Lis Malone. It is presented by The Melungeon Heritage Association (www.melungeon.org). You can subscribe on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, and Google Podcasts. The direct links are:
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Preserving Spaces Offers Virtual Historic Tours

Olde Meck members experienced a special treat at our August 12th monthly meeting when Kyle Scharf of Preserving Spaces demonstrated his virtual tours of historic Mecklenburg sites.
 
Kyle has combined his background in historical preservation with his expertise as a professional photographer to launch a new website which allows users to 'walk' through historic places in our area. The resulting 3D tours preserve important history which is fast disappearing.
 
With the goal to create a massive library of historic sites and accompanying oral histories that anyone can view at any time on their computers, smart phones, and tablets, Kyle has already posted tours of an old home, business, outdoor space, and even an historic jail. His podcast introduces the historians and preservationists behind the scenes for these sites. 
 
To take the tours of this 'online museum' or find out more, visit Preserving Spaces.
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Storyteller Has Writing Projects You Can Join

Thanks to storyteller Randell Jones for sharing his entertaining video of Famous and Infamous Women of North Carolina with us in July. Randell has many other fascinating tales, available both in printed and video form. He is also compiling stories from anyone else who wants to share and publish their own stories.
 
To hear more of Randell's stories and learn about his other writing projects, visit www.randelljones.com.
 
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Picture Formatting Suggestions

Below are links to YouTube videos created by Louise Nottingham, leader of the Olde Meck Writers' Group. They are designed to help you format photos and images of documents that you may want to include in a Microsoft Word family file:
  1. Corrections Tool
  2. Grouping Tool
  3. Placements Explained
  4. Screenshot Clippings
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Navigating Mecklenburg County Deeds

Video Tutorial
Deed records can provide a wealth of information to fill out our ancestors' stories but can oftentimes be difficult to access. We are excited to announce an addition to our website which will make the process of finding valuable Mecklenburg land records easier than in the past.
 
As part of her internship for a course in her Masters of Library Science program at East Carolina University, Ann Martin, now an Olde Meck member, has recently completed a helpful video tutorial to walk users through the process of accessing the Mecklenburg County Register of Deeds website. If you have Mecklenburg ancestors and have ever wanted to view old deeds and land transactions, this video will facilitate your journey.
 
Ann describes the basics of deeds, what they consist of, and how they can help with family research. She then provides easy to follow navigation through the Register of Deeds website using a specific example.
 
(1) Click Start Button below to begin. Be sure to view in Full Screen (icon at bottom right of video)
 
 
(2) If you want to go directly to YouTube, click Navigating Mecklenburg County Deeds
 
We hope you will find Ann’s video tutorial useful and search for the deeds of your ancestors. Please feel free to give us feedback on this new feature.
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Organize Your Family History Research

At the May 2019 monthly meeting, Lynn Bancroft presented a program on methods to help us organize our family history. She discussed useful hints and presented a sampling of different charts which can enhance our research. Based on Family Tree Magazine’s 8 Habits of Highly Organized Genealogists, Lynn described how the following tips may be helpful:
  1. Keep the big picture in mind.
  2. Take charge of paper files.
  3. Go digital.
  4. Establish an organization routine.
  5. Take advantage of tech tools.
  6. Designate a workspace.
  7. Color-code folders and files.
  8. Create a kit for on-site research.
Lynn gave explanations of how to implement each of these habits and had copies of the charts she presented available for attendees to take home.  Lynn's Research Organization Presentation is available to Olde Meck members who missed attending the meeting.
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December 9
December Holiday Meeting
We hope you can join us to celebrate another successful, if challenging year for Olde Meck. We will 'meet' on Zoom and have entertainment, installation of officers, and prizes!!
February 25
RootsTech 2021 - Virtual Connections at Your Fingertips
Celebrate Your Family Story with RootsTech 2021 Virtual Connections at Your Fingertips 25-27 February, 2021  www.rootstech.org   For the first time ever, the world’s largest family celebration event will be entirely virtual and completely free. Get ready to celebrate ...
May 19
NGS Family History Conference 2021
Learn new techniques, resources, and strategies to sharpen your family history skills at the NGS 2021 Family History Conference. The upcoming NGS 2021 Family History Conference will be held in Richmond, Virginia, and will offer the best and most ...