The Upper Shore Genealogical Society of Maryland (USGSMD) was founded in 1973 by folks interested in genealogy. Together they established a long-term group for the purpose of collecting, preserving, and sharing information of genealogical and historical value for the five counties of Caroline, Dorchester, Kent, Queen Anne’s, and Talbot.
The USGSMD, a 501(c)3 non-profit, has no paid staff and relies exclusively on member volunteers to create publications, to staff the research center/library, and maintain business affairs of the society. The research center/library, physically located at 12156 Greensboro Road in Greensboro, is open most Saturdays from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. with the exception of holiday or meeting weekends. A volunteer will be happy to assist visitors in identifying possible sources of information based on their needs.
Within the research center there is an extensive collection of material for the five counties, all of which are also listed in the online inventory. This material includes (but is not limited to) census records, cemetery records, indexes to land records, indexes to court records, marriage records, indexes/extracts to wills, maps, and other publications.
There is a large number of research material at the state level, and there are more limited records for a number of other counties in Maryland, Delaware, Pennsylvania, and Virginia. There is a significant collection of family histories/genealogies. Many of these are from sources with limited publication, so are very difficult to find. Another collection of family research materials has been donated by members and genealogists. These materials are mostly unique and not readily available elsewhere. There are maps, photographs, copies of wills, marriage certificates, family record sheets, Ahnentafels (genealogical numbering system), family trees, notes, and other research materials compiled during genealogical research.
There is a surname index that lists the main family name and most of the other surnames contained within the particular family, enabling someone to quickly locate the specific volume and family that contains the names of interest. There is a small collection of family bibles that have been saved from disposal or destruction. Members try to locate relatives of the family to return the bible to someone in the family. Volunteers photograph the significant pages of the family bibles and send them to the Baltimore County Genealogical Society for inclusion in their family bible preservation project.
The society publishes a semi-annual journal called Chesapeake Cousins, which consists of articles on genealogy, family histories, family stories, bible pages, family group sheets, extracts from various records/indexes of records, or other materials of interest to members. USGSMD also publishes a member surname directory annually. It provides a listing of family surnames that members are researching and contact information so that members can easily connect with other members researching the same families.
A newsletter called Cousin to Cousin is generated a few times a year. The website, http://usgsmd.org, features an online bookstore; information of interest to the members and the public; research center/library inventory; indexes for a number of resources; and research links to help others find online sources of genealogical information. The Facebook page @usgsmd provides timely events and dates, and members respond to queries.
USGSMD is always seeking new members interested in genealogy, not only their own family, but interested in learning more and in helping others find out the stories of their family. Membership costs $25 per year, and includes the journal, surname directory, and newsletter. Member meetings are held on the second Saturday in January, March, May, September and November, and usually feature an interesting speaker or presentation.
The USGSMD physical address is 12156 Greensboro Road in Greensboro, while the mailing address is P.O. Box 275, Easton, Maryland 21601. For questions, email President David Baker at firstname.lastname@example.org. For details, visit usgsmd.org.