Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Tuesday's Tip: Mayflower Resources

Spring has sprung... and so has research season.

Are you working on your Mayflower research yet? If so, we have resources that can help. Check out our finding aid!

Friday, March 25, 2016

It's not Halloween... but it's almost time for witches!

Do you know if your ancestor was accused of witchcraft? It didn't just happen in Salem - but throughout all of New England. Godfrey resources can help you find if your ancestors were ever called "witches."

Want to know why they were called witches? Join us on April 2 for board member Cathi Maxim's Genealogy Club talk on witchcraft in colonial history! More information here.


Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Tuesday's Tip: Revolutionary War Resources

Thanks to the DAR and SAR for a great Saturday! If you haven't already, check out the photos from our open house on our Facebook page.

Did an open house visit get you ready to research your Revolutionary War ancestors? 

Friday, March 18, 2016

Upcoming Event: Using the Connecticut State Library Website

Most Connecticut genealogists know the State Library is a must-visit site. They have duplicate copies of Connecticut church records, probate records, and much, much more... But did you know they also have a terrific website?

On March 21st from 6 to 8 pm, Godfrey staffer Bryna O'Sullivan will teach you  how to use the website for genealogy. Registration is required and full information can be found at https://www.facebook.com/events/108892012834948/.

Here's a sneak preview...

Probate records are one of the hardest types of records to use for Connecticut genealogy. Why? Because unlike vital or land records, they were never kept on the town level. Instead, probates have always been kept on the district level. Unfortunately for genealogists, those districts have changed regularly over time... so how you figure out where your ancestor's records might be located?

 Some are actually online and easily searchable. ResearchITCT gives Connecticut residents access to probate microfilms available on Ancestry.

Your ancestor's records not there? Try the guide available here to determine the correct probate district and contact the court in question...

Hope to see you Monday.

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Tuesday's Tip: How to Order Films to View at the Godfrey Family History Center

Did you know you can use Godfrey’s Family History Center to look at films from the Family History Library in Salt Lake City? It’s a great way to examine records from around the world and even dating back to colonial times in the U.S.

Here's how to order.

Don’t have an account?

1.      Go to www.familysearch.org/films.

2.      Click “Create an account” and follow the steps to designate Godfrey as the Family History Center you will use to view films. 

Do you have the film number?

1)      Go back to www.familysearch.org/films

2)      Enter the number in the box to the left and click “Search.”Information will appear to the right which allows you to place your order

Don’t have the film number?

1)      Go to www.familysearch.org.

2)      Click “Search” and then “Catalog.”

3)      Choose a search category and enter the pertinent information.

4)      Click “Search.”

5)      A new page called "Search Results for FamilySearch Catalog" will open. Click on a category and then a title for more information.

6)     Scroll down to see details of the listing of films and the film numbers.

7)      Click on the film image next to the film you wish to order.

8)      A new page will open with instructions. Follow them to complete your order.

Friday, March 11, 2016

Godfrey Membership can help with Connecticut vital records!

Did you know that a Godfrey membership can help with accessing Connecticut vital records? 

 Under the Connecticut State Statutes, a member of an approved genealogical society is permitted to take notes on and purchase a certified copy of all vital records.

The statute reads as follows:  
Sec. 7-51a. Copies of vital records. Access to vital records by members of genealogical societies. Marriage and civil union licenses. Death certificates. Issuance of certified copies of electronically filed certificates. (a) Any person eighteen years of age or older may purchase certified copies of marriage and death records, and certified copies of records of births or fetal deaths which are at least one hundred years old, in the custody of any registrar of vital statistics. The department may issue uncertified copies of death certificates for deaths occurring less than one hundred years ago, and uncertified copies of birth, marriage, death and fetal death certificates for births, marriages, deaths and fetal deaths that occurred at least one hundred years ago, to researchers approved by the department pursuant to section 19a-25, and to state and federal agencies approved by the department. During all normal business hours, members of genealogical societies incorporated or authorized by the Secretary of the State to do business or conduct affairs in this state shall (1) have full access to all vital records in the custody of any registrar of vital statistics, including certificates, ledgers, record books, card files, indexes and database printouts, except for those records containing Social Security numbers protected pursuant to 42 USC 405 (c)(2)(C), and confidential files on adoptions, gender change, gestational agreements and paternity, (2) be permitted to make notes from such records, (3) be permitted to purchase certified copies of such records, and (4) be permitted to incorporate statistics derived from such records in the publications of such genealogical societies. For all vital records containing Social Security numbers that are protected from disclosure pursuant to federal law, the Social Security numbers contained on such records shall be redacted from any certified copy of such records issued to a genealogist by a registrar of vital statistics.

What does this mean? 

If you know where your ancestor was born and are planing to visit a Connecticut town hall to review a birth, death, or marriage record, you can request to view your ancestors' records before purchasing copies. Plan to present the Town Clerk or Health Department with a copy of your Godfrey membership card, and your driver's license, if requested. Most clerks will request that you follow office policies about when and where records can be accessed and provide your own notepaper and pencils to take notes. 

If you do not know where your ancestor was born, married or died, and the event occured after  1 July 1897, you can contact the Connecticut State Vital Records office at http://www.ct.gov/dph/cwp/view.asp?a=3132&q=388130 to schedule an appointment to visit. Mention that you are a member of an approved genealogical society and plan to bring your card with you, as well as a photo identification.

Tuesday, March 8, 2016

Tuesday's Tip: Irish Resources

Did Saturday's lecture on Irish genealogy get you ready to research your own tree? Our finding aid is ready to help! View the list directly here... and please call the Library with any questions.

Friday, March 4, 2016

Need a Newspaper?: Godfrey Guide can Help You Find the Right One!

Newspapers can be a fantastic resource for researching your family tree. They often list births and marriages in announcements, deaths through obituaries, and even family vacations!

The hardest part in newspaper research is often locating copies of your ancestor's hometown paper - and a Godfrey resource makes it a little easier.

To get there, go to www.godfrey.org. 

Click on "Godfrey Scholar+" and log-in when the next screen loads. Once logged in, click on "Newspapers" under "Browse by Category."

On the next screen, click on "Newspaper Websites by State."

On the next screen, click on the number in the newspapers column next to your chosen state.

Happy hunting!

Tuesday, March 1, 2016

Tuesday's Tip: Irish-American Resources

Courtesy, National Gallery of Art, Washington

It's March... almost St. Patrick's Day... and we're getting excited about Irish genealogy! We've got a fantastic genealogy club session planned for this Saturday on tracing your Irish ancestors. In the meantime, check out our library resources for some hints on where your Irish ancestors lived in the United States. To access the list directly, click here.