On Friday, April 25, 1969, a group of eleven local genealogy researchers met to form an organization to encourage each other in their quest for discovering ancestors. Some of these researchers were people who had ancestral roots deep in our Champaign County area; many of them had no Champaign County ancestors at all which is still true for our membership today.
When this group of genealogists began doing research, there were few records available to them through printed or microfilm sources; most had to be purchased or ordered from facilities far away. Many researchers in that group had to hand-copy documents they discovered, due to the shortage of decent machines to photocopy records. Their family histories and other publications are now part of the collections in this county.
Many members of the original CCGS group became active volunteers and employees in the development of the unique resources available locally. These include the Champaign County Historical Archives in The Urbana Free Library; the University of Illinois Library system and the Family History Center located in the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. It was not enough for them to do only their own family research work; they wanted to contribute to the larger effort of making records easily available to all.
Many of those original members remained active in CCGS for the rest of their lives, and despite all the changes in genealogical research techniques over the years since 1969, they were committed to doing whatever was required to stay current in the exciting hunt for family records. CCGS owes a debt of thanks to: Jean Evans, Marjorie Roberts, Helen Judy, Diane Carothers, Virginia Bills, Jean Gordon, Barbara Roberts, Florence Barnes, Mary Elizabeth Pierce, Wanda Anderson, and Connie Knake.