Welcome to Western Michigan!
Allen County Public
Michigan Genealogical Society’s
Bus Trip to Fort Wayne’s
Allen County Public Library
The Spring 2017 Bus trip is scheduled for
Wednesday and Thursday, April 19 & 20, 2017.
Information and Registration
form now Available!
Call for proposals - Now Open for
Paths to Your Past
See our blog for details...
2017 Writing Contest
Sense of Place ~
Location, Location, Location.
Our ancestors moved, settled and moved
again. Place often determines
occupation, educational opportunities,
and even the materials used in building
For the 2017 WMGS Writing Contest,
entries should focus on the Great Lakes
Region (Michigan, Minnesota, Wisconsin,
Illinois, Indiana, New York, Ohio,
Ontario, and Pennsylvania).
We would love to hear your story.
Write it up and enter the 2017
writing contest! Start your
project now! Entries will be
accepted between January 1 & March 30,
2017. Full rules and entry information
can be found on the
downloadable and printable form HERE.
are SO excited! National Genealogical Society
President, Jordan Jones, announced last May that the 2018 Family
History Conference will be held at DeVos Place in
Grand Rapids, Michigan. Details about the conference
will be available in the fall of 2017.
Press release at Eastman's Online Genealogy
The Western Michigan* Genealogical Society was founded in
1954 with the purpose of preserving and making available for
genealogical research the records of our ancestors;
encouraging and assisting members in genealogical research;
promoting the exchange of knowledge and encouraging the
deposit of genealogical records in established libraries and
Membership Information is
*Includes Kent County and the counties
immediately surrounding; namely Ottawa, Muskegon, Newaygo,
Montcalm, Ionia, Barry and Allegan Counties. There is some
extension beyond these counties into other areas of the
Western Lower Peninsula.
New WMGS Publication!
STATE LAND PATENTS, KENT COUNTY, MICHIGAN
Originally compiled by Western Michigan Genealogical
Society in 1984, this publication was redone and
improved in 2010. Original land patents given by the
Michigan State Government from approximately
1840-1879. These are very important records, as Kent
County had more state land for sale than any other
county in lower Michigan at that time.
Soft cover, 114 pages REVISED, 2010
A resource site for historical and genealogical
organizations & repositories within West Michigan
Please consider making a tax deductible
donation in support of genealogical research, education, and
preservation in West Michigan. The Western Michigan
Genealogical Society is a 501(c)3 tax-exempt organization.
of Acquisitions and Donations
Genealogical Periodicals in Michigan
All of these periodicals and/or newsletters
(whatever has been done over the years) are available at the
Library of Michigan (Lansing) and in respective local
libraries. Societies: please update the webmaster with
corrections or additions.
Card File Subject Index to Grand Rapids
The Story of
Grand Rapids was edited by Z. Z. Lydens (Grand Rapids,
Michigan: Kregel Publications, 1966). A subject card file,
citing primarily newspaper articles was prepared during the
project and serves as an indirect index to Grand Rapids
Do you have questions, comments or
suggestions for Michigana? Contact the editor, Ruth
Our next Monthly Membership Meeting is Saturday,
February 4th 1:30 - 4:00 p.m.
In the Wake of Disaster: The Lake Erie Black
Friday Storm of 1916
On Friday, October 20, 1916 two freighters
sailed onto Lake Erie and into one of the worst
storms in Great Lakes history. Only one man, the
captain of the James B. Colgate survived to tell
the story of his vessel’s loss...
Matthew L. Daley
also on February 4th...
Mini Class: Mini-class: Finding Living Relatives
(12 Noon – 1:00 p.m.)
other classes, location and description
Signup for WMGS eNews
Annual Seminar Site
you have questions
about our search services?
Check out the
research resource page. Whether you need an
obituary lookup or a one, two or three hour custom
search in West Michigan, we can help. You may email
your questions to email@example.com.
database website has been named to
Family Tree Magazine’s list of
Websites for Genealogy for 2016, published
in the December 2016 issue and online. Click
the award badge here to view the entire
This list honors the best websites that
specialize in genealogy research for one of
the 50 US states. The 75 websites represent
the go-to online destinations for tracing
American ancestors, state by state. We
thank our hard working WMGS volunteers that
contribute every year to achieve this... the
6th year in a row! Thank you for
your work on behalf of genealogists across
New!! Media Committee: Do you
know of something that should be publicized to
our family history community? Whether the
newsletter or Michigana or the websites or Facebook? Send the item of interest to
firstname.lastname@example.org and it will reach our
Media Committee members who will help spread the