Visit to the Library: We hope you will visit the CGS library soon to attend a class, access the library resources, or attend a membership meeting.  Click here to find a map of downtown Oakland to help you plan your trip either by car or BART. You can also print a parking permit that is good for free parking on Saturdays at the lot adjacent to the library building.

Volunteer at CGS: CGS is a totally volunteer-run organization. Besides keeping the organization running, our volunteers help each other meet their genealogical goals. Click here if you would like to learn more about volunteering at CGS.

Membership Meetings: The Society holds membership meetings in January, April, July and October. In general the meetings include a short update about the Society activities and then a guest speaker. The meeting is free for members and registration is not required. Non-members are welcome to attend, but they need to pay the $5 fee patron fee for access to the library. These meeting are announced in the eNews and are listed on the Calendar of Events and the Google Calendar.

Get to Know the CGS Board: The CGS officers and board members are all volunteers that share your interest in genealogy. At the annual meeting in January the board provides information to the members on the success of the prior year.

Discounts: Members enjoy discounted prices for Society publications and events.


Introduction to Genealogy Classes: CGS offers an Introduction to Genealogy Class on the 1st Saturday of each month to help members and visitors get started with their genealogy. The library is free to all on this Saturday so it is a good day to bring a friend, attend a class, and do a little research. Check the Calendar of Events to verify the schedule before making your plans.

Beginning & Intermediate Genealogy Classes: CGS partners with the Oakland Regional Family History Center to teach multi-week genealogy classes. If you are just getting started with your genealogy research or want to enhance you genealogy skills, attending these classes is a great way to learn genealogy basics. Check the Calendar of Events to see what is scheduled. Class sizes are limited so registration is required. Online registration is available from our Eventbrite page; links to individual classes are often on the home page, on the Calendar of Events, on the blog, and in the monthly eNews newsletter.

Classes: CGS offers classes on several Saturdays a month. The classes are often free to members (typically $20-40 for non-members). The class topics range from ethnic research, to getting the most from subscription web sites, to writing your family history. Visit the Calendar of Events to see what is scheduled for the next few months. Online registration is can be accessed from the Calendar of Events.


Special Events: Each year CGS holds several all day events with guest speakers. These have included such topics as Irish genealogy, New England research, and using Google for genealogical research. Members generally have the opportunity to attend these events at discounted prices. These events are announced in the eNews and on the website home page (What's Happening).



Each year CGS offers week long guided research trips to some of the best genealogical libraries in the country. These trips are geared to be of value to both novice and the experienced genealogists. Participants receive assistance preparing for the trips and conducting their research while at the library. The week offers participants the opportunity to totally immerse themselves in genealogical research for the week and share their break time with a group of people who share their enthusiasm for genealogy.

Family History Library
Salt Lake City, UT

This trip is offered every spring.  The Library is the most complete library for world-wide genealogical research in the US.  The collection includes over 2.4 million rolls of microfilmed genealogical records; 727,000 microfiche; 356,000 books, serials, and other formats; over 4,500 periodicals and 3,725 electronic resources.  Records available are from the United States, Canada, the British Isles, Europe, Latin America, Asia, and Africa.  This trip is led by two experienced genealogists.  The trip leaders will help participants plan for the trip and assist them with their research while at the library.  You can access the Family History Library Catalog at


Allen County Public Library
Fort Wayne, IN

This trip is offered in the late summer every odd year.  ACPL is the best public genealogy library in the US and has over 513,000 rolls of microfilm, 55,000 compiled genealogy volumes, an impressive collection of state and territorial censuses, and many other resources unique to this library. You can search their online catalog at to get an idea of the breadth of their collections.  ACPL also has the largest collections of genealogy periodicals in the country.  ACPL created and maintains PERSI (Periodical Source Index), a subject index of every article from over 6500 genealogy and local history publications according to locality and family surname.  PERSI is searchable on FindMyPast, no subscription required.


New England Historical &
Genealogical Society
Boston, MA

This trip is offered in the fall of every even year.  NEHGS is one of the country's leading resources for family history research.  Located in downtown Boston, the library houses more than 200,000 books, 100,000 microforms, and more than 2 million manuscripts and family papers.  The NEHGS collection of New England records is unmatched anywhere and their collection of New York records has been expanded in recent years.  You can access the NEHGS catalog at  Participants will have the option of visiting the MassState Archives, Suffolk or Middlesex county court houses, the Mass Historical Society, NARA, or Boston Public Library(BPL).   The BPL has an excellent micro-text department with a wonderful newspaper collection.  You can access their catalog at