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Genealogy Methodology

Location, Location, Location.

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Location, location, location – the mantra of real estate, but also important in genealogy too. I’ve posted before about the importance of knowing what county your ancestor lived in as records are filed by county name. In addition, our ancestors could have lived in 1 location their entire life, yet lived in 3 different counties due to boundary changes. 32 of North Carolina’s 100 counties were created by at least two other counties.

One of the problems that researchers may have is determining which county they lived in before the creation of the new county. The Government and Heritage Library has a few tools that can help you narrow down where an ancestor really lived. Today, I will use a fictitious scenario to show how you can use these tools to find a location. The locations and time frames are real, but the scenario itself is made up.

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Using Wills in Genealogical Research

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Will of David Bradford 1779, Mecklenburg County (snippet)

Will of David Bradford 1779, Mecklenburg County (snippet)

Many researchers search for the wills of their ancestors and for a good reason: you can learn a lot from the information contained within! Let’s talk about the ways wills are helpful and how you can find them in North Carolina through 1900.

While wills in North Carolina were left primarily by men, according to author Helen Leary (27), plenty of women left them as well, It is less common to find those belonging to women, but they are there even back to the 1700s. For example, Ann Givin dated 1813 in Person County and another in Pasquotank County dated 1740 and left by Mary Glaister (Mitchell, 9, 189). (more…)

How to find the parents of Orphans, Part 1

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genealogy_tip_week-300x217

One thing genealogists have in common in the search for parents. If your ancestors were orphans, the search may be a bit easier. Once a month for the next few months, I will give you tips on how to find out who the parents were if your ancestors were orphans. (more…)

Migration Routes: King’s Highway

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map of NC, SC, VA, showing migragtion routes

4 major migration routes used by those who settled in colonial NC

Knowing migration routes during the colonial era is important in genealogical research in colonial North Carolina. Unlike other states along the Atlantic coast, North Carolina did not have any major ports used for immigration due to the treacherous coast line – the Outer Banks became notorious for ship wrecks. The majority of those who settled in North Carolina curing the colonial era did so by migrating from another state. There were 4 major migration routes these early settlers used and once a month for the next 4 months I will talk about 1 of those routes. The first route to be discussed is the King’s Highway (in purple in the map above).

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