MSS-052-Vermont French-Canadian Genealogical Society

Episode 052-August 30, 2016


By From the nek (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (], via Wikimedia Commons

The Vermont French-Canadian Genealogical Society is the next in our Spotlight on a Society series. Today’s guest, Sheila Morris, is currently the president of the Vermont French-Canadian Genealogical Society. In this episode, Sheila discusses what the society offers its members for help in researching their French-Canadian roots.

Vermont French-Canadian Genealogical Society

Many residents of southern Québec moved back and forth between that province and the state of Vermont. Perhaps your ancestors stayed; perhaps they passed through. The Vermont French-Canadian Genealogical Society might have just what you need to research your Vermont ancestors.

Sheila and I discussed the following:

The VT-FCGS began as a French-Canadian society but has since expanded to include other ethnic groups. To avoid confusion, it has not only a society website, but also a separate site for their library in Colchester, VT.

Vermont Genealogy Library

The library consists of:

  • A book room
  • A computer room
  • Microfiche of French-Canadian marriages
  • Microfilm from state of Vermont vital statistics
  • Vermont Catholic parish repertoires
  • Books for New England states and New York state: Lake Champlain tied Vermont and New York together. When looking for hidden Vermont families, check in New York, especially Chazy, New York.
  • Journals swapped with other societies
  • Maps
  • Family histories
  • Online databases: Ancestry, Find My Past, vital records, census records, military records, naturalizations, LaFrance, PRDH.

The Society

Society meetings are held at the library, which is open Tuesdays from 3:30-9:30 PM and Saturdays from 10-4 (2nd Saturday only in July and August). Contact the society if you are from out-of-town and would like to visit the library at a different time. First visit is free; annual membership is $30.00.

The society conducts a fall conference in October and classes throughout the year.

Plans for the future include a telephone and an employee! They also hope to include research into Italian, Loyalist, and Huguenot ancestry.


  • Classes, including computer instruction
  • Volunteer instruction
  • DNA classes


  • 1819 love letters – four years’ worth of love letters between Susan Maria Griswold and George Bradford Shaw. These letters are now located at the University of Vermont library. The transcribed manuscript is at the Vermont Genealogy Library.
  • Vermont Catholic parish records-So far the society has published fifty-three books of transcribed parish records
  • LINKS journal-published twice a year, for members. Back issues are in the members’ section of the website. The journal contains a major portion of French-Canadian material.

Benefits for long-distance members


Meet every month except during the summer; open to public

  • 1st Tuesday- Scottish group
  • 2nd Tuesday- French-Canadian group
  • 3rd Tuesday- Irish group
  • 4th Tuesday- DNA group

Social media

Facebook- “Vermont Genealogy Library.” This is an open group.

Volunteers needed

  • Librarians
  • Transcribers for parish books
  • People to man booths at fairs and festivals
  • Translators

Pin program

Pins are available for descendants in the following categories:

Fall Conference

  • The fall conference takes place October 22 in South Burlington, VT.
  • It’s an all-day affair with registration beginning at 8:30 AM.
  • Early bird special of $25 if registered by October 14
  • Speakers
  • David Graham: 1837-1838 Rebellion
  • Michael Laramie-Naval Campaigns in the Champlain Valley, 1665-1815; he will bring copies of his book By Wind and Iron
  • André Senecal-A New Life at Crown Point and Chimney Point; and Return to Chazy, NY & a 3rd Life as a Double Spy during the Revolution
  • Online registration


  •, lists published books, resources
  •– to register for conference, LINKS back issues

Have fun exploring these websites; there is so much to discover. To become a member, go here.



Suggestions, Please

I’m trying to make sure this podcast is not focused too much on Francos from New England. If you know of an excellent speaker or expert in an area of interest to French-Canadians, please send me a brief summary and contact info. I’d love to vary the topics beyond the northeast US.

It’s Translation Time Again!

This is a repeat offer from Dr. Elizabeth Blood of Salem State University. She is looking for French samples for her French language translation class.

Just as last year when several of us sent in journal articles or notary records (see episode #32), scan your materials and get them ready. Even a genealogy society took advantage of the offer and sent in an introduction to a French-language genealogy book. Make sure your documents are easy to read. Mail them to eblood [at] salemstate [dot] edu with “MSS Translation” in the subject line.

After you receive your translations, if you’d like to share them, send a copy of the original and the translation and I’ll post them on my website.


The survey question from episodes 50 and 51: “Which social media platforms do you use regularly for genealogy? You could check as many as apply. Choices were Facebook, Google+, Twitter, Instagram, LinkedIn, Pinterest, Tumblr, Reddit, Pocket, Periscope, Blab, Rootsweb mailing lists, E-mail, and Others where you could type in any other platforms that you use.

The results

Social Media used by genealogists








Survey #52

Question: Do you have a home subscription to PRDH?

The choices are yes; no, and I don’t plan to; no, but I plan to. To take the survey, go to

French-Canadian News

What's Happening Header

The American-French Genealogical Society

September 17, at 9 AM: “Genealogy for Beginners” workshop presented by Dennis Boudreau. Classes are held at the AFGS Library, 78 Earle Street, Woonsocket, RI.

The French Canadian Heritage Society of Michigan

September 10, 11 AM, at the Mount Clemens Public Library. Guillaume Teasdale, PhD, will speak on “French-Canadian Migrations to the Detroit River Region, 1760-1840” and “Unearthing The Past of Windsor’s Assumption Church.”

The Quebec Family History Society

September 10, 10:30 AM: Lorraine Gosselin will present “Kippy’s Trove: Family Photographs from 1850s to 1950s.” Class will be held at the Briarwood Presbyterian Church Hall in Beaconsfield.

The Vermont French-Canadian Genealogical Society

  • September 17: Beginning Genealogy with Sheila Morris
  • September 24: Ed McGuire will present Understanding & Using DNA Ethnicity Maps

Classes run from 10:30 AM until noon and are held at the Vermont Genealogy Library in Colchester, Vermont.

The American-Canadian Genealogical Society

September 24: Fall Conference and Annual Meeting at the Puritan Restaurant, 245 Hooksett Rd, in Manchester, New Hampshire. The day consists of three presentations and lunch. Click here for conference flyer and registration.

The French-Canadian Heritage Society of California

October 23: Fall Meeting from 10 AM to 4 PM at the Southern California Genealogical Society and Family Research Library in Burbank, CA.

Northern New York American-Canadian Genealogical Society

September 24: Fall Conference, 9 AM-3 PM. Speaker Denyse Beaugrand-Champagne will give two talks: Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec, a Treasure Trove of Genealogical Resources and Coroners’ Files at Bibliothèque et Archives nationales du Québec.

Get Maple Stars and Stripes

How to Contact Maple Stars and Stripes






Leave a Reply