Database of the Month

family historyWe’re excited to share two databases that are free for you to use, and that will help you learn more about your family history!

Ancestry Library Editions (Ancestry.com)

Discover your past with Ancestry.com! Ancestry.com is a genealogical database that has approximately 4,000 databases and records including census, vital, church, court, and immigration records that covers the United States, the United Kingdom, Canada, Europe, and more. To use this resource for free, you must access it while at a LARL library branch or LINK site.

Ancestry.com covers a wide range of subjects, including birth, marriage and death records, census records, immigration and travel documents, military, schools, directories, church histories, tax, criminal, land and wills, photos and maps. This content can be searched through the quick links, a home search, or an advanced search. Just remember to enter in as much information as possible such as first and middle name(s), last name, place lived, and birth year.

The site also offers a variety of helpful charts and forms that are downloadable and printable, including ancestral charts, a research calendar, a research extract, a correspondence record, a family group sheet and a source summary sheet.

HeritageQuest Online

HeritageQuest Online is a genealogical database offering a growing collection of research materials for tracing family history and American culture that can be use both at any LARL library branch or LINK Site and at home with a LARL library card.

HeritageQuest Online is made up of five subject fields.

  • Books (Genealogy and local history collection of 28,000 books that can be downloaded or copied)
  • Census information (Containing page images for the entire U.S. Federal census from 1790-1930, including name indexes for many years, with the ability to search by name, place of birth, age, ethnicity, and more)
  • PERSI Archive (Subject index that covers 6,600 genealogy and local history periodicals totally 2.3 million articles written from 1800-2009, which allows the user to find out about people and places by search surnames, locations and methodologies or by browsing the journals by title and keyword searches)
  • Freedman’s Bank (Records of the Freedman’s Savings & Trust Company, which was the primary bank for freed slaves from 1865-1874)
  • S. Serial Set (Documents and reports of memorials, petitions, and private relief actions of the U.S. Congress from 1789-1969)

HeritageQuest offers a variety of useful features. Each record contains a detailed citation and is downloadable in PDF format. Users can browse or search publications and census data and then keep track, edit and combine searches using the Search History Function. Finally, the Notebook function provides the ability to save selected results and take notes on findings.

Enjoy your journey into history!