(Revised August 10, 2013)


SECTION 1. The name of this organization shall be THE SEELEY GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY, hereinafter referred to as “the Society.”

SECTION 2. The Reverend Garner Osborn is recognized as the founder of the society. Any person who was a member prior to 1965 is a charter member.

ARTICLE II: Objectives

SECTION 1. The Society will solicit as members, descendants of the Seeley surname of all spellings to include those who by marriage have acquired another surname, and anyone who has an interest in genealogy. Known surname spelling variants include Seelye, Seely, Selee, Sealey, Sealy, Seela, Cilley, Ceely, Ceilly, and Ceilley; however, all similar spellings or variants are included.

SECTION 2. The Society shall engage in research, study, verification, discussion, collation, publication, dissemination, and preservation of Seeley information for the Society, for the education and benefit of its members and for posterity. In so far as practical, the Society will respond to all that inquire about Seeley ancestral lines. The Society will receive, hold, and invest appropriate monies, dues, gifts, proceeds from sales, interest, etc., and control and administer any properties for the benefit of the Society. The Society shall publish a periodic newsletter.

SECTION 3. The Society will establish and maintain associations with societies of other surnames and state and national organizations to encourage interest in genealogy and to benefit therefrom.

SECTION 4. The Society will pay special recognition to Robert Seeley of England who immigrated to America in anno domini 1630; and to Obadiah Seeley, who appeared in the records of Stamford, Connecticut in 1640.

SECTION 5. The Society will maintain a National Research Center, co-located with the Seelye Mansion in Abilene, Kansas. The Research Center will collect family and archival records for research by the membership and members of the general public.

ARTICLE III: Membership, Dues and Fiscal Year

SECTION 1. There shall be three classes of membership in the Society:

  1. Charter: Persons who participated in founding and administration of the Society prior to 1965.
  2. Individual, Library or Society
  3. Lifetime

Charter, Individual and Lifetime memberships shall apply to a member and spouse.

SECTION 2. Dues shall be specified in the SGS newsletter subject to revision per Article I of the By-Laws.

SECTION 3. Any and all references within the Constitution and By-Laws referring to the fiscal year shall refer to the period from October 1 through September 30.

ARTICLE IV: Officers

SECTION 1. The elected officers of the Society shall be a President, First Vice President, Second Vice President, Secretary, Treasurer, Chief Genealogist, and three Directors elected from the general membership.

The President shall appoint an Ancestor Files Chairman, a Membership Chairman, a Publications Editor, Assistant Genealogists as required, and a Director for the National Research Center.

All elected and appointed officers of the Society may be of either gender without exception. Throughout this document the use of the masculine pronoun should be considered in the classical sense to apply to both male and female genders.

SECTION 2. Officers and Directors of the Society shall be elected for a term of two years. The election is to take place at the national reunion. Officers and members in good standing are eligible to vote. A quorum of 25 members is required to elect.

SECTION 3. The officers’ and directors’ term of office shall begin on October 1 following the election or reelection of officers and directors at the national reunion.

SECTION 4. No member shall hold more than one office at a time, except for short times resulting from succession to office as provided for in Article IV, Section 5.

SECTION 5. In the event of the resignation or incapacity of any officer, except the President or a Vice President, the vacancy will be filled by a majority vote of the remaining elected officers. For the unexpired term, of the President and/or a Vice President, succession will be automatic from the remaining elected officers in the order shown in Article IV, Section 1 above, exclusive of the Treasurer.

SECTION 6. The elected officers and directors shall constitute an Executive Board.

SECTION 7. If there is more than one nominee for any office, elections shall be by secret ballot, and a majority of those voting shall elect.

ARTICLE V: Meetings

SECTION 1. The membership shall meet at least every two years, as specified in the By-Laws. Business of the Society may be conducted if there is a quorum present at the reunion.

SECTION 2. The officers and Executive Board shall meet as specified in the By-Laws and serve without monetary compensation.

SECTION 3. The order of business at all meetings will be governed by Roberts Rules of Order, Revised. The President may appoint a Parliamentarian, who will serve at the pleasure of the president.

SECTION 4. To conduct business of the Society, a quorum of 25 members will be required. Five elected officers constitute a quorum of the executive board.

ARTICLE VI: Disposition of Assets upon Dissolution of the Seeley Genealogical Society

SECTION 1. At the time that the dissolution of the Seeley Genealogical Society becomes necessary, all remaining assets shall be transferred to one or more entities that are involved in collecting, disseminating and archiving genealogical information and making such information available for general public use. The Board of Directors shall distribute such remaining assets to such entities with similar objectives as outlined in the SGS Constitution, provided that they meet IRS Section 501(c)(3) requirements.


(Revised August 10, 2013)

ARTICLE I: Dues and Membership

SECTION 1. It shall be the responsibility of the Executive Board to periodically review the dues structure to ensure the fiscal integrity of the Society. Changes proposed by the Executive Board must be approved by a three-fifths majority vote of the membership at the national reunion, subject to quorum requirements. Dues are to be paid to the Membership Chairman, who will issue a membership card and forward dues plus appropriate documentation to the Treasurer. The fiscal period for dues shall coincide with the Society’s fiscal year.

SECTION 2. Membership will be awarded as specified in Article II, Section 1 of the Constitution.

SECTION 3. Membership may be refused or suspended by a three-fifths vote of the Executive Board to anyone or any organization, whose interests conflict with the purpose of the Society.

ARTICLE II: Meetings

SECTION 1. The President, with the approval of the Executive Board, shall call meetings of the Board and the general membership subject to the minimum requirements of the Article V, Section 1 and 2 of the Constitution.

SECTION 2. It is recommended that the President call a meeting of the Executive Board each year in the month of August or at a mutually agreed upon time. The Society recognizes the geographical dispersion of the officers and directors. The President may present to and solicit from officers and directors public mail responses to questions, programs and reports necessary for the administration of the Society. These are to be reported to the membership in the newsletter. The in-person meeting of officers and directors is encouraged when it is practical.

SECTION 3. Six (6) of the officers and board of directors may call a special meeting of the officers and directors for consideration of issues. A special officers and directors meeting may also be called by twenty-five members of the Society by signed petition, at no expense to the Society. Quorum requirements will apply

ARTICLE III: Duties of Elected Officers

SECTION 1. The President shall be the chief executive officer of the Society and preside at all meetings. He shall be a member of all committees except the nominating and auditing committees. The President is authorized to approve disbursal of reasonable fund amounts from the Treasurer’s account(s) for the routine operation of the Society business, to carry on correspondence and to publish the newsletters. The President shall serve as the chairperson of the committee to organize the membership meeting conducted per Article V, Section 1 of the Constitution.

SECTION 2. If the President determines that an elected officer or director is not performing the duties for which elected, he may request the Executive Board remove the member. Such removal will require a three-fifths vote of the eligible Executive Board members.

SECTION 3. The First Vice President shall perform duties assigned by the President, preside and perform all duties necessary in the absence of the President, and assume the Presidency if the office becomes vacant.

SECTION 4. The Second Vice President shall perform duties assigned by the President, preside and perform all duties necessary in the absence of the President and First Vice President.

SECTION 5. The Secretary shall record and preserve the minutes of the meetings of the Executive Board and of the reunions. The Secretary will perform other administrative duties as assigned by the President.

SECTION 6. The Treasurer shall safeguard the funds and maintain all accounts in the name of The Seeley Genealogical Society. He shall be responsible for adequate financial records. When the Executive Board shall determine bonding is required, this will be done at the expense of the Society. If investment of funds of the Society is made, approval of the Executive Board is required.

SECTION 7. The Chief Genealogist shall have custody of the genealogical files of the Society and maintain such other files necessary for the performance of his duties. He will safeguard them from common hazards. The duties are those generally accepted as responsibilities of a genealogist. He will be assisted by genealogists appointed by the President. He shall comply with the requirements of Article II, Section 2 of the Constitution. He shall also work closely with the Director of the national Research Center to assure that all Society records are copied and/or archived at the Center for researchers’ use.

SECTION 8. Directors: The three Directors shall serve as representatives of the general membership. They may be assigned duties by the President to assist in the administration of the Society.

SECTION 9. The immediate past President shall be an ex-officio member of the Board of Directors and committees in a non-voting advisory capacity.

SECTION 10. The President, with the approval of the Executive Board, may establish other positions and collateral duties not named elsewhere.

ARTICLE IV: Duties of Appointed Officers

SECTION 1. Publications Editor: The Publications Editor shall be responsible for the organization, printing and mailing of the Seeley Genealogical Society newsletter. In addition to the newsletter, the Publications Editor shall be responsible for the publishing of and/or providing oversight for other publications of the SGS. The newsletter shall include inquiries submitted to the SGS for general membership response. A close liaison must be maintained with the Membership Chair, Chief Genealogist and appointed associate editor(s) to perform these duties.

SECTION 2. Ancestor Files Chairman: The Ancestor Files Chairman shall be responsible for maintaining a computerized database of all ancestor files submitted by members of the Society. He shall also be responsible for responding to inquiries to the Society regarding established lineage.

SECTION 3. Research Center Director: The Research Center Director shall be responsible for maintaining the National Research Center in Abilene, Kansas, as a resource to Society members and members of the General Public. He shall act as an advisor to the President and to the Chief Genealogist.

SECTION 4. Membership Chairman: The Membership Chairman shall be responsible for the promotion of the Society membership, maintenance of membership rolls, and collection and forwarding of dues to the Treasurer. He shall be appointed by the President from the membership, exclusive of the Treasurer.

SECTION 5. Assistant Genealogist: Assistant Genealogists, when appointed, will be responsible for specific tasks in support of the Chief Genealogist’s function.

ARTICLE V: Committees

SECTION 1. The President shall appoint necessary standing and ad hoc committees and require reports from them.

SECTION 2. Nominating Committee: The President shall appoint a nominating committee of at least two (2) members one year in advance of the national reunion. The Nominating Committee shall ascertain that all candidates nominated will be willing to serve if elected. The election shall be as provided in Article IV, Section 2 and Section 3 of the Constitution. Nominations may be made from the floor for all offices with the consent of the nominee.

SECTION 3. Auditing Committee: The President shall appoint an auditing committee of not less than two (2) members to examine the financial records of the Society, once every two years, or oftener if required by the Executive Board. The results will be presented to the membership in attendance at each reunion, and submitted in writing for publishing in the newsletter.

ARTICLE VI: Amendments and/or Revisions

SECTION 1. Amendments and/or revisions to the Constitution and the By-Laws will require approval by a three-fifths majority vote of the membership at a national reunion subject to the quorum requirement. All proposed changes must be printed in the newsletter for membership review a minimum of three months prior to the reunion.