Are you looking to uncover the secrets of your family history? With the right resources, you can trace your lineage back through time and uncover the stories of your ancestors. In this article, we'll explore three types of genealogical resources that can help you in your research: household sources, military records, and published sources. A great place to start is with household sources. These are the relics and “things” inherited and passed down from generation to generation.
Talk to family members about your interest in genealogy and you may be surprised at what they have inherited. Possible household sources include correspondence, newspaper clippings, photos, scrapbooks, journals, family Bibles, naturalization documents, funeral cards, and work-related and school-related documents. If your ancestor served in the military, there are a variety of records that can help you in your research. These include military service records, pensions, land rewards, awards, recruitment records, unit histories, battle histories, maps, death certificates, newspapers (including articles, legal notices, funeral notices, death notices and obituaries), funeral home records, pension records, church records, cemetery records, court records (to include a will or succession or a lawsuit in the event of an accident), a forensic investigation, city directories and the Social Security death rate.
Finally, don't forget about published sources. These can include biographical works of your ancestor or their associates; local and county histories; indexes of periodicals such as PERSI; Google Scholar; JSTOR; city directories; and member publications. By using these three types of genealogical resources – household sources, military records and published sources – you can unlock the secrets of your family history. With a little bit of research and some luck, you may be able to trace your lineage back through time.