The BIA Guide to
Researching Native Americans available online
Although The Bureau
of Indian Affairs does not conduct genealogical research for the public,
its website maintains a small set of pages to help you with your
genealogical research. There are good basic steps to beginning your
research, tips on how to proceed as you seek documentation, and some good
information on tribal enrollment. There is even a special page on Cherokee
ancestry. But, best of all, the pages are dotted with links – both online
and off – to repositories and agencies that can help with research. Go to
the web site:
Thanks to Larimer Cunty
Genealogical Society, PO Box 9502, Fort Collins, CO 80525.
Random Acts of
Genealogical Kindness Web Site
A good place for
people who are looking for relatives is Random Acts of Genealogical
Kindness (RAOGK). This is a volunteer driven search site, where several
people a month receive help in looking-up local pictures of graves. Ken
Humphrey says he volunteers about an hour a week and has been able to put
several families in touch with long lost relatives. Random Acts of
Genealogical Kindness (RAOGK) is hosted by RootsWeb.com at:
Thanks to Gems of
Genealogy, Bay Area Genealogical Society, Inc., PO Box 283, Green Bay,
Laws of Migration?
A 19th Century
cartographer in England’s War Office – Ernest George Raverstein –
formulated the following "laws of migration" on his retirement, which laws
should help in tracking elusive ancestors.
The majority of migrants
go only a short distance.
Migration proceeds step
Each current of migration
produces a counter current.
Females are more
migratory than males within the county of their birth, but males more
frequently ventured beyond that county boundary.
Most migrants are adults;
families rarely migrate out of the county of their birth.
Migrants going long
distances generally go by preference to one of the large centers of
commerce or industry.
The natives of town are
less migratory than those of rural areas.
Large towns grow more by
migration than by birth rate.
Migration increases as
industries and commerce develop and transportation improves.
The major direction of
migration is from agricultural to industrial or commercial centers.
The major causes of
migration are economic.
When researching, use Law 1
to spread out from a known parish or town to a radius of about 10 miles.
About half the migrants into town come from this radius; ¼ come from
between 10 to 20 miles. If a place of birth and final destination are
known (but there is a gap in the middle), draw a line on a map and
research the small towns along that line.
People may migrate, but
they often go home again even it only to marry or to have children.
Alternatively, they may go back only a step. Females often moved to become
domestic servants in the nearest town or large house, so continue to
search locally for them, but extend your search to neighboring counties
Law 5 points you to a
missing child, now grown up, who has fled the nest. Of course, researchers
will find exceptions to these rules, but they can be very valuable.
Thanks to Foothills
Genealogical Society, 31127 Joanie Road, Golden, CO 80403-8455.
Help save The Westford
Clan Sinclair Charitable
Trust is trying to save "The Westford Knight", an effigy of Sir James
Gunn, dated prior to Christopher Columbus at Westford, Massachusetts. The
proposed shelter will be a gazebo-type enclosure and will be protected
from the elements by a Plexiglas covering to allow for viewing. One half
of the plexiglass will have an engraving of what the looked like before
the elements faded his image.
Each person who contributes
to this effort will receive a color copy of an original painting by David
Wagner depicting the Knight being carved. Contributions over $50.00 will
receive an 8 x 10" matted and framed copy of this painting.
tax-deductible. Make checks payable to Clan Sinclair Charitable Trust
(marked for the Westward Knight), 3211 Big Woods Road, Chapel Hill, NC
National Burial Index
for England and Wales
The National Burial Index
for England and Wales indexes more than 5.4 million burials from
1538-2000. It is not a complete index but is a major resource that is now
available on a two-CD-ROM set produced by The Federation of Family History
Societies. It does not include full transcriptions of the records so
further research would be required.
The information provided in
the National Burial Index is taken from parish, non-conformist, Roman
Catholic and cemetery registers. It includes (where available): county of
burial, parish or cemetery where the event of burial was recorded, date of
burial, forename(s) of the deceased, surname of the deceased, age, and the
society or group that transcribed the record.
You can search by almost
any combination of surname, forename, county, place name, year (plus or
minus up to fifty years) as well as by religious denomination. For first
name and last name, you can specify exact spelling, look for variant
spellings or include "wildcard" characters in the name box.
The National Burial Index
also includes mapping software that interacts with the data. The maps
display: parishes covered by the National Burial Index including a table
of Counties, Places/Parishes, Church/Chapel, date range covered, parishes
that match the results of your last search, and regions.
In addition to a variety of
reports, the information can be exported in GEDCOM and database formats.
The National Burial
Index for England and Wales is produced by the Federation of Family
History Societies and costs approximately $50 in US funds. It is available
from a number of sources including TWR Computing at
http://www.twrcomputing.co.uk. Payment by credit card avoids the
difficulties of sending currency or checks to other countries.
Thanks to The Live Oak,
East Bay Genealogical Society, PO Box 20417, Oakland, CA 94620-0417.