Are You Missing the Best Genealogy Websites for Finding U.S. Ancestors?

We published our annual list of 75 top US state genealogy websites in the December 2016 Family Tree Magazine.

These state-focused genealogy websites stand out for their digitized historical records, searchable indexes to vital and other records, and how-to advice. But our list is just a starting point. There are many more state-focused genealogy websites to mine as you research American ancestors. Nonprofit and government sites don’t have a lot of money to market themselves, so it’s easy for them to slip under a genealogist’s radar. Here are five types of state-focused genealogy websites you should look for in every state where your ancestors lived: State Archive

You’ll find details and the list at the Genealogy Insider.

State Research Guides at Ancestry.com

Ancestry.com now has research guides available for each of the 50 states. These guides are free in the Learning Center.

Our state research guide series includes historical background, a chronology, helpful information on census and vital record availability, highlighted collection for that place on Ancestry.com, and links to important resources beyond Ancestry.com.

State Research Guides at Ancestry.com

Ancestry.com – State Research Guides

They are still adding states, but the ones that are out there now are quite impressive. Here’s how Ancestry.com describes them:

Learning about the history and what resources are available for the places your ancestor lived can give your research a solid boost. Our state research guide series includes historical background, a chronology, helpful information on census and vital record availability, highlighted collection for that place on Ancestry.com, and links to important resources beyond Ancestry.com.

Ancestry.com – State Research Guides

State Research Guides

When researching ancestors in a particular state, it’s nice to know a bit about that state’s history, what records are available and how to find them. Fortunately, there’s help in that department. Ancestry.com’s Learning Center has begun building a collection of free state guides. 

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Another great resource is the research wiki at FamilySearch.org. Enter the state you want in the search box on the wiki’s main page and then select the (state) option to display an amazing collection of information about that state. The screenshot above shows the Georgia (state) page to give you some idea of the resources available.