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Karen Miller Bennett, CGSM

I am a Board-certified Genealogist, certified in 2003 by the Board for Certification of Genealogists.  Certification requires being examined by the BCG review committee and meeting the standards set forth by the BCG Board. I have also agreed to abide by the Board’s Code of Ethics.

I do not take research projects on a regular basis, but I will occasionally consider a local research project. If interested, please contact me for details and availability.



  • Registrar, Lima Chapter NSDAR (2003-present)
  • Vice President of Development, Ohio Genealogical Society (2008-2010)
  • Trustee, Ohio Genealogical Society (2002-2008)
  • OGS Trustee for Athens & Wapakoneta Districts (2002-2008)
  • Chair, First Families of Ohio (2005-2010)
  • Co-Chair OGS Conference (2008 & 2010)
  • Program Co- Chair OGS Conference (2006)
  • Co-Chair OGS Church Records Committee (2003-2010)
  • Vice President, Mercer County Chapter OGS
  • Past review committee for OGS Settlers & Builders of Ohio
  • Past review committee for First Families of Mercer County
  • Speaker at OGS Chapter Management Seminars
  • Planning committee, NW Genealogical Workshop, featuring George Schweitzer (2005)
  • Speaker at Auglaize County Cemetery Preservation Workshops (2007 & 2012)
  • Speaker at numerous local chapters and groups


  • Board for Certification of Genealogists (BCG)
  • Association of Professional Genealogists (APG)
  • National Genealogical Society
  • National Society Daughters of the American Revolution
  • National Society United States Daughters of 1812
  • Ohio Genealogical Society
  • First Families of Ohio
  • Society of Civil War Families of Ohio
  • Settlers and Builders of Ohio
  • Century Families of Ohio
  • First and Pioneer Families of Mercer County, Ohio
  • First and Pioneer Families of Van Wert County, Ohio
  • Indiana Genealogical Society
  • Mercer County Chapter OGS
  • Van Wert County Chapter OGS
  • Jay County, Indiana , Historical/Genealogical Society

Publications, Articles and Awards

  • Zion Lutheran Church, Chattanooga, Ohio, the First 75 Years (2000) (church records translation)
  • OGS Simon Kenton Award for Zion Lutheran Church, the First 75 Years (2005)
  • The John George Schumm Family, 1568-2010 (2010) (technical advisor, editor, historian)
  • “Mary Whiteman: Proving Parentage with Indirect Evidence.” OGSQ, volume 44, No. 2 (June 2004)


Speaking Engagements

I occasionally give lectures to local groups. Please contact me if you would like a speaker on one of the lecture topics below for your event.


Nothing scheduled.

Past Lectures:

Tech Tools for Genealogists, 3 March, 2013, Mercer County Chapter, OGS

Beginning Genealogy workshop, 6 April 2013, Mercer County Public Library, Celina, Ohio.


Lecture Topics

Tech Tools for Genealogists

Learn about new tech gadgets and ideas to help research your family history and record your findings. Items discussed include portable scanners, digital cameras, tablets, data storage and mobility, and more.


Rocks of Ages-Tombstone Art and Cemetery Research

The messages on tombstones were often the last statements made by our ancestors. Discover what our ancestors were trying to convey with the artwork and carvings they placed on their grave markers, how to locate their place of burial and how to research in a cemetery. (Note: this talk can be adapted for both genealogical & non-genealogical groups)


Proving Parentage with Indirect Evidence

How can you prove a relationship when no direct sources of information are available?  Most or our ancestors left some sort of a paper trail that can help us build a case by using indirect evidence.  This lecture gives examples of how to prove a relationship if vital records were not available by using indirect evidence and collateral research.


Preparing Your Lineage Society Application

Don’t let your lineage application turn into an organizational nightmare! In many respects, lineage applications require much more stringent standards of proof than the usual genealogical project. Learn how to make your lineage application an organized, well-documented, project that shows quality research.


Land Deeds—More than Just Land Descriptions

You may be missing some valuable information about your ancestors if you do not search the deed books during your genealogical research. This lecture focuses on unexpected items you may find in deed books.


Boston’s Freedom Trail

Boston—The Cradle of Liberty and The Birthplace of American Independence. Take a virtual tour and learn about Paul Revere’s home, The Old North Church, Bunker Hill, and the other historic sites along Boston’s Freedom Trail in this Power Point travel log. Photos were taken by Karen during Boston Marathon weekend 2009.


Conferences Attended

  • 2012, NGS, Cincinnati, Ohio
  • 2011, FGS, Springfield, Illinois
  • 2007, FGS, Fort Wayne, Indiana
  • 2005, NGS, Nashville, Tennessee
  • 2004, NGS,  Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania
  • 2003, NGS, Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • 2001, FGS, Davenport, Iowa
  • 2000, Millennium, Fort Wayne
  • 2002-2011, 2013 Annual OGS Conferences

I love to attend genealogical conferences. Perhaps we have met at a conference or will meet at an upcoming conference. Look for me at the 2013 FGS Conference in Fort Wayne, Indiana.

CG and Certified Genealogist are service marks of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, used under license by those who have passed the Board’s program of competency examinations in genealogical research, evidence analysis, and professional reporting.




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  1. Patricia collins

    Hi Karen – I’m so pleased at stumbling across Becher information. My mother is a Becher, daughter of Albert and Mary R. (Neptune) Becher. I was able to obtain a copy of Patty (Granger) Bradford’s genealogy research, along with your work – Zion Evangelical Lutheran Church – before she passed away.

    1. Karen

      I am happy that you found the information useful. There were a lot of Bechers in Chatt at one time and most of them attended Zion Chatt. It is interesting to try to piece the family together. Thanks for writing!

  2. Paul L. Kouts

    I’m so pleased to find a cousin (albeit, an in-law) with similar interests from my old neck of the woods. I have three (3) Pioneer lines in Van Wert County that passed through Mercer, Hancock, Putnam, & several other Ohio counties.

    I am currently the State Genealogist for the NMSAR, Albuquerque Chapter and now working on the my Bennett & Elsea lineage.

    My GG-Grandmother was ‘Rebecca (Bennett) Elsea; b. 1833 in Delaware Co., OH; daughter of Jacob Bennett b. 1810, OH & Elizabeth Powell b. 1811, VA.

    I have registered with Karen’s Chatt and seeing your credentials will probably cross paths with sometime in the future. Especially with my present focus on sorting out Jacob,s lineage. Right now, I’m struggling through early 19th Century OH records in Delaware County.

    Looking forward to your next Chatt. Paul

    1. Karen

      Nice to hear from you and thanks for writing. How interesting that you are the State Genealogist for the NMSAR. I also like lineage societies and am registrar for the Lima Chapter NSDAR. I don’t believe there is a Jacob Bennett in my husband’s line. There were other Bennetts in Mercer County and the surrounding counties and it is worth looking into. Some day I will have to blog about the Bennetts… Thanks for following Karen’s Chatt!

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