• Join Us

    Cost of Annual Membership: Individual: $15.00 Family: $20.00; Organization: $25.00 Read More
  • Meetings

    Meetings are held from 7:00pm to 9:00pm at the American Legion Post #129, 22 Elm Street, Gardner, MA 01440 Read More
  • Publications

    Members of CMGS have compiled several publications. Read More
  • Links

    Links to Genealogy Resources Read More
  • 1
  • 2
  • 3
  • 4
    • Welcome to the Central Massachusetts Genealogical Society, Inc.
    • CMGS was founded 29 June 1993 in Gardner, Massachusetts.
    • Membership is open to all those interested in family history.
    • We meet January through October on the fourth Tuesday of each month from 7:00 to 9:00PM. Our November meeting is on the third Tuesday in November from 7:00 to 9:00PM. There is no meeting in December
    • Membership extends from January to December.
    • Our members are always happy to help those just starting with genealogy or with questions for finding their ancestors.
    • Guests are welcome for a $2.00 donation.
    • Please use the navigation menu to see further details about our organization.
  • Tiernan's Wake
  • Diseases and Epidemics in America Over the Years
  • To My Dearest - Civil War Letters of George and Emily Ward
  • Save*Organize*Share - Your Memories Now and for Generations


 Date:  April 23, 2019

"Tiernan's Wake"

Speaker:  Richard T. Rook

The author will talk about his book - a search for family and the Irish Pirate Queen, Grace O'Malley

      I was born in 1948, grew up in Rhode Island, and graduated Georgetown University (1969) and Boston University Law School (1976). In 2016, after 39 years as a practicing attorney and 20 years as a consulting genealogist, I decided to become a writer -- to keep a promise that I made to an inspirational high school English teacher in 1964. Better late than never.

       I wanted to write a book that reflected our “noble quest” -- the never-ending search for family roots and connections. I eased into it short stories, which won several awards and encouraged me to keep going. My debut novel Tiernan’s Wake, an historical mystery, was published in 2018. I hope to have the sequel ready for publication in 2019. Tiernan’s Wake was Winner of the American Book Fest 2018 American Fiction Award, and a finalist for the Chaucer Award (historical fiction) in the Chanticleer International book competition.

       I am married to Dyan Gingras Rook, an artist, retired public school art teacher, and direct descendant of a 14th-century female French pirate who appears in the novel. We live in Wrentham, Massachusetts.





Read More


Date:  May 26, 2019

"Diseases and Epidemics Over the Years"

Speaker: Lori Lyn Price

Epidemics of smallpox, measles, yellow fever, diphtheria, and other illnesses were common ailments in New England from colonial times up through the 19th century. Learn more about these diseases, why they were so greatly feared by our ancestors, and what remedies they may have used. 

 Prof. Lori Lyn Price is a professional genealogist and an assistant professor at the Tufts University School of Medicine.

Read More


Date:  June 25, 2019

Annual Dinner Meeting

"To my Dearest"

Civil War Letters of George and Emily Ward

When the Civil War broke out in 1861, George Ward was asked to raise the 15th Massachusetts Regimen.  In August 1861, he left his wife, Emily and their two small children to go to war. They wrote to each other frequently.  In all, 116 letters survive in the collection of the Worcester Historical Museum. They detail the pain of prolonged separation, the challenges of single parenting and the horrors of the battle front.

Join Lynne McKenney Lydick and Thomas R. Lydick as they share the personal and poignant letters of this Worcester couple.

 This program is supported in part by a grant from the Gardner Cultural Council and a grant from the Westminster Cultural Council, local agencies which are supported by the Mass Cultural Council, a state agency.



Read More


Date: July 23, 2019

"Save * Organize * Share"

Your Memories Now and for Generations

Speaker:  Tammy Jo Kirby

Many disasters and accidents strike each day.  Have you safeguarded your memories?  We should all have a plan in place for protecting the photos and documents that hold our one-of-a-kind memories.  Tammy Jo will present the importance of having a strategy for protecting your photos in case disaster strikes. She will provide you with a process for organizing, digitizing and protecting your photos.

Tammy Jo has been keeping her family's story since 1997 and has been helping people manage their photos for over 18 years.  She continues to educated herself and stay current with today's media conversion, digital storage and safe guarding memories.  She has been a guest speaker at several organizations.


Read More