Google Earth: Exploring the world of your ancestors.
Google Earth opens the door to a treasure trove of historical information.
Have you ever wondered exactly where your great great grandfather’s farmland was? And whether it’s still farmland or perhaps a shopping center or an elementary school now? Google Earth offers a new way to visit the world of our ancestors and perhaps make important discoveries along the way.
Eric Stitt, who writes a blog called “Genealogy Through Google Earth,” has thoroughly explored the exciting possibilities. “We all know that Genealogy and Family research doesn’t always happen in your back yard. We can’t just get in the car and drive across the states to visit the old homestead, and I know I’ll be camped out in line when we figure out time travel. But what if you could visit that old homestead or scroll back in time when your neighborhood was an old farm field, Google Earth can do that.”
“Using geographic information found in Deeds and addresses from sources such as Census data, property where ancestors and neighbors once lived may be marked on historical maps, which can then be overlaid on modern Google maps. Geographic features mentioned in property descriptions such as rivers and creeks will appear on topographical maps and in Google’s satellite imagery. Using this information, it is possible to locate a family homestead on an historical map and compare the changes to those locations that have occurred over time as the area developed. In some instances, the old home may still be there or a family cemetery.”
So log on and become a geographical detective as you revisit the world of your ancestors through Google Earth. You’ll probably be amazed at what you find!
For more information about using Google Earth in your genealogical research, visit http://genealogy.about.com/b/2013/03/31/diy-historical-map-overlays-in-google-earth.htm
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