Our Next Meeting: January 7 –The National Archives at Riverside


The National Archives are important to anyone doing genealogical research. We will offer a workshop and tour on Saturday, January 7 at 11:30 am, following our business meeting there at 11:00 am. The National Archives at Riverside is impressive in the size and scope of records held right there.  This behind-the- scenes tour is not generally open to the public. (Directions and more information below.)

This event is free. Because space is limited to 50, it is essential to make your reservations at FCCJamestowneGov@gmail.com.  This is an especially good meeting to bring guests, perhaps members of other lineage groups our members affiliate with.   It should be very interesting.  Our speaker is informative, personable and engaging, as several of us have experienced. 

Our Program

Kerry Bartels, the Archives Specialist, will present a talk, Introduction to the National Archives, followed by a “Stump the Archivist” question and answer period.  Bring your toughest research dilemmas!  Mr. Bartels’ program describes the different repositories of the National Archives and the huge volume of records held here, in DC, and elsewhere.  He will discuss the two digitization partners of the National Archives, Ancestry.com and Footnote.com, and their current activities.  Mr. Bartels then will cover four of the five major categories of records in the National Archives that are most commonly used by genealogists and will go into detail with one of these categories, military records.  This will be followed by some examples of records in the National Archives that are rich in genealogical value, but are little known and little used by genealogists.   
Facilities and Research
Our meeting room will have individual tables so members can take notes during Mr. Bartels’ talk.  You can return to this room later for personal research.   Bartels is very willing to take individual questions and often can guide a researcher to material on site, which may open a genealogical line where one has been stuck.  Bartels is also a former manuscript curator so he can help interpret documents as well as find them.  The National Archives collection officially begins with the date of the Constitution, 1789.  They do have a few colonial records.  The Archives are open from 8 am – 4:30pm so members can get some work done before or after our session.

About Kerry Bartels

Kerry Bartels is an Archives Specialist at The National Archives at Riverside in southern California.  He has long experience as an archivist and genealogist.  He has been a professional archivist since 1977 and has worked in historical societies, libraries, museums, universities, state Archives, and now at the National Archives.  He has extensive experience with county, state, and Federal records as well as private manuscripts of individuals and records of private organizations.  Over the years, he has also done a great deal of oral history and has administered a state micrographics laboratory and a state conservation laboratory among other specialties.  He has been a genealogical practitioner since 1962 and has done extensive research in the United States and Canada as well as many nations in Europe.

Location and Directions

The National Archives repository is actually located at 23123 Cajalco Road, Perris, CA, near Interstate 215. We also offer a map of the location by clicking here
To find the site from the north or south off Interstate 215, exit at Harville Road and turn left. Go approximately 300 yards.  Turn right on Cajalco Road and go about 300 yards to a dead end, where you will see the National Archives sign.  Turn in to the Archives driveway that ends at a guard gatehouse.  Push the intercom button and announce that you are there to attend the Jamestowne Society, First California Company event.  You will be buzzed in to the facility. 
If you get lost, please try (951) 956-2000.
Note: The Regional Archives (formerly at Laguna Niguel) moved to this new facility in early 2010.
Please also note that no meal will be available at the National Archives. You must bring your own lunch and can use the facility’s lunchroom, or go out to nearby Perris restaurants.
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