Tuesday, September 13, 2011

The Not So Usual

I was talking with a  friend recently recently about genealogy.  (Really, what else is there for 40-something women to discuss?)  She's someone I actually "converted" and helped get started researching her family.  We talked about her results and the records that she used.  It got me thinking about the records I use.

 Like many genealogists I use census records, land records, wills/probates.... These are what I call my "regular" records.  The record sets I start with when beginning a new search. But what about the less used records? Specifically the "not so normal records."

Here are a few that I use:

Road Records/Petitions
This is a set of records I came across at the NC State Archives.  I first posted about it here.  Road petitions presented in the county court are a great source for placing your ancestor in a particular location.  In this case, my ancestor's neighbors were listed and provided information on the neighborhood.  It is not unusual for those neighbors to be relatives.

Original Wake County Road Petition

I recently posted on some my ancestors' scrapbooks in my collection and how I use them.  These can be a treasure trove of information.  Scrapbooks add color to their lives and tell their stories when they can no longer give the voice to the story.

Elton Carr's Scrapbook

Tax Records
I have said it before, but I have to say it again.  Personal property and land tax records can help place an ancestor in a location when they do not appear in the census.  These are also helpful when trying to pinpoint an ancestor's location in between census years.

Church Histories:
Church histories are often written in anticipation of a church anniversary.  These histories can come in various forms including books/booklets or an expanded bulletin.  Photographs of ancestors can be found in these.  The genealogist can also get a sense of what the community was like and who was living in the area.  Collateral lines are often found among the fellow worshipers.

What "not so usual" records to you use?

No comments:

Post a Comment

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...