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Ancestry's Red Book: American State, County and Town Sources, 2nd Edition (Red Book: American State, Country & Town Sources) 2nd rev. Edition
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Top Customer Reviews
NEED TO KNOW -- WHEN a county was created? WHERE the probate records are kept? WHAT the migration patterns were? IF there are surviving church records of christening, marriage and burial? HOW the county boundaries changed over the years?
The RED BOOK has the answers! I always turn to it when helping someone at our local LDS Family History Center. The RED BOOK gets you quickly up to speed on what to expect when researching a particular state.
This one is on my "A" list!!! Myrt
However, after sitting down and doing a side-by-side comparison of the two books, I realized that there is some very different information between the two. Both are quite useful, and if I ever question information in one (come on, that's what we DO) I have a second source to confirm the first. I find myself reaching for this book time after time, and not just to confirm info from the Handybook. There are certain things I find easier to understand in the Red Book, not to mention the different perspective offered.
This book is, simply put, indispensible!
Jan 2010: Still true. The Internet is catching up with many local municipalities. But money restrictions keep many counties on the far end of the digital spectrum. Please use this guide to get you in contact with many genealogy resources. The price of a stamp and four weeks may be all that stands in your way of discovering a long lost relative.
Each chapter begins with a brief (less than two pages) essay on the formation of the state. The remainder of each chapter is broken down into topical headings: Vital Records; Census Records (Federal/State/Territorial and associated schedules; Background Sources (there is very little in American genealogy that someone has not written a book about); Maps; Land Records; Probate Records; Court Records; Tax Records; Cemetery Records; Church Records, Military Records; and a section on Periodicals, Newspapers and Manuscript Collections. The chapters conclude with a listing of Archives, Libraries and Societies with substantial holdings, a section on Special Focus Categories (immigration and special ethnic groups), and County resources.
Finally, a map of the current county boundaries for that state is included with addresses of the county seats, date formed/parent county/ies; birth/marriage/death and land/probate/court beginning dates.
Now, for the downsides. Unfortunately, almost as soon as a book goes to press with web addresses and emails, they are outdated. Such is the case with this book. However, this is a minor point since the institutions listed within the book are major ones with substantial holdings and easily "Google-able." In addition, the state essays that are at the beginning of each chapter are not consistent in their coverage or quality.Read more ›
Casual researchers who need information from only one state would probably find this book to be "too much information".
All the information in this book is available on-line for free AND is updated. This particular Edition was printed/published in 2004 and I bought it in 2015... That's my fault, as my common sense should've kicked in. I suggest not buying any of these kinds of books and just learn to search on-line. Each State's web page on the Internet (in the US) will provide you with this information, not only for free, but again, it will be updated... not outdated.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I'm working on my family's genealogy and have found this book useful.Published 25 days ago by V. Eicke
Worth its weight in gold! Section up front tells you how to use this awesome book. Book is broken down by state and covers every individual area which the section in the front of... Read morePublished 7 months ago by Taylor Worthington Gilchrist
This book is not exactly what I was expecting, but it will serve my purpose for the time being. I was hoping for more content than just the names of the agencies.Published 10 months ago by DPowers
it a great help when doing genealogy. It has been a great investment. love this bookPublished 10 months ago by Shopper
Extremely useful guide to all state records. It should be on every genealogist's bookshelf.Published 11 months ago by Country Girl