Grand Rapids for its significant historical importance as a city centrally located between all the Great Lakes. In the nineteenth century, the Great Lakes were major, strategic waterways that helped Americans moving West and immigrants coming from overseas through Canada to settle and develop the Midwest. Cheap land, mining, and the timber industry made the area attractive. The combination of water power from the rivers and rapids, together with access to grain and lumber, encouraged manufacturing and industry, including breweries, furniture, and cereal. Entrepreneurs flourished as became the center for the automobile industry for seventy-five years, encouraging migration from the south and attracting an influx of new immigrants in search of jobs and the American dream. Michigan
is a popular vacation destination with miles of bike and walking trails and many nearby locations for water sports or golf. Area highlights include the Grand Rapids Frederik Meijer Gardens and Sculpture Park, the Gerald Ford Presidential Museum, Grand Rapids Public Museum, and beautiful Lake Michigan only thirty miles away. Walk downtown and see the award winning art from ArtPrize or visit some of the many craft breweries along the beer trail. Bring your spouse, partner, or friends and spend time enjoying all that beautiful western Grand Rapids has to offer plus take the opportunity to attend the premier family history conference and learn more about genealogy. Michigan
Details about the NGS 2018 Family History Conference will be available in the fall of 2017. The four-day conference will include more than 175 lectures and workshops delivered by nationally recognized experts. Registration for the conference will begin 1 December 2017. Whether you are an experienced genealogist or just beginning your family history, save the dates 2‒5 May 2018 because you won’t want to miss this exciting conference—the first national genealogical conference held in Michigan. NGS is pleased to have the local support of the Western Michigan Genealogical Society, which was founded in 1954 and is the second oldest genealogical society in
Founded in 1903, the National Genealogical Society is dedicated to genealogical education, the highest standards of research, and the preservation of genealogical records. The
, based nonprofit is the premier national society for everyone, from the beginner to the most advanced family historian, seeking excellence in publications, educational offerings, and guidance in research. It also offers many opportunities to interact with other genealogists. Please visit the NGS Pressroom for further information. Arlington, Virginia
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