Tuesday, April 28, 2015

66 Places To Find A Female Maiden Name

Reposted from Colonial Roots

Just when you thought you had searched everywhere ...

The search for a female maiden name is often one of the most elusive searches in our family history. You first need to identify the records that may contain the maiden name of your female ancestor. A basic list of records containing this information is shown below.

Birth Records
Birth certificates, including delayed birth records and corrected birth records
Newspaper birth announcements
Family lore and oral histories
Published biographies and genealogies
Journals and diaries
Family Bibles

Marriage Records
Marriage certificates
Marriage applications & licenses
Newspaper wedding announcements
Family Bibles

Divorce Records
Newspaper announcements
Court proceedings: early records may appear in Chancery Court records
County divorce records

Death Records
Death certificates
Burial permits or transfer papers (if the death occurred out of state)
Newspaper announcements, including obituaries and death notices
Funeral records, including funeral cards

Cemetery Records
Sexton’s office (cemetery office, caretaker’s office)
Tombstone inscriptions
Note: a clue can be found by studying those buried adjoining the deceased

Census Records
Names of in-laws may be included in a family grouping
1890 Veteran’s census including widows of veterans
1925 Iowa State Census (the only U.S. census with the question, “Maiden Name of Mother?”)
Names of neighbors may contain clues
Clues from parents birthplace

Online Databases & Indexes
Google search
FamilySearch.org search
Ancestry.com, search family trees for clues
RootsWeb (archives) family name search
Name indexes
Online family trees

Vital Records Indexes & Compilations (some are online)
Kentucky birth/death index (one of the states whose records are available on the Internet)
The Barbour Collection (for Connecticut, a published compilation)
New England vital records (published town reports)
RootsWeb (archives) county pages may include county-wide indexes
Bible records: some are online (Virginia, North Carolina, and Louisiana); others may be found through relatives and church collections

Probate Records
Wills: a woman may be named by her married name in her father’s will
Administration records (same as above)
Appointments of administrators/executors (can provide a clue to the wife’s family name)
Estate settlements (may also be known as distributions or fiduciary accounts)

Church Records
Baptisms and christenings: pay close attention to the surnames of the sponsors or godparents
Church membership lists or class lists
Vestry minutes

Civil War soldiers & sailors online index
Veterans’ pension files: Revolutionary War, War of 1812, Civil War
Family correspondence and other family heirlooms
Family lore and oral interviews
Lineage society membership applications
Deeds and other land records
Civil court records (including Chancery Court)
Criminal court records
Newspaper articles: your ancestor may be mentioned in an article other than birth, marriage, or death notice
Social Security applications
Draft registration record
Driver’s license application
Samplers and Frakturs (often contain family names)
Records of fraternal organizations, including newsletters and other publications
Homestead record
Immigration and naturalization records
Insurance papers
Military records, including medical and burial records
Professional license applications
Passports applications
Genealogy newsletters, publications, and websites (queries)
Voter registrations
Immigrant aid societies

Finding a female maiden name becomes a bit easier—if you know where to look. Have you found an ancestor’s maiden name in an unusual place?

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