Dec. 28, 2009
The West Virginia Archives and History Library of the West Virginia Division of Culture and History will continue its series of after hours workshops on Tuesday, Jan. 5, from 6 - 7:30 p.m. The session is entitled “Genealogy and the Law: An Introduction to Some Legal Issues in Genealogical Research,” and will be led by attorney Scott E. Johnson. The program will take place in the library at the Culture Center, State Capitol Complex in Charleston. All sessions are free and the public is invited to attend. The library will close at 5 p.m. and reopen at 5:45 p.m., for workshop participants only.
The presentation will include an overview of the legal system, a discussion on the use and mechanics of the Freedom of Information Act in genealogical research, basics of copyright obligations and protections, rights and means to access graves located on privately owned property, and the fundamentals of the law of defamation.
Johnson has been in private practice as a plaintiffs’ lawyer and as a corporate defense lawyer. Currently, he is an assistant attorney general for the State of West Virginia. He holds a bachelor of arts degree from Washington and Jefferson College in Washington, Pa., and a law degree from West Virginia University, where he was an executive editor of the West Virginia Law Review and received the Law School Association Award.
Johnson is a member of the Sons and Daughters of the Colonial and Antebellum Bench and Bar 1565-1861, the National Society of the Sons of the American Colonists, the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution, the Hereditary Order of Loyalists and Patriots of the American Revolution (associate Patriot member), and the Sons of Union Veterans of the Civil War.
Future sessions include “Digging into West Virginia’s 18th Century, Groundhog Style” with Doug Wood, a living history hobbyist who teaches 18th-century Native American lifeways and interpretation skills and portrays Cherokee leader Ostenaco, on Feb. 2; and “Going Back Before 1850: Genealogical Strategies for Early American Research,” with Jaime Simmons, research specialist with the State Archives, on March 2.
Registration is not required, but is requested to ensure proper seating. To register in advance, contact Robert Taylor, library manager for archives and history, at (304) 558-0230, ext. 163, or by e-mail at Bobby.L.Taylor@wv.gov. Participants interested in registering by e-mail should send their name, telephone number and the name and date of the session. For additional information about the workshops, contact the Archives and History Library at (304) 558-0230.
The Archives and History Library is open from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m., on Monday through Wednesday, Friday and Saturday, and 9 a.m. to 8 p.m., on Thursday. The library is closed on Sunday.
The West Virginia Division of Culture and History, an agency of the West Virginia Department of Education and the Arts, brings together the state’s past, present and future through programs and services in the areas of archives and history, the arts, historic preservation and museums. Its administrative offices are located at the Culture Center in the State Capitol Complex in Charleston, which also houses the state archives and state museum. The Culture Center is West Virginia’s official showcase for the arts. The agency also operates a network of museums and historic sites across the state. For more information about the Division’s programs, visit www.wvculture.org. The Division of Culture and History is an Equal Opportunity/Affirmative Action Employer.
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