GENEALOGY AND HISTORY SITES THAT ARE FREE TO ACCESS AND FREE TO USE

Hard to find but free places where you can research genealogy on line, without having to pay. Your comments and feedback are welcome to any post.

About me: Jerry E. Reed
First and foremost, I am a seasoned voice talent and media/public relations specialist with many other interests. I have been helping businesses with their narrations, presentations, commercials, and more all of my adult life.
For more information about Jerry Reed - Voice Talent visit:
http://jerryreed.com

I am also a genealogist, a
n avid photographer, and artisan bread baker.
My genealogy interest began before personal computers were a family "must have." Personal genealogy computer research has blossomed in the past 15 years. It wasn't long before someone decided that they could charge for information that should be free and in the public domain. I have always been frustrated by that. Now, thousands and thousands of pages of useful facts are coming on line daily in free-to-access digital archives located all over the world. So, I'm constantly searching for new sources of free on line material. Blog updates follow this section and all links are added to the master list below the new posts.
Updates are posted when
I discover another new source or when something I have already reviewed gets a major update.
Have fun and enjoy.
Note: if you find a link no longer works, please let me know so I can research and update it.



Sunday, February 16, 2014

Pennsylvania Newspapers

This site is actually a blog that outlines several different sites where Pennsylvania newspapers are available digitally.  It's a good read and has some useful information.
Pennsylvania Newspapers

Friday, April 19, 2013

Historic Oregon Newspapers.

The Oregon Digital Newspaper Program (ODNP) is a digital historic Oregon newspaper project. This site makes historic Oregon newspapers freely available to the public through a keyword-searchable online database. The initial phase of the program concentrated on newspapers published between 1860 and 1922 and brought approximately 150,000 pages freely available online in its first two years (2009-2011). Now, in 2013,  the collection totals 365,000 pages.  
Historic Oregon Newspaper Program 

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

New York Heritage Digital Collection

New York Heritage is a project of the  NY3Rs Association, Inc. and provides free access to more than 170 distinct digital collections, totaling hundreds of thousands of items. The resource should be bookmarked as it's one where you could spend hours reading a researching.
http://nyheritage.org/

Saturday, November 26, 2011

California's San Fernando Valley Digital Archives

The Oviatt Library at the Californian State University at Northridge has several collections that are worthy of consideration as genealogy sources.  Two collections in particular stand out: San Fernando Valley History Digital Library and Latino Cultural Heritage Digital Archives. The first contains, images and historical documents from public and private collections in the San Fernando Valley. It covers the valley from the early 19th century through the end of the 20th century. The Latino digital collection is a portion of a larger collection at the library  and provides access to materials that "document the experiences of Latino/Chicano leaders and organizations of the Los Angeles and San Fernando Valley area."
http://digital-library.csun.edu/LatArch/

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Great Britain - Internet Library of Early Journals

The Internet Library of Early Journals is an interesting site of older newspapers from Great Britain and is a project developed by the Universities of Birmingham, Leeds, Manchester and Oxford. Its goal was to digitize substantial runs of 18th and 19th century journals and was first completed in 1999. No new material has been added since. The  collection includes runs of at least 20 consecutive years of the following journals: Gentleman's Magazine, The Annual Register, Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society, Notes and Queries, The Builder and Blackwood's Edinburgh Magazine.
There's not a great deal of genealogical information here but interesting reading none the less.
http://www.bodley.ox.ac.uk/ilej/

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Dig Memphis - The Digital Archive of the Memphis Public Library & Information Center

Dig Memphis is the digital archive made available free on line by the Memphis Public Library & Information Center. Memphis and Shelby County Room has a huge collection of local history and is now making some of its collection available digitally. They are adding new items regularly, so check back frequently. There are several sub collections; two in particular caught my eye: German Heritage and the Arthur Webb Collection. The first looks at German immigrants in Memphis from the 19th and 20th century. The Webb collection contains materials collected by the author who was a journalist, genealogist and historian, specializing in local African-American history. He died in 2006 but his collection of information is now available on-line. Those are only two of the many available. If your family has any connection to early Memphis on either side of the river, do visit this site.

http://memphislibrary.contentdm.oclc.org/cdm/

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County (Old and Rare Books)

The Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County has a growing digital book collection.  One particular collection caught my eye. This one is filed on their web site as "Old & Rare Books : 900 - History, Genealogy & Geography."
I found family histories, city directories and telephone books, local history, military regimental histories, pension abstracts, DAR lineage books, and more.  If you are looking for material from Southern Ohio and Northern Kentucky, this is a good place to start.  The nice thing about this collection is that you have the choice of reading on-line or downloading the book to your own computer in a PDF format. It's free to access and use.

http://virtuallibrary.cincinnatilibrary.org/VirtualLibrary/vl_OldRare.aspx?ResTypeID=12

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Some Vermont Vital Records of the Early 19th Century, 1802-1838

In all my searching Vermont is one state where the number of digital history or on-line genealogy records is quite limited.  The Vermont Historical Society has one collection of early Vermont vital records transcribed from index cards found in two drawers of a filing cabinet at the society. They consist of items relating to Vermont deaths and marriages were compiled by John Elliott Bowman from various newspapers, chiefly dated between 1802-1838, with a single reference to a 1796 issue of the Keene, N.H., Rising Sun, and one of the same year to Spooner’s Vermont Journal. It is not known how extensive the initial research was or if all issues of the listed publications were searched. The site presents a list of the newspapers from which information was gleaned, and time spans represented.
  

This link  takes you to the description page. At the bottom you will find the link to a PDF document you may view on-line or download.
http://vermonthistory.org/index.php/some-vermont-vital-records-transcription.html

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

BLM - Bureau of Land Management

Did your U.S. ancestors buy land from the Federal Government?  You can find out and search by state.  This site contains Federal land conveyance records for the Public Land States, including access to images of more than five million Federal land title records issued between 1820 and the present. The site also has images related to survey plats and field notes as far back as 1810. I checked out the site and searched for a distant relative that I know participated in the "land rush" in the Oklahoma territory and found a digital image of the original document showing that the land was transferred to him.  Currently their mapping feature is not active, but they do promise to have it functional sometime soon. 

http://www.glorecords.blm.gov/

Friday, October 7, 2011

Our Roots - Canada's Local Histories On Line

We're staying in Canada for another post. This one from the Universities of Calgary and Laval in cooperation with a list or organizations too numerous to list here.   Our Roots has nearly 6000 digital texts with nearly 1.5 million pages of information about Canadians and Canada. This one is similar to Google Books and Archive.org and contains books that are out of print or at one time only available in distant collections inaccessible via the Internet. And, yes there are genealogies and many local histories. You can browse or search by title or browse by subject.  It is free, but you will need to register on your first visit.

http://www.ourroots.ca

Sociable