Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Comparing the 'Big 4'



Ancestry, FamilySearch, findmypast, and MyHeritage are currently the four biggest genealogy databases available. Which one(s) should you be using? Are they worth purchasing a subscription?

At this year's RootTech, Sunny Morton compared the "Big 4" to help users understand which databases best fit their research needs. You can watch her discussion here.

Ms. Morton says that when choosing a database, you need to consider what you need right now. Remember that no one website will have what you need all of the time.

The biggest question you probably have is: Which site holds the historical records I want? Here is a brief overview of the databases:

Ancestry.com
  • 80 countries -- particularly: USA, Canada, Germany, France, Italy, Australia, Mexico, and the UK
FamilySearch
  • 96 countries -- strong global outreach with a unique collection of Central & South American, African, and Asian records
findmypast
  • 7 countries -- focus is on UK and Irish records as well as US, Australia, and New Zealand
MyHeritage
  • Claims to cover 'all' countries -- primarily Europe and global Jewish collections

For more information, watch Sunny Morton's information presentation.

Thursday, April 6, 2017

Census Records

Do you have questions about how to use census records in your genealogy research? Attend our class on April 12 to learn census research tips. 

Register online or call the Reference Desk at 847-729-7500.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

The Day That Lived in Infamy


Regardless of service branch, many records exist to tell your soldier, sailor, or Marine’s story. Jennifer Holik will teach you how to research World War II records for any branch of the military in this informative program.

In this engaging and informative presentation, Jennifer shares:

  • A trip through time, exploring the service history of several men and women. 
  • Explore resources to search prior to obtaining military records.
  • Provide information on obtaining Official Military Personnel Files. 
  • Show and teach you what military records can be used to reconstruct service history. 
  • Tips on weaving military, genealogical, and historical records together. 
  • A brief exploration of the Individual Deceased Personnel File (IDPF).

This program is presented in partnership with the North Suburban Genealogical Society.

Register online or call the Reference Desk at 847-729-7500.


Wednesday, March 22, 2017

New England Women

For Women's History Month, read about some exemplary 19th century women from New England.

Sketches of Representative Women of New England edited by Julia Ward Howe and published in 1904 features biographies of prominent New England women.

These women were philanthropists, writers, doctors, lawyers, and teachers. The sketches describe the roles these women played in society and highlight their many achievements. Of interest to the genealogist, the entries also detail family histories including the names of parents, spouses and children. They also contain important dates, addresses, and occasionally photographs.

The women highlighted here feature a variety of accomplishments and come from relatively diverse backgrounds. Fascinating reading for those interested in women's history!

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Free Irish Resources


For Saint Patrick's Day, all Irish resource collections are free on American Ancestors until March 22. Their databases include information on Irish immigrants in America, Catholic parish records, and some record collections from Ireland. You can also watch webinars and read articles on Irish genealogy. Ancestry.com has made their Irish records free for the weekend as well.

Find even more online Irish resources here.

Wednesday, March 8, 2017

Genealogy Research Day


Drop in this Saturday to get one-on-one help with your genealogy and to utilize our print and digital resources. Join us in the Technology Lab or the Genealogy & Local History Room any time between 1-4 PM.

Monday, March 6, 2017

Glenview History Center Annual Tea

Join the Glenview History Center on Saturday, March 18, for the Jackie O. Luncheon. Leslie Godard will portray Jacqueline Kennedy and share the story of her life in the White House and the death of John F. Kennedy.

Thursday, March 2, 2017

FamilySearch Class


Next Wednesday at 2 PM we'll be learning how to use FamilySearch.org. Discover how to use this free database that rivals Ancestry.com. Search their impressive catalog of books of microfilm and utilize their online learning resources.

Register online or call the Reference Desk at 847-729-7500.

Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Finding Free African Americans in the South

If you are searching for free African Americans in the colonial South, we have two valuable volumes
in our collection:

Free African Americans of North Carolina, Virginia, and South Carolina from the Colonial Period to about 1820
Free African Americans of Maryland and Delaware: From the Colonial Period to 1810 

Both books are by Paul Heinegg. While working on his own genealogy, Heinegg became interested in the history of free black families in the South. Many free African Americans were freed in the seventeenth and early eighteenth centuries. They often formed relationships with white servants or Native Americans and owned land and property. With the spread of plantations in the mid-1700s, legal restrictions on miscegenation and manumissions and increasing racism, caused free people of color to migrate elsewhere or to begin "passing" as white. Some freed African Americans were even forced back into slavery. Heinegg's work is indispensable for understanding and following the lives and genealogies of free people of color in the colonial period.      

Heinegg tells the story of free African Americans through family histories. Heinegg provides detailed information including marriages and births as well as land and court transactions and even physical descriptions when those details are available. He pulls this information from census records, tax lists, wills, deeds, marriage bonds, parish registers, Revolutionary War pensions and "free Negro registers."

This is an important volume for researching African Americans in the colonial era.

Friday, February 17, 2017

Chicago Genealogy Class

Do you have Chicago or Cook County ancestors? On Wednesday, February 22 at 10 AM, discover local resources to help you with your research.

Register online or call the Reference Desk at 847-725-7500.