Scott County Genealogical Society, Inc.
Georgetown, Kentucky

Established 1983

2013 Meeting Highlights

Photos by Tom Beatty
November 2013: This month we viewed a video titled, "Fundamentals of an Early 19th Century Will," provided by well-known genealogy blogger Michael John Neill. During his presentation, Neill discussed the will of John Demoss written in Maryland in 1820. John bequeathed his property, Traveller’s Rest, to his two sons. The will was not clear on some immportant facts, and Neill stressed that other information needed to be researched such as land, estate, marriage, and census records. Following the video presentation, SCGS members discussed their personal experiences researching wills. This was our last meeting of the year; our monthly meetings resume on January 18, 2014.

Photos by Tom Beatty
October 2013: Our October program, “Scott County’s Hummonstown Community: Its Founding and Residents,” was presented by Lexington resident Yvonne Giles. Giles traced an ancestor back to Maryland, and shared the fact that one of her Hummons ancestors was in Scott County before settling in southern Fayette County. Over the years, some of the Hummons family moved to southern Scott County and settled an area that became known as Hummonstown near the Donerail area off Ironworks Pike. The community no longer exists today, but was once home to several families and a small church. Giles shared pictures and written documents about her family, including a photo from a 1947 Hummons family reunion. In the photo on the right, SCGS President Nancy Giles presented a society mug to Yvonne Giles. Our refreshments were provided by Barbara Knox.

Photos by Tom Beatty.
September 2013: Georgetown author Beth Shannon took our members on a trip “across the pond” as she explained the process she used to track down relatives who left England and relocated to the American Colonies centuries ago. She highlighted some of the sources she used in her research including the National Archives of England website, and told of her collaboration with a noted British genealogist. Shannon reminded SCGS members who are looking for English relatives to pay attention to groups of colonial settlers; people often intermarried within those groups which can provide clues to family names. SCGS President Nancy Giles presented the coveted society coffee mug to our deserving speaker. Refreshments for the morning were provided by Ben Calvert.

PowerPoint® slide by Terri Cline. Photos by Tom Beatty
July 2013: Our program today, "DNA Testing From a Consumer Point of View," was presented by New York native Terri Cline. Terri became interested in DNA testing in her search for unknown relatives. She was also interested in discovering medical traits that might run in her family. She mentioned some sources for consumer-level DNA testing, and the costs involved. Terri explained the different types of DNA testing and the results that can be expected from each type. She discovered that her ancestors were most likely from Ireland or Britain, and explained personal traits that were passed down through generations. Refreshments were provided by Nikki Chowning.

Photo by Nancy Giles. PowerPoint® slides by Tom Beatty.
June 2013: Tom Beatty presented a program titled, "Why Genealogists Love Death Certificates.” He talked about the possible sources for death certificates, the valuable information that can be found on these records, and ways to cite a death certificate in genealogical research. Tom also pointed out that death certificates can contain erroneous information, and that they sometimes hold secrets that many older generations preferred not to discuss. Refreshments were provided by Sarah Baston and Kenny Roseberry.

PowerPoint® slide and photos by Tom Beatty.
May 2013: The Civil War was the longest and bloodiest conflict fought on American soil. Many of us can trace our roots back to soldiers who fought in this terrible war. Following the war, former soldiers and their widows were eligible for pensions as a result of their service. Our May meeting focused on the genealogical value of pension applications. We listened to a previously-recorded webinar produced by Michael John Neill, author of the Genealogy Tip of the Day blog. In his presentation, Neill showed examples of a Union soldier's and widow's pension applications, and the various vital statistics information that can be found in these documents. Following the presentation, members gathered for refreshments and problem-solving.

Photos by Kitty Allen (top right, lower left) and Tom Beatty. Title slide provided by Mike Key.
April 2013: In 1992, the Scott County Genealogical Society published a book titled, Gone, Forgotten, Now Remembered: Scott County, Kentucky Cemeteries. The book contained information on over 300 family and private cemeteries located in the county. Over the ensuing years, technology advances such as the Internet have changed how people conduct family history research. Mike Key, a librarian at the Scott County Public Library, approached our society with an initiative to update the information in our 1992 book to include global positioning system (GPS) coordinates and cemetery photographs, and to make that information available on Find A Grave, a website used by thousands of researchers looking for connections to their ancestors and family members. At our meeting this month, Key explained his initiative and gave an overview of posting data to the Find A Grave website. Following the meeting, SCGS members and guests visited Mt. Gilead Cemetery in rural Scott County to practice photographing head stones and acquiring GPS coordinates.

Photos by Tom Beatty (top row) and Kitty Allen (bottom row).
March 2013: One of our favorite programs of the year is genealogy show-and-tell, in which members bring treasured memories from their own families to share with each other. We had a nice assortment of artifacts this month. Clockwise from top left, Ellie Caroland brought a butter paddle to share with us, and Kenny Roseberry entertained us with a churning song from her childhood. Ron Vance found an old bible at an antique sale which turned out to contain information pertaining to the Sutton family of Scott County; Dr. William Loftus Sutton pioneered efforts to compile vital statistics in Kentucky. Kitty Allen displayed a sextant from her grandfather's shipyard days, as well as a cannonball that was dredged from the Baltimore shipyard. Anissa Davis displayed a teaching certificate that belonged to an ancestor. Visitors Sharon and Gretchen Gould looked a 1920s photograph of Tom Beatty's maternal family taken in Huntington, West Virginia; features in the photograph helped Tom identify when the family had moved to that area. And finally, Ben Calvert shared a family photograph showing a strong resemblance to Jesse James; Ben is a distant cousin to the notorious outlaw.

Photos by Kitty Allen. Title slide courtesy of
February 2013: Our society charted new territory this month as we conducted our first ever online program. has an excellent collection of genealogy-based video programs available online for free. Our program selection this month, "Basic U.S. Military Records," was presented by Tiffany Wright, genealogy reference assistant with the Midwest Genealogy Center located in Independence, Missouri. Wright explained how to locate military records from various federal and state repositories. Her presentation covered records from virtually every United States conflict from the American Revolution through the Second World War. Based on informal feedback from SCGS members, the online programs are a great source for learning about genealogy.

Photos by Tom Beatty
January 2013: We kicked off the new year with an update on the SCGS Bible Project provided by SCGS member Ernie Stamper. The purpose of the project, which has been underway for several years, is to record and document family bibles of early Scott County families by providing pictures of the bibles as well as transcriptions of the vital data found within them. A book containing all the information will be published in the future. In the photos above, Stamper (left) showed many of the pictures that he has collected over the years. Center, Stamper discussed one bible transcription with SCGS member Ellie Caroland. At right, a picture of a page from the Vanzant family bible.