Genealogy Links and Helps

I regularly add links here:

Click on the Genealogy Links and Helps below.  These are organized by topic.  (Some will only work with a Beloit Public Library card, or within Wisconsin).

Partial Index to Links by Topic:

Beloit Public Library Databases

More information about the BPL Local History/Genealogy Print Collection

Beloit Wisconsin – Local History; (Also see Wisconsin history under “States”)

(Specialized Genealogy Sites, Alphabetically:)

Abbreviations & Acronyms for Genealogy

Adoption – Ancestors and Searching (& Orphan Train Riders)

African-American Ancestors

Assistance for Genealogy

BLOGs, Newsletters,Online Magazines, User Groups, & Facebook Groups for Genealogists (Free)

Books for Genealogists Online

British Ancestors …

         Beloit Public Library Databases:

– Search for these Links on Beloit Public Library’s               Homepage   “”                                                       (> “Discover, Investigate, Grow” > “Genealogy and Local History”):

Color Logo Grey Text

1. Heritage Quest:  Comprehensive treasury of American genealogical sources

Heritage Quest

(Includes The U.S. Censuses)

 2. History Reference Center:

History Reference Center logo   Full-text history reference resource

3. EbscoHost:

EBSCOhost logoMilitary & Government Collection

Current news for all branches of the military and government

4. Wisconsin Historical Society Family History Records:

Wisconsin Historical Society blue logo Family history research records from the Wisconsin Historical Society records available on Ancestry

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 5. Newspapers:

A.  WNA Wisconsin Newspaper Association(Includes Beloit Daily News):

 Wisconsin Newspaper Association logo
 Weekly and daily newspapers in Wisconsin from 2005 to 90 days ago, plus some newspapers from the 1800s and 1900s.

B.  Newsbank  – (Beloit Daily News and national magazines, Only with Beloit Public Library Card):

Beloit Daily News


C. Library Edition – World Collection now available  (U.S. and International newspapers, dating as far back as the 1700s. (Does NOT Include Beloit Daily News, but big stories will be found in other Cities newspapers.):

D.   Newspaper Source Plus :

Newspaper Source Plus logo Full-text coverage of today’s major newspapers

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6 Beloit Local History Digitization: – (Digitized – 29 early Beloit History books – City Directories, Phone Books, etc. with keyword search.):

Beloit Local History Digitization       (The Beloit Local History Collection was funded, in part, through Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) grant in 2014. These grants provide financial support for public libraries to digitize and make available online, their local library resources. For more information about LSTA grants in Wisconsin, contact the Wisconsin Department of Public Instruction (DPI) Division for Libraries and Technology or visit the LSTA grant Web site at Logo

7. The State of Wisconsin Collection:    

This includes The State of Wisconsin Collection which brings together, in digital form, two categories of primary and secondary materials: writings about the State of Wisconsin and unique or valuable materials that relate to its history and ongoing development.

The collection includes published material as well as archival materials. The materials were digitized from a variety of formats including books, manuscripts, sound recordings, photographs, maps and other resources deemed important to the study and teaching of the State of Wisconsin.

8. Historic Photographs of the Beloit African -American community:

9. Historic Photographs of the 2010 Vets Roll:

10. Phone Address Directory

(Beloit Public Library access or BPL card remote only) :


More information about the BPL Local History/Genealogy Print Collection:

You can pick up print versions of genealogy forms and handouts at the Stateline Genealogy Club each month.

Index books (along with many genealogy books, plat books, Beloit City Directories, Beloit High School(s) yearbooks, maps, pamphlet file on local history, Local people and family histories, and Beloit newspaper(s) microfilm) are available  at the  Beloit Public Library to check out, or in our Local History/Genealogy Collection to use at the Library.

Beloit Public Library hours: Mon – Thurs 9:30 a.m. – 9:00 p.m., Fri & Sat 9:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.


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Others Links –

That are Not on Beloit Public Library Homepage – see Listed below:

(General/Recommended Sites are at the Very End of the List.)

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Beloit Wisconsin – Local History Including other Stateline Communities;(Also see Illinois and Wisconsin history under “States”)

*Beloit College Archives  –

* Beloit History Archive Collection Index.

* City of Beloit Wisconsin Ordinances

* Beloit Analysis of Impediments to Fair Housing- 2012   Includes – Appendix A “Timeline of the City of Beloit’s African American Residential Patterns: 1915-1989″

* Beloit (and Janesville) Wisconsin Postcard historical photographs  from

* Beloit Wisconsin Rosman Uehling Kinzer Funeral Home

* Beloit Wisconsin Oakwood and Eastlawn Cemeteries (and some early history.)

* Roscoe Township, Illinois    And Roscoe Township Historical Society

* Rock County Genealogical Society (Janesville Wisconsin) –

Specialized Genealogy Sites, Alphabetically:

 Abbreviations & Acronyms for Genealogy

  • Wildcards replace letters in a name to help you find misspelled, mis-transcribed or otherwise errant spellings of the names you’re searching for. Using an asterisk (*) will replace any number of characters in a name. A question mark (?) will replace one character. For a record you think may have been misspelled or mis-transcribed.
  • Abbreviations & Acronyms for Genealogy – The Accepted
  • ACCEPTED – genealogical abbreviations and Acronyms
  • Abbreviations for countries – RootsWeb, up-to-date country code standard. ISO 3166 is the commonly accepted International Standard this shows both the OLD two letter code ad the new ISO 3166 which is 3 letters.

  • Abbreviations: Country and Regional Locations – RootsWeb

  • Glossary of terms –

  • Common military abbreviations

  • Alt Key Codes for special symbols and foreign letters.

    Adoption – Ancestors and Searching

    (& Orphan Train Riders):

    Adoption Reunion Support and Search Angels – August 30, 2018  “Suggestions on getting started with your search. Register with the state registry where the adoption took place. Request the non-ID information from the state (or agency if you know it). Test with Ancestry DNA. Download your raw data from Ancestry, then upload to: Gedmatch, My Heritage and FTDNA. Best of Luck to everyone searching!”

  • Wisconsin Vital Records Office is responsible for filing, preserving, protecting, changing, and issuing copies of birth certificates, death certificates, marriage certificates, divorce certificates, and records of declaration of domestic partnership and termination of domestic partnership for events that occur in Wisconsin. This site provides information on obtaining copies of vital records, searching our records in person, and other available services. OR
  • Register of Deeds at the appropriate WI county courthouse. View list of addresses 
  • Orphanages- USA & International –
  • Find adoption foster care records in more than 13 billion genealogical records –

  • G’S Adoption Registry
  • DNA Detectives group on Facebook  
  • DNA NPE Friends — NPE short for “Not Parent Expected” – a closed Facebook support group of sorts for others who may find themselves in similar situations.

    To access the DNA NPE Friends Community groups, as featured in The Atlantic, Good Morning America, Megyn Kelly Today Show, and The Dr Oz Show, please request entry into the Gateway by visiting the following link. ALL questions must be answered. Nothing happens on this Link page – it is only to direct you.

  •“Search Angels” – Search Squad Facebook Group – volunteers dedicated to help reunite families.

Orphan Train/Adoption

Welcome to Ancestral Findings, by Will Moneymaker Request a Free Lookup from a Category.

Birth Lookups
Census Lookups
Death Lookups
Family Trees
Land Record Lookups
Marriage Records
Military Records
State Record Lookups
Passenger & Immigration Lookups

2. Fill out the request form.

3. Only One (1) LOOKUP REQUEST per day. (If you have 2 or 3 email accounts, please DO NOT use them all. Give others a chance to have their requests answered.)

4. Lookup requests are answered in the order they are received. The results will be emailed to you.

5. If you do not receive a reply within one week, please be patient. Don’t forget to check your SPAM folder.

6. Please keep in mind that this free lookup service is a means of pointing you in a direction to finding more information about your ancestors.  I do not research family lines since I do not have the time to do so.”

* A Professional Research Service at an Affordable Price – (Through The ANCESTOR SEEKERS FAMILY HISTORY RESEARCH SERVICE is a professional genealogy research service undertaken at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah, housing the world’s largest collection of genealogical records.

*German translator & German genealogy researcher:

Amy Koppe
Dayton, OH and starting in December 2019, Naila, Germany
Degrees in German (4.0 GPA) & International Studies; master’s degree in education.  Our family has lived in US & Germany. Speaks German & English at home.  Family ties to Thuringia (Thueringen), Bavaria (Bayern) & Schleswig-Holstein, with a wide variety of dialects & cultural experiences.  Will translate historical & modern documents in typeset or in script; both synopses & word-for-word translations.  Beginning in January 2020,  will do in-country research (see my website for more information).
* Computer Assisted Genealogy Group of Northern Illinois (CAGGNI)  – group .   Helpful Links they recommend for the area –

Birth records – See Vital Records

BLOGs, Newsletters,Online Magazines, User Groups, & Facebook Groups for Genealogists (Free):

British Ancestors:

Calculations of Dates AND Calendar Conversions – See Maps, Dates

Canadian Ancestors:

Cemeteries, Tombstone, Funeral Homes & Obituary  Sites:



United States Federal Censuses:

     Census records are available through:

See also other U.S. Federal Census postings on my BLOG:

1790-1840 U. S. Federal Censuses – Searching Hints –

1790 – 1840 The head of household was the only individual listed by name.  All other residents were represented by hash marks within ranges of age, and slave/free.

1850  was the first year that all individuals were listed by name rather than just head of household , (Native Americans and slaves excluded).

1880 was the first year to report the relationship of each individual to the head of the household and to specify the place of birth of the individual being enumerated, and also of his/her parents. 

1890 was the first year that Enumerators were instructed to add the street name and house numbers. 

1920 was the first year that- Individuals were recorded by permanent residence instead of temporary residence (where they worked or visited). 

How do I find out what the dwelling house number was on a street by using the (ED) Enumeration District numbers on a U. S. Federal Census?

“Finding the (ED) Enumeration District numbers on a Census – More Information”

State Censuses:

Other Countries Censuses – Wiki entry for each country –

Citations of Genealogical Sources – Guides

Clothing & Costume History:

Colonial American Ancestors (Including Patriots)

Price and Associates Price Genealogy  professional genealogy firm offers a free Immigrant Servants Database. Records of over 20,000 indentured servants who immigrated to America between 1607 and 1820; click on Database on left side of  screen.

Colonial America Facebook group – to share sources and techniques to solve genealogy problems when working in the American colonies, & get help


Court Case Searches:


Seventeenth Judicial Circuit (Second Appellate District):

Boone County – Belvidere, County Seat  Courthouse contact information: Boone County Courthouse 601 North Main Street Belvidere, IL 61008

Winnebago County – Rockford, County Seat  Courthouse contact information: Winnebago County Courthouse 400 West State Street, Room 101 Rockford, IL 61101


Wisconsin Circuit Courts (Statewide or by county) –

Czech Ancestors:

Danish Ancestors (See Scandinavian Ancestors)

DAR (Daughters of the American Revolution) – See Genealogical Societies

Dates, Calculations of,  AND Calendar Conversions – See Maps, Dates

Death Records – see Vital Records

DNA Testing and Genetics in Genealogy:

Y-DNA testing is for men. It tests the paternal line (your father’s, father’s father, etc.). It especially benefits those looking for an unknown parent or male relative on the paternal line, but it’s also great for those who want to trace the history of their surnames and join free genealogical research groups. While women can’t take the test, they can test a brother, father, or paternal uncle.

mtDNA Mitochondrial DNA tests reveal the DNA passed down from your mother’s mother’s mother, etc. The major difference between this and Y-DNA is that while both men and women inherit mtDNA from their mother, only women can pass it down to their children. It’s a great way to match with others who are also descended from your maternal ancestors several generations back.

Donating Genealogy Family History Research:

These are ways to preserve a person’s research for others to access and use, (even if that person passes away and the family does not want the papers, books, etc.)  Donate in several ways and in more than one place.  Input your research onto on-line genealogy data-bases. Make provisions in your will for possible distribution of materials. (see form below).

* The Genealogy Center, Allen County Public Library, P. O. Box 2270 Fort Wayne, Indiana 46801  Telephone: 260-421-1225   Fax: 260-421-1386   Email:    Genealogy@ACPL.Info.    “Share Your Research – genealogy papers, books, and data:   We welcome your contributions of papers, books, and disks of data.  In print or in digital formats, your work will not only benefit great numbers of researchers, it will also be preserved for generations to come on our shelves and webpages.  Whether it’s research articles, images of military veterans in your family history, completed books, indices to record groups large and small, or copies of the family record pages in your family Bible, all will find a good home in The Genealogy Center.  Contributions can be mailed or sent electronically directly to The Genealogy Center.”

The Family History Library, “a genealogical research facility in downtown Salt Lake City, has the largest collection of genealogical information in one place. The focus of the Family History Library is to help guests make personal family discoveries and is open to the public free of charge.  It is operated by, the genealogical arm of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints.”   Address 35 North West Temple, Salt Lake City, Utah 84105.  Contact: 1-801-240-6996 (Main), Schedule:Monday: 8:00am-5:00pm Tue-Fri: 8:00am-9:00pm  Saturday: 9:00am-5:00pm Closed most holidays.

Eastern European Ancestors:

(Albania,  Belarus,  Bosnia and Herzegovina,  Bulgaria,  Croatia,  Estonia,  Georgia (country), Kosovo,  Latvia,  Lithuania, Macedonia, Moldova, Montenegro, Romania, Russia, Serbia, Ukraine)

European Ancestors

(See also Eastern European Ancestors, Scandinavian Ancestors,

Family History Daily no-cost genealogy research sites.Family History Daily30 Free  Genealogy Sites on European Ancestors 

Finnish Ancestors (See Scandinavian Ancestors)

 Forms, Charts, & Worksheets – Genealogy:

Genealogical Societies:

* Mayflower Society & DAR/SAR – Patriot to Passenger Project:

General Genealogy Search Sites:

German (Germanic) Ancestors:

Being “German” is the biggest percentage of ancestry in the United States. May have come from Germany, or may have come from Austria, Switzerland, Alsace (part of France), much of what is now Poland, Luxembourg, southern Denmark, present Czech Republic, or even a little bit of Russia. Until 1871, when modern Germany was born, they said they came from Prussia or Bavaria or Brandenburg or another German state, not from Germany.  Were German-speaking, but any number of German dialects. Military Records – Most families 1600 – 1850 had at least soldier in service.

(See also: Translations and Languages in Genealogy; German, Fraktur and Jewish Ancestors)

Tips for Tracing Your German AncestorsFamilyTreeMagazine

Germanic Genealogy Society

German Ancestor connections to Grand Duchy of Saxe-Weimar-Eisenach –  Contact Astrid Adler on her website:

Max Kade Institute for German- American Studies, University of Wisconsin, Madison –  a resource for those seeking a better understanding of the experiences of German-speaking immigrants to North America and their descendants.  Repository of  rare German-language items written or published in America, ranging from cookbooks and religious works to family records, historical texts, and literature, as well as magazines, pamphlets, photos, and other materials.  (Accepts donations of materials.)

German Historical Institute  1607 New Hampshire Ave. NW Washington, DC 20009 (202) 387-3355: Independent research institute dedicated to the promotion of historical research in the Federal Republic of Germany and the United States.

  • German translator & German genealogy researcher:
    Amy Koppe
    Dayton, OH and starting in December 2019, Naila, Germany
    Degrees in German (4.0 GPA) & International Studies; master’s degree in education.  Our family has lived in US & Germany. Speaks German & English at home.  Family ties to Thuringia (Thueringen), Bavaria (Bayern) & Schleswig-Holstein, with a wide variety of dialects & cultural experiences.  Will translate historical & modern documents in typeset or in script; both synopses & word-for-word translations.  Beginning in January 2020,  will do in-country research (see my website for more information). German Handwriting

“Germans to America” – Lists of immigrant passengers arriving in the United States ports, by ship – 60 volumes: At Hedberg Public Library, Janesville Wisconsin (Many other Genealogy Links also:); WHS Wisconsin Historical Society and other libraries.   On-line link – Access to Archival Databases (AAD) resource on National Archives and Records Administration NARApassenger lists available – Data Files Relating to the Immigration of Germans to the United States, for the years 1850 – 1897

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) on NARA Data Files Relating to the Immigration of Germans to the United States

Ship Lists of German/Prussian Passengers

The German Emigrants Database at the Historisches Museum Bremerhaven  and on-line German Passenger Lists ($) – further information

Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild (ISTG) –

German Genealogy Cheat Sheet $

Understanding German Months

German Genealogy Toolkit

German Genealogy Glossary

Researching German Roots

Guide to Germany’s historical regions

Secrets to German research

Ten Tips for Deciphering Old German Handwriting

Suetterlin – German Handwriting

See what your surname looks like in old script

Step by Step Video for using Meyersgaz  Converting roman numerals dates/years in church books

Kathy Wurth, Family Tree Tours <> , Find Your German Ancestral Hometown, Planning for a Heritage Trip; and tours to other countries.  Facebook page, (

Heraldry, and Titles of Rank:

“Ranks of All Nations Possible” historic & modern – i.e.

Royal and Noble Ranks, Modern and Historic Military Ranks, Modern and Historic Political Ranks,  Modern and Historic Religious Hierarchy, Monastic ranks, Knights/Militant Ranks,  Historical Titles and Classes, Scots, Welsh, Irish, British, Byzantine, Estonian, French, Germanic, German, Saxon, Gothic, Greek, Hungarian, Italian, Languedoc (Southern French), Norse, Roman Empire, Russian, Slovenian, Spanish, Egyptian (Ancient), Hausa & Mali, Hindustani,  Islamic/Religious, Japanese, Mongol, Moorish, Persian, Semitic & Hebrew, Swahili, Turkic, Turkish, Chileno, United States, and Miscellaneous Ranks

The American Heraldry Society


College of Arms

Heraldry for Genealogists 

Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies—UK

American College of Heraldry

Coats of Arms from Ireland

And just for fun, this website explores the real history, heraldry and family trees that inspire Game of Thrones.

Hispanic Ancestors – (See Latino Ancestors)

 History of Daily Life,

AND Lifewriting:

 * Library of Congress Digital Collections

The Library of Congress’ multimedia website contains more than 9 million digital items, including interviews, photographs, books and recordings, with some items dating back as far as 1490. Pulling from 100 collections, subjects range from baseball to the Civil War to farming in the Great Plains.

House and Buildings – History of

(see also Maps):

Hungarian Ancestors:

Iceland Ancestors (See Scandinavian Ancestors)

Immigrant Ancestors, Ellis Island, Ship Passenger Lists, Etc.

*’s Search by Ship feature  manifest, or passenger list – all human passengers to be recorded on immigration passenger lists before a ship left its port of departure. In use between about 1891 and 1954.
Arrivals from 1820 to 1890 would be recorded on less-detailed customs passenger lists.
*Ellis Island received & processed newcomers starting in 1892. Upon arrival, the lists were turned over to the authorities on Ellis Island.  free Ellis Island database online.
* Ellis Island: immigration records, free indexes & original records, fee to download copies

*On-line link – Access to Archival Databases (AAD) resource on National Archives and Records Administration NARApassenger lists available at

– Data Files Relating to the Immigration of Germans to the United States, for the years 1850 – 1897

-Data Files Relating to the Immigration of Italians to the United States, for the years 1855 – 1900

-Data Files Relating to the Immigration of Russians to the United States, for the years 1834 – 1897
-Records for Passengers Who Arrived at the Port of New York During the Irish Famine, for the period 1/12/1846 – 12/31/1851
* New York Passenger Lists 1847-1897 -Castle Garden Passenger Lists Guide. Immigrants from several countries were processed at New York’s Castle Garden from 1855-1890. A list of indexes and finding aids for New York passenger lists for 1820 to the 1890s (and beyond), including the Castle Garden period.

Inventor Ancestors:

Google Patents home page

Irish Ancestors, (see also Scots-Irish Ancestors)

Italian Ancestors:

  • Explaining Italian Civil and Church Records   >>HANDOUT 1<< Italian Records Examined  >>HANDOUT 2<<
  • On-line link – Access to Archival Databases (AAD) resource on National Archives and Records Administration NARApassenger lists available at Files Relating to the Immigration of Italians to the United States, for the years 1855 – 1900

 Jewish Ancestors:

Jokes and Cartoons – Genealogy

Latino Ancestors

(Spanish, Portuguese, Central America, South America, Mexico, Caribbean Islands, Historic Spanish Territories in Now United States.)

Laws and Genealogy:

 Libraries, Genealogy

  • National Archives Library in College Park, MD
    If it’s in the National Archives, you will find information on it here. This is a great place to search for ancestors who were in the military, the government, or did business with the government.
  • Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.
    With a copy of every book or piece of media ever produced in the United States during its entire history, you are sure to find something of genealogical value here. It is a must-see library for any genealogist.

Maps – Historic, GIS, Sanborn Insurance Company, US Federal Census Enumeration Districts ,

And Land, Property, Land Patents, Atlases,

AND Buildings – Genealogy of,

And Time/Calendar/Date Conversions/Calculators:


Marriage Records – see Vital Records


Mayflower Society – See Genealogical Societies


Military Ancestors

(Incl. Civil War Ancestors):

General United States Military:

American Revolutionary War for Independence:

* Mayflower Society & DAR/SAR – Patriot to Passenger Project:

War of 1812 , the“Forgotten War”:

Civil War:

World War I:

World War 2:

Military – for Countries Other Than United States:

Missing, Unidentified, or Unclaimed Deceased Persons:

(See Also Adopted Ancestors; See also Historic Newspapers)

(The National Institute of Justice estimates that 40,000 sets of human remains lie unidentified in county morgues across the country.)

The National Missing and Unidentified Persons System database of unclaimed remains has around 12,000 open cases.

An online group called Unclaimed Persons, which serves as a clearinghouse for county officials and volunteer researchers, has solved 482 cases, a 70 percent solve rate.

Unclaimed Persons, Every Life is Worth Remembering – Links:

  1. Related or Similar Initiatives
  • The Forgotten Ellis Island: Deaths in Quarantine, 1909-1911 – Cathy Horn, who discovered that one of her own ancestral relatives died as a youngster shortly after arriving at Ellis Island, has created a website dedicated to this little known aspect of our history. She invites others to research those who died in quarantine to 1) locate their passenger arrival records and 2) find out where in the U.S. they were going.  Cathy will post any new information found and will gladly give researchers credit by placing their names on the site.
  • Garden of Innocence – A non-profit public benefit corporation formed to provide dignified burials for abandoned and unidentified children.
  • Forgotten Ashes – A database for unclaimed cremains. Created by a funeral director in PA, contains over 3,400 entries as of May 2016.
  • The Hart Island Project – Providing access to information about the burials in New York City’s Cemetery on Hart Island and tools for storytelling so that “no one is omitted from history.” Those buried in the mass graves on the island include many unclaimed.
  • ClaimUS – A subset of the nationwide NamUs system (National Missing and Unidentified Persons System) for medical examiners (MEs) and coroners (COs) to enter their unclaimed persons case data. The public may access the database and reach out to the ME or CO with information they may have about an unclaimed individual.
  • State of California Unclaimed Persons –  Database search for unclaimed persons. The purpose of this site is to offer information and closure to families of deceased loved ones for whom next of kin was not located. Maintained by the San Bernardino County Sheriff-Coroner Division. Note that this database used to be hosted at “” and was featured in the video which helped launch our effort. That URL is now defunct.
  • is a legacy site currently owned by our founder, Megan Smolenyak.
  • A similar effort to locate families of unclaimed veterans named Families for Forgotten Heroes, is also now defunct.

      2) Articles about the Unclaimed Persons Situation – Below is a sampling of articles about the unclaimed persons epidemic. You may like us on Facebook to stay updated on related news:

  • Our Media Page – featuring cases researched by the Unclaimed Persons team
  • WNEP May 26, 2016 – “Forgotten Lives Remembered in Special Funeral Service” by Stacy Lange
  • New York TimesMay 15, 2016 – “Unearthing the Secrets of New York’s Mass Graves” by Nina Bernstein
  • Herald Mail Media March 6, 2016 – “Veterans estate being used to benefit Franklin County’s poor” by Jennifer Fitch
  • National Public Radio – January 25, 2016 – “‘Today We Are His Family’: Teen Volunteers Mourn Those Who Died Alone” by Arun Rath
  • The HeraldDecember 10, 2015 – “Unclaimed Dead? York County coroner has cremated ashes, money, jewelry, even TVs” by Andrew Dys
  • Atlas ObscuraOctober 26, 2015 – “Indigent Burial in the U.S. is Shrouded in Confusion and Inconsistency–But There is Hope” by Simon Davis
  • The Augusta ChronicleAugust 18, 2015 – “Augusta-area coroners say they treat unclaimed bodies with respect” by Bianca Cain Johnson
  • WTOC June 22, 2015 – “Unclaimed bodies: More than 250 bodies stored in a county closet” by David Klugh, Anchor
  • Chicago Sun TimesApril 19, 2015 – “The county’s unclaimed dead recieve ‘dignity in death’ in archdiocese’s donated graves” by Diana Novak
  • The ChronicleJuly 31, 2012 – “Lewis County Coroner seeks to find family for unclaimed remains before August burials” by Stephanie Schendel
  • Tampa Bay TimesDecember 8, 2011 – “To be scattered at sea is a respectful end for the claimed and unclaimed”
  • Time MagazineAugust 07, 2009 – “Death in the Recession: More Bodies Left Unburied” by Alison Statement
  • National Public RadioJuly 28, 2009 – “In L.A. County, A Spike In Unclaimed Bodies” with Madeleine Brand, host
  • The OregonianJune 14, 2009 – “Oregonians act as ‘next of kin’ for unclaimed dead” by Ann Saker

     3. Sponsors and Friends   Honoring Our Ancestors – Grants, resources, and tips on genealogy research by author Megan Smolenyak

Public record websites, such as BeenVerified, Instant Checkmate and Intelius – kin searching about living people; addresses,phone numbers, details from property and financial records, professional licenses, interactions with law enforcement, and vehicle information. Records – $25 to $58 per month to use, or a smaller fee per search.

AtoZDatabases – free for Beloit Public Library patrons at the Library or from home; similar to above public record websites but more limited.

Search genealogy websites like & Family­Search  – create an online tree.

Google Translate

Native American Indian Ancestors:

There are over 500 various Native American Indian tribes and nations.


(See also 4 other newspaper databases under the Beloit Public Library Homepage heading at the top of this page.)

        *   Miriam J. Robbins maintains a guide to online historical newspapers. You can learn more and follow her progress at her blog.

* Chronicling America – National Digital Newspaper Program.

 Photographs of Ancestors :

Royal Ancestors:

Russian Immigrants:

(See also Jewish Ancestors.)

*On-line link – Access to Archival Databases (AAD) resource on National Archives and Records Administration NARApassenger lists available at Data Files Relating to the Immigration of Russians to the United States, for the years 1834 – 1897

SAR (Sons of the American Revolution) – See Genealogical Societies:

Scandinavian Ancestors (Northern Europeon):

(Denmark, Faroe Islands, Finland, Iceland, Jan Mayen /Norway, Norway, Svalbard /Norway and Sweden)

Dutch Immigrants in U. S. Ship Passenger Manifests 1820-1880 (to 1894 for New York) (online databases and books)

Beginning Scandinavian Genealogy –

Scandinavian genealogy –

Index of Scandinavian LDS Church Members from 1854-1954 –

Scandinavian Genealogy Records And Google tricks –

Beginning Scandinavian Genealogy –

Scandinavian Lutheran Church Records, 1890-1965 –

Scots-Irish (also called Ulster-Scots) Ancestors;

AND Scottish Ancestors:

  • A downloadable guide to church records helps you identify churches in each parish, as well as the records and PRONI holds for each church.
  • The Ulster Historical Foundation has records of Irish flax-growers in 1796; you can search an index on
  • hire a genealogist in Scotland to do the work for you.
  • – links to online resources for Scottish genealogy: Births and baptisms, Marriages, Deaths and burials, Census records, Directories and lists, Poorhouse records, Ship passenger lists, Maps of Scotland, Books on Scottish history and genealogy

  • –  run by the government of Scotland:  free surname searches, free indexes of records for free if you register for the site. No membership fee, but pay to look at the records (often important information in the records themselves that aren’t in the indexes). Buy credits in the amount you choose; view of one record per credit. Payment in British pounds, but your credit card will make the monetary conversion automatically.

Some of the records you will find on this site include: Wills and probate records, Census records, Births and baptisms, Marriages, Deaths and burials, Valuation rolls, Soldiers’ wills, Coats of arms.

* – Website has a full index of wills fro 1500 – 1901. Index is free to search, and costs 5 pounds to download the image of the will you want to read.

*   – free to use; one of the largest collections of genealogical records to be found anywhere in the world. Many records from Scotland: Scottish census records, scanned images of Scottish parish records and Scottish family trees.

* Edina.AC.UK/Statacc   – If you know which parish your ancestors lived in Scotland; free collection of detailed descriptions of the various parishes in Scotland. Published between 1790 and 1840, these descriptions provide a unique insight into the daily life your ancestors may have lived there during this time period and will give you a better idea of who your ancestors were and the places they lived.

*– contains a collection of discharge papers for Scottish soldiers released from their military duty between 1760 and 1913. Searching the index is free. Order hard copies of the records for 10 pounds each,  mailed by regular postal mail.

Software for Genealogy Organizing

* Family Tree Maker 2017

Sources (Genealogical) – (See Citations)

          Spanish Ancestors – (See Latino Ancestors)

States – Specialized Genealogy Sites:

(All States):

Alabama Department of Archives and History
Click on Search Our Collections to search for a name in Civil War service cards, 1867 voter registrations and WWI soldiers’ records.
Among the digitized records you’ll find from archives and libraries across the state are naturalization records, school yearbooks and Civil War diaries and letters.

Alaska State Archives
Resources for genealogists include indexes to naturalization records (1888-1972) and probate records (1883-1960) and guidelines for requesting information from the archives.


  • Arizona Genealogy Birth and Death Certificates
    The Grand Canyon State has updated this site with new records. You now can search for births from 1855 to 1940 and deaths from 1870 to 1965, and view the original records online.
  •  Arizona Biographical Database
    This database indexes more than 111,000 names in the Arizona State Library’s collection of books, newspaper articles, periodicals, obituaries and vertical files.
  • Arizona Memory Project Digitized items from museums and historical societies across the state include oral interviews, city directories, tax rolls and photos of pioneer settlers.


    Search for a name in over 1.1 million gravestone photos from all over the Natural State. Wal-Mart founder Sam Walton’s modest gravestone is there, along with a biography.
  • Arkansas State Archives                                                                                                            Search for a name in county, military, land and church records, as well as obituaries, manuscripts and photographs. The records aren’t online, but this catalog is a helpful finding tool.

California Digital Newspaper Collection
This site puts at your fingertips more than 15 million articles (almost twice as many as last year) in California newspapers dating from 1846 to the present.

California Genealogical Society and Library
Click the Databases tab to search 350,000 records in the California Names Index for free. A lookup in the original source costs $10. Members also get online access to San Francisco church records and newspaper notices.

Online Archive of California
Use this site as a portal to view more than 220,000 digital images and documents from collections of diaries, letters, photographs and other items at more than 200 libraries, museums, historical societies and university archives across the Golden State.

Colorado State Archives Historical Records Index Search
This search scours millions of entries in original sources, including county birth and death registers, a statewide divorce index (1880-1939) and will and probate records. You can order copies of the original records for a fee.

Denver Public Library Digital Collections
A search of the genealogy collections covers indexes to marriages (1858-1939), military records, biographies, obituaries, the 1885 Colorado state census, cemetery records and naturalization records (1877-1952).

Connecticut Index
Founded by genealogist Jane Devlin and now run by her family, this site provides free access to many genealogy resources from the New England and Mid-Atlantic states. Connecticut collections include indexes to church, cemetery, census and other records.

Connecticut State Library Digital Collections
Search and view 27 collections of digitized books, diaries, photographs, court records, witchcraft trial records, newspapers, vital record indexes and more.

Delaware Public Archives
Click on the Digital Archives link to access Civil War records, naturalization records, historical maps and more. Click on Research, then on Collection Gateway to search indexes to bastardy bonds, death registers and probate records. You can order copies of the records for a fee.

Florida Memory Project
Click on the Collections tab to access free databases from the State Library and Archives of Florida. Records include Confederate pension applications, WWI service cards, 1867-1868 voter registration rolls and Spanish land grants. Click on the Photographs tab to search a collection of more than 197,000 digitized photographs.

Digital Library of Georgia
If your ancestors hail from the Peach State, you can cover a lot of ground here with a single search covering digitized books, manuscripts, photographs, newspapers and more from 60-plus libraries, archives and museums and 100 government agencies.

Georgia Archives
Click on Virtual Vault at the right to search colonial wills, Confederate pension applications, death certificates (1914-1930) and the General Name File.

Hawaii State Archives
Under Research Our Records, click on Genealogical Indexes to search marriage, divorce, citizenship and death records. You can order copies of the records for a fee. Click on City Directories to view digitized copies from 1880 to 1924. Click on Hawaii Newspapers to access a search form for newspapers from 1834 to 2000. Note that as of press time, the searchable resources under the Digital Collections link (vital records, land records, passenger lists and WWI service records) have yet to return online after undergoing system maintenance.

Idaho State Historical Society: Searchable Indexes
Search for your ancestor in the Gem State with these indexes to naturalization records, Civil War veterans, pension records, the inmate catalog and the Idaho Biographical Index. When you find a promising reference, contact the archives for more details.


Indiana Digital Archives
Search indexes to more than 1.2 million records with information on veterans’ graves registrations, naturalization indexes and more.

Indiana State Library: Genealogy Collection
In the site index at the left, click on Databases and Indexes and scroll down to Resources Provided by the Indiana State Library. There, search indexes to marriages (1811-2013), commercial newspaper death listings, biographies and newspapers. Indiana Memory has digitized images of many resources, including county histories, oral histories, plat books, city directories, photos, newspapers, yearbooks and more. The VINE database has local history and vital records from libraries, historical societies and genealogical societies.

Allen County Public Library, Fort Wayne Indiana is the 2nd largest genealogical library in the U.S. and has a multitude of research resources for both the U.S. and some other countries. 

Iowa Digital Library: Civil War Diaries and Letters
Here’s a sample of what you might find in this fascinating collection: Andrew F. Davis describes his fellow soldiers in a letter to his wife dated May 9, 1861: “A great many are genteel well dressed gentlemenly men, and then again there is a great many of the most abandoned dirty ragged lousyest looking mortals that you ever saw.” You can search the collection, or browse the collection by type (diaries, correspondence, photographs) or by year (1862-1865).

The Iowa Heritage Digital Collections
Civil War diaries, county atlases, biographies and school yearbooks are just some of the digitized items you can view from Iowa libraries, museums and historical societies.

Kansas Historical Society
Two large indexes on this site will help you find your ancestors in the Sunflower State. The Kansas Names Index covers the 1895 state census, biographies, marriages, death notices and more. The Kansas Military Index has records from the Civil War to the present. Select Photo Orders from the Research tab for instructions on how to order copies.


Kentucky was granted statehood in 1792.  It became the fifteenth state in the US and the first state west of the Appalachian mountains.
Kentucky Digital Library
Search digital images of more than a million items from the Bluegrass State, including books, manuscripts, newspapers, maps, oral histories, yearbooks and pictures.

Louisiana State Archives
Click on Locate Historical Records to search indexes to death records (mostly 1804-1965), birth records (mostly 1790-1915) and Orleans parish marriages (1831-1965). Other online databases cover passenger lists from January to July 1851 and Confederate pension applications.

Maine Memory Network
Developed and managed by the Maine Historical Society, this site lets libraries and historical societies across the state upload digital copies of historical items from their collections into this site’s database. The site has more than 45,000 historical items (more than double last year’s count), including letters, photos, maps, clothing and audio and video files.

Maryland State Archives
Hover your mouse cursor over Find Records and select Family Historians for links to guides to genealogical research and various indexes. Then click on Search Online Databases to access death indexes and databases of slaves and early settlers. Next, select Archives of Maryland Online to access 471,000-plus historical documents. While visiting the Archives of Maryland Online, click on Probate Records for an index to colonial probate records (1634-1777) and on Military Records for Revolutionary War and Civil War resources.

Digital Commonwealth
Explore digitized photographs, maps, postcards, manuscripts, books and artifacts from libraries, museums and archives across Massachusetts.


Seeking Michigan
Click on Online Collections to access more than a million digitized records, including death records (1897-1952), state census records (1827-1894), Civil War service records, letters, diaries, photographs and plat maps. Click on Advanced Search to select one or more collections to search.

Western Michigan Genealogical Society: Online Searchable Databases
Search indexes to more than 2.75 million marriages, deaths, obituaries and other records, including more than 250,000 new records since last year, for free. You can order copies of most records for $5.

Iron Range Research Center
The Genealogy Database covers birth, marriage and cemetery records from the Iron Range in northern Minnesota, and alien registrations, naturalization records and obituaries from across the state. Order a copy of a record for $10.

Minnesota Reflections
This collection includes more than 50,000 digitized items from the state’s cultural heritage organizations. You’ll find newspapers, photographs, diaries, maps, plat books, oral interviews and more.

Mississippi Department of Archives and History
This page describes the archives’ most commonly used genealogical resources. Click on Digital Archives to view Confederate Pension applications and WWI statement of service cards and indexes. Use the online catalog to identify the archives’ holdings relevant to your Mississippi family.

Mississippi Digital Library
Libraries, colleges and historical and genealogical societies contributed scrapbooks, letters, photographs, books, oral histories and the large collection of family histories digitized on this site.

Missouri Digital Heritage
Access more than 9 million death, military, naturalization and other records from around the state through the main search form. Click on Browse Collections by Topic, then Genealogy to search individual databases.

 The State Historical Society of Missouri: Digital Collections
This site features a large newspaper collection, plus diaries, plat maps, photographs, oral histories and Civil War letters, as well as newsletters published by local historical and genealogical societies.

Montana Memory Project
Use the search box to find a name in digitized newspapers, yearbooks, prison records, photographs and more from archives across the Treasure State.

Nebraska State Historical Society
Under the Search Collections tab, select Additional Research Databases to access indexes to names in cemetery records, county atlases, plat books and prison records. The 1860-1954 Tract Books Index covers the first owners of land in Nebraska.

Nevada State Library, Archives and Public Records: Digital Collections
The Nevada State Digital Archives has more than half a million online records, including territorial census records (1861-1864), state land patents (1865-2013) and records of prisoners and orphans.

New Hampshire Genealogy & History
This extensive guide to researching your family history in New Hampshire covers all the major record groups and has numerous links to online resources. It even has detailed guides to every county and many towns in the state.

New Jersey State Archives
Click on Searchable Databases and Online Records Request Forms to access indexes to marriage records (1666-1799 and 1848-1878), and indexes to death records (1878-1895). The searchable databases cover more than 1 million references to documents and photographs.

New Mexico Digital Collections
Access digitized manuscripts, including genealogies, photographs, oral histories and maps from libraries and museums across New Mexico. The Newspapers Database (accessible via the Advanced Search options or under the Browse All Collections pull-down menu) tells where copies are available and includes links to digitized copies of some titles.

* German Genealogy Group

Old Fulton NY Post Cards
With 5 million more newspaper pages than last year, this site now tops more than 35 million newspaper pages (1726-2015) that you can search by word or phrase. Despite the name, Thomas Tryniski’s site has newspapers from all over New York, plus some from other states and Canada. To download the full list of titles, click on FAQ_HELP_INDEX at the top of the screen, then “to browse the different papers, click Here,” and then “Download this index as a Microsoft Excel file.”

Sampubco: New York Counties Will Books Testators Records
This index covers more than 274,000 New York wills. Browse by county or click Search This Site to search for a name on the whole site. In the FREEFind box, type the last name first and put quotations around the name to search on the phrase, such as “Robertson John.” Optionally, add a town or county (“Robertson John” Worcester) to narrow the search.

All About Relatives  – BLOG Focusing on genealogy research with emphasis on New York State.

North Carolina Digital Collections
A joint project of the state archives and state library, this site has digitized Confederate pension applications, naturalizations, Bible records and newspapers back to the 1700s. The Family Records collection groups the most useful records for genealogy, including marriage and death notices and cemetery records. Our list previously included this site as part of the State Archives of North Carolina.

North Carolina Digital Heritage Center
With contributions from cultural heritage institutions across the state, this site has digitized newspapers, yearbooks, photographs, city directories, genealogies, yearbooks and more.

Digital Horizons
Town and county histories, photos of homesteaders and oral interviews conducted with Germans from Russia dating back to the 1800s are just a few of this site’s treasures depicting life on the northern plains.

Ohio Memory
A collaborative project of the Ohio History Connection and the State Library of Ohio, this collection includes items from more than 360 cultural heritage institutions. You’ll find yearbooks, county atlases, photos of Civil War officers, more than 315,000 newspaper pages (nearly 100,000 more than last year) and much more.

Oklahoma Digital Prairie
This site from the Oklahoma Department of Libraries and its partners has digitized books, newspapers, photos and documents, including Confederate pension records and cards.

The University of Oklahoma Western History Collections
Key collections here include Civil War soldiers’ personal narratives, trabscribed interviews with Oklahomans from the 1930s and more than 200 manuscript collections about Native Americans.

Archival Records: Guides, Records and Indexes
This site’s Early Oregonians Database documents people who lived in Oregon prior to statehood. The Oregon Historical County Records Guide includes county maps, histories and record inventories. Search for relatives in the Oregon Historical Records Index to birth, marriage, death, divorce, naturalization, probate and other county records.

PA Photos and Documents
You can now search each collection here individually or all at once to access digitized photos and documents from
libraries. The resources from across Pennsylvania are grouped by subject, such as genealogy, local newspapers, Pennsylvania history and yearbooks.
Pennsylvania Historical & Museum Commission 
In addition to research guides and finding aids, this site has several online record collections. Military records date back to the Revolutionary War, and many of them include soldiers’ physical descriptions. Land records (1684-present) include browsable indexes. You also can browse statewide birth (1906-1910) and death (1906-1965) indexes.

Rhode Island Historical Cemetery Commission
More than just an index to gravestones, this site includes dates of birth and death, names of family members and maps of cemetery locations. Many entries include detailed descriptions and photos of the gravestones.

South Carolina Department of Archives and History
Click on the Online Research tab, then on Online Records Index to search more than 300,000 items (many with images). They include records of Confederate veterans (1909-1973), criminal court records, state land-grant plats (1784-1868), legislative papers (1782-1866), will transcripts (1782-1855) and school insurance photos (1935-1952).

South Carolina Digital Library
This collection of 200,000 items from 40 cultural heritage institutions across the Palmetto State includes family histories, yearbooks, oral histories, maps, photographs and family Bible records.

South Dakota State Historical Society
Find your ancestors in the Mount Rushmore State with the help of these indexes to naturalizations, cemetery records and biographies, plus a transcript of the 1885 census of Civil War veterans.

Volunteer Voices
Search digitized photos, letters, diaries, oral histories and artifacts in archives, libraries and museums across the state. You’ll find many Civil War-related items, including letters from soldiers, photographs of veterans and pictures of relics.

The Portal to Texas History
Libraries, archives, historical societies and genealogical societies from across the state have contributed more than 750,000 digitized books, maps and photos for this website. You’ll also find college yearbooks, county probate records and newspapers.

Utah State Cemeteries and Burials
This database contains cemetery records for about 600,000 people buried in Utah and more burials are continually being added. Information comes from both sexton’s records and gravestones.

Utah State Archives Name Indexes
The Utah State Archives created this convenient list of online records searchable by name. In addition to images of death certificates from 1904 to 1965, you also can search birth registers and other records from several counties.

Vermont Historical Society
Under the Research tab, select Genealogy, then Genealogy Indexes & Lists for links to PDF files with indexes and transcriptions of various records, including baptisms, marriages, deaths, naturalizations and town records.

Vermont in the Civil War
This extensive collection includes profiles, photos and gravestones of Civil War soldiers with any connection to Vermont. Click Name Search to search the site for an ancestor’s name.

Library of Virginia
Among the many useful indexes and digitized documents on this site, don’t overlook the index to wills and administrations up to 1800. The Library of Virginia has a separate site for digitized materials at Virginia Memory. On that site, under the Digital Collections tab, select Collections by Topic. Under Military Service, see Revolutionary War records and Confederate pension rolls. Under Land Office Patents & Grants, access digitized records dating back to 1623.

Washington Rural Heritage
Drawing on the collections of small, rural libraries and historical societies, this site has scrapbooks, oral interviews, old photographs and more.

Washington State Archives: Digital Archives
This terrific site has more than 60 million searchable records online (7 million more than last year), including birth, marriage, death, census, cemetery and naturalization records.

West Virginia Archives and History
Vital records databases include digitized birth records (1790-1940), marriage records (1780-1971) and death records (1753-1965). The West Virginia Memory Project has indexes to Civil War records.


Recollection Wisconsin
Resources from libraries, archives and historical societies across the state include county histories, diaries, genealogies, letters, local history, manuscripts, newspapers, oral histories, photographs, plat maps and yearbooks. Select Tips for Genealogists from the Explore tab for help searching.

Wisconsin Historical Society
Search more than 3 million records, including indexes to birth, marriage and death records, plus obituaries, biographies and photos. Scroll down the page for links to other resources, including Civil War records and local history and biography articles.    – Wisconsin Genealogy Vagabonds Facebook Group

Wyoming Newspapers
Search and view more than 800,000 newspaper pages, including newspapers published in Wyoming between 1849 and 1922. The site continues to add newspapers and has some titles up to 1989.


       * Hard to Find Surnames

Swedish Ancestors (See Scandinavian Ancestors)


Surname Variations found in Ireland at

The University of Pittsburgh’s Slovak Studies Program at

Norway Heritage shares common Norwegian names at

Dutch Patronymics of the 1600s at

Technology for Genealogy:

  • Newest Technology for genealogy.
  • Charts for purchase of software and online family history search databases, here.

Television Shows about Genealogy:

ABOUT TLC Television Shows

Who do You think You Are?  British version –

Who do You think You Are?  American version aired first on NBC and now on TLC –  

Who Do You Think You Are? Check out our recap of last season’s episode with actress Laverne Cox.

The American “Who Do You Think You Are?“, which , is modeled after the British show of the same name. Watch on TLC, on the TLC website by subscription, or purchase episodes on YouTube.

Finding Your Roots With Henry Louis Gates, Jr., Watch on your local PBS station, by subscription on the PBS website , or purchase episodes on  YouTube. (Update: Season 5 premieres Jan. 8, 2019.)

Ancestors – Watch for free at BYUtv.

Ancestors in the Attic – Jeff Douglas hosts, Canadian. Watch with a subscription.

Genealogy Roadshow – Watch by subscription on the PBS website  or purchase episodes on YouTube.

Genealogy Roadshow experts  research secrets for you in 11 Essential Research Tricks From Genealogy Roadshow, a downloadable video class now in the Family Tree Shop!

The Generations Project – Watch for free on the BYUtv website.

Long Lost Family – hosted by Chris Jacobs and Lisa Joyner, reunites separated families. Watch on TLC, online with a TLC subscription, or purchase episodes on YouTube.

Relative Race – The next season debuts in September! Watch free on the BYUtv website or look here for cable and satellite services and TV streaming apps .

Timelines in History:

Translations and Languages in Genealogy:

United States Government Links for Genealogy:

  • NARA National Archives and Records Records, Passenger Arrival Records, (Immigration) Naturalization Records, Land Records, Military Records, etc. Native Americans, African Americans, Japanese Americans, Chinese Americans, Hispanic Americans, etc.

Vital Records – Birth, Death, Marriage (see also States; Countries by name):

Death Certificates:

Volunteering for Genealogy:

USGenWeb Census Project – Fillable Forms – volunteer to transcribe Census templates –

Webinars, Some FREE:

(USCIS) U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services free genealogy webinars –  Watch Webinars

(WSGS) Wisconsin State Genealogical Society free Webinar Schedule  and registration:         All Webinars take place Tuesdays at 7:00 P.M. cst. – live webinar is free to anyone.  After the event the webinar is in the member’s only section on the website.

NARA National Archives webinars

Family History Library classes and webinars If you are unable to attend a class in person or online, most sessions are recorded and can be viewed later online –  archived here .

Women Ancestors:

Web Sites

Publications and Resources


 Writing your Family History / Lifewriting:

  •   Scrivener, a multifaceted word processor and project management tool – program for all of my personal and professional writing ($ software for Mac or Windows)

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Family History Daily

(50) Free Genealogy  Sites :

Family History Daily offers a popular and affordable, self-paced genealogy course that can help you with your research

1. FamilySearch: largest collection of free genealogical records in the world

2. WikiTree: enormous collaborative family tree

3. Fulton History: historical newspapers from the US and Canada

4. Find a Grave: locate your ancestors in cemeteries across the globe

5. Google News Archive: millions of archived newspaper pages

6. US National Archives: official US National Archives site, many free genealogy databases and resources

7. Automated Genealogy: indexes of the Canadian census

8. FreeBMD: civil registration index of births, marriages and deaths for England and Wales

9. USGenWeb Project: massive free genealogy resource directory by US state and county

10. WorldGenWeb Project: genealogy resources by country and region, not to miss

11. Cyndi’s List: highly respected directory of free genealogy resources and databases online

12. Library and Archives Canada: official archives of Canada, census records and more

13. Ellis Island: immigration records, free indexes and original records, fee to download copies

14. FreeReg: baptism, marriage, and burial records from parish registers of the UK

15. Crestleaf: various genealogy records

16. RootsWeb: world’s largest genealogy community, huge amount of free information

17. Castle Garden: immigration records, pre Ellis Island

18. Chronicling America: giant database of archived US newspapers from the Library of Congress

 19. Dead Fred: genealogy photo archive

20. African Heritage Project: records on former slaves, freedpersons and their descendants

21. Family Tree Now: various genealogy records

22. Daughters of the American Revolution: military service records and more

23. JewishGen: Jewish ancestry research

24. FreeCEN: transcribed census records from the UK

25. Access Genealogy: vast family history directories and more, good Native American resources

26. British Library, India Office: records on British and European people in India pre 1950

27. Guild of One-Name Studies: extensive surname research site

28. Geneabloggers: massive directory of genealogy related blogs with a huge amount of free information

29. NativeWeb Genealogy: list of Native American genealogy resources and searchable databases

30. Viximus: member submitted biographical information

31. WieWasWie: for researching ancestors from the Netherlands (in Dutch)

32. UK National Archives: official National Archives of the UK

33. The National Archives of Ireland: official National Archives of Ireland

34. GENUKI: reference library of genealogical resources for the UK and Ireland

35. German Genealogy Server: German ancestry research (many sections in German)

36. Preserve the Pensions: War of 1812 pension records access

37. Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System: Civil War records from the National Park Service

38. LitvakSIG: Lithuanian-Jewish genealogy databases and resources

39. Italian Genealogical Group: Italian American genealogy resources and databases

40. Internet Archive: a large amount of information useful to genealogists, but you’ll need to do some digging

41. Billion Graves: headstone records

42. Open Library: good place to find family history books, search for surnames or locations

43. GenDisasters: for researching disasters and other events your ancestors might have been involved in

44. RomanyGenes: Romanichal ancestry research

45. Patriot and Grave Index: revolutionary war graves registry and patriot index from the National Society of the Sons of the American Revolution

46. Illinois Digital Newspaper Collection: vast number of archived US newspapers

47. Seventh-day Adventist Obituary Database: hundreds of thousands of obituary entries

48. Släktdata: genealogy records for Sweden (in Swedish)

49. Hispanic Genealogy: wonderful list of resources for researching Hispanic ancestry

50: Free Genealogy Search Engine: search hundreds of free genealogy resources at one time on Family History Daily

There are many more free genealogy sites online. Since we can’t possibly list them all in one article, please share your favorite in the comments if you don’t see it here.

Keep your eye on Family History Daily for more articles about free genealogy resources, including our upcoming state by state guides. You might also like to read about how to access paid genealogy sites through your library’s website for free or check out our other articles here.

 Family Tree Magazine Best Sites:


You can Google for a name or place mentioned on pages of a specific site by putting site:URL (such as in the search box, along with key terms (for example, Iowa birth certificates).
 To find tips and tutorials on using many of these 101 websites, visit and

“History at Home: A Guide to Genealogy” –        a Special Site Shared with Us by the After-School Students doing a Family Tree Project

  • Basic Genealogy: This article outlines the core principles of genealogical research and sources of information.
  • Starting Your Genealogy Research: The USGenWeb Project offers step-by-step instructions with links to useful tools and a list of common research mistakes.
  • Top Ten Tips for Starting Your Family History: Try one or more of these tips to break into genealogy.
  • Be a Family History Detective: The PBS show History Detective Special Investigations solves historical mysteries, and this article shares their detective techniques for finding family history clues.
  • Genealogy 101: Family History and More: This article introduces methods for collecting and organizing family research and ways to improve these skills.
  • Ancestry Charts and Forms: Download an ancestral pedigree chart, a family group sheet, and other forms to organize genealogical research.
  • Genealogy Research in Military Records: The National Archives site offers many resources for genealogists, and this article is a guide for researching military records.
  • Personnel Records, Muster Rolls, and Genealogical Research: The U.S. Coast Guard explains how to access service records for officers, enlisted and civilian personnel, and lighthouse keepers.
  • Researching Individual Immigrant Records: Finding the right immigration and nationality records is simplified by this outline of dates and resources from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
  • Genealogical Research Tips: The U.S. Department of Interior explains how to begin a search for ancestors, with a special emphasis on Native American genealogy.
  • Genealogical Research at the Library of Congress (PDF): This article describes what type of research genealogists should do before going to the Library of Congress and what resources they can expect to find in its Local History and Genealogy Reading Room.
  • Ellis Island Immigration Records: Information on millions of ship passengers arriving at Ellis Island and the Port of New York can be accessed through this site: Just click the blue “Passenger Search” button in the upper right corner.
  • Compiling a Family Medical History: The Mayo Clinic identifies the health reasons for knowing three generations of your family history.
  • Learning About Genetic Health: This article details specific medical problems that can be affected by genetics and family history.
  • What is Genealogy?: The Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation merges traditional genealogy with DNA to find more connections in the family tree.
  • Public Health Genomics: Frequently Asked Questions: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers advice on topics such as how adoptees can locate information and how knowing family history can lower one’s health risk.
  • The Surgeon General’s Family Health History Initiative: According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the majority of Americans do not have a record of their family’s health history, and they can begin to create that record by accessing the My Family Health Portrait Tool on this site.
  • Using Maps in Genealogy (PDF): Maps are an important tool in tracing the movement of a family, and the U.S. Geological Survey discusses how to use maps, the best types of maps, and where to find them.
  • Take a Genealogy Quiz: Have a little fun and test your family research knowledge.
  • Oral History Interview, Questions, and Topics: This is a list of 83 questions that can be used to generate a family history interview.
  • Step-by-Step Guide to Oral History: Check out a comprehensive outline of the process of planning and recording an interview, including tips on how to ask questions, pinpointing problems, and self-evaluation.
  • Genealogy and Homestead Records (PDF): The National Park Service put together this useful guide to researching land records that pertain to the family tree.
  • Ten Things You May Not Know About the Roosevelts: This fascinating article about President Franklin Delano Roosevelt highlights some of the very things a genealogist looks for: interesting relatives, a marriage certificate, and juicy family stories.
  • Family History Research: This introductory guide includes cautions for wise use of the Internet, verifying information, and respecting the privacy of relatives.
  • Caring for Your Family Papers (PDF): Historical documents can be fragile, and this article gives practical advice for preserving photos, papers, and books.
  • Family Business: How You Find It and How You Keep It: This expansive article covers surname origins, cemetery searches and how to take an impression of a gravestone, the difference between primary and secondary sources, African American and Native American genealogy resources, and more.
  • History of Genealogy and Family History: An explanation of the British tradition of recorded genealogies and the development of family history societies can be found here.
  • How to Trace A House Genealogy: Knowing the history of a home can yield clues to the families that occupied it, and this guide demonstrates how to track down the information.
  • Preserving Your Photographs: Windows to the Past (PDF): The curator of sound and visual collections at the Minnesota Historical Society gives advice on how to identify and store photos.
  • Preservation of Artifacts: Discover the factors that can damage historical memorabilia, and learn how to preserve textiles, paper, photos, and items made of metal, leather, or wood.

Students, Children, Teens, Homeschoolers, Teachers, Parents Genealogy Sites:

Just for kids and teens

Canada GenWeb for Kids

Cyndi’s List—Kids & Teens

Family Tree Magazine free family group sheet
Use these forms to record your ancestors’ and relatives’ names for your school genealogy projects.

Genealogy for Kids

For teachers, parents and grandparents

“Ancestors” Teacher’s Guide
Tips for teaching kids about the lessons in each of the PBS series’ 13 episodes.

Fun & Easy Family Projects 

Helping Your Child Learn History Classroom

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