Thursday, February 10, 2011

More on line records from Michael Hait

My friend Michael Hait has just published the first edition of his PDF book, Online State Resources for Genealogy, an ambitious undertaking devoted to materials brought on line by states, counties, towns, organizations, and individuals. It has many sites you could easily miss, including vital records but with much more specialized information. Indianapolis or Milwaukee Sanborn Maps, anyone? Inmate case records from the boys' industrial school in Lancaster, Ohio? Poor farm records from Morgan County, Illinois? The WPA index of land and buildings in Hillsdale County, Michigan, 1936-1942? These can be brick-wall breakers if you know about them and know how to use them.

Listings are organized by state and by repository within each state; there is also an index. The book does not include any of the national-level web sites like Ancestry, Footnote, Findagrave, or FamilySearch. It does include many databases not covered in specialized free sites like Joe Beine's or Miriam Midkiff's city directory reference site.

The first edition of Online State Resources runs to 310 pages, and a second edition is anticipated around midyear. I'll be surprised if it isn't twice the size. And I'll be astonished if you don't learn several new things from the current version. In my opinion it's well worth the $15 download, and that price includes the second edition too if you register.

1 comment:

Malissa R said...

I absolutely agree! Chances are you will find something you didn't know about. I have already sent off for a copy of a collateral ancestor's 1911 Confederate Soldier's Questionnaire from Arkansas --which helps pinpoint my direct ancestor's birthplace in South Carolina. Yay!