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Some people eat, sleep and chew gum, I do genealogy and write...

Saturday, October 13, 2012

My Top Ten Genealogy Websites

Everybody likes to do a "top ten" this or that. A little while ago, I even did a list of my top ten favorite websites. But these sites were not all specifically oriented towards genealogy. Now, I turn my attention to the genealogy sites. I had to think about this for a while. Was my criteria simply the sites I used the most, or sites that I visited the most (not necessarily the same thing) or even, the sites I liked the most but didn't use all that much except when I wanted what they had on their site.

Some of these sites might even appear on both lists, since the majority of what I do at this point in my life is directly or indirectly connected to genealogy. But then again, my other list was directed at sites not usually thought of as genealogy websites. Nobody should feel bad because their favorite site doesn't appear on my list. Also, if any of you out there have your own favorites, you can certainly add them as comments to this post. The list is totally arbitrary and therefore entirely my personal preference. One other way of telling my favorites is to look at which sites are logged on the Google search page and therefore can be accessed by typing one letter of the alphabet.

OK, enough discussion, here is the list in the order I thought of them until I got up to ten and then quit.

1.  FamilySearch.org. OK, this is not listed number one because of any partisanship on my part, I really do use this website almost every single day. First, it is free and second, it has a lot of resources including the fabulous new FamilySearch Family Tree program. This link includes the Research Wiki and the Forums, not to fail to mention the Family History Library Catalog also.

2. Ancesty.com. Some of you might be surprised to see this on my list as number two, but I actually use Ancestry.com all the time. I have yet to exhaust their resources about my own family yet and so I am still using the site to get more sources for my ancestors. This includes all of Ancestry.com's sites also, Fold3.com, Archives.com and Genline.com

3. Internet Archive (archive.org).  This site is full of good surprises and I find myself going back to this site all the time.

4. MyHeritage.com (WorldVitalRecords.com) This is a sleeper. It crept up on me by surprise. The MyHeritage folks have fantastic support for their products and are acquiring a huge base of sources. They would not have been on my list a year ago, but their aggressive acquisitions and good attitude make up for any other failings.

5. Family History Expos, Inc. OK, yes I work with and for these people so that probably explains why I go to the website so much. But all that aside, I still like their site.

6. Findagrave.com. This site has so many gravesites that it can't help but come up constantly. It should be obvious why it would be on my list.

7. Library of Congress (loc.gov). Although not strictly speaking a genealogy site, it is still immensely valuable for searching for newspapers and other items.

8. Newberry Atlas of Historical County Boundaries. Another not-just-for-genealogy site, this is something I use regularly.

9. WorldCat.org. I have to add this to both lists because I really do use it frequently for genealogical purposes, especially for citations to books and other documents.

10. Google Maps and Google Earth. I use both of these constantly for genealogy.

I have thought about listing my favorite blogs but right now I subscribe to more than a hundred and I will have to think if I really want to offend everybody out there by picking the top ten.


2 comments:

  1. Thank you for your list. I had never heard of the Newberry Atlas of Historical County Boundaries, it is great. I think I will spend an inordinate amount of time searching here.

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  2. The Library of Congress has more resources than you might think including traditional, rare, and unique items for genealogy research—I love to go there. Their website is at www.loc.gov. Click on research, reading rooms, history and genealogy. Search tips are at http://www.loc.gov/rr/genealogy/tips.html.

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