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A narrative of the 2002 Annual Convention in Salt Lake City, UT by Bob Chapman, past CFA President:

The brave and adventurous of the Chapman Family Association assembled in Salt Lake City from 17 to 20 May 2002. Those not in attendance missed a wonderful gathering. Here is a list of those present.

First of all, the weather was gorgeous beyond belief. I take credit for that. Kilroy was there and he is responsible for the bad plumbing, lack of heating or cooling, slow service in the restaurant,and anything else that went wrong.

I also take credit for the service and food at the reception and banquet. I refuse to take responsibility for the condition of the motel rooms or the fact that we had a totally inadequate lobby for schmoozing and socializing.

Phyllis and I arrived late on Wednesday and were so tired that we simply dumped into bed about 2:00 A.M. I soon discovered that it was cold in our room and I couldn't do much about it. We snuggled under the big quilt but that was barely adequate. I asked for a new room the next morning and they obliged nicely and we had nice accommodations for the rest of our stay.

We discovered early on that a Salt Lake City block is a non-trivial distance. Count on it being at least twice as long as a normal city block elsewhere. In addition, you must understand that the width of streets in Salt Lake City is greater than anywhere you have ever been. Brigham Young, a native of Vermont, as was Joseph Smith, was a visionary as well as a practical man. The width of Salt Lake City streets is the result of his familiarity with ox carts and he designed street width to allow a double yoke of oxen enough room to make a U-Turn. As a lady in the Chamber of Commerce noted, Brigham was no fool.

Our festivities started Friday with a nice breakfast. The Banquet Staff provided us with a lovely choice of cereal, eggs, omelets, bacon, sausage, hash browns and other goodies both Friday and Saturday. I fear that I messed up the breakfast arrangements on Sunday. I apologize. Do as you please. Beat up on Mike for a refund or write it off as a donation. I prefer the latter. CFA needs the money.

After a few administrative announcements, Gil Alford launched into a detailed account of the history of the Data Base and how it evolved, starting as far back as 1972 and working up through the Chapman Chatter days into the beginnings of the Chapman Family Association. It was truly a "tour d'horizon", providing all of us with a deeper appreciation of what a marvelous resource the CFA Central Data Base is for all of us and why we should all work to add information to it as regularly as possible. THERE IS NO PIECE OF CHAPPIE DATA TOO INSIGNIFICANT THAT IT SHOULD NOT BE SENT TO GIL FOR INCLUSION IN THE CFA DATA BASE. Read that last statement several more times until you believe it with heart and soul and you resolve to find, cherish and provide every scrap of Chappie data for inclusion in the Data Base. Try to do it in digital format if possible. Given time, everything you send will get into the database and be published somehow and sometime. If it appears in a format that our PC's understand it will get broad circulation much sooner.

Our next meeting was in the Museum Auditorium. Elaine and Bob Booth provided a very useful tour of the Family History Library which is, without doubt, the premier genealogical research facility in the world.

After lunch, we were back in the auditorium being briefed on successful research techniques and then we had a wonderful hour of instruction on using software to enhance digital photos for inclusion in our genealogical records. Bob Booth used Adobe Photo Deluxe software to demonstrate techniques to make old family photos more useful as additions to our family histories. At the end of his magic show, he noted that we would probably never believe another digital photo we ever see. I've seen magic done with standard photo techniques so I haven't believed photos for a long time. Bob's knowledge of the software and how to manipulate photos and get the best from them was truly impressive, however.

Our annual reception was a an enjoyable social event. The Banquet staff provided an assortment of tasty hors d'oeuvres and plenty of them. Our only complaint was the lack of a sitting room to which we could adjourn and socialize. I suggest that we insure that in the future we have a nice lobby or similar place where we can sit and enjoy each other's company at length. We found this to be a real bonus in St Louis. It was an amenity that we missed this year, both after the reception and after the banquet.

Saturday, we started with our annual business meeting. This is the single reason the by-laws require an annual convention. This was an important session because we conducted our first election according to the procedures we adopted earlier and in accordance with our charter and by-laws. We were required to replace three directors whose terms were expiring and replace one director who resigned. Our nominating committee nominated Paul Rekow, Ernie Chapman, Don Chapman and Al Chapman. There was one nomination from the floor, John B. Chapman. Paul Rekow, Ernie, Don and Al Chapman were elected. In a subsequent meeting, the directors elected Don Chapman, President, Ernie Chapman, Vice President, Jackie Konecny, Secretary and M. D. Chapman (Mike) Morgan, Treasurer.

Our next meeting will be held in Richmond, VA at the Wyndham Hotel. Paul Rekow is our point man and leader in setting up this convention. In 2004, we will meet in Kansas City, MO. Other contending cities for this meeting were Houston, TX, Denver, CO, Minneapolis, MN, Indianapolis, IN, and Ft Wayne, IN. The contest was close but it finally came down to KC and Denver and KC won by a large margin.

There was much discussion about the 2005 convention site. Most seemed to favor the Northeast and Hartford, CT and Boston, MA were both nominated. After some very informed discussion, Hartford was chosen. Since I travel to southern New England frequently during the summer to visit my daughter's family and my two sisters who live in Connecticut, I volunteer to be the point man for this convention and make the initial arrangements if that is satisfactory with the directors and the convention planning committee.

I was happy to announce a generous gift from Bill and Faye Chapman to the CFA. Thank you! Others please note that we will appreciate additional gifts in any amount in the future, as frequently as you wish to make them. A couple of hundred here and there will make our Treasurer most pleased.

Following the Business Meeting, attendees met outside for the annual photograph. Many photos were taken and I know I have at least one satisfactory group photo taken with my camera by Kathy Tovar. Digital cameras are becoming common and that is a boon to the CFAQ since they fit directly into copy without being scanned. Those of you who have digital photos, please send them to Kathy electronically so she can use them in her issues as she sees fit. Those of you who have traditional prints should send them to Kathy also. She has a scanner and can enter them into her files.

We then moved our operations to the Joseph Smith Memorial Building and split into two groups Group A went to a class in the computer center to learn how to take advantage of Windows to make your genealogical searches more fruitful. This class was followed by a class on using the Internet to find family members.

Group B went to the Family Search Center and what a marvelous experience that was for many of us. I went to Salt Lake City intent on finding information on my Irish ancestors, the McEnanys and Boylans, and Phyllis' McFarlands. I confirmed data I had on the Boylans but found nothing new. There was nothing new on McFarlands or McEnanys. On the other hand, I thought I had my Bruce line down cold and only had to find our where Kendall came from to be able to trace the family in Scotland. My information from family records said that Kendall was the emigrant. Not so. The emigrant was George Bruce who came to America shortly after Edward Chapman of Ipswich and preceded Kendall by five generations. I guess we don't or shouldn't take too much for granted in this genealogical stuff.

The Annual Banquet was much fun. Certificates of Appreciation were given to the members of the organizing committee and those who set up our classes. Certificates of Achievement were awarded to Jean Chapman Snow to recognize her multiple contributions to the Chapman Family Association, one of them, her wonderful speech on "Chapmans by any other Name", which she delivered at our banquet. An address that was full of fun and information and which we all enjoyed.

A second Certificate of Achievement was awarded to Cindy Kuhn for her work on the Chapman Families Website. We owe her a great deal of thanks for what she has done to improve and expand the site. Go there and see what a wonderful job she has done.

I felt that I had to recognize M.D. Chapman Morgan for his unselfish devotion to the CFA since before its inception. Mike has been a solid contributor to this association forever. He helped in pulling things together at the beginning, he was the Vice President for several years, the Treasurer since day one, wrote, edited and published many issues of the CFAQ, (then the Newsletter) which he expanded from a few pages to a volume of 70 to 80 pages quarterly. We owe much to the founders of this organization, Gil Alford, Mike Morgan, and Bob Sonfield.

Sunday was a quiet day. Many of us stayed in the city, some to take advantage of the chance to continue delving into the genealogical resources available which were not available on Sunday but which would be open on Monday. Others stayed because of difficult travel arrangements and several of us took advantage of the opportunity to go to the live performance of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir performance on Sunday morning. As an old Glee Club member and choir member, I was happy to hear these great professional performers in person. It was a lovely performance but the climax came at the end when every performer turned to face the audience and sing "God be with you 'til we meet again." It was a beautiful ending to a marvelous convention which we shall remember for a long time.

This convention was particularly pleasant. There was a developing comradery that built on that which we felt at the St Louis convention.

I'm sure that the event in Richmond next year, 16-18 May will be a stellar event. Plan to be there. We really do have a lot of fun! And we learn a lot about our Chappies.
--Bob Chapman

Following are some photos from the 2002 Annual Convention:

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