Midwest Genealogy Center Building

The Midwest Genealogy Center opened in June 2008. The largest free-standing public genealogy library in the United States boasts 52,000 square feet of resources for family history researchers.

Germans From Russia: History and Research

Join genealogist Mike Meisinger for a two-part examination of the Russian-Germans. The first session examines German migration to Russia's Volga region. The second explores techniques to research Russian-German genealogy.

Night Before Christmas Carol

Join Charles Dickens in his study for a very special night. On this evening in 1843, he creates his holiday classic, "A Christmas Carol."

Traveling West Point Trunks

From the Revolutionary War to the Vietnam War, hear the stories of the fighting men and women that fill the trunks of West Point graduate Major Ernest Poff. Come hear, see, and touch these pieces of history.

Genealogy Blogs

Attend a Genealogy Conference from Home

Have you ever wanted to attend a national genealogical conference? National conferences are wonderful learning opportunities—from discovering new research techniques to networking with genealogists from around the world. Not everyone has the chance or leisure to attend these conferences, but what can you do?

Genealogy in Dictionaries? Yes!

Dictionaries may not be the first place you’d look for your ancestors, but give it a try! Like standard dictionaries, biographical dictionary entries are listed in alphabetical order, but instead of word definitions, you’ll find short biographies. 

Wills-what’s next?

You’ve found your ancestor's will. Yay! But now what? Where do you go from here? Your next step is researching probate case records. Almost all wills were presented in probate courts to be proved through a hearing process. Then the will was recorded and registered. The entire process can generate a gold mine of information for genealogists. 

Using Funeral Home Records for Genealogy

Genealogy is the pursuit of information on individuals and families. Many times, records generated by someone’s death can bring a wealth of information on that person’s life. Death records, obituaries, and burial notices can provide clues to what that person was like but also can provide information on their family members. Often, family history researchers will overlook one important piece in the burial process: the funeral home. That’s right; funeral home records are another great resource to find out information on your ancestors.

My Pot of Gold

When I first became interested in genealogy more than 25 years ago, I began by asking my mother for stories about our family in Australia. She told me all kinds of stories, but there was one in particular I remembered. The story went that our family had once owned a castle in Ireland and then lost it through unknown circumstances. My mom did not really believe the story, but it was something she had heard about growing up. I was curious about where the story originated and if any part of it was true. 

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