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03 July 2019

Immigrant Records


Where will I find my immigrant family records? What country, province or town did they live in? Questions I must answer before leaving the United States.  Do I have a pedigree sheet with as much information as I know? Do I have family group sheets with information and citations? Ask yourself, “How do I know that fact  . . . ?” You, the researcher, must have your facts and answers to where you found that fact. Squeeze all the information from each piece of paper you have. In order to find records, you must know the specific area in which to look; the name of a country is not enough.

Getting closer to the finding the where, when (time), what (records available), how (ask for help):


Where to look?


Check out your area Family History Library; some of the volunteers have many years experience in specific locations. Using my paternal great grandfather, Charles Elsner as an example (see me sitting on Charles’ lap on Facebook), before I could find his records, I had to know him. Carl (Charles) was born in GroβGievitz, Mecklenburg-Schwerin, Germany. This is over simplified. It took me three years to answer all the “How do you know” questions. The Family HistoryLibrary in Roswell, Georgia, has a fantastic volunteer, Ruth, with over 30 years Mecklenburg experience. Ruth would question me and give me ideas for searches. Once the area was identified, Ruth would look up church records. Finally, a call to the Family History Library in Appleton, Wisconsin, provided a digital copy of Carl’s baptismal record.  Elsner, Carl Friedrich August. born 30 January 1852, baptized 15 February 1852. page 183. Kirchenbuch, 1718-1934, Evangelisch Kirch Groß Gievitz (AG Warren), Salt Lake City, Utah: Gefilmt durch, The Genealogical Society of Utah, 1951, film 69116. photo from Family History Library, Appleton, Wisconsin. 13, November 2018. Thank you, Ruth and all the volunteers that made this possible!!!