How United States Voter Records Can Help You Build a Family Tree
During this election season, you are probably thinking more about who you are voting for rather than the information you provide on your voter registration form. But if you take a closer look at the details these forms collect, you will soon realize that voter records hold a treasure trove of data that can be helpful in building a family tree.
And just as many of us have the privilege to vote in America, as did some of the ancestors who came before us. While United States voter records are oft overlooked in the genealogy research process, they may lead you to an unknown ancestor, clues that provide you with more direction when you run into a brick wall, and a slew of other genealogical discoveries.
Where to Find Ancestors’ Death Records Online for Free
If you’re on the hunt for an ancestor’s death certificate, you may not have to look too hard. This is because death records can often be some of the easiest types of vital records to find — especially when searching online. These records can also offer up some of the most valuable information and interesting tidbits that often lead to other genealogical discoveries and unknown ancestors to add to your family tree.
Death certificates may include your ancestor’s date and place of birth, names of other family members like parents, a spouse, their children and next of kin. Sometimes death records include information on your ancestor’s military service, a cause of death and even where your relative was buried which can be helpful as you conduct cemetery research.
But if you’re searching for death records online, where should you even begin? The following resources will aid you in your search as you begin to look for family members’ death records online — and they’re all free to use!
Tips & Resources for Finding Your Labor Union Ancestors
It’s almost Labor Day! For most Americans this means a three-day weekend to enjoy the last moments of summer. But Monday, September 5 is more than just a federal holiday. In fact, the only reason we can hold our annual Labor Day cookouts with friends and family is because of our hard-working ancestors who participated in the U.S. labor movement. In 1880, the average American actually worked 12 hours per day! Your 9 to 5 job, employee benefits, paid vacations and a slew of other privileges wouldn’t exist without the formation of labor unions.
So, in addition to holding that annual cookout, think about spending some of your extra time this weekend to conduct genealogy research on your labor union ancestors. After all, they gave us the day off in the first place!
But where can you find information on your union ancestors, and how do you figure out if any of your ancestors belonged to unions? This article will offer resources and tips on finding your ancestors that belonged to labor unions so you can add their union stories to your family tree.
How to Use Cemeteries to Find Your Ancestors
Cemeteries are an exceptional resource for discovering details about your ancestors to add to your family tree. Whether you’re searching for birth information, maiden names, or additional family members, gravesites can enlighten you to an abundance of facts about your family’s past.
But if you don’t know where to begin when conducting genealogy research in a cemetery, it can be more than overwhelming! Thankfully, we’ve compiled the following basic steps to help you get acquainted with your first ancestral quest through a cemetery.
How to Find Free Military Records of Your Ancestors Online
Memorial Day is approaching, and this time of year is the perfect time to research military records of your ancestors. If your family consists of military servicemen and women, chances are you’ve heard quite a few stories to add to your family tree. Even if you haven’t heard of any ancestors who served in the military, you may be surprised at what you can uncover while researching military records — including long lost ancestors you may not currently know about!
Searching military records is an important step in the genealogy research process. While there isn’t a definitive way to begin your research, following some key steps can make the searching process simpler, whether you’re searching offline or online. And to make your search for military records even easier (on the wallet, especially!), the following websites may help aid you as you conduct research — and they’re all free to use!
Guidelines for Finding & Obtaining Your Ancestors’ Birth Records
Finding the birth records of your ancestors is an important part of genealogy research because just like other vital records, they can help you uncover family stories, additional ancestors and surnames you may be missing from your family tree. While some birth records are available online, others can only be found in archives or repositories where you must request copies of your ancestor’s birth certificate. But there are some basic guidelines that you can follow no matter where the birth certificate is located, or when your ancestor was born.
The following steps will help you discover how to obtain copies of your United States ancestors’ birth records for genealogy purposes.
A Look at the United States Census Through the Decades
Can you believe the U.S. census has been taken every ten years since 1790? While these records play an important role in reapportioning seats in the House of Representatives and realigning congressional districts, they are also helpful when conducting genealogy research.
The National Archives and Records Administration maintains decennial census records from 1790 to 1940 only. This is because records after 1940 are still confidential, as all census records remain that way or 72 years for privacy purposes.
But while you can’t readily search through records from 1950 through 2010 (unless you are the person named on the record or an heir), you can educate yourself on the history of censuses as well as the questions they provided. This is actually an important lesson when it comes to your genealogy research — and one that can aid you when adding stories to your family tree! Because census questionnaires have changed quite drastically since 1790 due to both political and technological advancements, you should know the types of information you’re searching for in any given decade.
In this article, we will peer into the history and questionnaires of the U.S. census to better understand how these records can be used for genealogy research.
Find Elusive Women in Your Family by Following These Smart Tactics
If you’ve been digging through tangled up roots to discover female ancestors to add to your family tree, you’re not alone. While every family historian runs into brick walls during their research from time to time, stories about women from our familial past can be some of the most difficult to find. But while it’s a challenge for us all for a number of reasons, there are certainly tried-and-true tactics that can help you discover clues that lead to these elusive women.
In honor of Women’s History Month, we’ve compiled a list of a few tips that can help you trace female ancestors to reveal stories and names of the women in your family.
Find Family Maiden Names Using These Top Resources
If you’re like most genealogists, your female ancestors have given you a hard time when it comes to locating their maiden names. But don’t be too angry or hold a family grudge! More often than not, we run into family maiden name brick walls because we aren’t searching for information in the best places.
So, don’t fret! You can find your ancestors’ maiden names and surnames. It just takes patience and searching through the right records in order to determine these vital pieces of your family’s history.
Stunning & Helpful Instagram Feeds to Help You Discover Your Ancestral Past
Looking for a great place to store, organize and share your family stories? There’s an app for that. Instagram, the mobile app used for photo-sharing, video-sharing and social networking allows you to capture family memories with your smartphone or tablet and instantly share your family’s story with the world.
The mobile social networking platform is quickly becoming an important tool for genealogists and family historians to utilize in terms of preserving family memories, learning new research tips, collaborating with family members on their family trees and connecting to others who are passionate about discovering their ancestral pasts.