2016 · 2017 · 2018 · 2019

PGS­CA Meetings 2019

All meetings are held at
Los Angeles FamilySearch Library
10741 Santa Monica Blvd, West Los Angeles, CA 90025

PGS-CA General Membership Meetings begin at 1:00 p.m.
followed immediately by presentation

Saturday, November 23, 2019

Official Elections

Presentation Pending

Genealogy as Detective Work

Linda Serna

“Genealogy as Detective Work” highlights the skills used by both detectives and genealogists to solve mysteries and explores how to reason through a genealogical challenge by using the tools of a detective and using indirect evidence. It includes specific examples as well as case studies showing how to find and put together information that at first seems elusive.

About Linda Serna

Linda has been involved with genealogy in researching and writing family stories for over 30 years. She also worked as a genealogist for the first season of the PBS Genealogy Roadshow program. Currently, she is Treasurer for the Southern California Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists (SCCAPG), and a member of the Genealogical Speakers Guild (GSG), the Polish Genealogical Society (PGS-CA), and the Genealogical Society of Hispanic America (GSHA-CA) and am past Vice President of Programs for the Orange County California Genealogical Society (OCCGS). She has written and given presentations on various topics for different groups in California and New Mexico and continues to develop new presentations as the field changes. Her loves, in addition to public speaking, include history, writing, and traveling. She especially likes seeing how individual family stories fit in and make up the fabric of history.

2019 Presentations Completed

Saturday, March 23, 2019

Cousin Baiting and Cousin Stalking - Finding Descendants

Christine will discuss the many ways to reach out to distant living cousins to help you expand your pedigree chart forward in time. You may be lucky and find family treasures, photos, and information that will break down a brick wall. She will share the various resources including online trees, lineage societies, online cemetery indexes, obituaries in newspapers, living people finder websites and social media.


Christine Cohen

As a 15 year member of the Whittier Area Genealogical Society (WAGS), Christine Johns Cohen has held the positions of President, Newsletter Editor and Membership Director. In addition, at WAGS and at other Southern Californian genealogical societies, she conducts presentations on a wide variety of genealogical topics. Christine is currently a member of the El Redondo Chapter of the DAR and the Society of the Daughters of Holland. Her interest in genealogy began in 1977 with the airing of the TV mini-series "Roots". She is a native Californian, a graduate of UCLA in Political Science and has worked for Vitol Aviation Company for the past 25 years.

Saturday, May 25, 2019

Pierogi Potluck!
What I’ve Learned at Conferences:
Three Steps to Genealogical Success

Conferences provide a venue to learn a lot about one’s genealogical research in a short period of time. Attending national conferences like NERGC, RootsTech, SCGS, FEEFHS, NGS, etc., one can learn many bits and pieces to up their genealogical research. But attending them can be expensive and overwhelming.

This presentation will include information gleaned from attendance at various conferences and focus on: new research pathways, methodologies, and strategies; technology and online resources; latest strategies for using DNA; ethnic genealogy of many types; social history and preserving family history; successful research planning and project implementation; general genealogical research skills and techniques; effective use of social media and online sources; and many other topics. We will also review pertinent information regarding participants’ general genealogical research with a focus on Polish research.

Disclaimer: This presentation will NOT include any pierogi making or eating!


Gregg Legutki, PGS-CA Member

Gregg has been researching his family for over 40 years, going back to time BC (Before Computing). His research extends back centuries to both Poland on his father’s side and England on his mother’s. He is a member of NEHGS (New England Historic and Genealogical Society), SCGS (Southern California Genealogical Society) and PGS-CA (Polish Genealogical Society of California), as wells as various New England genealogical and historical societies. As a member of the PGS-CA, he has served on the Board as President, and previously as editor of the Bulletin and currently of their eNewsletter electronic publication. Since retiring, Gregg has found ocean cruising, and in 2013 went back to Poland (cruise to Italy, train to Poland!) to his grandfather’s birthplace where he found relatives who had no idea they had living cousins in the United States, along with records going back to the late 1600s in the ancestral village. Gregg is a Google Certified Teacher having attended the Google Teacher Academy. He currently volunteers at the Victorville, CA, Family History Center.

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Knocking Down Our Brick Walls

PGS-CA Annual Brickwall Smashdown

Each year. PGS-CA invites our members, novices or veterans, to bring their brick wall problems to the group and solicit ideas for breaking through their brick walls. With the combined expertise of our membership, some brick walls can “come a tumblin’ down.”

New records are constantly being added to and Family Search, as well as other online sources - direct from Poland. New Facebook pages also come available on a regular basis. Some of those will be explored along with your “Brickwalls.”

Even if you have presented a brick wall problem in the past, someone in the group may have a new idea to provide possible assistance!

NOTE: All are invited to the brickwall event, but members who wish to bring their brick walls to the group must contact Annette Gathright, our Programs Chair (, to get on the list and get an assigned time. You will also receive information on what you’ll need to come prepared with.

Saturday, September 28, 2019

4th Annual Luncheon
Celebrating our Polish Heritage
4th Annual Polish Potluck and Member Sharing

PGS-CA 4th Annual Polish Heritage Potluck!

Since 1981, October has been designated as Polish American Heritage Month. What better way to celebrate our Polish Heritage with a potluck lunch at our September meeting?

On September 28, 2019, the Polish Genealogical Society of California will celebrate our Polish Heritage with a meeting designed around our Polish Heritage. The focus of the September meeting will be “Our Polish Treasures.”

SIGN UP DETAILS will be available in Summer, 2019

Pictures and Recipes from the 2016 1st Annual PHPL
Pictures and Recipes from the 2017 2nd Annual PHPL
Pictures from the 2018 3rd Annual PHPL

We are asking that PGS-CA members bring one of their Polish Treasures to talk about at the meeting, while we all savor a delicious potluck lunch of Polish goodies.

A Polish Treasure can be a memory of a person from our past, an artifact of great importance, a story about our research, anything that has some personal significance in our Polish ancestral research.

We’ll be meeting in the same place, the LA Family History Center, at the same time, 1:00 pm - 3:00 pm.