Chair Trev Wunderlin opened the meeting.  Twelve people, including speaker, Amy Lay were in attendance.       Four had not attended a previous meeting and two had attended a prior meeting, the six were asked to tell us the surnames they were researching and the areas that they were researching.

We could not find a projector for Amy’s power point presentation, so she turned her laptop to face the audience.  Amy Lay, Chair of the Florida State Genealogical Society Pioneer program and member of the Desoto Chapter of the NSDAR and the Florida Genealogical Society of Tampa, presented “Applying for the Florida Pioneer Descendants Certificate and Other Legacy Societies”.  She told us there were 14 members on the Florida Pioneer Committee and 10 served as reviewers of the applications.  She stated the goals of the program and the different certificates that were available.  The ancestor had to be living in Florida before 1845 when it became a state.  One must prove a direct line of descent using birth, marriage, and death records.  Land records, census, Florida Voters of 1845, wills, and other records can be used to prove residency.  Collect and analyze evidence, using primary and secondary sources.  Publications by Elizabeth Shown Mills are suggested for guidance on citations.  To start your application, go to the website,  There you will find a checklist to follow, generation to generation.  Make a inventory of your documents, and write a biography of the pioneer.  There is a $45 application fee, for additional persons (as children), add $5 per person.  Applications are due June 30th of each year, after the review, final completed revision is due October 31st.

Amy provided a three page ‘Suggested Florida Bibliography’ of references that could be used to aid in your research.

Other states have comparable programs, check with a state genealogical or historical society in the state of interest.  Other programs are Century Farm designations.

Other legacy organizations as the DAR, SAR, 1812 Society and Colonial Dames have a similar application process, so check those to see if you are eligible to join them.

The May 16th meeting: “New Ways to Research Your Roots” by George Morgan, President of Aha Seminars. 

Submitted by Trev Wunderlin

 Chair G-SIG.