Laura Smith's blog

Genealogy: Researching Texan Ancestors

We celebrate Texas Independence Day on March 2nd, but 21 April 1836 is the date of the Battle of San Jacinto, the final battle in the Texas Revolution.  The 2013 San Jacinto Day Festival and Battle Reenactment will be held on April 20th at the San Jacinto Battleground State Historic Site, and in honor of this event in history I’m going to focus on resources for researching your Texan ancestors and Texas history for this month’s post.  If you want to learn more about the battle of San Jacinto or th...

United Way Financial Opportunity Center - April Workshops

United Way Bay Area Financial Opportunity Center wants you to know about these April programs:

South Texas College of Law Legal Clinic - Thursday, April 11th, 9 a.m.  This workshop is first come first served and aims to provide free assistance in applying for social security benefits.  It will be held at the United Way Bay Area Service Center (1300 Bay Area Blvd., Building A, Houston, TX 77058).  See the flyer or contact Alec Lawton, J.D., South Texas College of Law Legal Clinics, at (713)646-2933 or alawton@stcl.edu. 

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Upcoming Local Events: Money Management, Job & Education Fairs

United Way Bay Area Financial Opportunity Center wants you to be aware of these upcoming events:

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Genealogy Research & the Female Line: Women's History Month

Genealogy research is often challenging, and one of the biggest stumbling blocks that researchers face is tracing female lines.  In order to research further back in a female ancestor’s line, you need to discover her maiden name and her parents’ names.  This is difficult because, especially the further back in history you get, few transactions, legal or commercial, were recorded in a woman’s name.  Vital records, often the most revealing sources of direct evidence in genealogy research, were not typically required to be recorded across the U.S.  until the early part of the 20th century, as you can see if you consult this list of links entitled “Where to Write for Vital Records” compiled ...

United Way Bay Area Financial Opportunity Center - February Events

The United Way Bay Area Financial Opportunity Center (FOC) has a lot going on during the month of February.    Not  sure what the Financial Opportunity Center is?  Orientation sessions are required for those interested in receiving FOC services, and they are held every other week, alternating between Tuesday evenings and Wednesday mornings.  See the flyer for upcoming orientation dates or call the FOC at (281)282-6061.  Registration is required.  Want to read up about it ahead of time?  Check out this information

African American Genealogy Research

In celebration of African American History Month we’re taking a look at African American genealogy research this month.  Researching your African American family history is conducted using the steps and resources outlined in this post from January until you work your way beyond the 1870 Federal Census.  Once you reach the years prior to 1870 it becomes more challenging.  Tony Burroughs, internationally known genealogist, author, former genealogy instructor at Chicago State University and featured expert on

SCORE Houston Business Counseling @ Freeman

Are you a small business owner or budding entrepreneur in the Clear Lake area?  Wednesday, February 6th kicks off our SCORE counseling sessions. 

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Winter 2013 Retirement Education Series

Has your conscience been pestering you lately about planning for retirement?  Join us for our winter series of retirement education seminars starting Wednesday, January 16th at 6:30 p.m. in the Community Room. 

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Genealogy: Beginning on a Budget

Did spending time with your family over the holidays make you wonder more about your roots?  Did it make you wonder if you’re actually related to some of them?  If you’re interested in beginning the search for your family history, here are a few ways to get started without spending a lot of money. 

Most experienced genealogists will tell you to first write down everything you know about your family, collect all the documentation that you have (birth certificates, marriage licenses, death certificates, obituaries, family photos, etc.) and then start talking to your family members – especially those from the generations prior to you. 

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Job Training Fair

Need job training for a new career?  San Jacinto College Continuing & Professional Development is hosting an information session regarding the scholarship opportunities available to qualified individuals through the Texas Public Education Grant (TPEG) and other financial aid programs for their job training programs. 

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