01 December 2008

Bureau County, Illinois Genealogical Society

The last ten years have been hard on genealogical societies, especially smaller ones in rural communities where the population base was never really large. The internet and changing ways of doing research have made a difference.

It is nice to see a society in a smaller area succeed. That is the case of the Bureau County, Illinois, Genealogical Society. The society has a library in a downtown storefront, an active group of members, and puts out a first rate newsletter for those members that are not close enough to attend meetings on a regular basis.

I have made several presentations for this group in the past and have always been impressed with their facility, their group, and their work to help those with ancestors in Bureau County, Illinois. The society gets a variety of speakers, their monthly meetings keep the "business" part of the meeting relatively short. This is an excellent idea--committee work and Board work needs to be done outside the general meeting of the members. There is always good attendance at their meetings.

Their library has a good amount of local and non-local materials, especially for a town the size of Princeton. The Society's website is always up-to-date, and they do try and help as many individuals as they can with their Bureau County research.

There are other rural societies that are doing well, too, and we'll try and mention them here as time allows. Those who live close enough might want to check out the society and see if they can pick up any ideas.