Ventura County Genealogical Society


Free Lecture

Saturday, August 15
Breaking Down Brick Walls: Three Case Studies  
1:00 pm to 4:00 pm
Camarillo Public Library, 4101 E. Las Posas Rd, Camarillo, CA
Speaker: Ted Gostin


"Breaking Down Brick Walls: Three Case Studies"
All genealogists eventually run up against a “brick wall” in their research; that is, a research problem that they just can’t seem to solve. This lecture reviews three cases studies where brick walls were successfully overcome, and from those experiences draws out a series of research strategies that might be applied to other difficult-to-solve problems. The three case studies involved trying to determine the parents of an early, post-revolutionary American ancestor in New York State (Metcalf); trying to determine Juaneño Indian ancestry (from Mission San Juan Capistrano) in a California Latino family (Mireles); and trying to find any trace of a Polish-Jewish immigrant tailor in England in the mid-1800s (Stargatt/Stargratt).
Mr. Gostin has been doing genealogical research since 1980, and has worked as a full-time professional genealogist since 1994. He has twice been President of the Jewish Genealogical Society, Los Angeles, and has taught genealogy for several adult school and university extension programs. Mr. Gostin has helped plan and organize three national genealogical seminars, and has been a featured speaker at many such conferences. He lectures widely on Jewish genealogy, Southern California resources and immigration and naturalization records. His articles have appeared in genealogical publications throughout the country. Mr. Gostin has published one volume of his own family history, and is the author of Southern California Vital Records: Volume 1, Los Angeles County 1850-1859. He was featured on a segment of the original BBC version of the popular television show Who Do You Think You Are? (Larry Lamb episode). He is very active in the international Jewish genealogical community, and maintains contact with genealogists throughout the world. He is the owner of both Gostin Research Associates and the publishing/bookselling firm Generations Press. Mr. Gostin is also an active member of the Association of Professional Genealogists.
Workshop following the lecture:
Who DNA Think You Are?
A Case Study Using Genetics to Direct and Support Traditional Genealogical Research

Don Worth
Learn how Don is using genetic genealogy, supported by traditional genealogical research strategies, to jump over a 40 year old brick wall. This will be primarily a non-technical presentation to help you understand the value (and limitations) of DNA tests in directing and providing support for your genealogical research.
The DNA Special Interest Group meeting will precede the general meeting from 11:00 AM to 12:00 PM at the Camarillo Library, 4101 Las Posas Rd, Camarillo.


Benefits of Membership

  • Monthly lectures and workshops with talented and exciting speakers.
  • Yearly Fall seminar. Review our EVENTS page to keep informed of our upcoming activities.
  • Our monthly newsletter. Each issue contains articles and information of interest to family researchers.  
  • Access to our members-only section on the Society's website.
  • Members-only email notification of special genealogical interest items and local, state, and national genealogical events.
  • Opportunity to participate on special projects.
  • The most compelling reason to join VCGS is the friendships you will establish with fellow researchers in the area. Those with a new interest in genealogy can learn from experts, and the experts can share the wealth of their experience. Membership is from January 1 to December 31 of each year. 
Click on the JOIN US menu item to pull up a Membership Form.

Reference Library

Ventura County Genealogical Society provides full maintenance and development of the Genealogy Collection housed within the Camarillo City Library (upper level), 4101 Las Posas Road, Camarillo, California.  You can access the catalog using the Library choice on the left-side menu.

Get Involved!

All VCGS activities are brought to life by the hard work of our volunteers.  Society elections are held each year in November, and vacancies on the VCGS board are filled as needed.  If you would like to volunteer your assistance, please contact the president.

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Federation of Genealogical Societies
Representing the members of hundreds of genealogical societies across the United States and other nations, the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) is here to link the genealogical community and help its members grow.
California State Genealogical Alliance - Member
The National Genealogical Society was organized in Washington, D.C. in 1903. NGS's mission is to serve and grow the genealogical community by providing education and training, fostering increased quality and standards, and promoting access to and preservation of genealogical records.
California State Genealogical Alliance - Member
Founded in October, 1982, the California State Genealogical Alliance serves as a statewide association of independent genealogical societies, individuals, and non-profit organizations.
Family Tree Magazine: Half of your total paid will go to support the FGS and hundreds of local member societies that need your help!
Family Tree DNA: DNA Testing at Group Rates
Coupons for VCGS members

Corona Genealogical Society - SEMINAR
Saturday, Aug 8th
8:30 am to 12:30 pm
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Technology Special Interest Group Meeting
Tuesday, Aug 11th
There will be no Technology SIG meeting in August.
VCGS DNA Special Interest Group Meeting
Saturday, Aug 15th
11:00 am to 12:00 pm
  Discussion Topic: An introduction to the 3rd party DNA analysis web site, GEDMATCH allows you to upload your ...
VCGS: Breaking Down Brick Walls: Three Case Studies
Saturday, Aug 15th
1:00 pm to 4:00 pm
Speaker: Ted Gostin   "Breaking Down Brick Walls: Three Case Studies" All genealogists eventually run up against a “brick ...
Whittier Area Genealogical Society - Hal Horrocks
Saturday, Aug 15th
1:00 pm
Presentation by Hal Horrocks Colonial Research
Technology Special Interest Group Meeting
Tuesday, Sep 8th
6:00 pm to 7:00 pm
The VCGS Technology Special Interest Group will hold its next meeting at the Family History Center in Ventura on Tuesday, ...
Huntington Library Civil War Symposium
Friday, Sep 18th
Ending a Mighty Conflict: The Civil War in 1864-1865 Conveners: Gary Gallagher (University of Virginia) and Joan Waugh (UCLA)