Wednesday, November 29, 2017

The Massachusetts Vital Records Project

If you have ancestors from Massachusetts before 1850, this site just may be the answer to your prayers.  I use it almost every week. 

First, not every town in Massachusetts has been completed. Some of the towns I really need to see are not done yet, but there is hope for the future. 

Once you get on the home page, you will have the option of clicking on surname or on town. If you know the town, that is the easier options. Once you click towns, you will then need to click on the county that the town is in. If you don't know, don't worry, if you click a county the names of the towns come up. Just keep looking until you find the one you need. 

Towns with a green star have an active link. That will take you the town and you then have the options of clicking births, marriages, and deaths. If you know the town, you will probably want to check all three. 

This site is an amazing resource and can help you to follow your family through several generations if they happen to be in the same town. In some cases, they will tell you that they have removed to another town. 

I think I also need to note that the towns in southern New Hampshire overlap with those of Massachusetts in these early records. So don't discount how useful these records can be in New Hampshire research. 

Wednesday, November 15, 2017

What's happening at Godfrey Library

December 2nd - Genealogy Club 9:30 a.m.- 10:30 a.m. at the library 

Using Military Pension Records Godfrey Board VP Al Fiacre will help us learn how to find these documents and how to understand them. He will focus on pensions and land bounty awards for Revolutionary War, War of 1812 and Civil War veterans in terms of the enabling laws, where to obtain the information and what information is contained in the pension file. These files contain a wealth of information as you will see from the examples Al will provide from both the Revolutionary War and the War of 1812 records. The talk will not include any discussion of general service records. Participants will have time after the presentation to research at the library. Genealogy Club is free to Godfrey Premium Members or $10 a session. 

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

What's happening at Godfrey Library

November 4th - Genealogy Club 9:30 a.m.- 10:30 a.m. at the library

Phthisis, Dropsy and Diptheria, Oh My! Death Records and Causes of Death over the Centuries 

Godfrey board member Laura Hobbs will describe the various places to find death records and what is typically in those records. Her talk will focus on causes of death and how they have changed over the years. Medical knowledge is not required. Participants will have time after the presentation to research at the library. Genealogy Club is free to Godfrey Premium Members or $10 a session. 

November 7th - & 18th Get help from an expert 9:30 a.m. - 10:30 a.m. at the library 

Wednesday, October 11, 2017

Was someone looking for your Irish ancestors?

If you have Irish ancestors you know how frustrating your search can be. Records are non-existent, have been destroyed or are just impossible to find. However, if you want to try for a needle in a haystack, give this website a look.

This site, provided by Boston College has links to the advertisements placed in the Boston Pilot by friends and relatives in Ireland trying to locate their loved ones in the United States. On the outside chance that someone was looking for your ancestor, this is worth a look. 

I did not find anyone but I certainly enjoyed looking. 

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Genealogy Conference in Cavan

Join us in Cavan for a one-day conference with some of Ireland's leading experts on seventeenth-century Ireland to discuss the Towns in the Ulster Plantation.
VENUE: Johnston Central Library, Cavan
DATE: Saturday 14 th October
TIME: 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.
TO BOOK: Contact Cavan Genealogy
First Floor, Johnston Central Library and Farnham Centre, Farnham Street, Cavan
Phone: +353 (0)49 436 1094
Fee: €10.00
Fee is non-refundable and must be paid in full at time of booking. To guarantee your seat, early and full booking is essential. All major credit cards including Visa, Mastercard and Laser are accepted.
For more information click the link below.

Wednesday, September 13, 2017

Beyond your autosomal DNA test

You have finally bought your autosomal DNA kit, sent it in and have your results. Now what?  If you bought it from Family Tree you can take it and download the results and put them on  You can not, however, put them on, Ancestry does not allow you to download your results from other sites. That is a shame of course since they have the largest database. 

If however, you had your test done at you can download your results and add them to Family Tree for free. If you really want to be able to use the result to the full extent, you will need to pay $19 to unlock some of the other features that they offer. It takes about 24 hours for your results to be available to you after the download. 

You may also download your raw data to My Heritage. Different people have their DNA at different sites so the more places that you place yours, the more likely you are to find some useful matches. 

I have downloaded mine to all of them and one of my brothers to Family Tree since that is where I had his Y DNA tested. I will update you all as I find useful matches. 

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Civil records available to Irish genealogists

Civil registration in Ireland began in 1864 which, for many Americans, is just too late to provide direct assistance. Having said that, these records are a treasure trove and may be able to connect you with family members who remained in Ireland.

The website allows you to access a variety of records. Births, marriages, and deaths are all available. For some of the records there is only an index, for others there are images. 

Births  1864-1915
Marriages 1845-1940 (Catholic marriages from 1864)
Deaths 1864-1965

Births 1864-1915
Marriages 1882-1940
Deaths 1891-1965

In addition to the civil records, this website includes access to church records as well as lots of valuable information about researching your Irish ancestors and links to many sources that can help you in your quest.