September 24th, 2013

Attention, Genealogy Enthusiasts!

ccpl genealogy symposiumBeginners and seasoned researchers alike, join us for an exciting day of family history lectures on Saturday, October 5th from 9am–1 pm at the Elkton Central Library! This wonderful event is sponsored by our friends at the Upper Shore Genealogical Society of Maryland.

We are pleased to host nationally renowned genealogist Michael Hait, our keynote speaker. (You may have recently seen him help actor Chris O’Donnell research his 1812 ancestor on TLC’s family history show, Who Do You Think You Are?) His talk – Online State Resources for Genealogy: Beyond Ancestry™ and FamilySearch™ – will address how to find and benefit from free, locality-specific resources you can access from the comfort of your home.

Librarian Leah Youse will provide some tips on developing methods of arrangement in Digital Genealogy Organization: Baby Steps Toward a Manageable System. She will focus on managing files and folders, email, and research.

The day concludes with a panel of genealogy experts ready to answer your tough questions. Do you have a tricky genealogy problem, such as trouble finding your female ancestors of tracing your African American heritage? Not sure how to research your family tree before the 1850s? If you can’t figure out the next step, ask our Bust Through Your Brick Wall Panel. E-mail your question to (subject line: Brick Wall Question) or submit your question in person at the Elkton Central Library information desk.

Be sure to visit our poster session at 9am! Historical and genealogical organizations are ready to tell you about the resources available to you locally. Poster session participants include:
– Daughters of the American Revolution
– Family History Center
– Delaware Genealogical Society
– Rising Sun Historical Commission
– Sussex County Genealogical Society
– The Historical Society of Cecil County

Doors open at 8:30am. Overflow parking available at Gilpin Manor Elementary School.

genealogy symposium inside page 2013 for web

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May 14th, 2013

Transporting the Library in My Carry-On


I’m not trying to rub it in or anything, but I just returned from a faah-bulous Hawaiian vacation. And while I fantasized about being technology-free while there, I realized that my tablet would sure come in handy for entertainment during my 12-hour (translation: forever) flight.

And handy it was. Surprisingly, my complimentary 8 peanut halves didn’t hold my attention longer than the 2.4 seconds it took to consume them, and the in-flight movie came at a rather steep price that I refused on principle. Stubborn, I know. But I learned quickly that you can take the girl out of the library, but you can’t take the library out of the girl, and my tablet connected me to everything I needed to have a pleasant travel experience. Books! Free books! At my beck and call! This concept is almost as mind-blowing as flying over an ocean whilst reading said books.

Thanks to my beloved CCPL, I had access to a great collection of digital ebooks provided by OverDrive. Browsing was a breeze. I love learning new things, so I chose to view all nonfiction titles, refining my results by availability, subject (history), and device compatibility. I “discovered” two promising titles: Provenance: How a Con Man and a Forger Rewrote the History of Modern Art by Laney Salisbury and The Bounty: The True Story of the Mutiny on the Bounty by Caroline Alexander. I decided that they were perfect for me – just not on my vacation. So I made use of the convenient “Wish List” feature by clicking on the little ribbon that sticks out of the book cover image.

Then I found “the one,” a book that blends cheeky humor, personal experience, and well-researched history: The Wordy Shipmates by Sarah Vowell. She makes seemingly dull history – in this case, the Puritans of New England in the 1600s – very lively. A great vacation pick.

No beach vacation is complete without a beach read, of course, so I did a search for the first Sookie Stackhouse mystery by Charlaine Harris, Dead Until Dark. It was checked out, but CCPL often purchases extra copies of popular titles for only Cecil County folks, so after placing a hold, I received it in only a day or two. Talk about great timing!

I completed my mobile library experience with a search for travel and digital photography books. Much to my delight, OverDrive has both Fodor’s and Frommer’s travel guides to Hawaii and several books on photography, including the popular “Dummies” series.  What better way to spend a flight than coming up with fun things to do, see, and photograph when you land?

The library delivered knowledge, entertainment, and instruction, all from the discomfort of my pitifully “reclined” plane seat – for free!

Have a Kindle, iPad, Nook, or other device? Want help using OverDrive, our digital eLibrary? Visit or call your local branch for friendly, helpful instruction.

And tell us, how do you take your favorite reads on vacation?

Photo credit: “Hawaii” by Ricymar Photography

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