Thursday, June 13, 2013

IGHR 2013 - Day 4

Today we spent the entire day of our land class with J. Mark Lowe learning about Land Platting. This was a treat. Mark is entertaining and has a way of explaining things that involve the class which helps illustrate a topic for understanding. For example; when explaining what metes are, he had a few of us stand up, to represent the metes. The lines connecting us would be the bounds. Metes and bounds land surveys are for the most part are found in state land (colonial) states, with some exceptions.

Mark also went through a few steps of drawing a tract map based on the "calls" (compass directions) that are found in a deed or elsewhere. We got some tips on how to determine the scale, how to mark North on the paper, and what else to include with our plat. Altogether we platted 4 deeds. To some it may not sound like much fun, but it happens to be an activity that I enjoy. I love working with land. Land is concrete. I find this oddly comforting. Land doesn't pick up and move around the country dodging the census taker, the tax man, or go into some strange void.

Our class let out a little early, so I decided to once again look at the BCG portfolio materials. Why am I torturing myself with this? Well the day before I had been pressed for time, and didn't get to view one of the portfolios I was really interested in viewing. I also hadn't been able to fully view a small binder of judge's comments on various portfolios. First I just looked at the comments. I think this is a great idea on the part of BCG to have gathered these for viewing. The binder contained examples of "approved" and "disapproved" for certification portfolio reviews. These sheets do not accompany the portfolio, so I was only able to view the critiques. I was relieved to discover not all of the "approved for certification" critique sheets had passing marks for every rubric. There were some areas (very few) that an applicant "did not meet standard." However, the judge took into consideration the entire portfolio, and the level of skill demonstrated throughout all of the assignments. The portfolio I viewed had a really good example of the Kinship Determination Project (KDP). I enjoyed the direct approach this portfolio displayed and felt like it was a less complicated style than some other examples I have seen.

Our dinner tonight was the banquet that is always held on the last evening of IGHR. It tends to be a fairly jovial affair, as attendees have a general feeling of accomplishment for the week. The keynote speaker tonight was Julie Hedgepeth Williams who has written A Rare Titanic Family, which was the subject of the presentation. Julie narrated an incredible tale of her great-uncle, his wife, and their child that survived the Titanic disaster. It involved some interesting research on her part and was a wonderful story.

During the banquet tonight a rather heavy storm front moved through. This seems to be an annual part of the IGHR experience. Fortunately it was over by the time the banquet was. Once I got back to the dorm I did a little packing in preparation for leaving tomorrow. This week has passed quickly and I'm sad to see it end. However, tomorrow morning we still have two more lectures before receiving our certificates of completion. When it comes to genealogy research there is always more to learn!


  1. I've enjoyed your IGHR reports so much and being able to attend Samford vicariously. I've been to three IGHR courses and would love to go again, but I'm not quick enough with registration. Totally agree with you about Mark Lowe...he's a delight and makes everything easy to grasp.
    Jan Dean

    1. Thanks for reading Jan. May your fingers fly over the keyboard next registration, then we can meet!