Researching German ancestry topic of Monday's Genealogy Society meeting

Dr. Ronald DunbarProfessor EmeritusGerman & LinguisticsIndiana State University

“Researching Your German Ancestry: Some Helpful Hints” is the topic of Monday’s program during Wabash Valley Genealogy Society’s meeting in the lower level conference rooms of the Vigo County Public Library, Seventh and Poplar streets.

Refreshments and fellowship begin at 6 p.m. The formal program, from 6:30 to about 8:15 p.m., promises to be an interesting and informative presentation by an internationally known expert on virtually all aspects of German culture.

“As we all know, most of our ancestors immigrated from some other country as they made their way to the United States, often referred to, especially by immigrants, as the “Land of Opportunity.” Perhaps because of World War II, many Germans made their way to the USA. As a result, many of us have some German heritage in our ancestral line,” the Genealogy Society said. “While many have an intense interest in their German ancestry, deciphering another language can often be very difficult.”

To help with this dilemma the Genealogy Society will host Dr. Ronald Dunbar, professor emeritus of German and linguistics at Indiana State University, where he served for 20 years as chair of the Department of Languages, Literatures and Linguistics.

Dunbar received his bachelor of arts degree from Valparaiso University and his master’s and Ph.D. from the University of Wisconsin. His areas of specialty are the history of the German language, German dialects and the history and culture of Germans in America.

During his presentation, Dunbar will cover a wide-ranging and fully-illustrated look at German immigrants to America: when and why they came, where they came from, where they settled, what they did and how they lived when they settled here.

Dunbar’s presentations will include other helpful insights into names, religions and occupations before and after immigrants arrived in America, as well as useful resources for individual research. If time permits, there also will be an introduction to deciphering old German script handwriting.

For more information on WVGS programs, visit inwvgs.org or call 812-230-0631.