Wednesday, March 07, 2007

Obituaries, Genealogy Treasures

One of the best places to get you over a hump in your genealogy are obituaries.

Start with dates off the Social Security Death index or other death indexes or cemetery records. With that you can get a death date and a possible death location.

Next check your local library website & see if they offer NewsBank or other national newspaper databases, they are good for recent obituaries.

Next check the newspaper websites for the county they died in. Smaller newspapers are more likely to keep a free obituary archive longer than the bigger cities. My experience, the bigger cities obituaries usually windups on NewsBank after 30 days or other pay sites.

Finally ask for a lookup on mailing lists, message boards, or are good. But if no one gets back with you try emailing that county’s library & find out if they keep newspapers on microfilm and if they can mail you a copy. There might be a small fee involved, but usually not much.

Why is this document important? It is most likely to give you clues on your ancestor’s life, ie… Son or daughter of, born, married, survived by, where they lived and what they did in their life.

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