Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

About the Person County NCGenWeb Pages ...(please note that these FAQ were originally started by our former host, Ed Clayton, and have been amended with updated info in some cases)

Q & A     We will pose the first question! Researchers frequently send  questions about their family lines under the apparent misunderstanding that we research every family line that has a Person County connection! Of course that is just not so. While we do research our own Person County lines, we can only provide some tips that may point you in the right direction to help in your research.

Q      I have a list of the tombstones in the cemetery where my g-gf is buried (in Person County). Would you like this information to add to the Cemetery web pages?
A      YES! we will add any Person County cemeteries for which you send information. Please share what you have in this manner. Take a look at the Harris and Fox cemeteries as examples. We can probably take the info in almost any file format which will be converted for the website.  If you are able to add annotations as has been done in the cases of the Alvis Moore or Mt. Zion Cemeteries, this additional information will be helpful to other researchers.

A word about photographs. We will accept photographs for cemeteries, which will be placed on our NCGenWeb County Cemetery Gallery if there are at least 10 images. Keep in mind that if you take a photograph of a tombstone you should make it a closeup. The inscription on the stone must be readable from the photograph to be of use to another researcher. An example of how they will be displayed can be seen here.

Q     I am looking for books about Person County history, Person County families, etc. What is available?
We suggest that you start by reviewing the list on this web site. Check the Resources: Books page. If you find books that we have not listed, send us the information and it will be added to the web page.

Q     What can I find by using the search feature on the home page?
The search feature provides an easy way to find every page on this web site that includes a word of interest to you. Enter the word or name of interest and click the "search" button.

Q     I tried to search the Message Board, but the search did not return something that I know is there. What happened?
Although posts to the Message Board show up as soon as the post is done, the index that the search function uses is only updated about once each week.

Q   Can I use a GPS to locate the cemetery where my long lost great-grandfather is buried?
A    Yes! Check this archived web page for information about using a GPS to mark or locate a cemetery.

For Beginners ...

Q      I am just starting to research my family. Where can I get information?
A      There are a number of web pages that will help you get started. One of the things that beginners seem to NOT want to do is to take the time to learn to research, but when you don't know anything about what to do next or where & how one can do research, you are actually hurting yourself and making everything you do nothing but a waste of time. Do yourself, and anyone else you come into contact with during your research, a favor, and learn something about the importance of how and what you research before you start looking for your ancestors.  I suggest that you at least browse through some of the following websites which do offer a great deal of instructions for beginners, and which can also be helpful for those who may need a bit of a refresher course:

Need Professional Help?

Here are a list of sites that provide professional genealogists for researchers. We are providing this info as a courtesy to visitors only, and it is up to you to contact them to find out pricing details:

Association of Professional Genealogists

Board of Certified Genealogists

Genealogy Freelancers

Cyndi's List of North Carolina Researchers


Message Board Links

One of the best ways to help connect to other researchers, is to post messages on free public forums. We suggest that you subscribe to the Person County Mailing List on, or to the Message Boards on Rootsweb, Genforum, or other forums of your choice. The following are underlined links to those sites where you will find lists or boards for State, County, Surname and many other Topics of interest to aid in your research. Remember, do the research first, locate your ancestors in Census records to get an idea of where to look, then seek out others researching the same families or researching the same locations.
Quick links to message boards, mailing lists, NCGenWeb/USGenWeb County sites & etc.
1 2 3 4 5 6
County Page

Msg Bd

All NC Boards Same
Person Person Person North Carolina Person  
Caswell Caswell Caswell   Caswell Caswell
Orange Orange Orange Orange
Durham Durham Durham Durham
Granville Granville Granville   Granville Granville
Mecklenberg (VA) Mecklenberg Mecklenburg   Mecklenburg
Halifax (VA) Halifax Halifax   Halifax

NCGenWeb county pages are sites such as the Person County NCGenWeb site you are now using.


These "Archive" sites are repositories for transcriptions of wills, deeds, and other useful documents. Very important that you check them out.


RootsWeb Message Boards provide a web page based facility for posting and searching messages. If you want to know when there is a new post for a specific county, use the "add board to notifications" link and you will receive an email each time a post is added. Messages posted to these boards can be searched efficiently. Try the "Advanced Search" link. If you post to these boards, do other researchers a favor and properly classify your post using the "Message Type" choices.

Be aware that although posts to the Message Board are made immediately, the index that the search function uses is updated on a later schedule.  You can always find any messages that you have posted yourself by clicking onto the "View Posts" option beside your, or anyone else's name, on the Message Boards.  Also, whenever using a Message Board, make sure that you keep your email address current with Rootsweb & Ancestry so that you can be notified of any replies to your message.  You can get replies many years after first posting a query on a Message Board, and it's always a good idea to keep your info up-to-date, no matter how many times you may change your email address.

Remember that when posting a message to either a Mailing List or Message Board, you should be clear and concise as to what you are looking for. In the Subject line, you should include the Name, Location, and a Time Frame at the very least, then in the Body of the message, a more detailed description of the individual and/or family saying what other records you have looked through and where, will better enable others to help you in your research. Never ask for "all the records that you have..." or similar wording when requesting research help, one should always be specific and courteous in any message posted on a public forum, and you will get much better results because researchers are more likely to read through a well-worded message than one that gives little or no details.
Still need additional instructions on posting messages? Click here for further details on How to Post a Query.


GenForum Boards are similar to the RootsWeb Message Boards, except that they are now Read only; North Carolina Messages are all one page.


The mailing lists provide a means to share information that is based on email rather than on web pages as is the case in #1 and #2. This option has the advantage that emails arrive in your mailbox without further action on your part. The mailing list data base is more difficult to search than options #2 and #3.


County Historical Societies are useful sources of of resources and frequently genealogical information.


A number of Obituaries for Person County are posted on the Rootsweb/Ancestry Message Board, some of which were posted in the past with permission of the Courier-Times, and others contributed by visitors.  Read the following instructions.


Tips for searching obituaries on the Person County Message Board

  1. After you get to the message board page, find the "Advanced Search" link and follow it.
  2. Click onto  "Person Board" underneath "Advanced Search" page.
  3. On the "Subject of Message" line, enter "OBIT"
  4. On the "Message Classification" line, select "Obituary" (this section is optional).
  5. Put in a Surname, if looking for someone in particular, or leave blank to get all Person County listings; then click SEARCH.

Using these options should restrict your search just to obituaries that have been posted from the Courier-Times.  Once you have tried a few searches, add this step:

  • Add a surname entry in the "With Surname" field. Generally the surnames listed for each obituary include not only the deceased by also the surnames of in-laws, and parents.

See our Resources for Research Page for addresses to Person County Courthouse, Register of Deeds, Libraries, Genealogy Societies, State Archives, Museums, and much more.

2013 to present by the NCGenWeb Project, Inc., and/or individual contributors.    Last updated 09/15/2017