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The Internet Archive (The Wayback Machine) volunteered in 2001 to archive what's on the web. Perhaps they didn't realize  how the web was going to grow. They now have archived 472 Billion pages and it has has archived the Pastfinders' web page 56 times since 2001, about a year after I started it. For a ride back in history, click here; and then use the arrows or boxes in the top right of each page to navigate forward or back. Links are live so click on whatever you want. Many images are not shown, so right click on a blank image to see if one is available. You can also click here to see our past regular meetings up to 2012.

Pastfinders provides free help sessions to aid you in your search. Sessions are held in the Genealogy Room at the Library. No appointment necessary.

Who are the Pastfinders of South Lake County?

We are a group of Clermont people who are interested in our ancestors. Some of us have been doing our family search for more than 30 years while others are beginners. The 30 year people are delighted to help the beginners. In fact, we will help anyone who wants to discover their family history. Imagine the thrill of finding a document about your great grandfather or that (gulp) he was married more than once. Our project for the summer has been to help some residents of Benton House Assisted Living discover their genealogy. From September to May we offer free help sessions to the general public. We have people in who are looking for their families in Germany, Ireland, Poland, Puerto Rico, Jamaica, as well as the United States. Our schedule is always listed in the local papers and posted at Cooper Memorial Library. During the summer you can call for an appointment. Our general meetings also run from September to May on the 2nd Thursday of the month at Cooper Memorial Library. Our business meetings are short and we have some exciting speakers scheduled for September, October and November. If you think your organization would be interested in having a genealogical presentation, we can do that. Let us hear from you. For more information call Esther at 352-989-4469 or Dotty at 352-242-9805.

 Special Notice
Pastfinders is now on Facebook. Thanks to member Anjanette Mercer
, Pastfinders now has a presence on Facebook. One account that is open to all can be used to publicize our events. It can be seen here A members only group page is available here:

Deaths in Clermont Area
1999 to 2013
Note: Some deaths in 2008 and 2009 are missing but may be found in the Obituary File at Cooper Memorial Library.

Books by Pastfinder Authors Updated October 26, 2004

Books in Special Collections



President, Esther Long; Vice president, Sandi O'Brien; Secretary, Rose D'Angelo;  Treasurer, Marlyse Lee;
Corresponding Secretary, Jody Close
Articles by Pastfinder Members

A journal of the life of Kneeland Munson, 1809 to 1897 written by his daughter, Delia and transcribed and indexed by Pastfinder member Sandra Oliver can be read here.

Regular Meetings
Computer Users' Group
Regular Meetings are held on the second Thursday of the month except for the months of June, July and August. We meet in the main conference room, Room 108 at the Cooper Memorial Library except in December when we meet at a restaurant. Subjects generally deal with history, genealogy, members experiences or other appropriate subject.

Next Regular Meeting

Pastfinders general meeting will be held September 8, 2016 in the community room at Cooper Memorial Library, 2525 Oakley Seaver Dr., Clermont. We begin at 5p.m. and our guest speaker is Kathryn Knight (K. I. Knight) who is a 7th generation Floridian. Ms. Knight was groomed by her great grandmother to become the keeper of the ancestors. She put the idea aside for a career in finance and real estate and later founded her own companies. With the financial collapse of 2006, her father-in-law rekindled her passion for genealogy. Nine years later Knight has published the first book in her planned series Fate & Freedom, telling the story of her husband's 9x great grandmother, a passenger on what became known as the the "Black Mayflower" and the events that occurred in 1619. Ms. Knight belongs to numerous local, state and regiona genealogical and historical societies, the Florida Author and Publishers Association, Florida Writers Association and the National Association of Professional Wome

 Guests are welcome to come and enjoy this free presentation. For further information about Ms. Knight's work you can visit For information about Pastfinders call Esther at 352-989-4469. 




The Computer Users' Group meets at 1 PM on the third Wednesday of the month in Room 221 at the Cooper Memorial Library. Our goal is to present information on using and maintaining computers, sites where genealogical information may be found and how to make the most of the marriage of computers and genealogical research.

Last Meeting.
While Stanley Wells was away, the meeting on May 18, was split between Anjanette Mercer and Bob Dill. Unfortunately, only 2 members and 1 guest showed up.

Anjanette got Pastfinders on Facebook for which we are thankful and she showed us her skill as she took us on a tour through Facebook showing among many other things, looking for ancestors how she found relatives in Jamaica.

It's much too detailed to present here but her handout includes a page entitled How I Fell Into Social Media, Facebook Basics that you can get by clicking on it. It has links to 11 sites that will tell you everything you want to know. If that's not enough, go here to see Jackson State University's paper on Social Media Explained that Anjie handed out.

Bob started with a discussion of how serious Ransomware is becoming and he presented a list of places that have been attacked such as the House Information security site in Washington, DC and the Massachusetts Police Headquarters in Massachusetts. Going price now is $500 to get de-encrypted.

The handout explains what to do and how to do it.

It also covers Indexing your flash dives and SD cards and covers Cloud Printing where you can print from anything, anywhere on your home computer.

The handout can be obtained here

All  Previous   Meetings
Photo Template
Name Tmplate

Our member, Sandra Oliver has researched those interred in the Minneola Cemetery checking multiple records to learn all she can about them. See the results of her work, updated on June 8, 2015  here.

New Books

Pastfinders and the Library have purchased many new books and there have been donations by members, Click here to see the list of new books.



These are the Pastfinder Newsletters that have been published under the editorship of Jody Close. Copies of older newsletters are available in the Special Collections Room at the Cooper Memorial Library in Clermont, FL.
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Last updatedAug 9, 2016