Sussex County Genealogical Society - Rehoboth Beach, Delaware
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SCGS is a member of the Friends of the Delaware Archives
SCGS is a member of the Federation of Genealogical Societies
SCGS is an official Society in the 1940 Census Indexing Project

SCGS is a 501c3 Non-Profit Organization
The best part about genealogy
is searching for ancestors
and finding friends.
                                                                   Lawrence Dillard
Come to a place where we do both!


Building an Educational Future: Delaware State College and its relationship with Delaware’s Comprehensive High Schools in the 1950s.
On Saturday, February 1, at 10:30 a.m. the Delaware Public Archives will commemorate African American History Month with a special program led by Dr. Donald Blakey.  In 1953, Dr. Jerome H. Holland was hired as the new President of Delaware State College. Dr. Holland had three sources of student recruitment – out of state, Wilmington’s Howard High School and Delaware State College’s High School. Coming to the rescue of the struggling college were many of the graduates of the newly formed county comprehensive high schools for African Americans and Native Americans. These schools were William. C. Jason (Sussex County), William H. Henry (Kent County) and Louis L. Redding (New Castle County). The graduates of these schools provided a continuous and highly important flow of student traffic to sustain the important efforts set in motion for Delaware State College by Dr. Holland. The intent of this program is to interact with former students of the schools in order to explore and capture valued experience gained within their home institutions and Delaware State College. These recorded memories will provide a permanent record to be available to current and future scholars.
A native of Washington D.C., Dr. Donald Blakey has been an active member of the Dover area community for many years. After graduating from Delaware State College in 1958, Blakey went on to earn his master’s degree and eventually his Doctorate. He served as a Physical Education Instructor & a Baseball Coach at Delaware State College before joining the Caesar Rodney School District as Assistant Principal at the High School and Director of Pupil Transportation for the District. An aviation enthusiast, he was a FAA certified commercial, instrument, multi-engine rated pilot who flew with Dover Air Trans, Inc. For more than 25 years Blakey served his community as a member of Kent County Levy Court and the State House of Representatives. He currently works as the Director and principal writer for DonDel Theater Co. in Dover.
The program is free to the public and will last approximately one hour.  No reservations are required.  For more information, contact Tom Summers (302) 744-5047 or e-mail
The Delaware Public Archives is one of the oldest public archives programs in the United States. DPA serves the citizens of Delaware by identifying, collecting, and preserving public records of enduring historical and evidential value; ensuring access to public records for present and future generations; and advising and educating interested parties in the creation, management, use, and preservation of public records.

Syl Woolford Lecture

Syl Woolford Lecture

Winter 2019 Ancestry & History Programs Update

Ellis Island Immigrants; Growing Up Italian; Becoming Americans: The Italians; US 1917-22: Twilight of the Progressive Era; Wisdom of Washington and Eisenhower; Ancestry: Telling Your Story; and the Italian-Heritage group [antipasti] Kick-off*.
The short backstory: A proud Italian-American whose roots in America start in 1903, my work on a memoir required me to take a deep dive into my personal history, my ancestors, and the history of the United States over the past century. After 6 years of research and work on the memoir I took a chance I could find others interested in ancestry, the history of the US, and promote intergenerational communication and transfer.
An educator with 30 years of experience, I designed and offered the Ancestry & You Series. Most of the attendees were Italian-Americans whose ancestors came to America through Ellis Island from 1892 through the early 1920s. Over and over I heard different versions of: “Why didn’t we ask Momma?” “Why didn’t we take the time to learn more?”   “I miss the closeness of la famiglia.” “My children don’t feel the same way.”
*Discussions with several attendees of the Ancestry programs led to the kick-off of an Italian-American heritage group [October 15, 2019] at Lewes Library. Forty attended and completed an interest form to determine if the Italian-American community will share skills, resources, and support a new organization. The short answer is a resounding yes. Contact  for the complete report and with any questions.
It’s been very rewarding to share the history of the Italian diaspora, growing-up Italian, and cultural inheritances. I’ve integrated what I learned from my research and the feedback from the Ancestry series into my manuscript, which I plan to publish Spring 2020. Stay tuned for further developments!
All the best to you and your famiglia for a joyous, happy, and healthy holiday season!
Jo-Ann Vega

Sussex County Genealogical Society

Wants to Know
What would you like to be included at our Genie Bytes, Special Interest, Discussion Groups and Monthly Meetings?
We have several great speakers lined up for our meetings and are looking for future suggestions!
Let us know .. OK?   Send your suggestions to

Tip of the Day by Michael John Neill
Want Great tips on Genealogy Research?
Ship List Research
Pilgrim Ships from early 1600's

January 28
Roots Magic Software Support Group
We will view the webinar by Bruce Buzbee on the new features of Roots Magic 8 as well as general discussion on aspects of utilizing Roots Magic 7.
February 6
Genie Bytes - Updates to DNA Products
In this meeting Alan Lowe discuss the updates to the different DNA products:  FTDNA, AncestryDNA and 23andMe.          Genie Bytes explores a wide range of topics that cover technology issues. You’re welcome to bring your laptops or tablets. Internet ...
February 15
D.A.R. Presentation
Catherine Hudson, Registrar from the Major Nathaniel Mitchell Chapter presents.
March 5
Genie Bytes - MyHeritage and DNA
In this meeting Nancy Purchase and Alan Lowe will present MyHeritage, our family trees and DNA results.          Genie Bytes explores a wide range of topics that cover technology issues. You’re welcome to bring your laptops or tablets. Internet access ...
March 28
Research Resources
Aaron Horner, Research Assistant, presents resources to be found at the Nabb Center, Salisbury University.
April 8
Board Meeting
Board/Committee Reporting and Planning. 
April 18
Copyright Laws and Plagerism
Drew Smith, Aha Seminars presents via live, interactive webinar.
May 16
Show & Tell
SCGS Members share their stories and findings.