If you’ve discovered your ancestor was involved in a court case, search local newspapers to see if the case was mentioned. Some newspapers published brief summary information of cases as they worked their way through the court process. Published legal notices may have been required in certain situations as well. Cases of extreme local interest may have been written about in some detail in the newspaper, perhaps containing information not contained in the court record.

When searching for a newspaper reference to your ancestor’s court case check the newspapers in the county seat as well as those closer to where your ancestor lived. Also keep in mind whether your ancestor’s court case was actually news or not.

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