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  • 2006 Archive

  • Vol. 8, No. 3
    Whole #254
    January 18, 2006
    Edited by Michael J. Leclerc and Valerie Beaudrault

    Greetings from the New England Historic Genealogical Society! This newsletter has been sent to people who asked to receive it. If you would like to unsubscribe or change your email address please click on the link at the bottom of the email and follow the instructions provided.

    * New on
    * Update to the Brigham Genealogy: We Need Your Help
    * NEHGS to Conduct Seminar for Librarians at Simmons College
    * Upcoming Education Program
    * Spotlight: Alachua County Archives
    * Upcoming "Genealogy in a Nutshell" Lectures
    * From the Online Genealogist
    * Research Recommendations
    * NEHGS Contact Information


    New on

    Index to Boston births registered 1800-1849

    An Index to Boston Births Registered 1800-1849 – on deposit at the Boston City Hall Archives – has been transcribed by Robert J. Dunkle and Ann S. Lainhart for this database.

    Births registered in the City of Boston for the period 1809 to 1849 have never been published. Furthermore, the City of Boston did not come into full compliance with state registration of vital records until 1849, so that the state copy of records between 1841 and 1849 conspicuously lacks Boston vital events.

    It should be noted that the 4,350 births registered is but a fraction of those that must have occurred inBoston over the first five decades of the nineteenth century. Many births went unrecorded or have been lost. Researchers should also consult baptismal records in Boston-area church records for birth information during this period.

    Social Security Death Index - Free Access
    Updated through December, 2005

    The SSDI, taken from the U.S. Social Security Administration's Death Master File, is one of the key resources available to genealogists today. It contains those individuals who were assigned Social Security numbers and whose death was reported to the SSA.

    Data is now current through December, 2005. Access to the SSDI is FREE to all who visit This database now contains the names of 75,737,428 individuals, most of whose deaths were recorded after 1965.

    Index to Hartford County, Connecticut, County Court Minutes, Volumes 3 and 4, 1663-1687, 1697, transcribed and indexed by Helen Schatvet Ullmann, CG, FASG. - Free Access

    Hartford County court records begin in June 1663, first as a continuation of the Connecticut Colony court records but then in 1666 as a county court. These records deal mainly with debt and land disputes as well as probate matters, but many other items appear: theft, troubled marriages, illegitimate children, constables appointed, older men freed from training, young men disturbing the peace, sales of cider to the Indians, and so on. The record books have two sides. One side has probate documents such as wills and inventories, and the reverse of the book contains the minutes of the court. In 2005 NEHGS published some of the minutes as Hartford County, Connecticut, County Court Minutes, Volumes 3 and 4, 1663-1687, 1697, transcribed and indexed by Helen Schatvet Ullmann, CG, FASG. (Volumes 1 and 2 are the old Connecticut Colony records. In 1687 Governor Andros closed the court, and volume 5 in the series continues from a later date. However, a few documents generated in 1697 were left out of their proper place and copied onto the blank pages at the end of the curtailed volume 4.)

    The Connecticut State Library granted permission to publish these records as a book (but not electronically). They did, however, grant permission to publish the index to the book electronically and that is what is available here. The index includes many subject headings as well as names. The original records appear on Family History Library microfilms 0,004,572 and 0,004,550, which are both available in the microtext department of NEHGS.

    The index enumerates over 12,000 court records.

    To purchase the book:

    Hartford County, Connecticut, County Court Minutes, Volumes 3 and 4, 1663-1687, 1697 (Softcover)

    Hartford County, Connecticut, County Court Minutes, Volumes 3 and 4, 1663-1687, 1697 (Hardcover)

    For more information, please see Helen Schatvet Ullmann’s article, “County Court Records, A Wealth of Colorful Detail,” in the Fall 2005 issue of New England Ancestors.


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    Update to the Brigham Genealogy: We Need Your Help

    Two volumes of The Brigham Family History were published in 1907 and 1927 respectively, chronicling the development of this important family. Several members of the present generation of Brighams are spearheading the creation of a third volume of The Brigham Family History, to be published in 2007 by Newbury Street Press.

    We need your help in gathering information for this endeavor. Volume 3 will trace modern-day descendants of Brighams mentioned in earlier volumes. It will also cover contemporary Brighams descended from individuals not listed—or imperfectly covered—in the 1907 and 1927 volumes. This new work will further include lines of descents from female Brigham ancestors who no longer carry the Brigham surname.

    If you would like to contribute to the project, please fill out the online survey at Please pass this along to other Brigham descendants you may know. If you would like a paper copy of the survey, or if you have any questions about the project, please contact lead author Rhonda McClure at or 321-443-1046. Please fill out the questionnaire by June 1, 2006.

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    NEHGS to Conduct Seminar for Librarians at Simmons

    Later this spring four of our esteemed genealogists will offer the following seminar for librarians as part of the Continuing Education program at Simmons College. Cost of the course is $160 and registration information can be found at

    Genealogical Librarianship: Assisting Family Historians
    Saturday, May 13, 2006
    1:00 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
    New England Historic Genealogical Society, 2nd floor Education Center, 101 Newbury Street, Boston (For directions see:

    Many librarians face the challenging task of helping family historians locate resources for their search. This workshop will give librarians the tools they need to better serve the growing public demand for genealogical information. The seminar will consist of three presentations. Genealogical Sources - Printed, Internet and Manuscript will cover the major genealogical sources used by most genealogists, and collecting, preserving and making available historical materials and manuscripts. Patron Service will address the common vexations librarians face in trying to help family historians, how to conduct an interview and to develop patron service standards. NEHGS as a Resource for Librarians will provide information on the collections of the New England Historic Genealogical Society and its online resources available to libraries and patrons. Faculty: David A. Lambert, NEHGS On-Line Genealogist; Timothy Salls, NEHGS Archivist; Judith Lucey, NEHGS Assistant Archivist; and Marie Daly, NEHGS Research Library Director.

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    Upcoming Education Program

    Research Week in Washington, D.C.
    March 5 – 12, 2006
    The Library of Congress (LC) has been added to our upcoming tour to Washington D.C. Combined with the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) and the Library of the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) in Washington, D.C., we will visit three of the major genealogical repositories in the United States. NEHGS staff will be available at each site for a week of intensive genealogical research and consultation, and the staffs of the three libraries will review the rich resources available for program participants. There will undoubtedly be new and interesting accessions to consult at each repository. The LC, NARA, and DAR libraries hold much unique content not available in Boston or Salt Lake City, and the trip to Washington, D.C., will offer participants a rewarding research experience.

    We will once again offer a limited number of rooms at the Hotel Washington plus a commuter rate which does not include lodging.

    For more information on this program visit or email Amanda Batey at

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    Spotlight: Alachua County Archives

    Alachua County, Florida has made a number of resources available through its website. Among these are:

    Marriage Records
    The Marriage License Index covers the period from 1837 through May 1973. You can search the database by groom surname, groom given name, bride surname, and bride given name. There is also a soundex option for use with surname searches. While the search results are automatically sorted in alphabetical order by groom's surname, you can choose to sort the results by bride's surname. In addition to the names of the bride and groom, the search result fields include the year, the official’s name, book and page number, which is linked to an image of the marriage license.

    Probate and Court Records
    The Probate and Court Records Index covers the period from the late 1820s to about 1969. The index can be searched by surname and given name. Again, there is a soundex option for use with surname searches. The search result fields include surname, given name, relationship, year recorded, the number of images online, first document (a link when images are available), index link, and type of document. Individuals using this database should be advised of the existence of Florida Supreme Court Administrative Order No. AOSC04-04, which places restrictions on the types of probate images that can be posted for online viewing.

    Deed and Mortgage Indexes
    The Deed Book Index covers the period from 1826 through 1916 and the Mortgage Book Index covers the period from 1847 through 1869. Both databases can be searched by surname and given name. Use the All Name Search option to look for a name in all existing data fields. You can also perform a keyword search. A keyword search is a good way to find property owned or mortgaged by a church, school or railroad. The Archives is currently in the process of adding data to the property description field. Once that has been completed, you will be able to search for property owners and mortgage holders by entering Township, Range and Section, towns or cities, subdivisions and more. The data fields in the search results include surname, given name, relationship (grantor/grantee), year recorded, book, document link, and index to related individuals.

    Census Indexes
    The website contains indexes to the 1850 and 1860 federal censuses for Alachua County. There is also a partial index to the 1870 census. The index can be searched by surname, given name, birthplace, and occupation. You can search all years at once or choose a specific census year. You can also view a transcription of the information for the specific census by typing in a page number and then selecting the census year. Data fields in the search results include surname, given name, age, sex, color, census year, page number, line number, occupation, and birthplace

    Transcriptions and Books with Online Images
    Currently there are more than 200,000 page images and nearly 5,000 transcribed pages from books on the website. Among the books available online are 190 Deed Record Books, 62 Mortgage Record Books, 48 Marriage Books, 17 Commissioners Minutes Books (1846-1955), and 24 Will Books. Other records in this collection include Appearance Docket Books, Bills of Sale of Property, Judgment Record Books, Register of Deceased Veterans (1941), Delayed Birth Certificates, Tax Rolls (1895 and 1896) and the 1875 Census of Male Inhabitants.

    Alachua County has changed considerably since 1830. To see how, click on Historical Maps of Alachua County links on the homepage. Visit the Alachua County Archives at

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    Upcoming "Genealogy in a Nutshell" Lectures

    Our "Nutshell" lectures explore a wide range of research skills and sources and are free and open to the public. They are offered in the Richardson-Sloane Education Center at 101 Newbury Street on Wednesdays and Saturdays at 10:00 A.M. unless otherwise stated. Advance registration is not necessary.

    February 1, 10 a.m., Marie E. Daly
    New Visitor Welcome and Library Tour
    With the Getting Started in Genealogy program available on the NEHGS website, the on-site program will change. New visitors will be welcomed, given a chance to introduce themselves, meet other new visitors, describe their research and have knowledgeable staff advise them on how to proceed. The thirty-minute welcome will be followed by a tour of the library.

    February 8, 10 a.m., David Allen Lambert
    Getting the Most from NEHGS Databases
    With over 110 million names in 2,200 databases, is the primary website for New England genealogy. This lecture will offer an exciting overview of the Society's online databases. A live demonstration of the website will offer you a chance to see how to best utilize the Society's resources from your home.

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    From the Online Genealogist

    Question Part I:
    “My father served as a Captain in the US Army Air Force. He was involved with "flying the hump". I am unable to find his unit number as the records were destroyed by fire. Is there any way this unit number or additional information may be located ?

    Answer – Part I:
    Thank you for your note. Where did your dad get discharged from, and where did he go home to? I can track down an address for the Adjutant General records of that state for you. They often have discharge papers on file, which should supply some of the material you need.

    Question Part II:
    “My father was discharged from Fort Devens, Mass. and returned home to Hartford, Connecticut I have a copy of the form he submitted in order to apply for a Veterans Bonus from Connecticut but it does not give any additional information. I also have a copy of an Army Certificate of Service form which lists his name, serial number, rank, but no unit number.”

    Answer – Part II:
    Since you have already attempted to get records from St. Louis that were destroyed on July 12, 1973 by fire, I would suggest you contact the following Connecticut offices:

    Department of Veterans' Affairs
    287 West Street
    Rocky Hill, CT 06067
    Tel: 860-529-2571 or 1-800-447-0961
    Fax: 860-721-5919


    State Adjutant General
    360 Broad Street
    Hartford, CT 06105-3795
    Tel: (860) 524-4820

    If you would like to read about the fire and records that were lost in 1973 visit

    Also if your father applied for a state bonus you may find a copy of his discharge papers at the Connecticut State Library. For more information go to:

    David Allen Lambert is the Society’s Online Genealogist. If you would like to ask him a question, contact him at or visit his blog at For more information about the Online Genealogist visit Please note that he will make every effort to reply to each message, but will respond on a first-come, first-served basis.

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    Research Recommendations

    Gems from Stones
    By Ruth Q. Wellner

    Are you having trouble finding that elusive ancestor? Have you exhausted all your options? Did you remember to seek out burial sites? Consider the possibilities of finding information on your ancestors in the cemetery and on related documents.

    You may discover what happened to your relatives who “disappeared,” or even family members you did not know existed. You may also find other genealogical information that has been eluding you, such as an ancestor’s place of birth or the maiden/birth name of a female ancestor. You may also discover an ancestor’s occupation or their membership in a fraternal association.

    Did you consider that large monuments have room to include many individual names and information? Consider that the size and style of a stone may give clues to the affluence of the family. In addition, symbolism on the stone may indicate a special interest or activity of your ancestor.

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    NEHGS Contact Information

    We encourage you to email this newsletter to others who might be interested. To subscribe or view back issues of eNews, please visit

    NEHGS eNews, like all of our programs, is made possible through the generous contributions of our members. For more information about giving to NEHGS visit

    To view the website of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, please visit

    To become a member of the New England Historic Genealogical Society, please visit

    Copyright 2005, New England Historic Genealogical Society
    101 Newbury Street, Boston, MA 02116

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