Topics: Ancestor Help?????????

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It depends on what you have. Hopefully you have names and dates, so the first place to start would be the 1930, 1920 and 1910 census returns. Make sure you hit the 1917 Draft registrations for all men aged 52 and younger. If you have anyone who came from Europe, you ll want to use the census returns to find the year of immigration. Those numbers are often off by a year because many people reported the year their alien status was issued and not the year their boat landed. There was about a 6 month delay in getting the paperwork processed, so you often get numbers that are off a year. If your ancestors came here between 1892-1924, they may have come through Ellis Island, but that s only if they didn t have a cabin. Ellis Island records are found at The records for NYC for 1st and 2nd class passengers as well as those arriving before 1892 in NYC are found at If your ancestors didn t come through NYC, they could have come through Baltimore, Philadelphia, Montreal, Boston or San Francisco. Some even came through New Orleans and Charleston SC. Those records are not complete, but the ones that are transcribed can be found at the following two locations. There are also sites for specific ethnic groups. If your ancestors were from France, Spain or Belgium, the French site is the site for you. Anyone from the Netherlands is best found at Polish ancestors are tracked best through and French Canadians are tracked in great detail between 1640-1799 at a special site through the Universite of Montreal. Russian ancestors need a little finessing to find. If that s in your background, let us help you traipse through that since we have access to many more sophisticated databases. Scandinavians and Germans have several sites that can help you, but it depends on year of arrival. So if they re in your ancestry, give us a nod. Anyone whose line has been in the US for more than 150 years is best tracked through a combination of both federal and state census returns (they are different and done in different years) and birth/marriage/death/baptismal records. Military records may or may not help you. You can use your local library for a great deal of research, particularly if your family has been in the same area for generations. The best part of using the library computers is that you not only get to use the ancestry programs for free which are otherwise quite expensive, but you also get the expertise of the reference librarians to help you when you hit a stonewall. I hope this helps give you your bearings. If there s anything I ve missed, feel free to drop a note through my profile or add a new question to the board.

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