Recent Blog Posts

bpl postcard
The Value of Open Public Records
Records and Repositories
Rate this blog entry:
10849762 815727755140585 6825543623968073505 n
MGC's NERGC Panel on Open Records: Citizens Can Make a Difference
General Legislation
Rate this blog entry:
How many deaths before the SSDI gets updated again?
Legislation Federal
Rate this blog entry:

MGC Blog Tag Cloud

Society Showcase APG NFOIC Georgia Archives Social Security Administration Programs legislators HR3475 FamilySearch Annual Meeting Sponsors MGC threats to access legislation Newsletter Billie Fogarty Teresa Scott health history Senate Vital Records Presidential Citation SSA HR3475 S1534 Ethnicity humane Richard Nugent Tennessee Education SSA Michael J. Astrue Melinde Byrne NGS Helen Shaw legislation Instruction Oklahoma State Library inheritable disease SSDI threats to access Rep. Sam Johnson (TX) introduction Death Master File Elections legislation Fred Moss Stan Nyberg award RPAC Donna Holt Siemiatoski APG Roundtable online registration diagnosis Barbara Mathews Alvie Davidson NAPHSIS Open Access ISJGS funding land records volunteerism seminar DMF State House Harold Henderson Delaware HR6205 public access archives Vendors records access Sharon Sergeant Virginia identity fraud Jan Meisels Allen sysoon Rhode Island Tax Fraud family medical history Public Records medical profile S3432 Presenters Transparency Records Access FOIA NEHGS closures Health pedigree 2014 Seminar New Hampshire open access DMF; SSDI; Tax Fraud; legislation 2012 Arkansas Federal Legislative Kate Auspitz access S-1534 Judy Russell Rep. Michael Capuano (MA) volunteers FGS Arkansas FGS Ancestry Randy Seaver Thomas MacEntee David Rencher IGS State archives Tennessee Virginia mail forwarding civil records records access Mary Ellen Grogran Legal Genealogist Linda McCleary Annual Seminar Congress Speakers HR295 Pennsylvania fraud medical pedigree Bruce Cohen IAJGS communication SSDI Annual Seminar State legislation Advocacy Jan Meisels Allen HR 295 TIGTA audit Jacobson v Massachusetts Civil Records FGS Conference Public Records New Hampshire smallpox NERGC Alfred DeMaria New Jersey budget Records Access Jan Alpert Richard McCoy Annual Meeting and Seminar Massachusetts family traits IAJGS Registration War of 1812 2012 Seminar Henning Jacobson Lame Duck Congress budget cuts records access Genealogy Free Lou Szucs Kenneth Ryesky Massachusetts Georgia Georgia blog DPH Advocacy RPAC Access IRS DMF outreach Identity Theft pensions Rep. Richard Nugent (FL)


(Online donations available
after website update in 2016.)
MGC has been recognized as tax-exempt under Internal Revenue Code 501(c)(3). Gifts of support are fully tax-deductible and donors will receive a written acknowledgement for tax purposes.

MGC Sentinel logo MGC Sentinel Logo

MGC Sentinel

Keeping Watch Over Massachusetts Public Records

  • Home
    Home This is where you can find all the blog posts throughout the site.
  • Categories
    Categories Displays a list of categories from this blog.
  • Tags
    Tags Displays a list of tags that have been used in the blog.
  • Bloggers
    Bloggers Search for your favorite blogger from this site.
  • Team Blogs
    Team Blogs Find your favorite team blogs here.
  • Login
    Login Login form

Please Sign RPAC's Genealogists’ Declaration of Rights

Posted by on in General Legislation
  • Font size: Larger Smaller
  • Hits: 7581
  • Subscribe to this entry
  • Print

At the National Genealogical Society's Conference in Richmond, Virginia last week, the Records Preservation & Access Committee (RPAC) announced the Genealogists' Declaration of Rights: a statement advocating open access to federal, state, and local public records. The Declaration affirms America’s long history of open public records, which has been threatened the last few years over concerns about identity theft and privacy. RPAC has worked with state and federal legislators as well as local public officials for more than twenty years in support of legislation and regulations that achieve a balance between access and privacy. The Declaration of Rights has been approved by the board of directors of the three sponsoring organizations: The National Genealogical Society (NGS), the Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), and the International Association of Jewish Genealogical Societies (IAJGS). To read the full press release click here: Press Release RPAC Declaration of Rights Ver4 (3).

Now is the time to speak up! Genealogists and anyone interested in open access to public records, please sign this petition! Thousands of professional genealogists do research everyday on behalf of clients, government agencies, and attorneys. Of particular note are the many forensic genealogists who assist the Department of Defense in locating next of kin for the repatriation of remains from previous wars; assist county coroners in the identification of unclaimed persons; work with attorneys in locating missing and unknown heirs involving estates, trusts, real estate quiet title actions, oil and gas and mineral rights, and other similar legal transactions; trace and track heritable medical conditions where finding distant cousins can facilitate early treatment and possibly prevent a premature death; research stolen art and artifacts for repatriation; and identify American Indians, Native Alaskans, and Native Hawaiians to determine  eligibility for tribal benefits.

Over the next few months, the Declaration will travel to the 34th IAJGS Conference on Jewish Genealogy in Salt Lake City, Utah, 27 July–1 August 2014 and the Federation of Genealogical Societies Conference in San Antonio, Texas, 27–30 August 2014. The Declaration will also be available for signature at by genealogists not attending one of the conferences. I'm not waiting. I've already signed it, and so can you.


Last modified on
Rate this blog entry:

Polly FitzGerald Kimmitt is a Board-certified genealogist specializing in Massachusetts research. She has been taking clients for sixteen years and researches a variety of topics from Mayflower lineages to locating townlands of Irish immigrants. She is a case worker under contract to the US Army on repatriation cases, helping to locate family members of servicemen missing or killed in previous conflicts. She currently serves as a director at Federation of Genealogical Societies (FGS), and editor of the FGS Voice Newsletter, and is past president of MGC. You can read her personal blog at


  • No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment

Leave your comment

Guest Thursday, 17 August 2017