Mayflower Genealogy: Finding Your Cousins Using Newspapers

Searching through GenealogyBank’s Historical Newspaper Archives recently, I found this old newspaper announcement for Margaret (Rogers) Smith’s 81st birthday. Margaret Anne (Rogers) Smith (1857-1943) didn’t come to America on the Mayflower ship – but according to this newspaper article her ancestor Thomas Rogers (c. 1572-Winter 1620/21) did. Ding! Hey – I am also descended... (Read More)

Truly Personal Obituaries from the Recent Obituary Archives

Introduction: Duncan Kuehn is a professional genealogist with over nine years of client experience. She has worked on several well-known projects, such as “Who Do You Think You Are?” In this blog post, Duncan searches GenealogyBank’s recent obituaries collection and discoveries some truly interesting – and sometimes funny – passages in some of these... (Read More)

Sukey, I Never Knew You

This obituary caught my eye for several reasons. First is the header, with its poem and graphic. “The Knell.” Not “Deaths” or “Died” – which are very common headers for obituary notices even today – but instead “The Knell,” as in death knell. Crisp. An excellent choice of words that immediately tells us this... (Read More)

Nellie Tayloe Ross: the Nation’s First Female Governor

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 learn more about one of the pioneering women in American history: Nellie Tayloe Ross, the first woman governor in U.S. history. It would seem fitting that the first U.S. state... (Read More)

Tracing Female Ancestors: The Mother of All Genealogy Research

Introduction: Gena Philibert-Ortega is a genealogist and author of the book “From the Family Kitchen.” In this guest blog post, to help celebrate Mother’s Day this weekend, Gena provides genealogy search tips to find information about your female ancestors. There’s no doubt that tracing female ancestors can be difficult and sometimes near impossible. Unlike... (Read More)

Did Grandma & Grandpa Write Letters to Santa Claus as Kids?

Introduction: Mary Harrell-Sesniak is a genealogist, author and editor with a strong technology background. In this guest blog post, Mary searches old newspapers to find some of the cute, funny, and heartwarming letters our ancestors wrote to Santa Claus. In our genealogical quests, we often overlook valuable sources of family history—such as time-honored childhood... (Read More)

Elizabeth Cady Stanton, Jackie Robinson & Rosa Parks Obituaries

During this October week in American history three pioneering activists died who had a big impact on American society: Elizabeth Cady Stanton, American women’s rights activist, died at 86 on 26 October 1902 Jack Roosevelt “Jackie” Robinson, American baseball player and civil rights activist, died at 53 on 24 October 1972 Rosa Louise McCauley... (Read More)