Thursday, November 18, 2010

52 Weeks To Better Genealogy – Challenge 46 Volunteering

Volunteering for Eastern Washington Genealogical Society started soon after my sister and I joined, we were gene helpers in the library on the second Thursday. The library was in temporary quarters in an old JC Pennys building and the gene section was just inside the door. On cold nights a lot of homeless people came into the library to keep warm and so they were asking for as many men as possible to volunteer in the evenings. While I liked being a gene helper, I really liked doing research so when the societies researcher retired due to health, I applied, and that was the job I really liked, being in the library almost all alone with all the records. I also got to research in the courthouse archives, that was a lot of work, but the archives were very quiet and peaceful.
I have also volunteered with other jobs in EWGS, helping with some of the programs and seminars, being on the budget committee, and many times on the auditing committee, I am also the Registered Agent for EWGS with the state of Washington, and have prepared the 990 form for the IRS for EWGS. I have helped at the Rest Stop Fund raisers, both manning the rest stop and baking cookies.
When I started doing the research for EWGS I did a lot of census lookups, and looking for someone in the Spokane County Territorial Census was a lot of work, so I started indexing the 1887 census, I copied ten pages, took them home and indexed them in Ski Index. Took me most of a year to finish, but it sure saved me a lot of time in looking for someone in that census. Since then I have done a lot of indexing, both for EWGS and also for the Washington State Library which sends the results to the Washington State Digital Archives.
I also have written many articles for the EWGS Bulletin, and that is probably my least favorite volunteering, guess I should have paid more attention in English classes in school.

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