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Genealogy Methodology

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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Organizing your Genealogy Research, Part 2

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snapshot from the vertical files at GHL

snapshot from the vertical files at GHL

Last week, I talked about organizing your genealogy information on paper. This week, I want to turn the focus to organizing your genealogy files on your computer. A lot a genealogy researchers use the internet and computers in general to do and organize their research. It’s important to understand why records stored on our computer need to be organized.

A somewhat obvious reason for organizing files is ease of access – If your files are named using a method you understand, you can look at the name of the file and know exactly what is it. There is no 1 single way to do it, no one size fits all. What is important is to file it in a manner that allows you to understand what the record is.

I am going to be using some examples from my own computer files of how files can be organized (or in my case, reorganized) for ease of access.

(more…)

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