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Meeting Dates

First Saturday of the Month

(no regular meetings January, June, July, August, October)

10:00 a.m. until 12 Noon (unless otherwise noted)

Held at the Portage County Historical Society

Note:  No refreshments served; may bring own coffee or other drink

            in non-spill container (no food please)

*Programs are free and open to anyone interested

  in doing family research or Portage County history.

Portage County Historical Society 

6549 N. Chestnut St., Ravenna, OH 44266

The Historical Society is located next to the Ravenna High School and just south and across the street from Maple Grove Cemetery.

Open Saturdays, 9:30 a.m.-Noon or by appointment

(call 330-296-3523 to verify hours)

2022-2023 Calendar

September 3rd, 2022 

Barb Petroski will present

“Using Property Deeds for Genealogy -

Basic Research for Home Ownership"

Discover how to uncover the history and genealogy of a house or other buildings

Barb Petroski.jpg

October 1st, 2022

First Settlers' Luncheon

11:30 a.m. - 1:30 p.m.

Portage County Historical Society

The Chapter does not have an inductee this year. We plan on ordering from a local restaurant and will have someone pick up the order. Last year we ordered from Guido's and everyone ordered what they wanted from the menu. Each member pays for their own meal. Drinks and dessert will be provided by the Chapter. 

If you would like to attend the luncheon, please contact Linda Ferguson ( This luncheon is open to all members and one guest only.


November 3rd, 2022

Joe Stamm Presentation

His family’s ancestors from the northern Portage county area including Nelson Township and surrounding area.

Nelson Twp.jpg

December 3rd, 2022

Brian Rhinehart will present

“Finding Your 19th Century Ancestors on Fold3 - Is There a Better Way?"
Ever get confused on Fold3? Learn what records are available for your 19th-century military ancestors there, and pick up some search strategies to narrow down what you’re looking for.  Yes, there is a better way to search!

January, 2023

No Meeting

February 4th, 2023 @

Reed Memorial Library

167 E Main St, Ravenna, OH 44266

The chapter will have a short business meeting followed a program presented by Kevin Gray, Reference Librarian at the Reed Memorial Library. Kevin Gray will provide information on using the library’s resources for genealogy research, such as and Heritage Hub. The program is free and open to anyone interested in genealogy or historical research. 

Reed Memorial Library, Ravenna.jpg

March 4th, 2023 

The chapter will have a business meeting followed by a program presented by Claudia Bissler entitled "Your Brick Wall Just Might Be Found in Amish Genealogy Sources". Her talk will include what she has learned from her Amish/Mennonite friends about the differences between Amish, Amish/Mennonite, Mennonite, and Brethren Communities. Many of the surnames that are on the chapter member’s research list may have roots in the Amish-Mennonite community. The program is free and open to anyone interested in genealogy or historical research.


April 1st, 2023 

"The Nelson Township Civil War Monument: Stories Untold"

Kent Civil War Society member Mark Perkins will present this months topic. Just after the last shots of the Civil War were fired the citizens of Nelson Township commemorated their warriors with a monument to their service. The names and units etched into the stone are fading but they still tell us something about Nelson's contribution during those perilous times. This presentation will look at what this monument tells us and some of what it does not tell us about the men memorialized on the monument. 

Nelson Civil War Monument.jpg

May 6th, 2023  

"Hudson Artifacts"

Esquire David Hudson (1761 - 1836) ~ A show and tell, guess-what-it-is program of artifacts from the estate of David Hudson, by Elizabeth Siman, one of his 6th great-grand-daughters. Shortly after the presentation, the artifacts will be donated to the City of Hudson to be displayed in their City Hall. Come learn more about this man and his impact in our area.


We welcome you to the website of the Portage County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society. You're invited to explore our pages and consider becoming a member of our society. PCCOGS is a non-profit organization formed in 1972. Everyone is welcome from beginner to expert genealogist.


Genealogy Society  |  Portage County  |  Ohio

United States  |  Portagecountyohioogs

First Settlers of Portage County

Our earliest pioneers came into a vast wilderness with wild animals, no shelter, and miles between settlers. They cleared the land, built roads and homes, and laid the foundations for the prosperous and beautiful county we have today.


Members of the Portage County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society may submit an application to be recognized as a First Settler of Portage County. You must be able to document and prove your relationship to the ancestor and that he or she resided in Portage County by December 31, 1840.

For First Settlers application, you need to have copies of written documents - such as marriage licenses, birth certificates, death certificates, will, estates - these are primary sources. Secondary sources are obituaries, census records, bible records, photos of tombstones, etc. Family trees from websites like  are not accepted. If you have more questions, please email Barb Petroski, PCCOGS President, at

Applications must be received by June 1 of the year in order to be eligible for membership for that year. There is a $15.00 fee required when the application is submitted. The chapter holds an annual luncheon honoring the approved applicants in October. Recipients receive a certificate and a free lunch. Applications may be downloaded by clicking the button below or by writing to First Settlers, P.O. Box 821, Ravenna, OH  44266.

Join the rolls of proud members who honor their Portage County forebearers. Click on the button below for a proven list of family names that have been approved as ancestors of the members of First Settlers of Portage County. 

The bold names are Chapter members. The names under are their ancestors. The number by the members are the order that they were received. This is everyone that has been recognized as a first settler. If someone is interested in viewing any of the records for a certain name they need to request in writing (letter or email) and the chairman of First Settlers will contact them. Permission may be necessary to obtain from the First Settler member. 

Portage County, Ohio

The name Portage comes from an Old Indian Path called Portage Trail, which ran between the Cuyahoga and Tuscarawas Rivers.

In June 1807, Portage County separated from it's parent county, Trumbull, and in June 1808 the first election was held. The last change to the county's boundaries occurred in 1840 when Summit County was erected from the western part of Portage. 

The present townships are:  Atwater, Aurora, Brimfield, Charlestown, Deerfield, Edinburg, Franklin, Freedom, GarrettsvilleHiram, Mantua, Nelson, Palmyra, Paris, Randolph, Ravenna, Rootstown, Shalersville, Streetsboro, Suffield, and Windham


(click on specific township's name to

go to their Historical Society's page or visit

Portage County Historical Society's page)

Portage County map.jpg

No Meetings Held in June, July or August

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