Hawaii Archives: 25 Newspapers for Genealogy Research

Hawaii, the most recent addition to the United States, became the nation’s 50th state when it joined the Union on 21 August 1959. The only U.S. state not located in the Americas, the state of Hawaii is a string of islands located in the central Pacific Ocean. Hawaii is the country’s 8th smallest state and the 11th least populous.

photo of Punaluu Beach Park, Big Island, Hawaii

Photo: Punaluu Beach Park, Big Island, Hawaii. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

If you are researching your ancestry from Hawaii, you will want to use GenealogyBank’s online HI newspaper archives: 25 titles to help you search your family history in “The Aloha State,” providing coverage from 1836 to Today. There are more than 166,000 articles and records in our online Hawaii newspaper archives! These historical HI newspapers are fantastic resources to trace back Native Hawaiian and Polynesian ancestry.

Dig deep into our online archives and search for historical and recent obituaries and other news articles about your Hawaiian ancestors in these HI newspapers. Our Hawaii newspapers are divided into two collections: Historical Newspapers (complete paper) and Recent Obituaries (obituaries only).

Search Hawaii Newspaper Archives (1836 – 1991)

Search Hawaii Recent Obituaries (1999 – Current)

Illustration: state flag of Hawaii

Illustration: state flag of Hawaii. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Here is a list of online Hawaii newspapers in the historical archives. Each newspaper title in this list is an active link that will take you directly to that paper’s search page, where you can begin searching for your ancestors by surnames, dates, keywords and more. The HI newspaper titles are listed alphabetically by city.

City Title Date Range* Collection
Hilo Big Island Weekly 04/18/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Hilo Hawaii Tribune-Herald 07/28/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Hawaii Independent 06/21/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Polynesian 06/06/1840 – 09/11/1858 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Afro-Hawai’i News 01/31/1989 – 12/31/1991 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Hawaii Reporter 10/21/2002 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Pacific Commercial Advertiser 07/02/1856 – 05/13/1876 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Temperance Advocate 01/01/1843 – 12/02/1843 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Hawaiian Gazette 11/04/1865 – 03/28/1893 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Honolulu Star-Bulletin 01/01/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Sandwich Islands News 09/02/1846 – 12/23/1846 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Friend 01/01/1844 – 12/01/1880 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Sandwich Island Gazette and Journal of Commerce 08/06/1836 – 07/27/1839 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Honolulu Star-Advertiser 06/07/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Honolulu Folio 11/16/1855 – 11/16/1855 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Punch Bowl 07/01/1869 – 09/01/1869 Newspaper Archives
Honolulu Honolulu Advertiser 01/01/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kailua-Kona West Hawaii Today 09/27/2004 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kamuela North Hawaii News 03/29/2012 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kaunakakai Molokai Dispatch 07/28/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Laie Ke Alaka’i 09/12/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Lihue MidWeek Kaua’i Weekly 06/16/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Lihue Garden Island 11/10/1999 – Current Recent Obituaries
Pearl City Afro-Hawai’i News 06/01/1987 – 10/31/1988 Newspaper Archives
Waialua Afro-Hawai’i News 04/30/1990 – 05/31/1990 Newspaper Archives

*Date Ranges may have selected coverage unavailable.

You can either print or create a PDF version of this Blog post by simply clicking on the green “Print/PDF” button below. The PDF version makes it easy to save this post onto your desktop or portable device for quick reference – all the Hawaii newspaper links will be live.

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Vintage Fashion: Our Ancestors’ Summer Apparel

Introduction: Gena Philibert-Ortega is a genealogist and author of the book “From the Family Kitchen.” In this blog article, Gena searches old newspapers to find articles and advertisements that show what our ancestors wore during the hot summer months.

I don’t know about where you live, but here in California it is HOT. This week has been hot and humid, something we are not as used to since we normally live with a “dry heat.” So as the temperature goes up people try all sorts of ways to keep cool, including altering the way they normally dress. A few days ago I was standing in line at the bank and a woman in her bathing suit was in front of me! Because it is warm all year long here, I would say the concept of “summer fashion” is lost on most of us Californians.

Typically in most places, however, each season brings with it new fashions. It wasn’t too terribly long ago that our ancestors learned about the newest fashion trends via the newspaper. And while swimsuits are a summer fashion must-have (see Great-Grandmother’s Swimsuit in Vintage Fashion Articles & Photos), other summer fashions are important for outdoor activities, social events, and vacationing.

bathing suit ad, Charlotte Observer newspaper advertisement 11 July 1916

Charlotte Observer (Charlotte, North Carolina), 11 July 1916, page 7

Summer Fashions of Yesteryear

I am grateful fashion trends have changed over the generations because some of the older apparel trends included way too much fabric to wear during hot summer months. Take this 1906 example from Louisiana. The Gibson girl look is well represented in these summer dresses, which are described as being “light” and made from “filmy fabrics.” And while I have no doubt that these linen dresses were much lighter than women’s standard fare at that time, I am grateful I didn’t have to wear that much fabric in a time when air conditioning wasn’t available.

summer fashions ad, Times-Picayune newspaper advertisement 11 February 1906

Times-Picayune (New Orleans, Louisiana), 11 February 1906, page 5

I have to admit I love looking at vintage fashions from the 1920s, and newspaper advertisements provide us with a sense of what clothing was really available to our ancestors for purchase. Sure, it’s interesting to see what models were wearing at fashion shows, but newspaper advertisements verify what styles of apparel were available for the common family.

Take for instance this short-sleeved frock. The reader is informed that “The whole background of summer fashions is white” and the use of “dainty pleatings and exquisite lace trimmings” can be seen in the fashions of 1924.

ad for summer clothes, Plain Dealer newspaper advertisement 25 May 1924

Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio), 25 May 1924, page 49

Similarly-styled dresses can be seen in an advertisement on the same page of the Plain Dealer, that proclaims:

When summer comes – it must not find us unprepared. Filmy Frocks of printed or plain georgette, crepe or chiffon, embellished with lace, embroidery or beads, in themselves suggest vine shaded verandas and light laughter, or the joys of the summer evening dance.

ad for summer clothes, Plain Dealer newspaper advertisement 25 May 1924

Plain Dealer (Cleveland, Ohio), 25 May 1924, page 49

Looking toward Hollywood

Celebrity has always attracted attention – and there is no doubt that, just like today, people have always been interested in what was being worn by the rich and famous. I love the description of the outfits in this 1939 article entitled “Ladies of the Screen Vie with Each Other in Wearing Latest in Summer Fashions.”

Ladies of the Screen Vie with Each Other in Wearing Latest in Summer Fashions, Dallas Morning News newspaper article 5 June 1939

Dallas Morning News (Dallas, Texas), 5 June 1939, page 4

One of the stars mentioned in the piece is Margaret Sullavan who starred opposite Jimmy Stewart in the movie Shop Around the Corner, the inspiration for the Tom Hanks and Meg Ryan film You’ve Got Mail. Sullavan’s outfit is described as:

…new hostess pajamas, the latest in lounging comfort, combine pigskin with a heavy roma crepe. The blond star chooses a watermelon pink shade for the very full trousers, with shirred bodice draped from the plain round neckline. A wide, natural-colored pigskin girdle, studded in silver nailheads, individualizes the suit, and, with it, Miss Sullavan wears a heavy cord snood to keep her curls in line.

Most likely the use of the word pigskin here indicates a type of leather.

A more summer-sounding outfit in the article is described as worn by Lupe Velez who:

…relaxing recently at Palm Springs, wore transparent oilskin fuchsia-colored slacks and bolero over a fuchsia and white striped oil-silk puckerette bathing suit.

(Oil-silk, incidentally, is a material much like that used for men’s tobacco pouches.)

Enter Last Name

$$$

What did those summer fashions cost our ancestors? I mentioned above how advertisements can provide us images of fashions that were available to our families, but they can also answer questions about the price of the apparel. This large 1933 newspaper advertisement includes sale prices for everything from wool bathing suits to summer coats and dresses.

 

ad for summer clothes, Daily Illinois State Journal newspaper article 20 July 1933

Daily Illinois State Journal (Springfield, Illinois), 20 July 1933, page 11

What shoes would they have worn with that summer wardrobe? Today we mostly think of sandals and flip-flops as summer ware, but fashionistas know you need much more. This ad offers shoes for $1.95 a pair:

Every style in this sale was selected for fashion-rightness. Shoes for all summer occasions – in models for street, sports, daytime and summer resort wear.

Notice that they proclaim to have plenty of white shoes in stock, since white was traditionally worn during the summer months or specifically after Memorial Day and before Labor Day; a fashion “rule” most likely established by high society women to distinguish themselves from everyone else.

ad for summer shoes, Evening Star newspaper advertisement 13 May 1934

Evening Star (Washington, D.C.), 13 May 1934, page 26

When you find an old newspaper fashion advertisement, take the time to research what the price would translate to in today’s world. Various websites including Measuring Worth can assist you in converting those prices into modern-day sums.

What did your ancestors wear during the summer? While our ideas about what constitutes summer wear have changed over the generations, it’s a good bet that your ancestors chose outfits that would have helped them beat the heat. What did your ancestors wear? Their hometown newspapers provide clues.

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Calvert Family Bible Worth Share of $300 Million!

What’s your old family Bible worth? For the Calvert family of Mason, Lewis and Bracken counties in Kentucky, their family Bible was invaluable.

Old Family Bible of Calverts Found, Lexington Herald newspaper article 10 March 1911

Lexington Herald (Lexington, Kentucky), 10 March 1911, page 9

According to a 1911 article from the Lexington Herald, their old family Bible was the proof the descendants of Obadiah Calvert needed to connect their line back to the original Calvert family of Maryland. With the pending probate court action, the confirmed descendants would share in the $300,000,000 estate!

Do you have an old family Bible?

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A word to the wise: Don’t let the information in your family Bible become lost to the family – as this Calvert family’s information almost was. Scan and upload copies of each page of the family register information and preserve it online.

Do it today.

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August Update: 4 Million Genealogy Records Just Added!

Every day, GenealogyBank is working hard to digitize more newspapers and obituaries, expanding our burgeoning collection to give you the largest newspaper archives for family history research available online. We just completed adding 4 million more U.S. genealogy records, vastly increasing our content coverage from coast to coast!

screenshot of GenealogyBank's homepage showing the Monthly Update for the month of August

Here are some of the details about our most recent U.S. newspaper additions:

  • A total of 30 newspaper titles from 19 U.S. states plus the District of Columbia
  • 10 of these titles are newspapers added to GenealogyBank for the first time
  • Newspaper titles marked with an asterisk (*) are new to our online archives
  • We’ve shown the newspaper issue date ranges so that you can determine if the newly added content is relevant to your personal genealogy research

To see our newspaper archives’ complete title lists, click here.

State City Title Date Range Collection
California Idyllwild Idyllwild Town Crier 11/1/1946–12/20/1947 Newspaper Archives
California Redding Free Press 1/2/1892–12/31/1892 Newspaper Archives
California Riverside Riverside Daily Press 4/1/1941–6/30/1941 Newspaper Archives
California San Francisco San Francisco Chronicle 1/1/1871–8/31/1984 Newspaper Archives
Connecticut Cheshire Cheshire Citizen, The* 11/20/2012–Current Recent Obituaries
Connecticut New Canaan New Canaan Messenger 1/2/1904–12/25/1909 Newspaper Archives
District of Columbia Washington (DC) Washington Times 3/1/1982–10/31/1989 Newspaper Archives
Idaho Boise Idaho Statesman 10/21/1886–12/6/1970 Newspaper Archives
Idaho Idaho Falls Idaho Falls Times* 5/16/1966–5/31/1966 Newspaper Archives
Indiana Evansville Evansville Courier and Press 1/1/1932–12/31/1937 Newspaper Archives
Kentucky Lexington Lexington Herald-Leader* 3/1/1951–1/8/1984 Newspaper Archives
Kentucky Lexington Lexington Leader 1/1/1965–9/15/1981 Newspaper Archives
Louisiana New Orleans New Orleans States 11/1/1923–11/30/1928 Newspaper Archives
Louisiana New Orleans Times-Picayune 1/1/1860–9/3/1860 Newspaper Archives
Maryland Baltimore Sun 1/28/1921–2/20/1921 Newspaper Archives
Massachusetts Manomet Manomet Current, The* 04/27/2011–Current Recent Obituaries
Mississippi Biloxi Daily Herald* 4/1/1953–12/31/1955 Newspaper Archives
Missouri Kansas City Kansas City Star 5/27/1945–7/12/1945 Newspaper Archives
New Mexico Albuquerque Albuquerque Morning Democrat 9/20/1882–12/30/1885 Newspaper Archives
North Carolina Winston-Salem Winston-Salem Journal 4/1/1921–12/31/1922 Newspaper Archives
Ohio Cleveland Cleveland Leader 7/6/1902–7/6/1902 Newspaper Archives
Oklahoma Coweta Coweta American* 03/13/2006–Current Recent Obituaries
Pennsylvania Bristol LevittownNow.com* 03/13/2013–Current Recent Obituaries
Pennsylvania State College Centre Daily Times 7/1/1988–12/31/1996 Newspaper Archives
South Carolina Charleston Charleston News and Courier 5/1/1970–5/1/1970 Newspaper Archives
South Carolina Charleston Evening Post 11/1/1977–11/30/1977 Newspaper Archives
Texas Austin Texas State Gazette 8/25/1849–6/7/1851 Newspaper Archives
Texas San Angelo San Angelo LIVE!* 06/09/2015–Current Recent Obituaries
Virginia Dumfries, Stafford, Woodbridge Potomac Local* 06/28/2010–Current Recent Obituaries
West Virginia Charleston Charleston Gazette-Mail* 07/20/2015–Current Recent Obituaries

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Was Your Ancestor’s Marriage Certificate Filed Late?

Everyone is familiar with the regulations that couples wanting to be married need to register and obtain a marriage certificate. This document permits them to be wed by a justice of the peace, minister or other authorized official.

Pastors Liable to Heavy Fines, Oregonian newspaper article 2 September 1906

Oregonian (Portland, Oregon), 2 September 1906, page 36

Perhaps less well known is the question: Who returns the signed and completed marriage certificate to the town hall or county registrar?

That was the responsibility of the minister or person performing the wedding.
But – sometimes they never filed the paperwork with the government, or filed it very late.

Enter Last Name

The Oregonian reported on this problem in 1906, reporting that: “In years gone by…many marriage certificates were never returned at all.”

The old news article went on to cite multiple examples of late filing of the documents.

article about Rev. Ghormley being fined for filing marriage certificates late, Oregonian newspaper article 2 September 1906

Oregonian (Portland, Oregon), 2 September 1906, page 36

For example, the Greenwood-Mitchell marriage certificate wasn’t filed until six years after their marriage. Cases like this can make it difficult for genealogists to locate their ancestors’ marriage certificate.

Genealogy Tip:

When you are searching for a birth, marriage or death certificate, remember: they are often filed in chronological order by the date that they are received in the clerk’s office, not necessarily the date of the event. Be sure to search for several years after you believe the event occurred to make sure you find the certificate. Registrars often received “Delayed Registrations” years after the event occurred.

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Alaska Archives: 29 Newspapers for Genealogy Research

Although Alaska is the largest of the United States, it is the nation’s 4th least populous state. The territory was purchased from Russia on 30 March 1867 for the incredibly low price of only two cents per acre. Alaska became the 49th state when it was admitted into the Union on 3 January 1959.

photo of Denali - Mt. McKinley, Alaska, the highest point in North America

Photo: Denali – Mt. McKinley, Alaska, the highest point in North America. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

If you are researching your ancestry from Alaska, you will want to use GenealogyBank’s online AK newspaper archives: 29 titles to help you search your family history in “The Last Frontier,” providing coverage from 1869 to Today. There are more than 1 million articles and records in our online Alaska newspaper archives!

Dig deep into our online archives and search for historical and recent obituaries and other news articles about your Alaska ancestors in these AK newspapers. Our Alaska newspapers are divided into two collections: Historical Newspapers (complete paper) and Recent Obituaries (obituaries only).

Search Alaska Newspaper Archives (1869 – 1993)

Search Alaska Recent Obituaries (1985 – Current)

illustration: state flag of Alaska

Illustration: state flag of Alaska. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Here is a list of online Alaska newspapers in the historical archives. Each newspaper title in this list is an active link that will take you directly to that paper’s search page, where you can begin searching for your ancestors by surnames, dates, keywords and more. The AK newspaper titles are listed alphabetically by city.

City Title Date Range* Collection
Anchorage Alaska Dispatch 10/15/2009 – Current Recent Obituaries
Anchorage Alaska Spotlight 07/28/1956 – 11/30/1968 Newspaper Archives
Anchorage Arctic Sounder 06/28/2013 – Current Recent Obituaries
Anchorage Arctic Warrior, The: Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson 06/03/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Anchorage Bristol Bay Times & Dutch Harbor Fisherman 06/07/2013 – Current Recent Obituaries
Anchorage Anchorage Daily News: Web Edition Articles 12/17/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Anchorage Anchorage Daily News 10/03/1985 – Current Recent Obituaries
Anchorage Anchorage Gazette 12/01/1992 – 01/01/1993 Newspaper Archives
Anchorage Anchorage Daily News 12/01/1970 – 12/30/1972 Newspaper Archives
Anchorage Alaska Dispatch News 07/08/2014 – Current Recent Obituaries
Bethel Tundra Drums 11/28/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Bethel Delta Discovery 07/15/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Cordova Cordova Times 04/27/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Fairbanks Fairbanks Daily News-Miner 09/17/2001 – Current Recent Obituaries
Fairbanks Fairbanks Daily News-Miner 11/29/1917 – 03/16/1928 Newspaper Archives
Fort Adams Yukon Press 05/01/1894 – 05/01/1894 Newspaper Archives
Healy Aurora Borealis 12/31/1898 – 03/01/1899 Newspaper Archives
Juneau Daily Record-Miner 02/23/1903 – 05/08/1911 Newspaper Archives
Juneau Juneau Empire 01/02/1998 – Current Recent Obituaries
Juneau Alaska Mining Record 03/26/1891 – 12/27/1899 Newspaper Archives
Juneau Daily Alaska Dispatch 01/20/1900 – 09/28/1919 Newspaper Archives
Kenai Peninsula Clarion 08/18/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Kodiak Kodiak Daily Mirror 01/10/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Nome Nome Nugget 01/06/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Seward Seward Phoenix LOG 08/25/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Sitka Alaska Times 11/06/1869 – 12/25/1869 Newspaper Archives
Sitka Daily Sitka Sentinel 01/09/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Sitka Alaskan 11/07/1885 – 08/02/1893 Newspaper Archives
Wasilla Mat-Su Valley Frontiersman 09/13/2002 – Current Recent Obituaries

*Date Ranges may have selected coverage unavailable.

You can either print or create a PDF version of this Blog post by simply clicking on the green “Print/PDF” button below. The PDF version makes it easy to save this post onto your desktop or portable device for quick reference – all the Alaska newspaper links will be live.

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Did Your Ancestor Fight at the Battle of Monmouth?

Did your ancestor fight at the Battle of Monmouth during the Revolutionary War?

Painting: “Washington Rallying the Troops at Monmouth,” by Emanuel Leutze

Painting: “Washington Rallying the Troops at Monmouth,” by Emanuel Leutze, before 1854. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

My cousin Joel Pratt (1752-1844) did and his obituary records some of his personal recollections of that battle.

obituary for Joel Pratt, Times newspaper article 30 November 1844

Times (Hartford, Connecticut), 30 November 1844, page 1

We learn that in the Battle of Saratoga and the Battle of Monmouth, “…he carried the colors of his regiment.”

At the battle of Monmouth…he saw Gen. Lafayette …say, with his foreign accent, “Hold up your heads, my lads, we’ll pick at the fine clothes by and by.”

That must have been really cool.
Calling the Brits the “fine clothes” – the men would have loved that; a touch of Mel Gibson or John Wayne. A great line – glad I found it recorded in his obituary.

I wonder who else fought with him at the Battle of Monmouth? Are there more memories of the battle recorded in their obituaries?

Did these soldiers’ letters or diaries from that battle survive? Are these personal writings available and online today? Perhaps some of these old documents even mention my cousin, Joel Pratt.

One way you can find the answers to those questions is by searching the old newspapers by keyword for mention of the Battle of Monmouth.

screenshot of the GenealogyBank search box showing a search for the "Battle of Monmouth"

For example, a quick keyword search in GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives for “Battle of Monmouth” generated over 3,300 search results.

screenshot of the search results in GenealogyBank for the search "Battle of Monmouth"

Great – that gives me a lot of relevant historical newspaper articles to go through.

I can sort this list of old newspaper articles chronologically and read about the battle as it happened – or I can read through them by topic. For example, I can look at the 70 obituaries that are cited to see what information is given in each one.

screenshot of GenealogyBank's search results for a search for the "Battle of Monmouth" showing how many obituaries there are

This obituary of Adam Hoffains (1756-1827) was published in the Boston Recorder (Boston, Massachusetts), 24 August 1837, page 135.

His obituary tells us that:

He was in the battle of Monmouth and was one of twelve who survived the battle, of a whole company. He was also at the battle of Bunker Hill.

In Captain Ephraim Whitaker’s (1755-1846) obituary published in the North American (Philadelphia, Pennsylvania), 16 July 1846, page 1, we learn that he was also in the Battle of Monmouth.

The battle of Monmouth was fought on one of the hottest and most sultry days in June (28th). Captain W. bore his full share in the heat, burden and danger of the day; he received a shot through his cap and another through his canteen, spilling the liquor with which it had been supplied in the morning.

Solomon Parsons (1757-1831) was also in the Battle of Monmouth. His obituary published in the Boston Traveler (Boston, Massachusetts), 24 May 1831, page 3, records:

He enlisted at the age of 20, and was at the battle of Saratoga and taking of Burgoyne. He continued in the army till the battle of Monmouth, in June, 1778, when he was discharged on account of the wounds he received on that occasion.

Going through each obituary, you learn about the lives of real men, the real stories of those that fought in the battle with Joel Pratt.

Newspapers are published every day, 365 days a year.
Look and find your ancestors’ stories and the experiences of those who fought with them.

Related Revolutionary War Articles:

How to Research Legal Notices in Newspapers for Genealogy

Introduction: Gena Philibert-Ortega is a genealogist and author of the book “From the Family Kitchen.” In this blog article, Gena shows how legal notices published in old newspapers are a great genealogy resource, providing a wealth of family history information.

When doing your family history research, have you ever given much thought to those legal notices found at the back of the newspaper? Legal notices in newspapers have an important purpose: they notify the public about government and individual actions so that readers may take action if necessary. The publishing of these public notices dates back to 1789, when Congress “required all bills, orders, resolutions and congressional votes to be published in at least three publicly available newspapers.”*

According to the genealogical text, The Source, legal notices may include: “land sales for payment of taxes, administration in probate, proving of wills, heirship determination and the settlement of estates, pending divorce proceedings, sales of properties of insolvent estates, and more.”**

Have you looked for your ancestor in these public notices published in newspapers? These legal articles can lead you to additional sources stored in courthouse archives, county government offices, and beyond. Let’s look at a few examples.

Probate & Estate Notices to Creditors

One genealogically rich source of information is the Notice to Creditors for estates being probated.

At the very least these probate notices provide the deceased’s name, such as this example found in an Arizona newspaper following the death of Mary J. Griffin.

This legal notice is a good reminder to not make assumptions about female ancestors. We often assume women in earlier times didn’t leave behind wills, but they may have – and if so, legal notice of that will or testament might have been published in the local newspaper. Legal notices are a wonderful source for researching female ancestors.

a legal notice for Mary Griffin, Tucson Citizen newspaper article 26 July 1915


Tucson Citizen (Tucson, Arizona), 26 July 1915, page 5

Legal notices will often include a family member’s name who was administering the estate. This notice to creditors article example from an Idaho newspaper includes the name of the deceased, S. F. Beery, and the name of the executor who was most likely a relative, David Beery.

legal notice for S. F. Beery, Idaho Statesman newspaper article 26 June 1905

Idaho Statesman (Boise, Idaho), 26 June 1905, page 5

Court Actions & Case Files

Notices of court actions in the newspaper include everything from divorces to individual lawsuits, delinquent tax issues, and foreclosures on property. Consider this example from a Minnesota newspaper that not only notifies the defendants about the court action, it mentions the land that is at the heart of the case.

legal notice for Elizabeth Field, Duluth News-Tribune newspaper article 11 January 1910

Duluth News-Tribune (Duluth, Minnesota), 11 January 1910, page 11

Let’s face it, even our ancestors had money troubles – and that’s nowhere more obvious than in the Notice of Summons for delinquent taxes. This example from a North Carolina newspaper published during the Great Depression is an entire page of delinquent tax notices, and includes the names of married couples as well as individuals.

legal notices, Greensboro Record newspaper article 22 August 1932

Greensboro Record (Greensboro, North Carolina), 22 August 1932, page 12

Divorces can be found in various parts of the newspaper (see Divorce Records in Newspapers: Genealogy Research Tips) including the legal notices section. In this example from an Oregon newspaper, Loretta Gates believed her husband John W. Gates to be dead, so a notice was published in the newspaper giving him the opportunity, if alive, to respond to her divorce petition. It states:

SIR: PLEASE TAKE NOTICE that a petition has been presented to this court by Loretta Gates for dissolution of your marriage on the ground that you absented yourself for five successive years, last past, without being known to her to be living, and she believes you to be dead, and that pursuant to an order of said court, entered the 22d day of December 1949, a hearing will be had upon said petition at Supreme Court…

legal notice for Loretta Gates, Oregonian newspaper article 12 February 1950

Oregonian (Portland, Oregon), 12 February 1950, page 39

This notice ran in the newspaper for at least three consecutive Sundays, providing ample time for a living Mr. Gates to read it.

Enter Last Name
Enter Last Name

Bids

Government notices in the newspaper may provide you a better understanding of an event, or even an occupation, that affected your ancestor. In this legal notice from a Mississippi newspaper, the city of Gulfport in 1936 was taking bids from those who wanted to feed prisoners.

legal notice, Daily Herald newspaper article 31 December 1936

Daily Herald (Biloxi, Mississippi), 31 December 1936, page 3

It’s important to remember that newspaper articles may report on activities that impacted your ancestor’s life, but they won’t be specifically named. Search the census and city directories for your ancestor’s job and then turn to the newspaper to learn more about how they may have acquired that job.

And Then This…

I have to admit that when I think of legal notices, I think of a certain type of notice such as those I’ve highlighted above . But you never know what you might find, including this one from a San Quentin prisoner published in a California newspaper.

legal notice for Charles Cupp, San Francisco Chronicle newspaper article 9 January 1927

San Francisco Chronicle (San Francisco, California), 9 January 1927, page 73

This pardon notice for Charles S. Cupp surprised me – though I guess it shouldn’t have. His seeking a pardon would have been of interest to the community, and its publishing provided the community – and the victim of his crime – with notification so that they could then respond. Cupp had been convicted of shooting at a police officer.

Did You Know?

GenealogyBank has a special category for legal records, probate records and court case files. Explore legal records now >>

Genealogy Tip: Don’t limit your newspaper search to just one type of article. Make sure to examine all kinds of newspaper articles, including legal notices that mention your ancestor by name or involved activities that impacted their lives.

————————

* “Public notice and the role Oregon newspapers play.” Oregon Newspaper Publishers Association. Accessed 3 May 2015. http://www.gallatinpublicaffairs.com/services/media/pdf/Public_Notice_Whitepaper.pdf.
** “Newspapers” by Loretto Dennis Szucs, FUGA, and James L. Hansen, FASG in Szucs, Loretto D, and Sandra H. Luebking. The Source: A Guidebook of American Genealogy. Provo, UT: Ancestry, 2006.

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Vermont Archives: 88 Newspapers for Genealogy Research

Many Americans may not know this, but Vermont was actually an independent country before becoming part of the United States. Originally territory disputed between New Hampshire and New York, Vermont was not one of the 13 colonies that formed the United States. Instead, the Vermont Republic was founded in 1777 and retained its independence for 14 years. Finally, in 1791, Vermont became the first addition to the young country when it was admitted into the Union as the 14th state. Today Vermont is the 6th smallest state in the nation and the 2nd least populous.

photo of the Vermont State Capitol building in Montpelier

Photo: Vermont State Capitol building in Montpelier. Credit: Jared C. Benedict; Wikimedia Commons.

If you are researching your ancestry from Vermont, you will want to use GenealogyBank’s online VT newspaper archives: 88 titles to help you search your family history in “The Green Mountain State,” providing coverage from the 1700s to Today. There are more than 12.5 million articles and records in our online Vermont newspaper archives!

Dig deep into our online archives and search for historical and recent obituaries and other news articles about your Vermont ancestors in these VT newspapers. Our Vermont newspapers are divided into two collections: Historical Newspapers (complete paper) and Recent Obituaries (obituaries only).

Search Vermont Newspaper Archives (1781 – 2006)

Search Vermont Recent Obituaries (1999 – Current)

illustration of the state flag of Vermont

Illustration: state flag of Vermont. Source: Wikimedia Commons.

Here is a list of online Vermont newspapers in the historical archives. Each newspaper title in this list is an active link that will take you directly to that paper’s search page, where you can begin searching for your ancestors by surnames, dates, keywords and more. The VT newspaper titles are listed alphabetically by city.

Did You Know?

The Rutland Herald is the oldest family-owned newspaper in ongoing operation in the U.S., as well as the second largest in circulation in Vermont. You can explore Rutland Herald news articles and obits from the 1700s, 1800s and 1900s through to today in the VT archives.

City Title Date Range* Collection
Barre Times Argus 03/07/2000 – Current Recent Obituaries
Bellows Falls Vermont Intelligencer 01/01/1817 – 12/30/1822 Newspaper Archives
Bellows Falls Bellows Falls Gazette 12/01/1838 – 05/30/1851 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Bennington Banner 11/18/1999 – Current Recent Obituaries
Bennington World 10/19/1807 – 03/27/1809 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Vermont Gazette 05/04/1847 – 10/10/1850 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Vermont Gazette 03/17/1847 – 12/27/1848 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Ploughman; or, Republican Federalist 07/27/1801 – 02/01/1802 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Vermont Gazette 12/14/1872 – 12/22/1876 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Tablet of the Times 01/05/1797 – 08/31/1797 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Bennington News-Letter 03/25/1811 – 08/14/1815 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Green-Mountain Farmer 04/17/1809 – 06/10/1816 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Vermont Gazette 06/05/1783 – 02/16/1847 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Epitome of the World 02/10/1807 – 10/12/1807 Newspaper Archives
Bennington Bennington Banner 02/27/1841 – 12/31/1885 Newspaper Archives
Brattleboro Semi-weekly Eagle 08/10/1847 – 12/09/1852 Newspaper Archives
Brattleboro Brattleboro Reformer 06/07/2000 – Current Recent Obituaries
Brattleboro Brattleboro Messenger 12/24/1821 – 08/29/1834 Newspaper Archives
Brattleboro Federal Galaxy 01/06/1797 – 01/17/1803 Newspaper Archives
Brattleboro Vermont Phoenix 10/24/1834 – 12/29/1882 Newspaper Archives
Brattleboro Independent Inquirer 09/14/1833 – 09/06/1834 Newspaper Archives
Brattleboro American Yeoman 02/04/1817 – 01/27/1818 Newspaper Archives
Brattleboro Reporter 02/21/1803 – 12/05/1820 Newspaper Archives
Burlington Burlington Gazette 09/09/1814 – 01/28/1819 Newspaper Archives
Burlington Burlington Mercury 06/03/1796 – 03/24/1797 Newspaper Archives
Burlington American Repertory 09/28/1821 – 03/25/1823 Newspaper Archives
Burlington Vermont Centinel 03/19/1801 – 07/12/1850 Newspaper Archives
Chelsea Vermont Advocate 01/12/1830 – 07/30/1834 Newspaper Archives
Chester Chester Telegraph 03/29/2012 – Current Recent Obituaries
Chester Green Mountain Palladium 06/22/1807 – 04/12/1808 Newspaper Archives
Colchester Colchester Sun 01/27/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Danville North Star 01/08/1807 – 01/26/1889 Newspaper Archives
Essex Junction Essex Reporter 12/30/2010 – Current Recent Obituaries
Manchester Manchester Journal 04/06/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Middlebury Columbian Patriot 09/01/1813 – 08/23/1815 Newspaper Archives
Middlebury Addison Eagle 08/03/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Middlebury Christian Messenger 11/06/1816 – 11/23/1819 Newspaper Archives
Middlebury Middlebury Mercury 12/16/1801 – 07/04/1810 Newspaper Archives
Middlebury Middlebury Campus, The: Middlebury College 01/16/2002 – Current Recent Obituaries
Middlebury New Market Press 08/03/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Middlebury Addison County Independent 12/27/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Middlebury Christian Herald 09/25/1816 – 10/30/1816 Newspaper Archives
Middlebury Green Mountain Outlook 08/05/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
Middlebury Vermont Mirror 09/30/1812 – 09/18/1816 Newspaper Archives
Middlebury Valley Voice 02/28/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
Middlebury Religious Reporter 04/08/1820 – 09/30/1820 Newspaper Archives
Middlebury National Standard 08/30/1815 – 12/26/1820 Newspaper Archives
Milton Milton Independent 10/18/2007 – Current Recent Obituaries
Montpelier Argus and Patriot 07/09/1863 – 12/30/1908 Newspaper Archives
Montpelier State Journal 10/25/1832 – 10/25/1832 Newspaper Archives
Montpelier Vermont Precursor 11/22/1806 – 11/13/1807 Newspaper Archives
Montpelier Freemen’s Press 08/25/1809 – 08/27/1812 Newspaper Archives
Montpelier Watchman 11/20/1807 – 12/31/1873 Newspaper Archives
Newport Newport Daily Express 07/24/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Northfield Northfield News 09/25/2008 – Current Recent Obituaries
Peacham Green Mountain Patriot 02/23/1798 – 01/27/1810 Newspaper Archives
Putney Argus 03/16/1797 – 02/26/1799 Newspaper Archives
Randolph Weekly Wanderer 01/24/1801 – 04/06/1810 Newspaper Archives
Royalton Vermont Advocate and White River Advertiser 11/21/1827 – 03/11/1829 Newspaper Archives
Rutland Rutland Herald 12/08/1794 – 12/29/1818 Newspaper Archives
Rutland Herald of Vermont 06/25/1792 – 09/10/1792 Newspaper Archives
Rutland Rutland Herald 10/01/1999 – Current Recent Obituaries
Rutland Farmers’ Library 04/01/1793 – 11/29/1794 Newspaper Archives
Rutland Vermont Mercury 03/29/1802 – 03/12/1804 Newspaper Archives
Rutland Vermont Courier 07/25/1808 – 05/30/1810 Newspaper Archives
St. Albans Vermont State Paper 06/23/1835 – 04/26/1836 Newspaper Archives
St. Albans St. Albans Messenger 12/04/2006 – Current Recent Obituaries
St. Albans St. Albans Messenger 01/25/1838 – 10/12/1933 Newspaper Archives
St. Albans St. Albans Daily Messenger 04/24/1861 – 04/29/2006 Newspaper Archives
St. Albans Franklin County Advertiser 07/26/1810 – 10/29/1810 Newspaper Archives
St. Albans St. Albans Adviser 03/10/1808 – 01/28/1809 Newspaper Archives
St. Albans St. Albans Advertiser 12/19/1873 – 07/05/1878 Newspaper Archives
St. Albans Champlain Reporter 05/11/1809 – 06/28/1810 Newspaper Archives
St. Albans American Repertory 05/15/1823 – 12/26/1833 Newspaper Archives
St. Albans St. Albans Transcript 03/22/1873 – 07/30/1874 Newspaper Archives
St. Johnsbury Caledonian-Record 01/05/2011 – Current Recent Obituaries
St. Johnsbury St. Johnsbury Republican 08/07/1907 – 08/07/1907 Newspaper Archives
St. Johnsbury Caledonian-Record 09/03/1918 – 12/31/1926 Newspaper Archives
St. Johnsbury Caledonian 08/08/1837 – 03/13/1918 Newspaper Archives
Vergennes Vergennes Gazette and Vermont and New-York Advertiser 08/30/1798 – 10/08/1801 Newspaper Archives
Westminster Vermont Gazette or Green-Mountain Post-Boy 04/02/1781 – 09/27/1781 Newspaper Archives
Windsor Morning Ray, or, Impartial Oracle 11/15/1791 – 09/25/1792 Newspaper Archives
Windsor Vermont Republican 01/02/1809 – 10/09/1834 Newspaper Archives
Windsor Spooner’s Vermont Journal 08/07/1783 – 11/04/1826 Newspaper Archives
Windsor Washingtonian 07/23/1810 – 01/22/1816 Newspaper Archives
Windsor Post-Boy 01/01/1805 – 03/31/1807 Newspaper Archives
Windsor Vermont Journal 06/20/1844 – 10/20/1877 Newspaper Archives
Woodstock Woodstock Observer 01/11/1820 – 06/05/1832 Newspaper Archives

*Date Ranges may have selected coverage unavailable.

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The Evertons’ Genealogy Workshop 50 Years Ago Hooked Me

It was 50 years ago this week – 25 July 1965 to be specific – that George and Ellen (Nielsen) Everton conducted their genealogy workshop in the lower-level auditorium of the Ferguson Library in Stamford, Connecticut.

photo of George and Ellen (Nielsen) Everton

Photo: George and Ellen (Nielsen) Everton. Credit: FamilySearch.org – KWZM-YNM George Baugh Everton, Sr. Memories Page

They were road warriors who routinely conducted classes and day-long genealogical workshops, teaching the basics of genealogy across the country. Their firm – Everton Publishers was founded in 1947 –was active in publishing the long-running Genealogical Helper magazine, how-to books, charts, forms and other support materials for family historians.

The Evertons were terrific – funny, upbeat and personable – as they taught the basics of genealogy research. I had been working on my family history for several years, and this genealogy workshop was a game-changer for me.

I was working at the Ferguson Library then, where I was “apprenticed” to Grace Hope Walmsley (1885-1971), the long-serving genealogy reference librarian there.

article about librarian Grace Hope Walmsley retiring, Stamford Advocate newspaper article 28 February 1968

Stamford Advocate (Stamford, Connecticut), 28 February 1968, page 14

Up to that point I had kept my family tree and genealogy notes on the familiar yellow pads of paper, which I kept in a folder in my desk.

Miss Walmsley was a skilled genealogist and teacher. Working with her got me started in genealogy. The Ferguson Library’s Genealogy & Local History Room was always busy – and I learned from her about the books, documents and resources that were needed to document a family history.

Enter Last Name

During a break in the Everton’s genealogy workshop in 1965, they announced that they were giving away door prizes to the youngest and the oldest person attending the seminar.

As one of the hosts of the family history event, I was standing along the side of the auditorium. George Everton said: “The winner of the door prize for the youngest person in the room is easy – it’s him” – pointing in my direction.

I turned around to see whom he was pointing at – and realized he meant me! Ha.

I went up to the front and he gave me a 12-generation family tree chart – which I started filling out and have never looked back.
I was hooked.

I had been getting my genealogy skills from on-the-job training – but now the Evertons opened up more techniques, tools and a sense of what was possible. Their wonderful genealogy workshop was invaluable to me.

Take the time to be trained in genealogy.
There are online classes and webinars available 24/7 on the Internet.

Watch and learn at sites like:

Both of these sites have hundreds of live and taped classes on a wide range of topics – from Hungarian research to the core basics in Genealogy Boot Camp. Also, watch GenealogyBank’s genealogy tutorial webinars on Youtube and the Learning Center.

Check with your local genealogical society and see when their next meeting or event will be. Getting together with other genealogists is an easy way to learn new approaches and improve your research skills.

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