Friday, November 19, 2004

Family History Links

OK, I started looking through my family history links and realized most of them are at least locale specific, and most family specific, so I am only including the most general of them. Some of my favorite family history links are: The Lazy way to do genealogy! A paysite, but I spent the first six months without sleeping poring over census record images that I could not access for years! Very well worth the price. Also, often available for free at the local LDS family history centers.

Heritage Quest I get this for free with my local library card, usually only available in smaller cities, because they have to pay by how many patrons they have. It does a great job with the census records that Ancestry needs to work on still, and vice versa, so between the two of them, most census data can be found.

Census Records Online Although both Ancestry and Heritage Quest have census records, this one is not images, but painstaking transcriptions of the images done by amateurs, and often very helpful.

Bureau of Land Management General Land Office Records This is invaluable if your ancestors bought land (and most did!).

Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System Helpful if you had an ancestor in the Civil War.

FamilySearch You can download PAF (a software for creating your family tree) for free here. This is a good site, and it links to the one below, which will let you search through the Church's holdings from around the world. Very helpful, as really very little of the holdings are available online. Vast collection, and essential to the serious genealogist. You can order the records on microfilm at your local LDS family history center for about $3. (a bargain!) It takes about 10 days to get them.

Family History Library Catalog Search This is also available on cd, which has the advantage of letting you actually use the keyword search option, which is grayed-out on the website. We have a copy of it, but darned if we can figure out where we got it. If anyone knows, please tell me. May have been the LDS Distribution Center.

U.S. GenWeb Project A good place to start, because it breaks down into states and then counties. Tons of info.

RootsWeb Same thing. Lots of the same stuff as Ancestry, but free. The Social Security Death Index Database is not as up-to-date as Ancestry's, though. The family trees are good (I think Ancestry may have gotten theirs from RootsWeb, because mine is on both and I only ever submitted it to RW).

CinnamonToast Genealogy My daughter gave me this link (I convinced her that genealogy is the ultimate video game! And now she prefers it to video games! Too bad she's doing her boyfriend's family! No, just kidding, but I could use her wonderful sleuthing in our own family lines!)

Hamrick U.S. Surname Distribution Map This gives you a map of how a particular surname was distributed throughout the U.S. at various times. It is kinda cool, and actually useful. We use it in the "Gift of Family History" packets we create for investigators and new members.

dMarie Time Capsule Another Gift of Family History goodie. This gives a "on this day in history" snapshot of what was happening for whatever day you put in, like your birthday. Somewhat U.S.-centric.

The World GenWeb Project The same as GenWeb but has most of the countries in the world.

Canadian Genealogy and History Canadian specific site.

Alberta Family Histories Society This site has great stuff for all across Canada, not just Alberta.

Newfoundland's Grand Banks Genealogy Site Newfoundland-specific site. Very, very good. (A lot of Newfoundland parish records can be found on microfilm, too.)

Newfoundland and Labrador GenWeb The GenWeb link for Newfoundland. A lot of it links to Grand Banks, above, so I mostly use Grand Banks, but this does have some stuff GB doesn't.

OK, that's it for today. If anyone has any questions or wants any help with genealogy, just email me. It is one of my greatest passions, and it is one of the most fun things to do! It is also incredibly important!
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