African American Genealogy

  • African American Census Schedules Online
    Try this site if you are looking for state and federal special censuses for slaves or persons of color.
  • African American Resources on Family Search
    Family Search is a powerful tool for genealogy research. This page provides useful tools and resources for anyone researching African American ancestry.
  • African American Lives
    African American Lives is the companion website to the PBS Special. Learn about your African heritage and about doing genealogical research on your family.
  • African Americans in Southeastern Ohio
    African Americans in Southeastern Ohio is a collection of databases, articles, and pictures about the African American experience in Southeastern Ohio. Some of the topics include the Underground Railroad, the Civil War, Notable African Americans, Slave Narratives, and links to other regional information.
  • AfriGeneas
    The goal of AfriGeneas is to assist African-American individuals researching their African ancestry. This site offers access to forums, has a database of surnames, Slave Data Collection, and much more.
  • Born in Slavery: Slave Narratives from the Federal Writers' Project, 1936-1938
    This site contains over 2,300 first-person accounts of slavery and 500 black-and-white photographs of former slaves. These narratives were collected as part of the Federal Writer's Project of the 1930's. For a list of the narrators just click on the browse narratives by narrator button.
  • Christine's African-American Genealogy Website
    This is a must-see site for the African-American family researcher. It has links to many sites dealing with African-American genealogy and history.
  • Civil War Soliders and Sailors System
    The Civil War Soldiers and Sailors System is a computerized database containing very basic facts about servicemen who served on both sides during the Civil War.
  • Freedmen's Bureau
    The Freedmen's Bureau was created in 1865 to assist freed slaves. This website is a great source for African-American genealogical research.

Beginning Genealogy

  • Ancestors (PBS program)
    This is the companion web site to the PBS program. The site includes a series overview and viewer's guide, online course, and a teacher's guide. There is a section on beginning genealogy, FAQs, and other research help. There is even a section of printable forms to keep your research manageable.
  • Family Search Internet Genealogy Service
    The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints(Mormons) has the largest collection of genealogical records. This site allows you to search their Ancestral File, International Genealogical Index and Family History Library Catalog.
  • Genealogy Classes
    An online step-by-step guide to getting started on doing your family history.
  • RootsWeb Guide to Tracing your Family Tree
    This is a beginners guide from RootsWeb, the largest collection of free genealogical data. It has a lot of graphics and links to various other genealogical webpages. Don't let the graphics fool you! This is a good overview of how to do genealogy.

Columbus and Franklin County

  • Find A Grave: Green Lawn Cemetery, Columbus, Ohio
    Green Lawn is one of the largest cemeteries in Columbus, Ohio. This website will include more recent interments in the cemetery than another website Green Lawn Cemetery Burials Columbus, Ohio, also linked here, which includes burials up through 1981. Use both to get more complete information regarding burials at Green Lawn.
  • Franklin County Genealogical and Historical Society
    The Franklin County Genealogical & Historical Society's mission is to build interest in preserving and collecting genealogical and historical records of Franklin County and Ohio. The society provides educational opportunities through genealogy workshops. Special interest groups within the society include the African American Interest Group and the DNA Interest Group. Please contact the society for any information regarding membership, workshops and seminars, research queries and more.
  • Green Lawn Cemetery Burials Columbus, Ohio
    Green Lawn is one of the largest cemeteries in the Columbus, Ohio, area. This site is an alphabetical listing (with birth and death dates) of those interred in the cemetery.
  • The Columbus City Graveyards
    Written by Donald M. Schelgel, this online book is a history of several graveyards once owned by the city of Columbus: the Franklinton, North, East, South and Colored graveyards. It includes listings of known burials or lot owners, many of which have been removed to Green Lawn Cemetery.

German Resources

  • Germany GenWeb Project
  • Palatines to America-Ohio Chapter
  • Palatines to America
  • Resources for German Genealogy on the Internet
    This website has a wide variety of information for the German-American researchers. The site includes information on immigration, history and culture, and guides to help you with your research.
  • This site is dedicated to the study of ancestors from all German-speaking lands. The Society mainintains an immigrant ancestor registry. The society's library was moved to the Columbus Metropolitan Library in 2008. Best of all is that the Society is headquartered right here in Columbus!
  • The Ohio Chapter of Palatines to America supports the goals and objectives of the National Palatines to America. A society that researches all German speaking ancestry. They offer education through workshops and seminars, maintain an Immigrant Ancestors collection
  • This webpage has a wide variety of information for those researching their German ancestors. The site includes information about doing research in Germany, the history of Germany, information about the various regions, plus much more.

Great Britain

  • Directory of Royal Genealogical Data
    A database containing the genealogy of the British Royal family and those linked to it via blood or marriage. Almost every ruling house of the western world is included as the result of intermarriage. This site includes over 30,000 individuals from the earliest times to present. It is indexed alphabetically, by date, by ruling house or title, or by other specificed search string.
  • GENUKI UK & Ireland Genealogy
    England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Channel Islands and the Isle of Man are all covered in this website. The site has a large collection of genealogical material, from how to get started to FAQs.
  • Tracing Your Scottish Ancestry
    A good website to begin your Scottish research, with lots of links to the various record organizations and other sites to help with your search. There is also a section on names, clans, and tartans.

Immigration and Migration

  • Ellis Island Database One-Step Search Tool
  • Ellis Island Immigration Records
  • Emigration and Immigration Links
  • Immigrant Ship Transcribers Guild
  • Migrations
  • Passenger Manifest (1848-1891) for the Port of Boston
  • TheShipsLists
  • U.S. Ports of Arrival and Their Available Passenger Lists (1820-1957)
    This is a list of nearly every port in the United States that has published immigration records from 1820-1957, organized by state. Included are some Canadian and Mexican border crossing records.

    Irish Resources

    • Information Wanted: a Database of Advertisements for Irish Immigrants
      "The Boston Pilot from 1831-1921 ran a column called ""Missing Friends."" The column was a way for people to find friends and relatives who had emigrated from Ireland to the U.S. This database indexes all the advertisements from the column and can be a wealth of information for Irish research."
    • Ireland Genealogical Projects
      This is the local Irish resource index page for online research in Ireland.
    • Public Record Office of Northern Ireland
      The Public Record Office of Northern Ireland is the offical depository of public records in Northern Ireland. This site is a how-to guide to researching information at the Records Office. There are also some useful links listed.


    • Civil War Records
      The National Archives and Records Administration has extensive information of the Civil Wars. This page is a guide to what types of records our ancestors may have created while part of that conflict and where to find them.
    • Civil War Service Records Research Guide
      An extensive guide to research and information on researching civil war ancestors.
    • National Cemetery Administration
      "Looking of ancestor that was buried at a National Cemetery? Try this Department of Veterans Affairs website. To search for individuals, use the National Gravesite Locator. To find a cemetery, click on ""Cemeteries.""

    Native American Resources

    • How Do I Trace Indian Ancestry?
      This website, from the U.S. Department of the Interior, provides a short introduction on how to do Native American genealogy research. It also talks about how to go about enrolling in a tribe.
    • Native American- Indian Genealogy
      An extensive collection of online sources to help with Native American research.

    Ohio Genealogy

    • Official Ohio Lands Book
      Ohio's land history is somewhat unique. As the first state formed from the Northwest Territory, it became an experiment is survey systems. This site gives a good overview of how Ohio lands were divided.
    • Ohio Genealogical Society
      This site gives general information about the society and how to join. It talks about their library and special projects that may help the genealogist researching their Ohio ancestors.
    • Ohio GenWeb Project
      The Ohio GenWeb Project brings together genealogical information for each of the counties in Ohio. The information ranges from where and how to find local information to scanned and transcribed records.
    • Ohio Historical Society Library
      The Archives/Library of the Ohio Historical Society collects, preserves, and makes available to the public written and graphic information concerning Ohio's history, including genealogical resources.
    • State Library of Ohio
      On the State Library of Ohio's website you can search their catalog and see what special census microfilm they have. The site also explains what materials they own, their hours, and contact information.

    Ohio Genealogy: Ohio Obituary Indexes

    • Cleveland Necrology File
      This database is a collection of death notices from various Cleveland newspapers and other sources. The database covers roughly the time period from 1847-1975. It is by no means complete, but is a good starting point for finding obituaries. All you need to do is type in the name you are looking for and press the arrow button.
    • Hayes Presidential Library's Obituary Index
      If you are searching for relatives in Northwestern Ohio you may want to try this obituary index. The core of the index is the Fremont papers from the 1830s to the present. Many other parts of the state are also represented.
    • Newsdex by the Cincinnati Public Library
      This is an index to the local Cincinnati paper. It is also a great place to search for current obituaries.


    • Ohio Historical Society
      This site presents the Ohio Historical Society's list of resources and information about historic places in Ohio.

    Teens and Kids

    • Genealogy for Children
      This site is for parents who want to get their children interested in family history. This site has a list of activities and books to help encourage budding genealogists. It also has links to sites such as the Boy Scouts of America Genealogy Merit Badge, Genealogy Forum, and U.S. Genweb Kidz.
    • Genealogy for Kids
      This website gives a good overview of how students could start working on their family genealogy. There are also some free forms to help you get started with your research.


    • Abbreviations Found in Genealogy
      In some of the documents you come across in your search for your ancestors, abbreviations may pop up. This website has an extensive list that can help you make sense of them.
    • Association of Professional Genealogists
      The Association of Professional Genealogists promotes awarness of professional genealogists worldwide. When you cannot do the research yourself the association provides access to professionals who can do the research for you. You can search by location, research specialty, geographical specialty and more.
    • Birth Date Calculator
      This calculator is a useful tool for genealogists. It is designed to calculate the birth date when the age at death and the date of death are known.
    • Deciphering Old Handwriting
      Can't read the family Bible or your ancestor's will? This site has some tips to deciphering old handwriting.
    • Genealogical Glossary
      This site will give you some of the more common genealogical terms and their definitions.
    • Genealogy Terms
    • Ohio Genealogy Researchers
      If you want to hire a private researcher to do genealogy research for you, the Ohio Historical Society has a list of people who will do research for a fee.
    • Relationship Chart
      "This is a neat chart that nicely explains family relationships, such as, ""2nd cousin once removed,"" and so on."
    • A list of terms that you may encounter in your genealogical research.

    Tools: Free Forms

    • Family Search Free Forms
      Lots of free forms to help you keep track of all your family research.
    • Family Tree Magazine Free Forms
      Take a look at all the free charts and forms that can be found on this site. With all the forms found here, you should be able to organize your family history in no time.
    • Genealogy ChartsThis site has free pedigree, fan, and many other types of charts that are available for downloading.

    United States Census

    • Finding Treasures in the U.S. Federal Census
      The United States Census, taken every 10 years, is a great tool for family researchers. This site explains what the census is and what information you can find on the different years. It also explains how to use the Soundex, which is the index for the 1880 and 1900-1920 censuses.
      In 1850, 1860, 1870, and 1880, census enumerators were directed to secure--in addition to the required data--information on persons dying 12 months preceding the time of the census. Known as “Mortality Schedules,” they are just one more possible avenue to search for your relatives. On these Schedules you can find name, date of death, and cause of death.
    • Obtaining EDs for the 1900-1940 Census in One Step (Large Cities)
      For most of the 1930 U.S.Census there is no index. If your ancestor lived in a large city and you know their address in 1930, you can find their Enumeration District with this website. With the ED you should get close to your ancestor's entry.

    Vital Records

    • Online Searchable Death Indexes & Records
      This website is a directory of online death indexes listed by state and county. Included are death records, death certificate indexes, death notices & registers, obituaries, probate indexes, and cemetery & burial records. Also included is information about searching the Social Security Death Index online.
    • Vital Records Information
      This site contains information about where to obtain vital records such as birth, death, marriage, and divorce records from each state and county of the United States. It also has links to foreign vital records sites.
  • TheShipsLists was established to assist those seeking information on the vessels which brought their ancestors to the United States, Canada and Australia.
  • Between 1848-1891, over 1,000,000 Immigrants came through the Port of Boston. During this time Massachusetts recorded all the arriving immigrants. This database is an index to the original passenger list that can be found at the Massachusetts Archives.
  • The Migrations website was created to futher migrations research and develop a comprehensive database to help genealogists in their searches.
  • The Immigrant Ship Transcribers Guild is a group of volunteers dedicated to transcribing ship's passenger lists. Click on one of the volume buttons on the left side to start your search. This site allows you to search by ship name, port of departure, port of arrival, and by surname.
  • The links on this webpage lean heavily towards German immigration, but it is still a good overview of passenger lists and information. The site has lots of links to various how-to guides that may help the beginner and the serious researcher.
  • This database covers the records of 17 million immigrants who came through Ellis Island between 1892-1924. The records in the database list the name of the immigrant, the ship, departure and arrival dates, plus a U.S. contact.
  • Having trouble finding your immigrant ancestor on the Ellis Island Database? Try this database. This site has forms for the one step process, if your ancestors were Jewish, a short form and a form for searching manifests. This database assumes you have a good deal of information on your ancestor. If you know very little about your ancestors it may not work.

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