LinkConnector Validation

A Genealogist In The Archives: Finding Records Where They Don't Belong

Thursday, December 19, 2019

Finding Records Where They Don't Belong

Ever wonder how some records get into some archives?

Are you looking for records for you ancestors that are possibly being housed in places that they seemingly don't belong?

As an archivist, I know full well that many of our archives have records in them that don't belong but thankfully they are being preserved.

Loose Records, Houston County, TN. Archives

For instance, in a recent announcement by the University of Arkansas, they revealed they had received a donation of the New York Post newspaper's photo archive.

Examples of Photographs from the New York Post

WAIT! What? The New York Post photo archive is being housed in Arkansas? Yep, you read that right!

How did that happen?!!

According to this article...

The collection was donated in 2017 by an anonymous donor. While it's not typically something you'd find at the University of Arkansas, Dennis T. Clark, dean of libraries, said it "we are fortunate to have this opportunity".

I know in my own case, as the archivist for the Houston County, Tennessee Archives, I have accepted a collection of genealogy research for surnames that have nothing to do with our area because they were going to be thrown away. Two sisters came to the archives with their mother's 50 years worth of genealogy research and told me "If you don't want it, we are just going to throw it away". Well, I couldn't let those records walk back out the archives door, so I accepted them. Our plan is to archive them and make them available to the public, this way they are being saved and preserved.

Genealogy Research Notebooks, Houston County, TN. Archives

So, how does someone find records where they don't belong? This is where the internet can be very helpful. Many of these types of records are housed in state archives, university archives and local county archives. Looking at the websites of these archives and specifically at their indexes, catalogs and digitized collections might help you locate records where they don't belong.

Other websites that could be of help are the following:

Internet Archive

Archive Grid

Searching these websites for surnames or locations might help you locate archived collections that are in archives where you wouldn't think they would be located.

So, the next time you think you have searched everywhere for your ancestors records, try looking in places where the records shouldn't be!

Remember: It's Not All Online, Contact or Visit an Archive Today!


Needs some tips and tricks to get your family members talking about family history? 

Get my Legacy Family Tree Quick Guide

Family Gatherings: Dragging Genealogy Information Out of Your Family Members

No comments:

Post a Comment