Tuesday, March 8, 2016

FREE Ancestry.com Research Center

Do you know what primogeniture means? How about et ux? Are you a puzzled progeniture?

You could just Google these words for a definition, but that may give only modern day use. Visit Ancestry's Genealogy Glossary landing page. The genealogy glossary list gives you the genealogy-specific use of terms, many in century old documents.


Here's another problem many of us face. Sometimes you can search a foreign database index using names and gender only. You will get search results in most cases, but when you see the images, they are in the foreign language.

This page has  topics for searching in Dutch, French, German, Italian, Spanish and Swedish language documents. Help with wordlists, occupations and names is given. Click the "more..." link under each language to see overall research hints for those records. You may also discover specific databases that are more obscure. Remember, the general Ancestry search only looks at the top 10% of the most popular databases. A small, obscure foreign database must be searched specifically by name.

If you are searching using keywords, such as an occupation, you should use the foreign terms. Here is a message you will see on the search page for Meyers Gazetteer of the German Empire. (You must log in to see this gazetteer.)

Here are just a few terms you may encounter as you search foreign databases.

Inventaire des biens or Pensionnaire (French)
Manente or Pompiere (Italian)
aangetrouwde or zuigeling (Dutch)
Lehrkrankenschwester or Wäschereiangestellter (German)

One last item: Be sure to check out the Research Guides in the top right corner of the Glossary page. These are FREE and new ones are frequently added.



Take advantage of these free research topics to achieve better search results in Ancestry.com, and generalize what you see to other searches you do.

If you want even more help, be sure to visit us at the Iroquois County Genealogical Society in the Old Courthouse Museum.

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