Genealogy Roundtable Forum: Feb 2019

The West Nebraska Family Research & History Center conducts a monthly Genealogy Roundtable Forum on the third Saturday of each month at 1:30 pm. Topics vary in subject matter and length of presentation but are always followed up by a question & answer period. The programs are free and open to the public.

North of the Platte, South of the Niobrara Book Signing Event, February 10th

Author Bryan L. Jones will be visiting us here at the Research Center on Sunday, February 10, 2019 at 1:00 pm for a book signing event of his latest work, North of the Platte, South of the Niobrara : A little further into the Nebraska sand hills.

Filled with adventurous writing, sharp scrutiny, meticulous and audacious use of language, North of the Platte, South of the Niobrara: A Little Further into the Nebraska Sand Hills winds around its subjects the way the rivers and creeks of the Great Plains twist around humps of prairie grass, ranches and rock outcroppings.  The ambitious goal of author Bryan Jones was to create a fresh understanding of the Nebraska Sand Hills from the inside. Surely he has done that, and more. He reflects with almost unbearable poignancy on war and its consequences, and with fierce advocacy on two beloved Nebraska poets. He brings humor and occasional cynicism to reflections about “the metaphysical and metaphorical aspects” of the Sand Hills, Ted Turner and other newcomers, the Sandoz family and other old-timers and a considerable chunk of Western history.

This event will take the place of our regularly scheduled February Genealogy Roundtable Forum.



Kukas, Russia

Our sincere appreciation goes out to Al Kukas for presenting his program and subsequent discussion on his family's name and the town from which its derived from, Kukas, Russia.  Al, age 95, talked about his parents and why they left the Volga region of Russia in the mid-nineteen teens and then coming to America.  Al's father was the first to come to the U.S. in 1913 and his mother and two sisters came in 1914.  Al talked about why the family couldn't all come together at the same time and he told some of the many stories that had been handed down from generation to generation.  Al story telling was lighthearted and humorous at times yet quite sobering at other times  If you have Germans from Russia in your family and you missed this program you really missed some valuable insight.


Genealogy on the Web & Announcments

In keeping with our commitment to provide our readers with information they may find useful in their family and local history research we are passing along the information below as it was received by us.  If you have an announcement you'd like to make and it fits within our mission let us know and we'll pass it along as well.

Red Feather Genealogy YouTube Channel

From Jason Weekley,

Hi! I'm looking to get the word out about my YouTube genealogy channel; I've been doing this stuff for a decade now, and the channel for 4½ years... I post updates once a month now, and the "Cherokee" video has been of particular interest to the masses lately.

Here's hoping you dig it too! ;)


UNL PhD Student requests survey participation

Good afternoon!

 I am conducting an anonymous and short online survey on Nebraskan's residential decisions and am hoping you may share the link to the survey on social media so that I may better reach the people of northwest Nebraska.

The purpose of my Nebraska Roots Migration Survey research is to better understand the factors that influence Nebraskans to stay, leave, or move back to Nebraska.  This survey is for anyone over the age of 19 who was a resident of Nebraska when they attended high school. Of course, if you fit this description, I encourage you to take the survey as well!

By clicking on the link, you can see more on the survey's front page without actually starting the survey itself.

Along with the link, I will add the language I used when posting the survey on my own social media.

"If you are over 19 and attended high school in Nebraska, please help me with a research project on Nebraskans’ residential decisions by filling out this super-short (5-10 minutes), anonymous on-line survey. Please share the link and pass the survey along to any former NE high school students. The survey will be available from February 5 - March 3, 2019.

Thank you for your consideration.

-Andrew Husa

University of Nebraska-Lincoln
Geography, PhD student


Contributions & Donations:

We wish to gratefully and publicly acknowledge the recent research material donations and/or financial contributions by the following individuals and/or organizations.  Their contributions and support is paramount to our success and we truly appreciate their generosity.

• Shirley Weihing

• Connie King

• Pat Gribble

 **The West Nebraska Family Research & History Center was incorporated in the state of Nebraska in 2003 as a not-for-profit, public genealogy and local history research library.  Funding provided primarily through donations**


Panhandle Genealogical Societies

Plains Genealogical Society (PGS)

The PGS meets on the fourth Thursday of each month at the Kimball Public Library.  Information about the society, their meetings and their programs can be e-mailed directly to Freddie Petersen, society President, at

Heritage Seekers genealogy group (HSGG)

The HSGG meets on the third Thursday of each month usually at the Knight Museum in Alliance.  Information about the group and their programs can be directed to the Knight Museum staff at

Cheyenne Co., Genealogical Society (CCGS)

The CCGS meets quarterly (Jan-Apr-Jul-Oct) on the third Thursday at 2:00pm at the Sidney Public Library.  Information about the society, their meetings and their programs can be directed to Jan King at


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