The Old Dobbs Genealogical Society, which has not met for more than a year, will begin meeting again with its first event planned Saturday.

The meeting will be at 10:30 a.m. at the Wayne County Public Library, 1001 E. Ash St. There is no cost to attend. Library staff request that anyone who has not been fully vaccinated for COVID-19 wear a mask.

The guest speaker will be David McCorkle, a native of North Carolina with deep roots on many lines dating back to the 1700s, primarily in the Mecklenburg County area. McCorkle is president of the Durham-Orange Genealogical Society and N.C. Historical Records Online, http://nchistoricalrecords.org.

McCorkle is on the board of the Mecklenburg Genealogical Society and the Historic Mapping Congress. He has given lectures and webinars to national, state and local audiences on topics such as land grants, court records, digitization, maps and mapping tools, land records, DNA and land platting. He created and operates the free website http://nclandgrants.com.

He will be speaking on “Finding and Understanding N.C. Court Records.”

Courts have always had the role of dealing with crimes and disputes, but in the past they also handled more routine items that can be of interest to genealogical research.

The courts have handled many functions that are now performed by other government offices, such as proving deeds, probate, petitions, taxes, appointment of local officials, licenses, bastardy and manumission, or the act of freeing slaves from their owners.

The type of courts and what they have been responsible for have changed over time. The discussion will help with the understanding or how and where to search for records.