2015 Officers

- Ann Talbot Roberts
- Mary Torres
Corresponding Secretary
- Yvonne Swanson
Recording Secretary
- Rosemarie Herrmann
- Barbara Krafka

Genealogical Tips Vol. LIV, No. 1
January - March 2016

2015 Committee Chairpersons

Book Selection
- Position not filled as of 02-14-2013
- Coralie Somers
Editor, Genealogical Tips
- Marlene Pegg
- Susan Francis

Member Notice

Tip O' Texas Genealogical Society is a local non-profit organization. We welcome individuals interested in learning to trace their family roots and improve their skills. The society works closely with the Harlingen Public Library which maintains a large collection of genealogical resources.

Programs and workshops provide members with interesting speakers designed to help in genealogical research and a way to network with others. Our quarterly newsletter showcases research techniques and successes.

We offer members the opportunity to learn new strategies, research and present new topics, serve on the Board of Directors, and expand their personal genealogical knowledge including using new technology and social media. Like us on Facebook!

The annual dues are $20. For more information call 956-345-4756 or visit totgs.org.

 Programs and workshops provide members with interesting speakers designed to help in genealogical research and a way to network with others.

Upcoming Meetings

Thursday October 20th
The Tip O' Texas Genealogical Society will meet at 10:15 AM on Thursday, October 20 in the auditorium of the Harlingen Public Library. In honor of National Family History Month, the society is pleased to welcome George McShan for an update on his family history which he presented to TOTGS last February during Black History Month: "The Jane Bell Story ~ my Great-Great Grandmother.  Jane Bell was born in 1841 and lived 99 productive years.  As a slave in Georgia, she was sold to Arkansas, and finally arrived in Texas.  She was eventually freed in 1865 and was able to purchase land for farming. Though a slave, she became a leader and instilled that quality into her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren.  The meeting is free and open to the public. Refreshments will be served.

Partnership Announcement

August 8, 2016 – Austin, TX. and Brownsville, TX. The Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS) and the National Park Service's Palo Alto Battlefield National Historical Park announce a partnership to develop a searchable database of more than 130,000 soldiers of the U.S.-Mexican War.

The database will allow descendants of U.S. soldiers to connect to their personal history and help Palo Alto commemorate and tell the stories of these soldiers. After the database is developed, unit histories, digitized documents, and information on U.S.-Mexican War soldiers will be added. Efforts will also be made to include names and information about Mexican soldiers in this war.  "FGS is thrilled to partner with the Palo Alto Battlefield National Historic Park for this important preservation project," said FGS President D. Joshua Taylor. "We look forward to working with our member societies and volunteers to provide new access to records for those researching the Mexican War." 

Palo Alto Battlefield is also pleased with the partnership. "National Parks tell the stories of America," said Superintendent Mark Spier. "Palo Alto Battlefield is excited to have the opportunity to work with the Federation of Genealogical Societies to tell the stories of the thousands of soldiers who served in the U.S.-Mexican War."

To help bring these soldiers' stories to life and to be a part of this momentous preservation project, indexing volunteers should contact Project Coordinator Patricia Rand, The Villages, FL, at projects@fgs.org.

The Federation of Genealogical Societies and the National Park Service previously partnered together in 1999 for the Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System database project where FGS volunteers completed data entry for more than five million names. The efforts of the CWSS project can now be experienced on the NPS Civil War website.

Become a Member

Interested in joining the TOTGS? Go to our Contact for more information.


Beginning Research
Chart, going backwards. Write down everything. ASK family members – interview by asking open-ended questions.
Roots Web
Find A Grave
Heritage Quest
Family Search
Library of Congress

Paid Websites
Godfrey Library

An excellent resource is the printed Virginia Slave Index (compiled 1853-1865), later transcribed in microfilm format during the WPA in the 1930s and now available thanks to the Alexandria Library and put out by Heritage Books; also available on Amazon. Arranged alphabetically by slaveowner names, the 6th volume is a Geographic Supplement, arranged by county names. Pricey but worth it, or maybe you can order interlibrary loan.