Old Jail provides look into the past

The jail, which is the oldest public building still standing in Carthage, was built in 1891, according to records at the Old Jail.

The Old Jail Library and Historic Museum will host a series of genealogical research workshops this spring, the group has announced.

The library’s Leila Belle LaGrone Family History Center plans several classes, with the first one Saturday. “Introduction to Genealogical Research” will take place from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m., with students learning how to research their ancestors back several generations.

“The Panola County Historical & Genealogical Association is excited to have the opportunity to bring local history and genealogy classes to Panola County,” Old Jail Librarian Jo Ann Oliphant said. “We have had many requests for how-to workshops and classes. We will do our best to meet all of the specific requests for introductory, cemetery, courthouse, maternal, ancestry, census and multigenerational classes.”

Oliphant is serving as instructor for the workshops. She has taught genealogy and local history classes for more than 25 years.

Other classes planned include a cemetery research class on May 18 and a class on using Ancestry.com on June 15. The cemetery class involves both classroom and on-location lessons, so students should bring clipboards and wear comfortable shoes.

Participants will need to bring information on themselves, their parents and their grandparents. They will also need to bring their own lunch; coffee and water will be provided.

Cost for the classes is $20 for Panola County Historical & Genealogical Association members and $25 for non-members. Proceeds will go to the PCHGA for upkeep of the Old Jail.

For more information, or to reserve a spot in the class, call (903)-693-3388. Payment for classes can be given in advance or the day of the workshop.

The Old Jail Library is located at 213 N. Shelby St. in Carthage, off the northeast side of the Square.