Zion Genealogical  Society of Lake County (Illinois, USA)

Researching Around the World

Including the Neighboring Lake County Communities of:

Beach Park, Gurnee, North Chicago, Park City, Wadsworth, Waukegan, Wildwood, and Winthrop Harbor

About Us
2014 Meetings &
Guest Speakers
2014 Calendar
Meeting Minutes
ZGS Resources
Writing Workshops
Genealogy Links

 Ancestry Webinars

  ISGS Webinars

Zion &
Christian Catholic Church
Lake County History
Member Surnames
Board Members
Sponsored by:
Zion-Benton Public Library

Checkout the Calendar of Genealogy Events by State Sponsored by Eastman's Online Genealogy Newsletter.

Click Here for the May Handout on Using Newspapers

War of 1812 Contributor

MONDAY - OCT. 20, 2014

The American Geographical Society Library and Its Resources for Genealogists

Presented by: Jovanka Ristic


Jovanka received her Bachelor of Science, Master of Science Botany/Zoology and Masters of Library Science from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee. Jovanka has been with the The American Geographical Society Library for 30+ years and helped many genealogists look up map-related questions.


The University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee Academic Reference Librarian Jovanka Ristic will discuss map resources for genealogists. The University's library in Milwaukee holds the foremost geographical and map collections in North America. There are some 500,000 maps held in their collection.

ďMaking Maps, Mapping History"mirrors centuries of human experience in the Great Lakes region and at the same time reflects major changes in the art of mapmaking. These maps show how the Great Lakes influenced the development of the mid North American continent and how human activity changed the lakes. More than three centuries ago, as the French continued to explore North America, they collected a vast body of knowledge that mapmakers in Europe used to depict the land and waterways.

As farming and mining began, port cities along the western shores of Lake Michigan became centers of commerce, trade and manufacturing. The Great Lakes facilitated this rapid change, serving as the regionís principal transportation routes until 1860. By mid-century, the railroads challenged the waterways, and a quarter-century later they dominated transportation in the region. Lake and railroad carriers ultimately became interdependent. Car ferries across Lake Michigan linked railroads in Michiganís Lower Peninsula and Wisconsin to provide east-west traffic. Great Lakes port cities eagerly sought railroad connections to enhance shipping, commerce and manufacturing. The spread and dominance of railroad transportation from 1850 to 1920 brought a marked growth in the regionís population, agriculture, urban areas and industry.

Economic development produced major environmental changes in the region. These problems became worse during the next 100 years. Cars and trucks began to replace the railroads after World War II, and the vast urban-industrial-residential expansion increased the demands on the water, fish and other resources of the Great Lakes. At the same time, the growing popularity of outdoor recreation and the regionís growing abundance of state and federal parks and forests helped create a new awareness of the natural environment.1

You can see how maps give the full circle view ó from the incomplete and distorted views of the Great Lakes during the Age of Exploration to the comprehensive and sweeping view of the lakes in the twenty-first century.

Beach Park Village Hall
11270 Wadsworth Rd - Lower Level
Beach Park, IL 60099

7:00 P.M. to 8:00 P.M.

8:00 P.M. to 8:30 P.M.

Business Meeting
8:30 P.M. to 9:00 P.M.

1Summary: A Historian's View by Margaret Beattie Bogue, professor emerita of history, UW-Madison

The ZION GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY research materials are housed at the Zion-Benton Public Library for the public's use. Our workshop volunteers are at the Zion-Benton Library on Wednesday evenings, from 7:00 to 9:00 P.M.

Our quarterly newsletter The Illuminator is published in February, May, August and November. Articles may be submitted online to the Editor or mailed to the Society at: 2400 Gabriel Avenue, Zion, IL 60099.

Questions? Contact...
Zion Genealogical Society

Map to Zion-Benton Library

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Map to Beach Park Village Hall

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Presented by: Teresa Steinkamp McMillin

Updated Oct 6, 2014

Federation of Genealogical Societies Member vv Illinois State Genealogical Society Member