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Local History Workshops

The Local History Department offers a variety of hands-on workshops that teach basic and advanced techniques in genealogical research as well as book repair and conservation. The cost of workshops vary. Advance registration is required for all courses. Check back in the spring for the next series of workshops. All classes are taught in English.

The following workshops are offered by the Plainfield Public Library. Check the Library's Event Calendar for upcoming sessions. All workshops will be marked with a lavender box Local History Event in the Event Type field.

Winter-Spring Class Series 2014

Family history research classes will be offered on Thursday afternoons, from 2:30 to 4:00 PM, in the library’s Job Assistance Computer Center on the main floor of the building.

All classes are free and can be attended on a one-by-one basis or in the series.  Class size is limited to 12. Basic computer skills are recommended. Advance registration is requested. Register in person at the library, by phone at (908) 757-1111, ext. 136 or email us at genealogy[@]

These workshops are geared to the general public and those interested in engaging in focused genealogy research.

Keeping Up with Changes
This final class in the Winter/Spring series provides an update to some of the latest developments on this valuable genealogy website.
April 17, 2014
2:30 to 4:00 PM


Special Guest Speaker: Gary Saretzky
Nineteenth-Century New Jersey Photographers: Union County

Of the approximately 3,000 different photographers who were active in New Jersey before 1900, a substantial number worked in Union County. In a slide lecture, Gary D. Saretzky will profile these pioneers, especially in Elizabeth, Rahway, and Plainfield, and discuss them within the larger context of New Jersey photography in the Nineteenth-Century. Among the photographers to be featured will be Alfred S. Campbell and Guillermo Thorn. This lecture will be held in the Anne Louise Davis Gallery Room on the lower level.

Gary D. Saretzky, archivist and photographer, has worked as an archivist for more than forty years at the State Historical Society of Wisconsin, Educational Testing Service, and the Monmouth County Archives, where he has been County Archivist since 1994. Saretzky also taught the history of photography at Mercer County Community College from 1977 to 2012 and has served as coordinator of the Public History Internship Program for the Rutgers University History Department since 1994. He is a former Chair of the New Jersey Caucus of the Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) and a past member of the New Jersey State Historical Records Advisory Board. Under the auspices of the Horizons Speakers Bureau of the New Jersey Council for the Humanities, he lectures around the state on topics related to the history of photography. Saretzky has published more than 100 articles and reviews on the history of photography, photographic conservation, and other topics, including "Nineteenth-Century New Jersey Photographers," in the journal, New Jersey History, Fall/Winter 2004.

May 3, 2014
10:30 AM to 12:30 PM





















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