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Wisconsin STate Genealogical Society

Assistance with Running Your Society

Links to assist our Affiliate societies with the day to day operations of their organizations.


NGS | Advertising & Promoting Your Society | Fundraising & Grants Historic Preservation | Legislative Advocacy | Newsletter Editing & Copyright Aids | Speakers | Technology



National Genealogical Society (NGS)  The National Genealogical Society was organized in Washington, DC, in 1903. NGS has a long history of leading the way in genealogy and produced some remarkable achievements. It was the first national genealogical organization. The society published the first national genealogical journal (NGSQ) and co-created the Board for Certification (BCG). The society introduced the acclaimed NGS Home Study Course in American Genealogy in 1981 and now offers cloud-based, online courses in American Genealogy plus special subject matter courses developed by leading experts in the field.

GenTech, a division of NGS, helped to facilitate a bridge between genealogy and technology, and is known for the GenTech Genealogical Data Model, which is of use to software developers who write genealogy software. And the NGS Book Loan Collection is the largest free lending library of its kind, among the 20,000 books available for research, many in the collection may be borrowed by lending through ILL including a wide range of family histories; state, county and local histories; abstracts of records of cemeteries, churches, courts, deeds, marriages, wills and other probate records.

  • Bylaws, Newsletter & Website Reviews Among the benefits coming soon to member genealogy societies and family, history associations are a series of review programs designed to help your organization improve. Keep an eye on this page for news about when these reviews will begin following the October 2020 merger with the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS).
  • Conferences The National Genealogical Society Family History Conference is a premier annual event for Family Historians, Professional Genealogists, Hobbyists, and History Buffs. There are also special events planned for organizations: societies, libraries, archives, and museums. The conference typically takes place in a different US city each year in the month of May, with a new theme, a new program of lectures, sessions, workshops, luncheons, and events.
  • Genealogical Events Calendar NGS' calendar of events where you can advertise your society's all-day or multiple day events.
  • NGS Awards - The NGS Awards program recognizes scholarship, service, excellence, and achievement in the fields of genealogy, history, and biography by presenting awards to individuals and to societies and organizations.
  • FORUM Archives - Archives of the former FORUM magazine from FGS. Available on the Members Only section of the NGS website accessible only by organization members of the National Genealogical Society.
  • My Society - FGS Radio Archive of the My Society weekly Internet radio program presented by FGS which discussed the issues that confront genealogy societies.
  • Society & Organization Resources NGS provides its organization members with knowledge & information resources, templates, checklists, guides, and tools that are viewable on their website or downloadable.
  • Society Management--Now and Into the Future! - A publication from FGS officers David E. Rencher and Edgie E. Donakey on business and society strategies plus tips and tricks for managing your society.
  • Society Management Books - Available on the Members Only section of the NGS website accessible only by organization members of the National Genealogical Society.
  • Webinars Webinar archives.  Available on the Members Only section of the NGS website accessible only by organization members of the National Genealogical Society.

Advertising & Promoting Your Society

    Fundraising & Grants

    • - Design and sell merchandise such as T-shirts, mugs, stickers and more to raise money for your organization.
    • GoodSearch / GoodShop - Websites which give money to your charity or school when you search the web and shop online.
    • Google Ad Grants - Part of the Google for Nonprofits program, the Google Ad Grants program allows for ads for your society to appear in Google search results.
    • Grants for Cemetery Restoration & Preservation - Several companies offer restoration grants to help digitize cemetery records, perform cemetery mapping and perform restoration and preservation of grave markers and cemetery monuments.
    • Create your own products by adding artwork, messages, or colors in just seconds. Products can include T-shirts, clothing, phone cases, business cards, buttons, mugs, stickers, art and posters, tote bags, greeting cards and hats. Everything is made exactly to order, often within 24 hours.

    Historic Preservation

    • The Association for Gravestone Studies - The Association for Gravestone Studies (AGS) was founded in 1977 for the purpose of furthering the study and preservation of gravestones. AGS is an international organization with an interest in gravemarkers of all periods and styles. Through its publications, conferences, workshops and exhibits, AGS promotes the study of gravestones from historical and artistic perspectives, expands public awareness of the significance of historic gravemarkers, and encourages individuals and groups to record and preserve gravestones.
    • Wisconsin Historical Society Historic Preservation - Resources on historic preservation, tax credits and funding, education, preservation professionals, and cemetery preservation.


    Legislative Advocacy

    • GovTracks.US: Tracking the United States Congress - is a tool by Civic Impulse, LLC to help the public research and track the activities in the U.S. Congress, promoting and innovating government transparency and civic education through novel uses of technology.
    • Public Records Access Monitoring - A website from the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies' Public Records Access Monitoring Committee which monitors new federal and state legislation that might limit access to genealogical source materials.
    • Records Preservation and Access Committee (RPAC) The Records Preservation and Access Committee (RPAC) is sponsored by the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies (IAJGS), and the National Genealogical Society (NGS) and supported by the Association of Professional Genealogists (APG), the Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG), the American Society of Genealogists (ASG), and the International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists (ICAPGen). Members of RPAC meet monthly to advise the genealogical community on ensuring proper access to vital records and on supporting strong records preservation policies and practices.
    • Tool Kit for State Liaisons - Downloadable PowerPoint presentation to assist RPAC state liaisons with learning how laws are created and monitoring legislation in their state.
    • Wisconsin Legislative Notification Service - Allows you to track legislative activities on proposals, committees, authors and subjects by receiving notification emails.
    • Wisconsin State Legislature Bills - Searches and links to the full-text of state bills and legislative proposals.

    Newsletter Editing & Copyright Aids

    • Canva FreeFor people and teams wanting to design absolutely anything, from logos and social media content to documents, prints and more. Tons of free templates, photos and fonts to bring your vision to life.
    • Creative Commons Creative Commons provides free, easy-to-use copyright licenses to make a simple and standardized way to give the public permission to share and use your creative work–on conditions of your choice.
    • Copyright Advisory Network - Resources and tools provided by the American Library Association's Office for Informatin Technology Policy to help librarians and others learn about copyright.
    • Digital Millennium Copyright Act - Wikipedia entry on the DMCA.
    • Genealogy Newsletter Editor's Corner This gathering spot will feature articles, clipart and fillers that can be used freely to make the job easier. Links will take you to those sites that are willing to share - and list the necessary steps, if permission is needed. It is hoped that all newsletter editors will share their articles, etc. that are appropriate for others to use. Anything posted here must have permission of the author or owner -- so that we can know that anything found here is legal to use. 
    • - Freely convert media files online from one format into another. Converters are provided for audio, video, image, document, ebook, and archive files.
    • Plagiarism Today - Resources and articles about content theft, copyright infringement and plagiarism.
    • Unsplash - The Internet's source of freely-usable images.
    • Wikimedia Commons - A database of millions of freely usable media files (images, audio and videos) to which anyone can contribute.


    • Genealogical Speakers Guild - A compilation of information about the members of the Guild as speakers making it easy for you to find them. You may search their Directory of Members alphabetically by speaker or by location of residence of speakers. Program planners may also wish to visit the "Speakers' Calendar" page to determine when speakers may be appearing in our state.
    • Association of Professional Genealogists Great Lakes Chapter - A listing of members of the APG Great Lakes Chapter, which covers the states of Ohio, Michigan, Indiana, Kentucky, West Virginia, and Western Pennsylvania. Several members are speakers, as well as professional researchers.
    • Association of Professional Genealogists Northland Chapter - A listing of members of the APG Northland Chapter, which covers the states of North and South Dakota, Minnesota, Iowa and Wisconsin. Several members are speakers, as well as professional researchers.


    • Cyndi's List - Societies & Groups >> Social Networking
    • - TechSoup is a nonprofit which provides other nonprofits and libraries with technology products and learning resources, including articles, blogs, free webinars, and forums led by expert hosts which are available to all users. Once qualified with TechSoup, nonprofits and libraries can access 400+ technology products from almost 80 donor partners — including Microsoft, Adobe, Cisco, Intuit, and Symantec. All donated and discounted products are available for a small admin fee which is considerably lower than the retail prices of the products.

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