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           July, 2006

      Carol Sanderson, Editor
      Charles Hansen, Technical Advisor

          Newsletter Archives   |  E-mail                    

  Spring Seminar
- by Charles Hansen

        Nearly every year, the Eastern Washington Genealogical Society has a Spring Seminar, and on June 3, 2006, there was one. Leland Meitzler, from Everton Publishing, came to Spokane to do the all day seminar. He talked on four subjects: State Censuses and SubstitutesAmerican Newspapers  and  Their Genealogical Value, Genealogy On The Cheap and Finding Your Female Ancestors.

        The first session was on examples of state census and census substitutes. William Dollarhide first wrote about state census and substitutes in The Genealogy Bulletin from Heritage Creations. Leland had examples from almost every state and territory covered by Bill Dollarhide in his Genealogy Bulletin articles:

  • GB#61 (Feb 2004) "State Census records & Census Substitutes for Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Louisana and Mississippi",
  • GB#62 (Apr 2004)" 300 Years of New England Censuses & Substitutes: Colonial, State and Census Substitutes for Connecticut, Maine, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Rhode Island and Vermont",
  • GB#63 (Jun 2004) "Mid Atlantic State Censuses & Substitutes: Colonial, State and Census Substitutes for Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York and Pennsylvania",
  • GB#64 (Aug 2004) "Census Substitutes for the Old South for Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Virginia and West Virginia",
  • GB#65 (Oct 2004) "Censuses & Substitutes for the Old Northwest for Illinois, Indiana, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio and Wisconsin",
  • GB#66 (Dec 2004) "State Censuses & Substitutes for the Central Plains for Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Dakota Territory, North Dakota and South Dakota",
  • GB#67 (Feb 2005) "State Censuses & Substitutes for Texas and Oklahoma",
  • GB#68 (Apr 2005) "State Censuses & Substitutes taken in California, Nevada, Alaska & Hawaii",
  • GB#69 (Jun 2005) "Censuses & Census Substitutes for Arizona & New Mexico",
  • GB#70 (Aug 2005) "State and Federal Censuses & Substitute Name Lists for Colorado, Utah and Wyoming",
  • GB#71 (Never Published) The Oregon Country: Territorial and State Censuses & Substitute Name Lists for Oregon, Washington, Idaho and Montana,
  • GB#72 (Never Published) "State and Federal Censuses & Substitute Name Lists for Washington D.C."

        Bill Dollarhide did a wonderful job of collecting information on the state censuses, indexes, where to find the censuses, and indexes, and for states that never took a census, he found name lists that you can use hopefully to find your ancestors between the federal censuses. GB#71 and 72 were never published due to Heritage Creations bankruptcy but you can get a copy from Bill Dollarhide ( or from Leland Meitzler (

        I was interested in GB#71 since I do many lookups for people in Washington, and so I had downloaded this article from Bill in April when I first heard he had it available. Washington took Territorial Censuses in 1856, 1857, 1858, 1859, 1861, 1871, 1879, 1881, 1883, 1885, 1887 and 1889, and one in 1892 after Washington became a state. Sadly a lot of these censuses have been lost but the ones available have a lot of information on them. I had indexed the 1887 Spokane county census several years ago and our genealogical society published the index in the Bulletin, and Bill had it listed as one of the existing printed indexes for the territorial censuses. So Bill asked me to review his article on the Washington censuses.

        If you are having trouble finding your brick wall ancestors, check out the state censuses and substitutes, and if you have to look through many un-indexed state censuses maybe you can help index them so others can benefit also.

  A Study
- by Carol Sanderson

        I have been trying to help someone on his or her genealogy. At this point, the help has consisted of looking at census records...trying to locate the family over the period of years from the first immigrants who happen to be just the third generation back.

        He had sent me the information, which he had on his family going back to the immigrant grandparents on both sides of the family. One night the phone rang and he said in an excited voice that he had found his father's parents and a sister in an 1896 passenger list at the Ellis Island web site. He went on to say that there was something strange though, the sister at age five or six was listed as being a citizen. How could that be if they were just entering the states? .

        I decided that I would look in some census records as I had easier access to them. Since the 1890 census has just fragments and those are not of the New England area, I tried the 1900 one first. I found a record of his grandparents living in South Boston where he had said they settled. The record was taken four years after the passenger list and has the child as being born in Massachusetts in 1890. That same record lists his great grandmother and two of her daughters as living with them along with three more siblings of the child Sarah. My friend now knows the street address where they lived. I am going to let him look for another immigration list before May of 1890. Sarah was born that month. I am also going to suggest that he try to get a birth certificate for her if he does not already have one.

        I have not found this man's father in the 1910 census. In 1910, I found his grandfather, his great grandmother, and one of her daughters all living together at a different address...still in the same enumeration district of South Boston as the 1900 census. Sarah, her siblings and her mother are nowhere to be found... What happened? He thinks there was a divorce after the 1900 census as he tells me that his grandmother was married to another person in 1918. His brother has that marriage certificate or document. I cannot find the grandmother in any of the census records that I have searched yet. It may be easier to use some other method of documentation. I did find this man's father as a head of household in 1930 in South Boston. That identifies his father and mother and her year of birth. Two of his siblings are living with them at that time.

        In the June 2006 Family Chronicle Magazine, Janet Nickerson, a professional genealogist based in Toronto Canada has an article in which she gives 25 ways of discovering and documenting links between parents and children. These are all documents with which we are familiar. We will most likely use all or most of them in trying to put these families together and document them which both of us feel should be done before too much research overseas is done.

        Because most of these are familiar, I think I will just list them as most speak for themselves, anyway. They are and these are in the order that Janet Nickerson put them:

  1. Child's Civil marriage record,
  2. Child's Church marriage record,
  3. Child's Baptism record,
  4. Child's civil death record,
  5. Newspaper announcement of child's birth,
  6. Newspaper announcement of child's marriage,
  7. Newspaper obituaries for this child,
  8. School records,
  9. Bible records,
  10. Census records,
  11. City directories,
  12. Petitions to Government,
  13. Land transfers,
  14. Local History publications,
  15. Passenger lists,
  16. Child's military records,
  17. Child's pension records,
  18. Child's will,
  19. Parent's will or estate papers,
  20. Newspaper obituaries for parents,
  21. Newspaper obituaries for siblings,
  22. Bible records of parents,
  23. Grandparent's wills,
  24. Parents civil death records,
  25. Records for siblings.

The above study, or start of one, is an example of the use of some of the records available to us. I am sure that as we work on this more, we will be using more of them. Let the above list serve as a reminder of what is available.

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