October is Family History Month and in recent times, discovering your roots has become an increasingly popular pastime, particularly with many people stuck socially distancing from family and friends during the COVID pandemic. The lack of contact with others during that period has made people think more deeply about their relationships with family and, with so much information available online now, genealogical research has boomed as people want to understand their roots and where they came from.
Here on the Sunshine Coast, a group of long time genealogists with connections to the Coast decided to take advantage of this online boom and began meeting via Zoom to help each other solve their family mysteries. From this small group, most with more than 40 years of genealogy experience stemming back to pre-internet days and one whose documented family tree contains almost 40,000 relatives, the Sunshine Coast Genealogy Club (SCGC) was born.
Over the past year, the SCGC has grown to 23 members who are scattered from Powell River to Idaho and Penticton to Campbell River, all with ties to the Sunshine Coast. The club meets monthly on Zoom and works closely with the local museums in furthering interest in the Coast’s people and history. It also hosts guest speakers and special events to make members and the public aware of their collective past and is also affiliated with BC Genealogical Society and its vast network and library.
On Oct. 29, the SCGS is co-hosting two lectures by internationally renowned British genealogist Chris Paton on Finding your Irish Ancestors through Land Records and on Scottish Marriage. On Nov. 19, they will be co-hosting a “Find your Ancestors” event with the Sunshine Coast Museum and Archives in Gibsons and will have members available to assist the general public in their ancestry searches, as well as to answer questions for those wanting more information on genealogy.
Family History Month is a perfect time to reflect on what brought your family to this beautiful part of the world, the Sunshine Coast. The Sunshine Coast Genealogy Club is always looking for new interested members so for more information or to find out more about their upcoming events contact firstname.lastname@example.org.