A Brief History of the Clark County Genealogical Society
- 1972 — On November 3 Margaretta Zimmerman and 14 ladies invited by her met and formed a genealogical society. Dues were set at $.25 per meeting or $3.00 per year. When the group met again in November nine others joined them.
- 1973 — In September the group adopted the name “Clark County Genealogical Society.”
- 1974 — The first issue of the newsletter was published in September. The Society began compiling information from local cemeteries.
- 1975 — In January Volume I, No. 2 of the periodical Trail Breakers was published. In April a small, temporary library was set up in the home of one of the members. Members telephoned a day in advance to use the library. Later that year the library was moved to a trailer located in Hazel Dell. The Society had grown to 52 members.
- 1976 — Monthly general meetings were held at the historic Grant House. Beginning in January the Society conducted a 10-week course in genealogy at Jason Lee Junior High School. The acquisition of a good used duplicating machine marked the beginning of the Society's print shop.
- 1977 — In January the Clark County Historical Society approved the use of a room in the basement of their building at 1511 Main Street for the Society's library. In early 1977 the Society hosted its first Saturday workshop. The first fall workshop was held in November. A Society member taught a six-week genealogy class at the Grant House. By March the membership had risen to 97. Larger meeting facilities had to be found for the general meetings.
- 1978 — On March 4 the Society hosted its first all-day seminar. In April, after several unsuccessful attempts, the Society received non-profit tax-exempt status from the Internal Revenue Service.
- 1979 — Interest groups began: first Missouri, Scandinavian, Scottish to be followed later by Computer Interest.
- 1980 — In March the fourth annual research trip to the Family History Library in Salt Lake City took place. In April the Clark County Genealogical Society was officially incorporated.
- 1981 — In November the Society received a grant of $1,745 which was used to purchase print shop equipment. The Society also purchased an off-set printing press. Printing the Society's and members' publications was an important function of the Society. Membership had grown to 214.
- 1982 — A nine-week genealogical course was offered at Clark College. German, Canadian and Irish interest groups were formed.
- 1983 — Membership had risen to 281 members.
- 1984 — In addition to the organized trips to Salt Lake City, the Society organized trips to Seattle where members could research in the Seattle Public Library, the Seattle Branch of the National Archives or the Suzello Library on the University of Washington campus.
- 1988 — In January the Society received a grant of $1195 which it used to purchase a binding machine.
- 1992 — The Society rented space to house the print shop. It had been in the basement of various members homes until that time.
- 1996 — The Society's library obtained its first computer.
- 1997 — The Clark County Genealogical Society celebrated its 25th anniversary. The Society posted its own web page on the internet for the first time. The Society's library moved from the main floor of the Historical Society's museum where it had been for several years back to the basement. Membership had grown to 543 members from all over the U.S., Canada, and Europe. Dues were $17.00 per year.
- 2000 — The Society leased commercial space for the library. In June 2000 the library was moved from 400+ sq. ft. in the basement of the museum to a 1500 sq. ft. facility at 717 Grand Blvd. Society membership had grown to more than 650 members.
- 2002 — Membership reached a peak of 677 members.
- 2005 — In March the Society began leasing the space next to its library. The Society furnished this space as a meeting room capable of accommodating up to 100 people. The Society began using it for their meetings, classes, seminars and other purposes. When not used by the Society, the Society rented it to other groups. In October the Society made its first organized trip to the Allen County Indiana Library.
- 2014 — Society membership has declined gradually as potential members think they can do it all on the internet. Membership stands at 325 members. Individual dues are $30 per year. The Society library is staffed four days per week and one Saturday per month. Four on-line computers are available to members at the library. The society has subscriptions to American Ancestor and Ancestry.com which are accessible from computers in the library. General membership meetings are held the fourth Tuesday of most months. The Society's periodical, Trail Breakers, is published once per year. The newsletter is published monthly except January, July and August. Society members teach a series of genealogy classes each fall and spring and present several free “getting started” classes each year. The Society produces a seminar each fall and spring. Legacy's webinars are presented live several times per week. Several interest groups meet monthly. A group of users of the Legacy genealogy database program meet monthly. The leased meeting space next to the library is used for most of these meetings and classes. The Society maintains a web page at http://www.ccgs-wa.org/ .
The members of Clark County Genealogical Society are proud of their many accomplishments in the genealogical field. We have published many helpful books which are available to the public. See our listings of marriage, cemetery and other books which can be ordered now. There are links below to view the information on the books.
The library address is:
Clark County Genealogical Society
717 Grand Boulevard
Vancouver, WA 98661
Our phone number is: 360-750-5688
The mailing address is:
Clark County Genealogical Society
PO Box 5249
Vancouver, WA 98668-5249
The following days/hours are subject to having enough volunteers to serve!
Our library is open to the public Tuesday through Friday and the second Saturday from 10 am until 3:00 pm. The public may use the library free-of-charge. A small donation to use our library equipment and resources is suggested..
See further information about our library, plus any announcements about closures, by clicking on the line below.
More information about CCGS can be obtained from our membership chairman. See the membership form on another page or send an E-mail to our chairman with this convenient button.
E-mail us at:
gensoc at ccgs-wa.org
You can send an E-mail message to our CCGS research chairman.
E-mail Alice Allen at:
dcallen at pacifier.com