Seminars / Education

Fall/Winter 2018/2019 Genealogy Programs at Cloverdale Library

Note: Pre-registration is required for Genealogy Programs - payment
is required before registration is complete unless otherwise noted.


To register, please call the Cloverdale Library at 604-598-7327,

drop in, or email


Our website:

Ongoing:  Genealogy Collection Orientations

with Cloverdale Library Staff

The Cloverdale Branch of Surrey Public Library has one of the most extensive collections of Canadian genealogical materials in Western Canada. The library has a wide variety of books and microfilms covering records from the Canadian provinces and territories. To help you become familiar with the collection, the Cloverdale library offers orientations on the first Saturday of every month, from 10 am - 10:50 am. Visit our website for upcoming dates.

No Charge but please register - dates may change over holiday weekends, and orientations are not be held during the summer. Please check the latest program listings online or contact the branch.

Upcoming Family History Programs


Fall 2018 Genealogy Programs at Cloverdale Library


Fun Family History Fridays

A free drop-in, conversation session for any and all who are interested in family history and want to meet other family historians. No preparation required – just bring yourself and your fascination for all things genealogical.  By all means bring a friend along as well.

Generally the meetings will take place the first Friday of each month. But check our schedule or contact us to make sure.

Fridays, Sept. 7, Oct. 5, and Nov. 2,  Dec 7 2:30pm – 4:00pm
No Charge


Ongoing: Start Searching Your Family History

A beginner’s workshop in five lessons with Brenda L. Smith


Tuesday Evenings, 5:30 pm – 8:30 pm: Sept 25, Oct 9 and 23, Nov 6 and 30


This series of five 3-hour classes, developed by writer and researcher Brenda L. Smith, addresses each beginning family history researcher's need for guidance in embarking on a very personal journey.  Working with their own materials, and supporting each other, learners will discover their particular motives and set goals for their research, organize and evaluate their data, and plan the first stage of their individual programs.  Participants must be able to commit to attendance at all five sessions.

Lesson 1: Probe the Past - From the Known to the Unknown 
Discover your personal motivation for compiling a family history, formulate goals for research, and draft a family tree diagram.

Lesson 2: Organize - The Second Prime Directive
Explore organizational approaches, basic data collection and storage techniques, organize your workbook, and create a family group sheet.

Lesson 3: Can You Prove That? Verify Your Findings
Process documents, discuss evidence and apply standards of proof.

Lesson 4: Right Forest, Wrong Tree: Interpret Your Findings
Build context for your research, & develop techniques for critical analysis of family history data.

Lesson 5: Pack Your Parachute: The Research Plan
Renew your research goals and prepare a plan for continuing research.

Charge: $100 for the series

Ancestry Library Edition Workshop

With Jamie Brown, and Carmen Merrells

Ancestry Library Edition (ALE) is free to use at Cloverdale Library. Learn to use it to help improve your research skills and become a better family historian.

Bring your own device for a hands on session!

Wednesday Nov 7, 7:00 pm – 8:30 pm
No Charge

10th Annual Family History Show & Tell!
Location is Guildford Library!

Hosted by Paul MacDonell

We continue the tradition by inviting people who document their family history to bring in their creations – there have been family quilts, a digitized Super 8 film featuring a BC lumberjack ancestor, artfully done scrapbooks, storyboards, diaries, a very special chamber pot, digital collages and much more.

So please join us and bring whatever you’ve made to honour your ancestors. Or, you might just have a unique family history artefact to share with everyone.

You are welcome to share by describing your project OR you may simply have a table and showcase your items. A laptop with the Internet and a projector will be available to demonstrate online projects such as family history websites or digital collections.

Visitors without stories are welcome to see and listen. Who knows, you might discover a great Christmas gift idea!

Note! Participants limited to a maximum of ten minutes talk time.

Saturday Nov 17, 10:30 am - 12:30 pm.
At Guildford Library
No charge
. Register at either Guildford or Cloverdale.



Just a few quick updates from Cloverdale Library’s Family History Department:



Cloverdale Library given Affiliate Library status with!  This means that while using at Cloverdale Library you will be able to view digital images of original documents that are locked to home users.  This is a big step for us and we are thrilled to have this recognition from!


Family History Show & Tell:  Please join us for this year’s Family History Show & Tell on November 17 – this takes place at Guildford Library.  Time is 10:30am to 12:30.  Always fun, always interesting.  You could do a presentation, or set up a display, or just come to listen and look.   Free.  Please call 604-598-7327 to register.