Southwest Colorado Genealogical Society
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All rights reserved.  2018 Southwest Colorado Genealogical Society
The Southwest Colorado Genealogical Society was formed in April 2011 with a mission to promote education and interest in genealogy. Meetings are held on the second Saturday of every other month beginning with each January's potluck and 'Show and Tell.'

The Members' Directory is now available on the 'For Members' webpage. If you are a member and don't know the password to access this page, use the form submission box below and send us your name and email and we'll send you the password.

Ongoing: Family Search Indexing Project
Have you found genealogical treasures at Perhaps it is time to pay back or pay forward by being an indexer! For more information about how to be a Family Search indexer, or, if you are already an indexer and would like to join the Southwest Colorado Genealogical Society Group, click on the pdf document below or contact Anna Hopkins-Arnold at

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Current Board

President: Wendy Allen
Vice President: Carole Gomez
Secretary: Eilene Lyon
Treasurer: Ruth Lambert
Board Member at Large: John Peel
Newsletter Editor: Barb Hancock

Let's Talk Genealogy!
We have formed a Google Group for the Society to encourage discussion about genealogy in a somewhat more private forum than our Facebook page. If you would like to join in genealogical discussions, please join our Google Group. Go to In the search box, type “SWCOGEN” and you will be taken to our group. Click on the blue box that says “Apply to join group.” Our moderator will review your request and add you to the group.
Next Society Meeting
Saturday, November 10th at 10:30 am
Durango Rec Center

This is our annual meeting with elections followed by a webinar presentation by John E Putnam
on the Salem Witch Trials.

The Salem Witchcraft Hysteria: A Caldron of Religious, Economic, Social, and Political Ingredients Gone Awry

Even with the benefit of hindsight, historians have pondered the causes of the events surrounding the Salem Witchcraft trials for over three hundred years. As a descendent of both the protagonists and antagonists, this historical incident continues to fascinate and amaze John Putnam who continues to read widely on this incident. Besides the incredible historical story, it is also becomes a genealogical story for him too since his direct Putnam ancestors were involved in most aspects of the witchcraft hysteria that occurred in his ancestral hometown of Salem Village (now Danvers, Massachusetts). Because of its relatively small size, Salem Village faced a long period of “healing” following this incidents. John will share many genealogical, historical, religious, social, economic, and political factors that led to and followed the horrific events in 1692.

John is a native of Western Massachusetts where he grew up on a farm; attended public schools, and attended the University of Massachusetts Amherst. where he earned his BA in Government/Political Science. John has spent the last 47 years in the insurance industry.

John’s interest in genealogy started at a very young age when his two grandmothers would tell stories about the family. As a twelfth generation New Englander, there were many stories to be told. His Putnam ancestors lived in Salem/Danvers, MA where they were very involved in the Salem Witchcraft incident. Both his parents were active in their local historical society and frequently added to John’s interest in Western Masssachusetts’ local history. 

John is the past President of the Pikes Peak Genealogical Society. In December 2011, he wrote a paper telling about his Teaching Grannies for a local genealogy course taken at Pikes Peak Community College. In June 2012, he presented a paper at the Pikes Peak Regional Historical Symposium on Historical Floods in the Pikes Peak Region. 

John would appreciate having input from members on the following questions. 
Please send your responses directly to him at the email address given below.

            1. Do you know if you are related to a Salem Witch? If so, with whom?
            2. Did you have ancestors living in Essex County from 1650-1700? Anyone in Salem, Salem Village                 (Danvers), Ipswich, Andover, Salisbury, or Beverly?
            3. Are you aware of any other New England Witch connections? 

Please have any responses sent to and to identify your group, Durango

Other upcoming events:

Oct. 20, 10:30 - 12:30 ~ Drop-in Session @ the Durango Public Library