The North Carolina Genealogical Society (NCGS) is currently in the process of indexing original estate files held at the North Carolina State Archives and they are doing a phenomenal job! Done in partnership with FamilySearch, the records are available online and society volunteers are creating name-specific way-pointers to facilitate finding records. As it stands, records can be searched by name, or browsed by county. The indexing at FamilySearch.org is approximately 70% completed.
As I personally began working with this database, I quickly realized I wanted a better way to browse. The surname index is a great asset for the online collection, but browsing is limited to one county at a time and you can’t see the entire alphabet at once. So, to make it easier to see a list of names within any one county, and to make it easier to look for records across counties, I am partnering with NCGS to create a master index to the collection. For example, while I know that there were Koonce families in Jones County, NC – I could use the master index to see what other Koonce persons there were across the state who are represented in this collection.
The master index is hosted on the NCGS website and can be viewed at http://goo.gl/uHdVoQ. It is a work in progress, but you can view the list by surname or by individual county. Additionally, the county lists will eventually be shared on some of our NCGenWeb sites too! Please stay tuned as we add more and more counties to the master index in the upcoming months.
Then, you will just LOVE the latest offering from the NC Department of Cultural Resources (NCDCR). Just today they announced the online availability of the master index to the seminal work “North Carolina Troops, 1861-1865: A Roster” and I know many a researcher will be ecstatic!
A project that began back in 1961, the book collection, currently at 18 volumes, contains 115,000 names of North Carolinians who served in the Civil War. NCDCR projects that at least another 4 volumes are forthcoming for publication so the database will very likely be added to as the volumes continue to be published. From the email announcement today:
The rosters in each volume are arranged numerically by regiment or battalion and alphabetically by company. Each roster is preceded by a unit history giving information about where it was raised and how it was designated. Officers and enlisted men are listed in separate sections alphabetically by surname. Each name is followed by a service record that includes information such as the soldier’s county of birth and residence; his age and occupation at time of enlistment; promotions; whether he was wounded, captured or killed; and whether he deserted or died of disease.
You can access the index online at http://cwroster.ncdcr.gov/. To search, click on the “Entries” tab and enter a surname into the search box in the far right corner of the screen. Once you’ve identified an entry of interest, you can either find the book at a library near you, or purchase the books from NCDCR.
Many thanks to NCDCR for this great resource!
The NCGenWeb Project is pleased to announce the availability of a new database of Confederate burials from around the state. A project of the North Carolina Division of the Sons of Confederate Veterans, many volunteers are contributing to the information available.
The database is online at http://www.ncgenweb-data.com/csaburials. This is an ongoing project and new records will be added on a regular basis.
The site is currently searchable by name, city & county. Be sure to try a variety of spelling to look for your persons of interest. Each database record has multiple fields, though they may not all be filled in. Fields include the name of the person, birth date, death date, company, any remarks, county of death, cemetery buried in, cemetery address, city of burial, directions to the cemetery, latitude & longitude.
The cemetery project is managed by Keith & Myra Lanier and Myra is one of our county coordinators here in NCGenWeb. Thanks to the NC SCV, the Lanier’s and all volunteer contributors that help make this resource available for NC researchers.
Have you visited our pages for Alamance County & Rockingham County lately? We are pleased to share that both sites have recently been updated with new website designs and we invite you to check them out!
Alamance County is coordinated by Cathy von Hassel-Davies. Cathy joined the NCGenWeb in December and is enthusiastic about helping researchers get to information relevant to the county. If you would like to stay current with site updates, be sure to subscribe to the RSS feed or sign up to receive notifications by email. A big welcome to Cathy!
Additionally, the Rockingham County site has also had a facelift. Interim coordinator Katherine Benbow is an experienced genealogist and has been with NCGenWeb for many years. Katherine can help steer you in the right direction should you have questions about researching genealogical information in that area. Subscribe to the RSS feed to stay current with updates.
The NCGenWeb is dedicated to helping provide free genealogical information and relies on your contributions. Please do let us know if you have information to share.
Back in August I shared news that NC would be contributing papers to the Library of Congress’ Chronicling America digitized newspaper portal. The final title selections have now been made and announced on the North Carolina Miscellany blog of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Newspapers selected will cover Buncombe, Cherokee, Chowan, Craven, Cumberland, Durham, Guilford, Henderson, Edgecombe, Mecklenburg, New Hanover, Pasquotank, Sampson, Vance, Wake, and Watauga counties.
The full list of 21 titles is on the NC Miscellany blog post. These are going to span 1836-1922 and there are sure to be many gems among their pages. All 100,000 pages planned for this phase should be online by Summer 2014. Stay tuned for more info as they start to get digitized!
Image credit: Vinmag by Flickr user Oliver Joe.
I never ceased to be amazed and the number of resources coming online that aid us as we search for stories and information about our ancestors. Thanks to a NCGenWeb researcher, I’ve recently learned about the availability of a few resources from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and thought they would be good to highlight here.
NC Runaway Slave Advertisements, 1751-1840
This database includes all known runaway slave advertisements that appeared in NC newspapers during this time period — more than 2300 of them. There are options to browse the collection by county and by decade. You can also search the full-text of the advertisements. Each record includes the digital version of the advertisement. After completing your search you can narrow by the name of the newspaper, the slave name, and the name of the person placing the ad. From my own previous research, I’d previously located this ad for Tom Whitfield, a slave of one of my family’s slaveholders Warre Kilpatrick but it was good to see that it was included here. Maybe I’ll find more information for my own research!
Civil Rights Greensboro
Greensboro was a central location of activity during the Civil Rights Era, a history recently more thoroughly acknowledged with the opening of the International Civil Rights Center & Museum a couple of years ago. The Civil Rights Greensboro website offers a great online collection of information on the city’s civil rights history. The website offers a myriad of options for searching and browsing the digital files and each record contains a wealth of information. You will also find a timeline history and an interactive map of key event locations. I grew up in Greensboro so this database touches very close to home.
Take a look! Let us know if you find something of interest in these, or other UNCG Digital Collection resources! Many thanks to the UNCG team for their hard work.
A few years ago, I submitted a small write-up for a society journal with tips for searching patents. Today, while indexing some issues of the Roanoke Beacon newspaper for the NCGenWeb People in the Papers website , I was reminded on just how interesting it can be. A notice from the October 12, 1900 issue of the paper reported that Mr. D.S. SETTLEMYRE of Connelly Springs (Burke County) received a patent for his “baby walker” invention.
Now, not that I advocate putting a baby in the walker all night, it was still an interesting notice. So, off I went to search US Patents via Google’s Patent Search, and surely enough I was able to find the patent information right away. And, it looks quite similar to our current baby walkers.
The patent application is worth a read – it’s full of detail about how the walker works. Notice that Settlemyre’s signature is on the drawing, as well as the signatures of his witnesses and his attorney. His patent has influenced others also – including a 2004 patent filing for a remote -controlled and motorized baby walker.
How neat if this were someone in your family. Wouldn’t you want to see the details of their inventions? PDF files of the patent applications can be downloaded from the Google site so you can keep it among your personal records. Take a moment to check it out!
In early August, the National Endowment for Humanities announced their latest round of project funding. Our lovely state of North Carolina is the recipient of several awards, including one to the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to digitize 100,000 pages of historical newspapers from -1836-1922. The newspapers will be added to the Library of Congress’ Chronicling America website. You can read more about the award on the North Carolina Miscellany blog.
This is great news for NC researchers — newspapers contain a wealth of information that will aid you in your research. Kudos to UNC for the award!
How did I not know about this resource? Perhaps you knew about it; if not, you’re sure to be pleasantly surprised. The State Library has an online database that will help you identify newspapers that may have covered a particular area of interest in NC. Need to know what papers were published in Craven County in 1917? Covered! Need to know what papers would cover Asheville in the late 1880s? The NC Newspaper has you covered there too.
You can access the database online at http://cinch.nclive.org/newspaper/. Recently, the library staff uploaded a YouTube video to help you learn how to navigate and search.
The database includes records about the library’s holdings so keep that in mind as you search. Just because you don’t find what you need, does not mean it does not exist.
Some additional resources for your NC newspaper searches include:
- North Carolina Newspaper Digitization Project - digitized issues of several NC newspapers; covers 1750s-late 1800s
- North Carolina Newspapers – at Google News Archive
- NC People in the News – online abstracts of vitals representing many individuals across the country
- NC Newspapers – digitized papers at digitalnc.org
- NC Newspaper Extracts Bibliography – locate print books with NC newspaper abstracts
The NCGenWeb Project is saddened to announce the passing of Joyce Ann Wilson Harrison, former county coordinator of the Orange & Durham county sites. Joyce passed away Sunday, June 24th in Greensboro, NC.
Prior to resigning from the project this past fall, Joyce had been an active contributor. Not only did Joyce volunteer with the NCGenWeb, but she was also Secretary for the Alamance County Genealogical Society. We extend our condolences to her family. May Joyce rest in peace with her ancestors.