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05 February 2017

A Super Bowl of Links: New England

Well, I got lucky this year. Last year about this time I thought, "hey, I should post some genealogy links for the locations of the Super Bowl teams." I couldn't pull it off last year because I didn't have enough links for Colorado.

If you've read this blog very much, you know all my ancestors are from Georgia. I have some links for you, go to this post. I can even provide Atlanta links. And New England isn't hard. Lucky me (or is it lucky you?).

I'll be up front, I'm going to keep it somewhat short on the New England links. If you don't know, New England is known for their long history of recording vital records. There are civil and religious records for centuries. It's almost unsporting (since we're talking sports).

I'm going to hit some of the big collections and I'll provide a handful of Massachusetts and Boston-specific links. If you're a New England expert, I doubt you'll find anything you don't know about. Feel free to leave a comment with your favorite New England-related research link.


If you're doing New England research, you need to use AmericanAncestors.org. This is the subscription site for the New England Historic and Genealogical Society.

Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org also have New England collections. Depending on your experience, you may find this extensive, because there are so many New England records that exist. For both sites, make sure you are looking at the exact collections for the state/colony you are interested in. Don't just rely on the main search form (and don't just rely on a search, some collections are browse-only, especially on FamilySearch, but some Ancestry.com collections don't search well).

Don't forget to check the GenWeb site for the town you are interested in, as well as the county and state. Once again, because there are so many more records in existence for New England, you may find many FREE resources on these sites. Don't neglect any additional or alternative sites to U.S. GenWeb sites. Whether these exist varies by location. Start with an Internet search for your location and "GenWeb" and also search for your location and just "genealogy."

If you're new to New England research, many records are kept at the town level. Make sure to check for town specific sources AND county and state sources. Online information isn't just organized by the official record creator (since it's not just put online by that entity). Don't miss valuable information by limiting yourself just to the town or just the county.

Massachusetts Society of Mayflower Descendants. This site has a number of helpful items under Research > New England Resources (the link will take you straight there but using the tab is quicker to see what they have).

The Boston city website actually has a nice collection of genealogy links. Being a port city, you may have a colonial interest or a 20th-century interest in Boston and this is a nice mix addressing that entire range. There is a link to Boston City directories but if you need more years than is included, check out...

Fold3 for Boston City Directories (and many other locations). When Fold3 used to be Footnote.com, their focus wasn't military records so they have a number of excellent non-military collections. Make sure to check them out. No subscription? You can search for free from home. You can then access the images at a local library who has a subscription or get organized and do a short-term subscription, yourself.

As an additional resource, there are Boston newspapers on Newspapers.com. I mention this site specifically because they are owned by Ancestry.com which means you do get a discount if you subscribe to Ancestry.com, Fold3, and Newspapers.com together. Your local library may have subscriptions to all three, also. Every newspaper site has different papers so make sure you check what you want is available before considering any newspaper subscription. Google News Archive is free and there are all sorts of other random free newspapers online (try Chronicling America, too).

That is a quick selection of New England-related links (and some general genealogy links, too). I'd love for you to share your favorite New England genealogy link in the comments.

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