NGS 2023 Speaker Spotlight—Megan Clark Young

April 3rd, 2023 by Teresa Kelley


Megan Clark Young has been researching her family since she was sixteen when she traveled from western Pennsylvania to Sweden as a summer foreign exchange student, family tree in hand. In 2017, she began to focus on her genealogical education and now is employed as a forensic genealogist. In addition, Megan owns MACY’s Genealogical Research, LLC. She is on the Board of Directors for the Western Pennsylvania Genealogical Society, for which she has chaired the First Families of Western Pennsylvania Lineage Society since 2020. She is also on the editorial committee for the newly relaunched WPGS Quarterly.

Megan is presenting two lectures at the onsite conference.

Session Number: F204
Title: Squatters on George Washington’s Land — Pennsylvania and Virginia’s Overlapping Colonial Land Claims
Long before significant settlement occurred in present-day western Pennsylvania, the French, British, and Native Americans claimed the land west of the Allegheny Mountains. Even among the British, boundary disputes between Pennsylvania and Virginia lasted until 1780, affecting settlers in the modern Pennsylvania counties of Greene, Fayette, Washington, Westmoreland, and Allegheny.

In this session, Megan discusses the series of events that led to this dispute. She explains how this led to competing parallel governments, court systems, and land offices that were established in the same jurisdiction, often resulting in duplicate land claims. Megan shares, as an illustration, an ejectment suit brought by Gen. George Washington against a group of twelve “squatters” (two of whom are Megan’s ancestors). She also shows where to find the pertinent records.

Session Number: S348
Title: He Wasn’t a Captain! Strategies to Correct Myths and Mistakes Using Modern Methods
Genealogists frequently encounter myths and mistakes during research, often without even realizing it. In the digital age, it is especially easy for incorrect information to proliferate. From conflated records for same-named people to records created intentionally to mislead, responsible genealogists must do their best to identify incorrect information and set the record straight. 

In this session, Megan discusses how to recognize and correct a myth or mistake using the Genealogical Proof Standard (GPS).1 She shares creative strategies for sharing your written findings both with others who may fall into the trap of the same incorrect information and to a wider and/or future audience.

1. Board for Certification of Genealogists, Genealogy Standards, 2nd ed. (Nashville, Tenn.: Ancestry Imprint, Turner Publishing Co., 2019), 1-3.

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