Friday, July 3, 2015

Daughters of the American Revolution


Find your revolutionary ancestors on the Daughters of the American Revolution website.

The Genealogy page of the DAR site explains how to get started with genealogy and how to conduct research at the DAR library in Washington, DC.  

You can also search the DAR's online databases. Information in the databases is pulled from DAR membership applications. They include databases for:

Ancestor Database: Previously known as the Patriot Index, this is a database of members' "original" ancestors. These ancestors provided patriotic service during the Revolutionary War. If you can prove your lineage from one of these patriots, then you are eligible to join the DAR.

Descendants: Searches through every name on the lineage portions of DAR applications. These are all of the recorded descendants of the Revolutionary War Era ancestors.

GRC: This is a database of the Genealogical Records Committee Reports and includes transcriptions of gravestones, family Bibles, and personal collections created by DAR members. 

Wednesday, July 1, 2015

Free Database Access

In honor of Independence Day, several databases are offering free access to records this weekend.

Ancestry lets users search for records from the original thirteen colonies through July 5th. Search for free here.

If you're looking for early colonial ancestors, NEHGS has a great offer this holiday weekend. The New England Historic Genealogical Society will allow guest users to search the Great Migration Study Project until July 8th. This is an excellent resource if you're looking for ancestors who migrated to New England between 1620 and 1640.

And with Fold3, you can search for Revolutionary War military records through July 5th.

Happy Fourth!

Thursday, June 25, 2015

New Genealogy Room Hours


The Genealogy & Local History Room is now open on Tuesday evenings! Our volunteer, Karen, will be in the room every other Tuesday from 7:00-8:30 PM. For the summer, the room will be open the evenings of June 30, July 14, July 28, August 11 and August 25.

Wednesday, June 17, 2015

Caribbean-American Heritage Month

This June marks the 10th anniversary of the creation of National Caribbean-American Heritage Month.

There are plenty of great resources online to help you find your ancestors in the Caribbean. Here a few:

Caribbean Genealogy Research
Includes lists of country-specific resources, records depositories, and a surname index.

Caribbean Family History
Databases of burials, religious records, and slave compensations primarily for Barbados.

Cuban Genealogy Center
Links for Cuban genealogy records.

Genealogy of Jamaica
Information and online resources for Jamaican genealogy.

Puerto Rican Hispanic Genealogical Society
Articles and resources for research in Puerto Rico.

You can also search FamilySearch's collections for the Caribbean: Anguilla, Antigua and Barbuda, Aruba, Bahamas, Barbados, British Virgin Islands, Cayman Islands, Cuba, Dominica. Dominican Republic, Grenada, Guadeloupe, Haiti, Jamaica, Martinique, Montserrat, Puerto Rico, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Saint Lucia, Saint Vincent and the Grenadines, Trinidad and Tobago, and the US Virgin Islands.



Friday, June 12, 2015

Genealogy with Kids


Looking for a good summer activity that will introduce your kids or grandkids to genealogy? Janice Nickerson has great ideas for games that will get children involved with their family history. She lists ideas for quizzes and family trivia, family photo jigsaw puzzles and a scavenger hunt!



Monday, June 8, 2015

European Genealogy Resources





The hardest part of researching European ancestors is actually finding European records online! Here's a list of some online resources that can help you get started.

And don't forget to visit Cyndi'sList, RootsWeb, and WorldGenWeb to find more great European genealogy websites.

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

The Unforgettable Story of Unbroken with Byron Kinney


The story of the best-selling book Unbroken by Laura Hillenbrand about the life of Louis Zamperini, WWII P.O.W. survivor, is a riveting story of survival, suffering, salvation and forgiveness.

On Saturday, June 13 at 1 PM, WWII Air Force B-29 pilot, Byron Kinney, will share his personal connection to this fascinating story via his mission to Japan that was instrumental in saving 700 starving POWs, including Zamperini. Mr. Kinney will also speak about the continuing story of their relationship especially during the past 25 years.

In partnership with the North Suburban Genealogical Society.

Register for the program online or call the Reference Desk at 847-729-7500 x7700.

Friday, May 29, 2015

European Genealogy

Are you ready to "jump the pond" and start researching your ancestors in Europe but don't know how to get started? Join us for a class on Friday, June 5 at 10 am and learn how to find your ancestors in European sources!

Register online or call the Reference Desk at 847-729-7500 x7700.

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Researching Common Last Names

Trying to find ancestors with common surnames can be daunting. Dr. Henry Louis Gates and Meaghan Siekman offer some helpful research strategies in their genealogy column at The Root.

In particular, I like their idea of researching related families:
Even if people in one of your lines had a common surname, they may have married or were closely associated with people who had less-common surnames. If your Tom Jones married Catharine Hornburg, you’ll want to focus on researching the Hornburg family. Documents for associated families, particularly land and probate records, may mention your ancestors. 
In addition to families that married into your Jones family, pay attention to their neighbors or to people who served as witnesses to your family’s wills, land records, marriages and births. People often migrated and settled with people they knew, and if you notice a pattern of the same surnames always living near your family or participating in major events of the family, it may be worth doing a bit of research on them, too.
Great tip!

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Immigration Records Class

Need help understanding immigration and naturalization records and where to find them? Register for our class on May 20 at 2pm. Sign up online or call the Reference Desk at 847-729-7500 x7700.