Genealogy Meetings

Meetings are held the 2nd Monday of the month at 10:00 AM in the Main Library Meeting Room in Jacksonville.

Valuable info, ideas, and tips to successfully research your roots!


  • May 9: Clans & Tartans of Scotland
  • June 13:  Pirate Genealogy: Was Your Ancestor a Scourge of the Seven Seas?
  • July 11: Past Tense Genealogy Book Club: Trials of the Earth by Mary Hamilton
  • August 8: Discover the 1950 Census


Trials of the Earth, by Mary Mann Hamilton

Trials by Fire Cover Opens in new windowNear the end of her life, Mary Mann Hamilton (1866-1936) began recording her experiences in the backwoods of the Mississippi Delta. The result is this astonishing first-person account of a pioneer woman who braved grueling work, profound tragedy, and a pitiless wilderness (she and her family faced floods, tornadoes, fires, bears, panthers, and snakes) to protect her home in the early American South.

An early draft of Trials of the Earth was submitted to a writers' competition sponsored by Little, Brown in 1933. It didn't win, and we almost lost the chance to bring this raw, vivid narrative to readers. Eighty-three years later, in partnership with Mary Mann Hamilton's descendants, we're proud to share this irreplaceable piece of American history. Written in spare, rich prose, Trials of the Earth is a precious record of one woman's extraordinary endurance and courage that will resonate with readers of history and fiction alike.


Jacksonville: July 11; 10 AM-12 PM

  For additional information, please email Roxanne Puder.