BCG Offers Free Webinar Tuesday, October 15, 2019, at 8 p.m., U.S. Eastern Daylight Time

Civil law notarial records are among the most valuable genealogical resources available. In civil law societies like France, Spain, Italy, (French) Canada, and many other countries, notaries function much like contract lawyers, creating legally binding “authentic acts” (also called contracts or protocols) that regulate private relationships among individuals. These are among the oldest extant types of records, dating in France, for one example, to the sixteenth century or earlier, and pre-dating church records in some places. They are also packed with information—explicitly stated family data as well as information that can help define an ancestor’s family life, social standing, financial status, business and social relationships within a community. This presentation examines the value, content, and location of the most commonly used notarial records, and strategies for using them to further genealogical research.

The Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG) in conjunction with Legacy Family Tree will present “Civil Law Records in Genealogical Research: Notarial Records,” the second of two webinars by Claire Bettag, CG®, FUGA, FNGS, live and free to the public, at 8:00 p.m. Eastern time, 15 October, 2019. In order to accommodate those who might have schedule conflicts, the webinar may be accessed at no charge for a week after the broadcast. It will remain available to subscribers until November 14, 2019, on our partner website Legacy Family Tree Webinars (

Claire Bettag, CG®, FUGA, FNGS, is a professional genealogist in Washington, D.C., focusing on Louisiana French and Acadian families. She has lectured nationally and was a contributing author to Professional Genealogy: A Manual for Researchers, Writers, Editors, Lecturers, and Librarians (Elizabeth Shown Mills, ed., 2001). She has published in the National Genealogical Society Quarterly, the Association of Professional Genealogists Quarterly, and elsewhere. Currently she is writing a book about her paternal line for private publication. She has served as the director of the National Institute on Genealogical Research (now Gen-Fed), as a ProGen mentor, and on the boards of NGS, APG, and BCG. She is on the NGSQ editorial board and volunteers at the National Archives.

“The Board for Certification of Genealogists offers monthly webinars on an array of subjects in support of its mission to promote standards and ethics among all who practice genealogy, not just those who are seeking certification,” said President LaBrenda Garrett-Nelson, JD, LLM, CG®, CGL℠. “These webinars provide an opportunity for certified associates to participate in advancing the Board’s goals by presenting quality educational experiences to the entire genealogical community.”

Register for “Civil Law Records in Genealogical Research: Notarial Records,” by Claire Bettag, CG®, FUGA, FNGS, before October 15, 2019. BCG receives a commission if you register by clicking our affiliate link: To see and register for the full list of BCG-sponsored webinars for 2019, visit the BCG blog SpringBoard at

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email containing information about joining the webinar. For more information, contact

For access to all BCG webinars, see the BCG Library at Legacy Family Tree Webinars at Again, BCG receives a commission if you register by clicking via our affiliate link.

The words Certified Genealogist and letters CG are registered certification marks, and the designations CGL and Certified Genealogical Lecturer are service marks of the Board for Certification of Genealogists®, used under license by board certificants after periodic evaluation.