Maine Historical Society

MAINE HISTORICAL SOCIETY

PRESERVING HISTORY
ENGAGING MINDS
CONNECTING MAINE

Upcoming Programs & Events

Events on this page: August | September | October | November | Ongoing Programs | Podcasts | Annual Trip | Exhibitions | Regional Genealogy Events

Program fees and registration details are listed in the program description. Programs for MHS members are free or discounted. Support MHS by becoming a member today. All programs take place at our facilities at 489 Congress Street in Portland, unless otherwise noted. Click here for Directions or Parking information.

If you have questions about any of the programs listed below, please contact Larissa Vigue Picard, Director of Education & Interpretation, at (207) 774-1822 x215.

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Ongoing Programs

Wadsworth-Longfellow House Tours - Daily, May - October. See details.

Exhibition Galleries (self-guided) - Changing schedule, year-round. See details.

Historical Walking Tours of Portland - Daily, June - Columbus Day weekend. See details.

Library Tours - First Wednesday at noon in January, March, May, July, September, and November. See below for next scheduled tour.

August Programs

Wednesday, August 5 – Friday, September 25, 2015

Historic House Tour: Furniture & Furnishings in the Longfellow House

Anne Longfellow Pierce's bedroom

Anne Longfellow Pierce's bedroom

Tour Guide: John Babin, MHS Visitor Services Manager

Tour takes place on Wednesdays and Fridays at 3:30PM, and Thursday evenings at 6PM. Tickets can be purchased online or on-site at the museum store the day of the tour.

Material culture history is an important aspect of the appeal of the Wadsworth-Longfellow House. This tour provides numerous details about the furniture and objects in each room, along with information about the construction of the house. This tour will be of special appeal to those interested in architecture, period furnishings, antiques, home décor, and carpentry. Participants get to visit the rarely-open third floor, see additional pieces not on display to the public, and take home a special souvenir coaster.

Cost: $20 general admission; $15 MHS members, seniors, and students; $10 for children 16 and younger; free for children 5 and younger.

September Programs

Wednesday, September 2, 12:00 pm

Intro to MHS: Library Tour

Intro to MHS: Library Tour

Tour Guide: Nicholas Noyes, Curator of Library Collections

This 45-minute tour of the Brown Library, fully renovated in 2009, takes participants throughout the library's reading rooms and behind-the-scenes into the archive, normally closed to the public. Nicholas Noyes covers the history of the building, architectural details, the basics of doing research in the library, and even shares a few treasures from the collection.

(Monthly on the first Wednesday at 12PM in Jan, March, May, July, Sept, Nov.; free; limited to 10. Sign up in advance by sending an email to nnoyes@mainehistory.org or call 774-1822 x207.)

Thursday, September 10, 12:00 pm

Children of the Dawn: Short Film Screening & Talk

Photo credit: upstanderproject.org/dawnland

Photo credit: upstanderproject.org/dawnland

Speakers: Adam Mazo and Ben Pender-Cudlip

Join us for a screening of the short film, Children of the Dawn, followed by a discussion with the filmmakers, Adam Mazo and Ben Pender-Cudlip. Children of the Dawn documents the work of the Maine Wabanaki-State Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC), the nation’s first task force dedicated to uncovering and acknowledging the truth about what happened to Wabanaki children and families involved with the Maine child welfare system. Free for MHS members, $5 general admission. Pay at the door.

Friday, September 11, 5:30 pm

Presented in partnership with Vena's Fizz House
Distilled in Maine: A History of Libations, Temperance & Craft Spirits

Distilled in Maine: A History of Libations, Temperance & Craft Spirits

Speaker: Kate McCarty

Kate McCarty, popular food blogger and author of Portland Food: The Culinary Capital of Maine, is back to regale us with tales from her newest book on Maine’s “spirited” and complicated history with alcohol. Naturally, we’re going to have some fun samples to share, compliments of mixologist Steve Corman from Vena’s Fizz House. Cost: $10 MHS members; $15 general admission. Register online.

Tuesday, September 15, 12:00 pm

Book Talk: The Painter’s Panorama: Narrative, Art, and Faith in the Moving Panorama of Pilgrim’s Progress

Book Talk: The Painter’s Panorama: Narrative, Art, and Faith in the Moving Panorama of Pilgrim’s Progress

Speaker: Jessica Skwire Routhier

Co-authored by Jessica Skwire Routhier, Kevin Avery, and Tom Hardiman, The Painter’s Panorama is the culmination of a decades-long project to preserve and reinterpret an 800-foot-long panoramic painting from 1851. The painting is in the collections of the Saco Museum, where Routhier served as Museum Director from 2008 to 2012. Cost: Free to MHS members, $5 general admission. Pay at the door.

Thursday, September 17, 7:00 pm

Presented in partnership with Victoria Mansion
A Passion for Fashion: Textile Factory Girls and the Dangers of Shopping

Advertisement, B.F. Hamilton, Saco, 1856. MMN#29088.

Advertisement, B.F. Hamilton, Saco, 1856. MMN#29088.

Speaker: Elizabeth De Wolfe

University of New England Professor of History Dr. Elizabeth De Wolfe explores the lives of 19th-century New England textile factory girls. By day, they made the fabric that made the fancy dresses. By night, they shopped, spending their hard-earned money. Illustrating her talk with tales from 19th-century sensational fiction, Dr. De Wolfe will explore why their passion for fashion—and shopping—led girls down a very dangerous path. Free and open to the public.

Wednesday, September 23, 10:30 am

Children's Hour, a Story & Craft Activity for Kids: Kunu's Basket: A Story from Indian Island

Children's Hour, a Story & Craft Activity for Kids: Kunu's Basket: A Story from Indian Island

Facilitator: Kathleen Neumann, Manager of School and Interpretative Programs

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was often called “the children’s poet” and his love of children is still well remembered. Monthly, Maine Historical Society invites children ages 4-9 to celebrate reading and literature in an hour-long book-and-craft program. This month, the book is Kunu's Basket: A Story from Indian Island by Lee DeCora Francis. The accompanying activity is simple basket weaving.

The program is free and refreshments will be served. Participating children must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver; check-in at the Museum Store. Space is limited. Advance reservations required: Please call or email the Manager of Education & Interpretation the Friday before the program to reserve a spot at 207-774-1822, x214, or kneumann@mainehistory.org.

Wednesday, September 23, 4:00 pm

Children's Hour, a Story & Craft Activity for Kids: Kunu's Basket: A Story from Indian Island

Children's Hour, a Story & Craft Activity for Kids: Kunu's Basket: A Story from Indian Island

Facilitator: Kathleen Neumann, Manager of School and Interpretative Programs

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was often called “the children’s poet” and his love of children is still well remembered. Monthly, Maine Historical Society invites children ages 4-9 to celebrate reading and literature in an hour-long book-and-craft program. This month, the book is Kunu's Basket: A Story from Indian Island by Lee DeCora Francis. The accompanying activity is simple basket weaving.

The program is free and refreshments will be served. Participating children must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver; check-in at the Museum Store. Space is limited. Advance reservations required: Please call or email the Manager of Education & Interpretation the Friday before the program to reserve a spot at 207-774-1822, x214, or kneumann@mainehistory.org.

Saturday, September 26, 09:00 am – 4:00 pm

Brick Walls and Missing Persons: One-on-One Genealogy Assistance

Brick Walls and Missing Persons: One-on-One Genealogy Assistance

Sign up for a 90-minute one-on-one genealogy research session with one of Maine Historical Society's reference librarians and genealogy experts! These sessions are ideal for intermediate-and-beyond genealogists who have been doing research and are familiar with at least basic resources but need some detailed help on challenging ancestry questions.

Twelve slots are available throughout the day. Following your online ticket purchase, an MHS staff member will email you to confirm your slot preference. Times include: 4 slots from 9AM-10:30AM; 2 slots from 10:45AM-12:15PM; 2 slots from 12:30-2PM; and 4 slots from 2-3:30PM. Slots are first come, first served.

Throughout the day, refreshments will be available in the library lobby and the museum store will feature discounts on genealogy books and related material. There will also be a drawing for a year's free MHS membership! Cost: $40 MHS members; $50 general admission. Register online.

Monday, September 28, 5:30 – 8:00 pm

Annual Maine History Maker Award: Honoring the Mills Family

Annual Maine History Maker Award: Honoring the Mills Family

LOCATION: Hannaford Hall, University of Southern Maine
SCHEDULE: 5:30-6:45pm: Reception in Hall Lobby; 6:45-8pm: Program


Each year Maine Historical Society recognizes an individual in Maine who has made significant contributions to the community through the Maine History Maker Award. This year, we are collectively honoring the Mills Family: Dora, Janet, Paul, and Peter.

The Maine History Maker Award honors contemporary citizens who are shaping life in Maine today, be they business leaders, artists, community members, doctors, journalists, educators, political figures, or others who make a difference. Previous award recipients have been Mert Henry, a retired lawyer and political strategist, and Vin Veroneau, President and CEO of the J.B. Brown & Sons Company.

The Mills family represents a wide swath of Maine culture and economy – spanning politics, education, civil service, community engagement and development, law, government, and public health. We are excited about honoring this Maine family as they reflect the values and attributes of the Maine History Maker Award. Janet Mills serves as Maine’s Attorney General; Peter Mills is the Executive Director of the Maine Turnpike Authority and former State Representative; Paul Mills is an attorney and principal at the Farmington law firm Mills & Mills; and Dora Mills has had a long career in public health and currently serves as Vice President for Clinical Affairs at the University of New England.

We are very excited to honor the Mills siblings as they fully embody the spirit of the award and have been an inspiring presence in Maine serving the State in a multitude of ways.

Cost: $50 per person general admission; $250 per person Host Committee (name appears in print materials). Reserve tickets online. Deadline for registering is September 25.

Complimentary parking is available in the lot behind the Abromson Center.

Tuesday, September 29, 6:00 – 7:30 pm

Presented in partnership with Rangeley Public Library, Rangeley Lakes Region Historical Society, and Maine State Library
Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Rangeley

Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Rangeley

Facilitators: Kathy Amoroso, MHS Director of Digital Projects; Larissa Vigue Picard, MHS Director of Education

Location: Rangeley Public Library, 7 Lake Street, Rangeley

Everyone loves a mystery – and we invite you to help solve some of them! As part of the launch of Maine Memory Network's new "Mystery Corner," we are making our way around the state to host Mystery Photo events with local partners.

Join friends and neighbors at Rangeley Public Library to sort through, and help identify, old photographs and historic objects in local collections that are missing important details. Bring your own mystery photos, too--originals, copies, or scans on a thumb drive. We’ll project them for everyone to see and try to get your questions answered. In addition to solving the mysteries, we'll explore the new “Mystery Corner” of Maine Memory Network.

The event is free and refreshments will be served. RSVPs are appreciated: please email info@rangeleylibrary.com.

October Programs

Thursday, October 1 – Saturday, October 3, 2015

Presented in partnership with Spirits Alive: Friends of the Eastern Cemetery
Lecture & Cemetery Tour: Bartlett Adams, America's First Stone Cutter

Lecture & Cemetery Tour: Bartlett Adams, America's First Stone Cutter

Speaker: Ron Romano

Lecture, at MHS: Thursday, October 1, 6:30PM

Cemetery Tour, at Eastern Cemetery: Saturday, October 3, 9AM, 10AM, 12PM, and 1PM


In 1800, Bartlett Adams (1776 - 1828) arrived in Portland and established the area’s first stone-cutting shop. He made marble hearthstones, mantle-pieces, and doorjambs, but his more lasting and visible impact can be found in the early cemeteries of southern Maine—including 700 grave markers at the Eastern Cemetery. Spirits Alive tour guide and board member Ron Romano has researched Adams’s life and work and surveyed 175 cemeteries throughout southern Maine where Adams’s stones appear.

Cost: Lecture is free. Cemetery tours are $10 per person and limited to 10 people each. Tour times are 9AM, 10AM, 12PM, 1PM. Register online.

Tuesday, October 6, 5:30 – 7:00 pm

Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night at MHS

Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night at MHS

Facilitators: Maine Memory Network Team

Everyone loves a mystery – and we invite you to help solve some of them!

Help Maine Historical Society sort through old photographs and historic objects in local collections that are missing identifying details. We need the public's knowledge and memories to help name people, places, and events. And you can bring your own mystery photos, too!

The evening will include sharing ideas, telling local stories, and socializing with friends and neighbors. In addition to solving the mysteries, we'll explore the new “Mystery Corner” of Maine Memory Network.

If you have questions about some of your own photos, bring them along and we’ll project them for everyone to see — and maybe solve your mysteries, too. Bring originals, copies, or scanned photos on a thumb drive.

The event is free. Refreshments will be served. RSVPs are appreciated: please email lvpicard@mainehistory.org by Friday, October 2.

Tuesday, October 13, 6:00 – 7:30 pm

Presented in partnership with Camden Public Library, Camden-Rockport Historical Society, Lincolnville Historical Society, and Maine State Library
Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Camden

Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Camden

Facilitators: Candace Kanes, MMN Curator

Location: Camden Public Library, 55 Main Street, Camden

Everyone loves a mystery – and we invite you to help solve some of them! As part of the launch of Maine Memory Network's new "Mystery Corner," we are making our way around the state to host Mystery Photo events with local partners.

Join friends and neighbors at Camden Public Library to sort through, and help identify, old photographs and historic objects in local collections that are missing important details. Bring your own mystery photos, too--originals, copies, or scans on a thumb drive. We’ll project them for everyone to see and try to get your questions answered. In addition to solving the mysteries, we'll explore the new “Mystery Corner” of Maine Memory Network.

The event is free and refreshments will be served. RSVPs are appreciated: please email hmoran@librarycamden.org.

Thursday, October 15, 5:30 pm

Baskets from the Dawnland: Talk & Workshop

Baskets from the Dawnland: Talk & Workshop

Speaker/Facilitator: Theresa Secord

Theresa Secord, a member of the Penobscot Nation, an award-winning basketry artist, and the founding director of the Maine Indian Basketmakers Alliance, will present a talk on the history and contemporary movement of baskets and basket makers’ self-determination in saving their own art. Following the talk, Theresa will also conduct a hands-on workshop weaving an ash and sweetgrass bookmark. Theresa served as guest co-curator for the Baskets from the Dawnland exhibition.

Refreshments will be served. For the talk only: Free for MHS members, $10 general admission. For the talk and workshop: $15 for MHS members, $25 general admission (materials included). Space is limited. Register online.

Monday, October 19, 6:00 – 7:30 pm

Presented in partnership with Curtis Memorial Library, Pejepscot Historical Society, and Maine State Library
Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Brunswick

Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Brunswick

Facilitators: Candace Kanes, MMN Curator; and Tilly Laskely, MMN Content Assistant

Location: Curtis Memorial Library, 23 Pleasant Street, Brunswick

Everyone loves a mystery – and we invite you to help solve some of them! As part of the launch of Maine Memory Network's new "Mystery Corner," we are making our way around the state to host Mystery Photo events with local partners.

Join friends and neighbors at Curtis Memorial Library in Brunswick to sort through, and help identify, old photographs and historic objects in local collections that are missing important details. Bring your own mystery photos, too--originals, copies, or scans on a thumb drive. We’ll project them for everyone to see and try to get your questions answered. In addition to solving the mysteries, we'll explore the new “Mystery Corner” of Maine Memory Network.

The event is free and refreshments will be served. RSVPs are appreciated: please email director@pejepscothistorical.org.

Tuesday, October 20, 12:00 pm

Book Event: French and Indian Wars in Maine

Book Event: French and Indian Wars in Maine

Speaker: Michael Dekker

For eight decades, an epic power struggle raged across a frontier that would become Maine. Between 1675 and 1759, British, French and Native Americans clashed in six distinct wars to stake and defend their land claims. Author Michael Dekker, a former trustee on the Lincoln County Historical Society board of directors and a member of the Boothbay Region Historical Society, shares his extensive research on the wars. Cost: Free to MHS members; $5 non-members. Pay at the door.

Wednesday, October 21, 10:30 am

Children's Hour, a Story & Craft Activity for Kids: Too Many Pumpkins

Children's Hour, a Story & Craft Activity for Kids: Too Many Pumpkins

Facilitator: Kathleen Neumann, Manager of School and Interpretative Programs

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was often called “the children’s poet” and his love of children is still well remembered. Monthly, Maine Historical Society invites children ages 4-9 to celebrate reading and literature in an hour-long book-and-craft program. This month, the book is Too Many Pumpkins by Linda White. The accompanying activity is pumpkin painting.

The program is free and refreshments will be served. Participating children must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver; check-in at the Museum Store. Space is limited. Advance reservations required: Please call or email the Manager of Education & Interpretation the Friday before the program to reserve a spot at 207-774-1822, x214, or kneumann@mainehistory.org.

Wednesday, October 21, 4:00 pm

Children's Hour, a Story & Craft Activity for Kids: Too Many Pumpkins

Children's Hour, a Story & Craft Activity for Kids: Too Many Pumpkins

Facilitator: Kathleen Neumann, Manager of School and Interpretative Programs

Henry Wadsworth Longfellow was often called “the children’s poet” and his love of children is still well remembered. Monthly, Maine Historical Society invites children ages 4-9 to celebrate reading and literature in an hour-long book-and-craft program. This month, the book is Too Many Pumpkins by Linda White. The accompanying activity is pumpkin painting.

The program is free and refreshments will be served. Participating children must be accompanied by a parent or caregiver; check-in at the Museum Store. Space is limited. Advance reservations required: Please call or email the Manager of Education & Interpretation the Friday before the program to reserve a spot at 207-774-1822, x214, or kneumann@mainehistory.org.

Thursday, October 22, 09:30 am – 3:00 pm

Co-hosted by Maine Historical Society and Maine Humanities Council
Maine National History Day: A Teacher Workshop

Maine National History Day: A Teacher Workshop

Maine Historical Society and Maine Humanities Council co-host a one-day workshop for teachers of grades 6-12 on participating in Maine National History Day. The workshop runs from 9:30AM – 3:00PM in the MHS lecture hall. It is free of charge. A .5 CEU or certificate of attendance with credit hours will be available to teachers attending the full workshop.

The workshop will be facilitated by Maine NHD Coordinator John Taylor, a veteran History Day teacher, and USM Professor of History (and History Day judge) Libby Bischof. The agenda addresses all aspects of the competition and hands-on activities relate directly to the 2016 History Day theme, "Exploration, Encounter, Exchange in History."

Advance registration is required. Register online via Maine Humanities's website.

Friday, October 23 – Saturday, October 31, 2015

Longfellow's "Haunted House"

Longfellow's

Don't miss this unique evening tour of the Longfellow House in the week leading up to Halloween! Based on Longfellow's poem, "Haunted Houses" -- "All houses wherein men have lived and died / Are haunted houses" -- the 90-minute tour is written and led by seasoned guide James Horrigan. It evokes the various family members that died in the Wadsworth-Longfellow House over its long history. The tour is followed by a variety of snacks and beverages (including beer and hard cider) in the ell of the house, and you’ll take home a special tour souvenir.

There are eight tour evenings: October 23, 24, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, and 31, from 6-7:30 PM. RSVPs are required and each tour is limited to 12. Cost: $15 MHS members; $20 general admission. Register online.

Friday, October 23, 2:00 – 3:30 pm

Presented in partnership with Lincoln Memorial Library, Lincoln Historical Society, and Maine State Library
Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Lincoln

Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Lincoln

Facilitators: Kathy Amoroso, MHS Director of Digital Projects; Larissa Vigue Picard, MHS Director of Education

Location: Lincoln Memorial Library, 27 West Broadway, Lincoln

Everyone loves a mystery – and we invite you to help solve some of them! As part of the launch of Maine Memory Network's new "Mystery Corner," we are making our way around the state to host Mystery Photo events with local partners.

Join friends and neighbors at Lincoln Memorial Library to sort through, and help identify, old photographs and historic objects in local collections that are missing important details. Bring your own mystery photos, too--originals, copies, or scans on a thumb drive. We’ll project them for everyone to see and try to get your questions answered. In addition to solving the mysteries, we'll explore the new “Mystery Corner” of Maine Memory Network.

The event is free and refreshments will be served. RSVPs are appreciated: please email lindamorrill2@lincolnmaine.org.

Wednesday, October 28, 5:30 – 7:00 pm

Presented in partnership with McArthur Public Library and Maine State Library
Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Biddeford

Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Biddeford

Facilitators: Kathy Amoroso, MHS Director of Digital Projects; Larissa Vigue Picard, MHS Director of Education

Location: McArthur Public Library, 270 Main Street, Biddeford

Everyone loves a mystery – and we invite you to help solve some of them! As part of the launch of Maine Memory Network's new "Mystery Corner," we are making our way around the state to host Mystery Photo events with local partners.

Join friends and neighbors at McArthur Public Library in Biddeford to sort through, and help identify, old photographs and historic objects in local collections that are missing important details. Bring your own mystery photos, too--originals, copies, or scans on a thumb drive. We’ll project them for everyone to see and try to get your questions answered. In addition to solving the mysteries, we'll explore the new “Mystery Corner” of Maine Memory Network.

The event is free and refreshments will be served. RSVPs are appreciated: please email mtcoombs@mcarthur.lib.me.us.

November Programs

Monday, November 16, 6:00 – 7:30 pm

Presented in partnership with Androscoggin Historical Society, Lewiston Public Library, and Maine State Library
Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Lewiston

Who? What? When? Where? Help! Mystery Photo Night in Lewiston

Facilitators: Kathy Amoroso, MHS Director of Digital Projects; Larissa Vigue Picard, MHS Director of Education

Location: Lewiston Public Library, 200 Lisbon Street, Lewiston

Everyone loves a mystery – and we invite you to help solve some of them! As part of the launch of Maine Memory Network's new "Mystery Corner," we are making our way around the state to host Mystery Photo events with local partners.

Join friends and neighbors at Lewiston Public Library to sort through, and help identify, old photographs and historic objects in local collections that are missing important details. Bring your own mystery photos, too--originals, copies, or scans on a thumb drive. We’ll project them for everyone to see and try to get your questions answered. In addition to solving the mysteries, we'll explore the new “Mystery Corner” of Maine Memory Network.

The event is free and refreshments will be served. RSVPs are appreciated: please email rjones@lewistonmaine.gov.

Program Podcasts

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Annual Cruise - SOLD OUT - Call for Wait List

CRUISE - Elegant Elbe, River Cruisetour - Berlin to Prague
October 8 - October 21, 2015

Join MHS as we discover the natural beauty of former East Germany's dramatic landscape on a 13-day Elbe River cruise with Maine Historical Society. Start in Berlin and move on to tour the opulent palaces of Saxon monarchs and stroll through beautifully landscaped gardens; sail between the dramatic sandstone cliffs of Germany's "Saxon Switzerland." Get Trip Details.
Find out more about Viking River Cruises.

Exhibitions

exhibit graphic
Morton Block and Wadsworth-Longfellow House, ca. 1912

Home: The Longfellow House & the Emergence of Portland
Opens June 27, 2014

Home: The Longfellow House & the Emergence of Portland uses the Wadsworth-Longfellow House as a prism to explore how Portland has grown and changed over more than 230 years. It's a fascinating new way to look at the House, its relationship to the community, and Portland history. Read More.

 

exhibit graphic

Baskets from the Dawnland: Weaving the past and future together
August 14 to November 28, 2015

Earle G. Shettleworth, Jr. Lecture Hall

Our exhibition--Baskets from the Dawnland: Weaving the past and future together--explores the rich history of the baskets made by Wabanaki people, a tradition that has thrived for thousands of years. Read More

 

Maine Memory Network

Offers online access to numerous Web–based exhibits and a constantly growing collection of nearly 45,000 historical documents, images, and objects contributed by more than 270 organizations around Maine. New exhibits added regularly. Go to www.mainememory.net.

Regional Genealogy Programs, Events, and Conferences

Find out about regional conferences and other family history instruction and workshops.