Thursday, May 4, 2006
Your great-grandfather cannot be found
Steve Morse's website has a funny message ... Enjoy! Does it remind you of when your web page can't be found?
There are so many places to look on the Internet, and in traditional library or repository resources. There are several good databases to search for your elusive ancestor on the Internet:
The LDS FamilySearch si te - look in the IGI, Ancestral File, 1880 US census, etc. databases. These are very useful as "finder data" but could lead you to more reliable data.
The Rootsweb WorldConnect database - user submitted, but a tremendous resource for finding others searching for your ancestor.
The USGenWeb or WorldGenWeb sites - there is a site for every US state and county, and many countries also. If you know where your elusive ancestor lived, go to the county or country site and see if they have data for him/her.
Use the Family Finder page at Genealogy.com. While some of the data is on the subscription site, many user-submitted genealogy reports are available in the "Family Home Pages" link. It also links you to "Genforum Message Boards."
The Rootsweb/Ancestry Message Boards and Genforum Message Boards are great places to find other researchers who might have information on your ancestor.
There are also archives for all of the surname and locality mailing lists housed at Rootsweb.
These are just some of the places I start the search on the Internet when I can't find my elusive ancestors. Then I use the clues from the data on these sites, plus any family data, census data, or other available data to find books, periodical articles, or microfilmed records to find details about the life of my elusive ancestors.
There are many instances where your elusives really hide from you.
My advice to you is DON'T GIVE UP! Surely, there is a record somewhere for your great-grandfather or whoever you are looking for. Your challenge is to find that record...wherever it may be.