Archive for November, 2013

civil war family history

Civil War Family History: Where do I begin?

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How do I search for Civil War Family History records if I want to find my ancestor?

Heirlines Professional Tip: Query -How do I search for my ancestor who may have served in the Civil War?

civil war family historyDo you have an ancestor who you believe served in the Civil War? Are you trying to figure our where exactly to begin in your search for information? Civil War research can be extremely exciting as we uncover our ancestors’ role in history. It can also be tricky in some cases. The following are some beginning steps to take when researching your Civil War ancestor.

Step 1 – First things first – Each generation must be accurately documented to properly establish your lineage and correctly determine your Civil War time period ancestor.

Step 2 – Once you have a documented or authenticated pedigree, you will have some sound evidence about your ancestor who may have served in the Civil War. It is very important to acquire correct information about your ancestor’s name, location, and timeline, who may have served in the Civil War. The records hopefully will have produced some solid collateral information about the people who were associated with your ancestry as well as providing additional valuable information to use as you continue your search for your ancestor’s part in history. With the name of a potential Civil War Soldier who may have served in either the Union or the Confederacy, we then need to learn more about him in relationship to his family by searching the 1860 or 1870 Census for their name and location. If the soldier has a real common name, then we will need to look for other items first and then search the Census. You will need to check your repository to see what records they have that might be useful in your search for your Civil War Ancestor. Here are some valuable records to search for.

Step 3 – The Compiled Service Records Index is available for Union Civil War Ancestors in the index for the state of service (if known). indexes. In the case of Confederate Soldiers, searching the Consolidated Service Records Index is required. If the state of service is not known for a Union Soldier, the Pension Files must be searched.

Step 4 – When the Company and regiment (or the described unit) is identified, then search for copies or summaries of that Service Record. The compiled services records for the Confederacy can list all known military units for each state, with the compiled service record cards for each soldier in the Regiment arranged in alphabetical order as well as many important military notes and comments about the soldier and letters and documents.

Step 4a – Some states have published abstracts of military service records for their soldiers, such as Georgia and Virginia. Some states do not. You will have to know the state of service to determine the potential records for research on your ancestor.

Step 5. Search for a Pension Application File for the soldier. If Union, all soldiers and sailors should be listed. If Confederate, pensions were not readily available and are more difficult to find. Because there is no general index, it is necessary to find the soldier in the state where they were residing when the pension was applied for. Get a complete copy of their pension if it is available.

Step 6- Identify if possible the history of the company or regiment that the soldier served in to learn more about your ancestor.

Step 7 – Additional Sources may be available. Remember, they may have been a prisoner of war in a Military Prison or have had a history written about them if they were famous.

Looking for help with hard to find records or genealogical questions? Contact Heirlines Family History and Genealogy, breaking through family history walls for almost 40 years. We professionally identify and document ancestry and kinship relationships and verify and certify the family tree with Certified Family Trees™ and Certified Forensic Genealogy Solutions™. We’re ready when you’re ready!

Give us a call and speak with one of our professional genealogists today. Call toll free 1-800-570-4049 or visit us at www.heirlines.com

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family history center

The Richland Washington Regional Family History Center

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Family History Center – A few success stories that shouldn’t surprise us.

family history centerThe Richland Washington Regional Family History Center serves about 250,000 people in the Tri-Cities, Washington Area. Librarians Richard and Ann Allen share several success stories that remind us why we love genealogy and shouldn’t surprise us at all!

Three Unusual HAPPY PATRON Events at the Richland Family History Center

I. When a German family from Wuerttemberg stopped by to visit the Richland Family History Center, we proudly showed them our extensive collection of German Family History books. They were excited to see the seven volumes of the Wuerttemberg Emigration Indexes. We selected one of the books at random for the German visitors to examine and, to our surprise, that volume contained the only entry in the entire set for one of their families that had emigrated to the United States!

II. Several years ago a Richland Family History Center librarian brought in a book she had found at a yard sale. It featured pictures of villages in a certain area of Germany. Usually the books in our collection have names, dates and places, not pictures, but the librarian felt so strongly about this particular book that we catalogued it into the holdings. Some time later we had a visitor from Germany. Her family originated in the area covered by the “yard sale” book and she found actual pictures of the villages of her family in the book. She was quite excited to see the pictures and very happy at her discovery.

III. Early in July 2013 a man on a bicycle rode up to the Richland Family History Center. He had a long white pony-tail and wore blue jeans. He did not tell us his name. In April he had found an impressive pedigree chart in the gutter near his home. He had kept it for all those months and now thought that he should bring it to the FHC, because “we would know what to do with it.”

The pedigree chart was rolled like a scroll. It was hand-printed on a very large piece of cardstock. It showed many generations of a family, going back to the 1770s. In that generation, one ancestor was designated as the Turkish Ambassador to the Court of the Austro-Hungarian Empire. Other ancestors were also illustrious. Certain clues on the pedigree chart indicated that this was a Jewish lineage.

We called a well-known scientist, who is a friend of ours, who is also Jewish. When we told him some of the recent names on the chart he became very interested. The children in one of the families had been baby-sitters for his own children here in Richland! He knew the family whose lineage was recorded on the chart! Our friend told us that the man whose lineage was recorded on the chart had been a physician in the Tri-Cities for many years and was now dying in Seattle. Our friend had been asked by the family to give the funeral address. He thought that, when the former doctor was taken to Seattle last spring, the chart had blown out of the moving van, only to be found in the gutter by the man with the pony-tail, who had brought it to the FHC.

The very next day an obituary in our local paper indicated that the doctor had died. Our friend was able to return the important pedigree chart to the family immediately, because they had all come here for the funeral. Needless to say, they were very happy to have it once again.

Looking for help with hard to find records or genealogical questions? Contact Heirlines Family History and Genealogy, breaking through family history walls for almost 40 years. We professionally identify and document ancestry and kinship relationships and verify and certify the family tree with Certified Family Trees™ and Certified Forensic Genealogy Solutions™. We’re ready when you’re ready!

Give us a call and speak with one of our professional genealogists today.

Call toll free 1-800-570-4049 or visit us at www.heirlines.com

Follow us on social media
Facebook/heirlines | Twitter/heirlines | Pinterest/heirlines | Linkedin/heirlines | Google+/heirlines

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