The Ellen Clarke Bertrand Library

GER 241: Germans in the World: Home

Ancestry Library Edition

What does Ancestry Library Edition search?

  • Government documents like census records, birth certificates, marriage certificates, death certificates, draft records, etc.
  • Other records like newspapers and yearbook photos that subscription members have entered
  • Family trees that subscription members have entered
  • So remember it's a mix of archival government docs (which may include mistakes) as well as crowdsourced information. 

Tips for searching Ancestry:

  • Look for family trees (but make sure the person is right first!)
  • Be flexible with birth dates and spelling. Some things were entered incorrectly or the person entering them wasn't sure. If you find variations in spelling (i.e. Botkin, Bodkin, Bodkins, etc.), think of which one would most likely have the correct spelling, but also consider searching for the incorrect spellings.
  • Use the sliders next to results for how confident you are that you have the information correct.
  • The Census (completed every 10 years) shows those in a household, which can sometimes help identify a parent
  • Think of each person as a multi-sided object (like a cube) with facets for information like name, places lived, birth/death/marriage dates (as these create government records), spouse name, etc. If you are struggling to find someone, these are tools you can use in the Expand Search menu or information to look for in documents to confirm you have the right person.
  • Put as much information as you know about a person in the search box, especially if they have a common name. HOWEVER, remember that any results returned will only be the ones that contain ALL of that information. So using a middle name to help find someone specific won't return documents where the middle name wasn't use.

Subject Databases


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Mary Broussard
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