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Stocking Your Own Genealogical Library

While many genealogists depend heavily on libraries for information to fill out their family tree, you may want to begin your own genealogical library at home.


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While many genealogists depend heavily on libraries for information to fill out their family tree, you may want to begin your own genealogical library at home. In addition to the many books about genealogy and how-to texts that teach you how to research your family history, there are many related books, especially those dealing with specific times in history.

Below is an annotated list of books that will help you start stocking your own genealogical library:

The Ancestry Family Historian's Address Book by Juliana Szucs Smith from Ancestry, Inc

You'll find everything from the phone number and address of the American Historical Association to the D.A.R. headquarters in Washington, D.C. to the Chester County, PA, Historical Society in this book.

Evidence! Citation and Analysis for the Family Historian by Elizabeth Shown Mills from The Genealogical Publishing Company.

This book provides family history researchers with a reliable standard for both the correct form of source citation and sound analysis of evidence. It offers a road map both for beginners and advanced researchers.

Finding Your Roots: How to Trace Your Ancestors At Home and Abroad by Jeane Eddy Westin from Tarcher/Putnam Publications.

This book shows you how to make genealogy fun rather than drudgery and helps get and keep you organized.

The Handybook for Genealogists from Everton Publishers.

At 356 pages, plus 56 pages of maps, the latest edition of this book includes many important features not the least of which are the color state maps and handy migration route maps. In compiling it, the publishers requested from every county or parish clerk an update of records in their custody‚Äďabout 95 percent of parish and county officials have responded.

Genealogy as Pastime and Profession by Donald Lines Jacobus from The Genealogical Publishing Company.

Written in a clear and graceful style by the dean of American genealogy, this classic work describes the principles of genealogical research, the evaluation of evidence and the relationship of genealogy to chronology, eugenics and the law. It discusses nomenclature, royal ancestry, the use of source material and the methods of compiling a family history.

The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy by Loretto Dennis Szucs and Sandra Hargreaves Luebking from Ancestry Publishing.

Great for novice researchers, this revised edition is intended to identify and describe the rich body of original research material that's available and to facilitate the use of these materials so that family history can be preserved and enjoyed.

Ancestry's Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources edited by Alice Eichholz from Ancestry, Inc.

This 858-page book is an expansive guide to the most useful resources in each of the 50 states and the District of Columbia. The book is organized alphabetically by state. Excellent guides for developing research strategies are included in the Background Sources for each state. A state map with county divisions and principal cities completes each state section.

The Researcher's Guide to American Genealogy from The Genealogical Publishing Company.

This is an essential text for the present generation of researchers in American genealogy. It identifies the various classes of records employed in research, groups them in convenient tables and charts, gives their location and uses and evaluates them in the context of the research process. Both a text and reference book, it's designed to answer all of a researcher's needs.

The books listed above are just a few of the many fine genealogical books available. In addition to those dealing with genealogy in general, there are hundreds of books dealing with state and local histories, occupations, and migrations that would add interest to any genealogist's home library.

Source Information: Everyday Genealogy, New Providence, NJ, USA: Genealogy Today LLC, 2007.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are those of the author and do not necessarily reflect the views of Genealogy Today LLC.

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