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September Member Meeting


Margaret Nicholson will be back with more DNA goodness for our September member meeting. Here’s a taste of what’s in store for us . . .

An aunt asked me to get involved with our family genealogy. Then she talked me into sending my DNA to I was surprised to find a close, but unknown, DNA match. To learn how this person was related to me, I had to become proficient in using a peculiar website and master the methodology behind shared matches (triangulation). My presentation will take you through my journey to the discovery that the daddy who raised me was not my birth father. Along with my story, you will learn what can be done on’s website: building and sharing trees for free, reviewing DNA results after paying for a kit, and, finally, using advanced features available to “big money” subscribers.’s recently revised interface will also be discussed. This presentation is structured to appeal to both novice and experienced users of genealogy/DNA online sites as well as those who have not submitted DNA.

Margaret M. Nicholson, PhD moved to St Augustine from Harrisburg, PA, sixteen years ago, prompted by the birth of her grandchild. Creating a family tree for Noah sparked Margaret’s interest in genealogy. She says, “He’s sixteen and ignores me if I utter the words, ‘first cousin once removed,’ but he will look at the ship manifest showing the arrival of his maternal great-grandfather from Italy.”

After retiring from university teaching, Margaret eagerly switched from academic writing to personal subjects. Close to completing a travel memoir, the unexpected results of her DNA test prompted a change of topics. She published My Surprise Family: Find Your Ancestry Story this past January. Described as a mystery, a memoir, and a manual, the book can be ordered from Amazon. Books will also be available at the meeting for purchase and signing.

Join us Saturday, September 21st, at the Southeast Branch Library for a bit of history and a little partying. Check-in begins at 12:30pm and the meeting is called to order at 1:00pm. Visitors are always welcome at no charge.

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