Off the Beaten Path

The best discoveries are sometimes made off the beaten path–without a map. That’s true with genealogical records as well.

Indexes, inventories, and finding aids can be incomplete. This “family entry” from an Illinois Lutheran church was found by browsing images of the church’s records. The names were not index and the inventory did not indicate these items were included. Sometimes one simply has to browse things in order to make certain that everything was seen.


2 thoughts on “Off the Beaten Path

  1. Maria

    Whether you sit and do it online, sit at a library and wind through a roll of microfilm or look at microfiche, or sit and page through an entire book, nothing will take the place of just looking through the record. That is how genealogy research is done!

  2. Kat

    I’ve found much information by “just looking,” whether through newspapers, deed books, probate records, etc. You never know what you may find, unless you look.
    I have little sympathy for those folks who expect to find their family history by typing the surname into a search box!


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