Pastfinders Genealogical Society of South Lake County

Welcome to Pastfinders!
Welcome to the Pastfinders of South Lake County‚Äč Website.
We are located in Clermont, Florida (From Gem of the Hills to Choice of Champions). The Cooper Memorial Library's (CML) Genealogy Room is our base of operation with monthly meetings, genealogy help sessions, computer users’ classes, Beginner Classes, and special events. 
Pastfinders mission is to educate the public on the art and science of preserving family history.  Learning about your roots, where you came from, and the struggles your family made to get you where you are today can open one’s eyes to what kind of pioneers our ancestors were. 
All the classes Pastfinders of South Lake County Genealogical Society conducts are open to the public and most are free to attend. Our meetings are held from September to May.
During the summer months the only scheduled activity is a weekly Summer Genealogy Chat at the library. 
Please see the event calendar on the menu bar for more detail or contact us by Email at for more information.

Thursday, December 14 at 2 PM
Pastfinders Holiday Luncheon for local members will be held at Piesanos.
Please RSVP here.  Parties will pay hostess for their own meal. 
This event is open to all Past and Present Pastfinders Members, Friends and Family.

Your Genealogical Journey Starts Here!
Learn how to proceed with virtual Family History Classes.
 January 2023 Classes will be on Zoom
Zoom Registration is required
Session 1 on January 3 - Register
Session 2 on January 17 - Register
Session 3 on January 31 - Register
Class 1:  Reasons for immigration, Basic Ancestry Research Plan, Exploration in Usage of Research Websites, and  Description of Research Software.
Class 2:  Digging into Vital Records, Uncovering Census Basics, Avoiding Research Errors, etc. 
Class 3:  Obituary Notes, The Naturalization Process, Government Website Sources.

 Pastfinders January Meeting
Thursday, January 11, 2024
Topic: Preserving Your Family History... or, what to do with all my stuff? 
Connie will share examples from her own family history on how you might preserve your family history. 
Speaker: Connie Lizak 
Connie grew up in the northwest hills of Connecticut, where her family settled eleven generations ago. She moved to Southwest Florida in 2001. Connie began her family research efforts in 2008, when she joined the Lee County Genealogical Society. Connie became a DAR member in December 2009. Since then, she has proven 39 patriot ancestors, including four widows. She has helped more than six hundred ladies become members of the DAR. She has served in many positions in her chapter, and at the state, and national levels. She was State Registrar, 2017-2019, and currently serves as State Librarian for the Florida Society. She also is a member of many lineage societies including Mayflower, Associated Early American Witches, Charlemagne, and Founders and Patriots. Connie earned a Certificate in Genealogical Research from Boston University in 2021, and seeks to improve her skills by attending genealogical workshops and webinars. She is especially grateful for the “Research Like a Pro” Study Group sponsored Pastfinders and KinSeekers, during which she broke one of her brick walls! 
ZOOM REGISTRATION - This meeting will be held virtually, our Meeting Room is not available 

Pastfinders Virtual
Special Interest Groups
Irish SIG meets on the 3rd Monday each month at 11 AM Eastern Time.
Peter Stauder is our Irish expert and he will help you discover where and how to research Ireland. To Join the Irish SIG list for the season please register here: REGISTATION You will recived a reminder email in your inbox each month from Pete the program facilitator. 
Family Tree Maker SIG meets on the 3rd Tuesday each month at 2 PM
Stan Wells hosts the meetings and uses the FTM 2019 instruction manual to guide content. To join the FTM SIG please send your contact info, Name, City, State and Pastfinders membership status to with the Words FTM SIG on the Subject line. 
Your host will maintain an email distribution list.  You will receive an email several days prior to the meeting with your Zoom link. 
How about hosting a special interest group! Do you have a passion for a topic? You do not have to be an expert, just willing to share your special knowledge. We would love to have you host a SIG.  Things like DNA, German, British, Or a Research SIG would be fun.

AncestryDNA Study Group Members helpful instructional Videos.
Basic Spreadsheet Class: This class was held on 4 December 2021 for Pastfinders members & guests
Click HERE for Excel Basics hosted by Stan Wells of Pastfinders.
YouTube Videos on using Excel for Genealogy.
Basics of using Excel from the Genealgical Society Pennsylvania
Lisa Stokers Excel Research Log session 1, Session 2, Session 3 and Timelines