Notes from the past…


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52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy Week #8: Genealogy Libraries

Genealogy libraries (and dedicated departments in regular libraries) are true treasures in the family history community.  Tell us about your favorite genealogy library. What or who makes it special?

I have already covered a couple of local libraries with fantastic genealogy departments in a previous 52 Weeks post, so I won’t go there again.

Instead, here is my “Bucket List” of genealogy libraries, those places that I would like to visit before I become an entry in a distant descendant’s database:

Outside the entrance to the Salt Lake City Family History Center

1. The Family History Library- Salt Lake City, Utah

If you’ve been wondering about your family history, come on in! You won’t know who you’re related to until you look. Visit the Family History Library, where you can delve into two million rolls of microfilmed records. Discover a feeling of belonging as you explore your family tree.The Family History Library of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints houses a collection of genealogical records that include names of more than 3 billion deceased people. It’s the largest collection of its kind in the world.

2. Clayton Library for Genealogical Research- Houston, Texas

The Clayton Library Center for Genealogical Research has been named one of the best genealogical research libraries in the United States. The Clayton Library houses national and international collections of family history research materials in print, microprint and online. These include published and unpublished family histories, vital records, state and county histories and information and materials from all over the United States, as well as foreign countries such as Canada, Mexico, the United Kingdom and German.

Genealogy Staff

3. The Genealogy Section of the Dallas Public Library- Dallas, Texas

The Genealogy Section of the Dallas Public Library contains one of the largest and most comprehensive collections for family history research in the Southwest. Over 50,000 individuals visit annually, with many traveling from out of state to utilize the collection which includes all states and counties of the United States. Resources for many foreign countries are also available.

Texas Heritage Museum

4. The Historical Research Center at Hill College- Hillsboro, Texas

The Historical Research Center aspires to be widely acknowledged-by the college community, by the people of Texas, by scholars world-wide, and by our professional peers—as one of the nation’s finest Civil War collections repositories, bringing international distinction to Hill College by advancing scholarly research and education at the college and beyond Included in the Historical Research Center is an extensive collection of maps, photographic collections, microfilm, and an archive that contains numerous files of soldier’s letters, diaries, and unpublished manuscripts form all Texas wars. It also features original art, art prints, and sculptures depicting the Civil War plus personal items belonging to Hill College graduate Bob Bullock during his term as Lieutenant Governor of Texas. Over 10,000 books detail the military operations of the United States with an emphasis on Texas and Texans during wartime.

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52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy by Amy Coffin is a series of weekly blogging prompts (one for each week of 2012) that invite genealogists and others to discuss resources in the genealogy community including websites, applications, libraries, archives, genealogical societies and more. You do not have to be a blogger to participate. If you do not have a genealogy blog, write down your thoughts on your computer, or simply record them on paper and keep them with your files.


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My 1940 Census “Wish List”

RootsMagic 5Back in January, I created a new page at Ruth’s Genealogy and began a list of who I’ll be searching for at 8AM Texas Time on April 2nd. I was making this list manually by going through my RootsMagic database and checking birth and death dates. Tedious…

Then yesterday, it occurred to me: Create a RootsMagic Custom Report. Duh!

It took a little head scratching and a message to the RootsMagic users mailing list at RootsWeb, but I finally came up with a list that shows my ancestors who were born after 1850 and who died after 1940, currently 132 people. Many will be on the same census pages, of course, but now I have a pretty good starting point for my 1940 Federal Census search.

To see my list, click on the 1940 Census tab at the top of this page.

Next task: come up with a believable debilitating illness that will be miraculously cured 132 census searches later…


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Last Week’s Research Activities

  • Research and document my findings for
  1. Wayne Hamilton
  2. George Hamilton
  3. Ann Hamilton
  4. Andrew Hamilton
  5. James Hamilton
  • Update both my FreePages site and WorldConnect database and email a RootsMagic backup to my Gmail account
  • Add 2 direct-line ancestors to my research wiki
  • Week #7 post for 52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy (a little change here: this weekly challenge starts on Sunday, which doesn’t give me much time to write my post, so I’m gonna back up a week)

This has been quite an interesting research week! I am quite excited to announce that I have finally documented at least 2, and possibly 3 ancestors who were born in a foreign country! The Republic of Texas, a sovereign state in North America, existing and independent from 1836 t0 1846, was the birthplace of 3GGU’s Wayne and George Hamilton, and possibly 3GGA Ann Hamilton, all born in Travis County, Republic of Texas! Pretty cool!

I have also been able to find quite a lot of Civil War documentation (military records and pension records) on a couple of my Hamiltons. The pension records are especially interesting. Here is one example:

George Hamilton pension formI also received my copy of FWGS’ Texas Marriage Collection cd. A bit disappointed here, as I only found one ancestor couple (I already had that info), but it’s cool. I have a lot of future Texas ancestors to search for, so still a most valuable collection!

Plans for this week:

  • Research and document my findings for
  1. Andrew Hamilton
  2. James Hamilton
  3. Thomas Hamilton
  4. F Hamilton
  5. Guy Kennedy
  • Update both my FreePages site and WorldConnect database and email a RootsMagic backup to my Gmail account
  • Add 2 direct-line ancestors to my research wiki
  • Week #8 post for 52 Weeks of Abundant Genealogy