County and local histories published in the late 19th century often contained biographies of residents. These writeups were often submitted by the subject of the biography or their immediate family and usually required payment. If your ancestor did not have the means to pay or did not have the inclination to pay, the chance they have a biography in some of these books is minimal.

There also was little or not fact-checking of the material contained in these books as well. Use the data as clues and validate where you can from contemporary sources with reliable information. What’s in the book may very well be correct, but as the time covered moves further into the past the chance of errors increases.



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