Friday, November 5, 2010

A Good Freebie from Ancestry.com


You're all familiar with Ancestry.com, no doubt, the biggest, baddest online source of family history information in the universe.

It's a subscription service, and we don't do fee-based sources here at Free Genealogy Tools. But there's a good deal of free content that Ancestry.com has made available.

One of my favs is Ancestry Magazine, a print magazine that ran for 25 years before it ceased publication in 2009. A lot of the content is available online, and there's some awfully good material here, like the list of the Top 300 Genealogy Sources at home, in public records and online.

Here's part of  the Top 300 list:  things you ought not overlook in your family papers:
  • Address books
  • Adoption papers
  • Application copies (for jobs, schools, organizations)
  • Autobiographies
  • Autograph albums
  • Awards
  • Baby books
  • Baptism/christening records
  • Bibles
  • Biographies and biographical sketches
  • Birth certificates
  • Birthday books
  • Cassette tapes, DVDs, and videos of family members
  • Cemetery deeds
  • Christmas letters
  • Citizenship/naturalization papers
  • Contracts
  • Death certificates
  • Deeds
  • Diaries
  • Diplomas
  • Embroidery
  • Employment records
  • Family e-mails
  • Family histories
  • Family newsletters
  • Family tree charts
  • Funeral books and records
  • GEDCOMs/family trees
  • Journals
  • Heirlooms
  • Home computers
  • Hospital records
  • Insurance papers
  • Jewelry with engravings, insignias, or photos
  • Leases
  • Letters (old and recent)
  • Letters of administration
  • Licenses
  • Marriage certificates (civil and religious)
  • Marriage licenses
  • Medals and trophies
  • Membership cards, papers, pins, insignias
  • Memorial cards
  • Military records and certificates
  • Missionary records
  • Newspaper clippings
  • Obituaries
  • Online sources including message boards
  • Passports
  • Pension records
  • Photographs
  • Postcards
  • Resumes
  • School records
  • Scrapbooks
  • Service medals
  • Social Security cards
  • Tax returns
  • Telegrams
  • Titles to homes, cars, etc.
  • Traditions/family stories
  • Wedding invitations
  • Wills
I'm sure there's at least ONE item on there that you hadn't thought about, eh?

The wonderful magazine collection at Google Books also has old issues of Ancestry Magazine going back to 1994.

Worth a look.


Don't forget to also check for your family history at Ancestry.com and  NewspaperArchive. These are subscription databases, but they are among the most powerful research tools available for looking into family roots..

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