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May 2011 Newsletter

GenealogyBank Adds 8 Million Records in May!

We constantly add more newspapers and obituaries to our online archive. Currently, GenealogyBank features over 5,000 newspapers from all 50 states, with over 160 million obituaries and death records! Here are the details of GenealogyBank's most recent additions, a total of 173 titles from 43 states and the District of Columbia. We've shown the date ranges so that you can determine if the new content is relevant to your personal research.

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The Mystery of Ammi Ann Ferris

Who was this mid-19th Century Greenwich, Connecticut, farmer? In the 1850, 1860, 1870 and 1880 censuses, this mysterious farmer is recorded as Ann Ferris, Ami Ferris, and Amni Ferris; sometimes recorded as a female, sometimes recorded as a male—and sometimes recorded as both! This story is a good example of how easy it is to find online genealogy records—and how carefully we have to read them once we find them, especially handwritten ones.

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How to Read Obituaries

Along with birth announcements and marriage notices, obituaries are an important genealogy resource found in newspapers that can help you with your family history research. Once you've found them, however, what's the best way to glean all the information you possibly can from an obituary? This article will examine an actual obituary in detail, and show you how much information you can learn from it.

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A Funny Story about an Unusual Name

Imagine if your research uncovered a 19th Century ancestor with the unusual name of "Return Jonathan Meigs." Trying to find out more about this fellow, you discover his obituary. In such a somber document as an obituary you find the expected information: a summary of his life, and some family details. There is also something unexpected at the end: a burst of humor, as the obituary writer felt compelled to explain this unusual name.

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GenealogyBank Video

GenealogyBank VideoHere's a quick (3:43) video you can watch: it gives an introduction on how to search GenealogyBank's records for your ancestors, focusing on our extensive historical newspaper archive of more than 5,000 titles.

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