Southern California Genealogical Society
SCGS INTEREST GROUPS - Computer Software User Groups

Family Tree Maker | Legacy Family Tree | RootsMagic | The Master Genealogist

posted 02/16/2021

Choosing a genealogy software program is a personal decision. Did you know that many of the most popular genealogy software programs offer free trials? Often the free or trial programs do not have all of the “bells and whistles” that the paid version does, but they do have something you need to try out the software and find the one for you. Try them all and see which of program fits your needs. Download our pdf list of the most popular software programs and links to free sample versions. Each program offers different strengths.

Questions to consider when comparing genealogy software include “What am I going to do with my research?” Do I want to publish a book? Do I want to share my research with my family? Am I interested in making fantastic family trees and print them as wall charts?” Each program offers different strengths.

Family Tree Maker User Group (FTM)

Meets: 2nd Sunday of the first of the quarter (check calendar )
Hours: 4:00 p.m. to 6:00 p.m.
Contact: for more information.
Location: 417 Irving Drive, Burbank, CA 91504
Southern California Genealogy Society building

The Family Tree Maker User Group now meets on-line via Zoom four times a year - from 4-6pm on the second Sundays of January, April, July and October. Those interested in tuning in should contact Dick Humphrey at

Family Tree Maker is the flagship genealogy program from As such, it enjoys a close relationship with Ancestry's online features - synchronization with Ancestry online member trees and web search of Ancestry databases from within the Family Tree Maker program. The current version is Family Tree Maker 2019.

2023 Meeting Dates
Jan 8, Apr 9, Jul 9, Oct 8

Legacy Family Tree Users Group (LUG)

Meets: 2nd Monday of each month except July (check calendar)
Hours: 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 p.m.
Contact: Barb Gaitley
Meeting using GoToMeeting during the Covid-19 pandemic. Contact Barbara Gaitley to be added to the distribution list.

Back to Basics and Legacy 8

Whether you are a beginner or expert, the Legacy Family Tree User Group is for you. It's a forum to learn the basics of this software program, answer your questions to further your knowledge and efficiency and, to assist others with your expertise. All are welcome to participate! You are welcome to bring your laptop or tablet to practice skills and explore Legacy's capabilities.

2023 Meeting Dates:
Jan 9, Feb 13, Mar 13, Apr 10, May 8, Jun 12, Jul 10, Aug 14, Sep 11, Oct 9, Nov 13, Dec 11

RootsMagic User Group (RM)

Meets: 3rd Sunday of each month
Hours: 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Contact: Jerry Domier
Meetings are being held online using Zoom during the Covid-19 pandemic. Email Jerry/Jay to be added to the contact list.

User group meetings will provide information for all levels of RM users from beginner to advanced and serve as a forum for all to share their knowledge of this great software tool for keeping track of your genealogical efforts.

  • Roots Magic is a full-featured genealogy program with a very easy and intuitive user interface. The latest version is 7 and you can download a free trial version at For further information on RootsMagic Version 7, go to the RootsMagic Blog at
2023 Meeting Dates
Jan 15, Feb 19, Mar 19, Apr 16, May 21, Jun 18, Jul 16, Aug 20, Sep 17, Oct 15, Nov 19,
Dec - no meeting

The Master Genealogist User Group (TMG)
Meets: 1st Saturday of most months (check calendar )
Hours: 2:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.
Contact: (meeting facilitator)
Contact: (to be added to the meeting reminder list)
Location: 417 Irving Drive, Burbank, CA 91504
Southern California Genealogy Society building

We welcome all interested TMG users, beginning to advanced, to our meetings. 

The Master Genealogist facilitator is . Participants are encouraged to bring their laptops or their project files on a removable disk (CD, USB/Flash/Thumb/Travel drive) for the Q&A session. Not only do we discuss TMG, we also discuss the TMG companion programs "TMG Utility" and "Second Site."

2023 Meeting Dates
Jan 7, Feb 4, Mar 4, May 6, Jun 3, Jul 1, Aug 5, Sep 2, Nov 4, Dec 2