Jean L. Cooper works as a Cataloger and Reference Librarian, and Genealogical Resources Specialist at the University of Virginia Library, where she has worked for the past thirty years.

She is the author of

  • A Guide to Historic Charlottesville and Albemarle County, Virginia (History Press, 2007)
  • Index to Records of Ante-Bellum Southern Plantations. 2nd ed. (McFarland Publishing, 2009
  • Index of Students of the University of Virginia, 1825-1874 (Shortwood Press, 2011)
  • Cohabitation Register of Louisa County, Virginia (Shortwood Press, 2016)
  • A Challenge Was Given (Shortwood Press, 2017)

She maintains a blog offering short biographies of individual students listed in the Index of Students. Jean Cooper also received the Virginia Genealogical Society’s Virginia Records Award in 2009 for her work in indexing the Records of Ante-Bellum Southern Plantations microfilm collection. Ms. Cooper has a B.A. from Alma College, Alma, MI, and an M.L. from the University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC.

Ms. Cooper has been editing and proofreading for electronic publishers since 2000. She has worked with fiction and non-fiction, academic, business, and popular works. With Shortwood Press, she embarks on a new aspect of the publishing world — acting as project manager to bring a book concept to fruition in print and electronic formats.

Jean Cooper has long been an advocate of innovation in publishing. In 2003, she self-published the first edition of Index to Records of Ante-Bellum Southern Plantations, stating, “I want to have control over the publication process, so that I can make this information available in a timely manner, for a reasonable price, and formatted as I want it to be formatted.”

Genealogy is one of the most popular pastimes in the United States. Ms. Cooper’s presentations seek to introduce the beginner in genealogy to concepts such as what genealogy is, why people enjoy it, basic research guidelines, what resources to use, and gives general advice for the genealogist. She especially tries to  help researchers find new resources and learn how to efficiently use traditional resources in their research. She has spoken on topics such as, “Genealogy for Beginners,” “The U.S. Federal Census for the Genealogist,” “The 1940 U.S. Census: What’s In It For Us?”, and “Electronic Resources for the Genealogist.”

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