Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Sometimes Googling It Pays Off

The other day, I talked about a possible family for my paternal 4th great grandmother Rebecca Schoolcraft Radcliff. However, I only had indirect evidence that Aaron Schoolcraft was in fact her father. I decided to turn to Google to see if I could find some clues.

As I suspected, there were several family trees on the first page of results. However, I didn't expect that one of those trees would give me an entire page of sources and notes for him and his family. I'd unwittingly stumbled onto a genealogy goldmine.

In the notes for one of the books, History of Harrison County West Virginia From the Early Days of Northwestern Virginia to the Present by Henry Haymond, I found references to not only the Schoolcrafts, but also some other familiar surnames I've researched in West Virginia and Virginia. These included the Radcliffs, Sleeths and Neals, all surnames from my paternal line.

I decided to see if I could find a copy of the book online. Heritage Quest had it digitized so I looked through it there. However, while you can download pages from the book, there's a daily limit on how many and the number of pages that referenced my surnames went beyond the limit. So I jumped over to Google Books, which had it as well and allowed me to download the entire book.

The family tree that led me to this book had several other books listed as well. I've downloaded most of them and will be going through them to see what other information I can find. While the books aren't primary evidence, they can still be helpful in my research by offering clues.

1 comment:

  1. What a great find! I'm a fan of Googling ancestors. You never know what you might run across. It would be nice to find a site that had sources noted like the one you found had. Google Books is great.