“Using the National Archives Websites (Plural)” and “The Online National Archives Catalog: Understand and Do More With It“ are now posted on this website. I hope you find them useful.
The California Genealogical Society has a number of great online programs scheduled for the next several weeks. Check them out here. There’s even one called “Using the National Archives Websites (Plural)” tomorrow, Tuesday, June 15, 2021, at 9 p.m. Eastern (6 p.m. Pacific) that will be presented by a NARA staff member.
It’s not considered one of the “traditional” genealogy record groups, but Record Group 33, Records of the Extension Service, is a treasure trove of information about farm life across the United States from about 1910 to 1950 or so. Even if one’s own ancestors are not mentioned in the records, they provide excellent county-level context on rural life. I lectured on these records on the 2011 NARA genealogy fair and have written about them a couple times, as well. My research guide, “Agricultural Extension Service Annual Reports, 1909-1968, and Related Records“ will help you get started.
NARA is working on digitizing the the Service’s microfilmed annual reports (ca. 1908-1944) so they are not yet available online. I am delighted to report, however, that nearly 350 motion picture films from RG 33 have been digitized and are available for viewing or download from the National Archives Catalog. (Some may be restricted by copyright or other intellectual property right restrictions.) Happy viewing!
Premiering today, June 1, 2021, at 1 p.m.! Researching ancestors who worked for federal agencies is a popular topic at the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). This presentation will tie together the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) Official Personnel Files (OPF) held in St. Louis with agency records located in various NARA field sites.
The session will open with what can be found in the OPFs and how to request them. Cara Moore Lebonick, Reference Archives Specialist from the National Archives at St. Louis, Missouri, will conduct a deep dive into several OPF’s of Native women employed by the BIA.
Cody White, Archivist and Native American Related Records Subject Matter Expert from the National Archives at Denver, Colorado, will then explore how further information can be found in the regional records of the BIA.
Together Cara and Cody will show how the holdings across the National Archives can provide a more complete genealogical story.
Premiering today, May 11, 2021, at 1 p.m., this presentation will provide an overview of what’s available for genealogists on the archives.gov website, and demonstrate how to navigate to its many resources and tools, including the National Archives Catalog, the Access to Archival Databases (AAD) system, the Microfilm Catalog, topic pages, articles, reports, and blogs. We’ll explore the Genealogy portal page, and also see how the website is organized, which will enable you to do even more expansive searches for information.
This session is presented by Sarah Swanson of NARA’s website staff. Have specific questions? Get them answered in the live chat that accompanies the premiere.
If you’re a regular NARA blog subscriber, you may have noticed that your expected new post notifications haven’t been arriving in your inbox lately. The problem seems to be part of some larger technical issues experienced during the recent migration from the commercial WordPress.com hosting solution to NARA’s own Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud space. While the blogs still use WordPress-created software, NARA lost access to a number of premium features due to the move, and it appears that the subscriber lists were affected. NARA is working on resolving these issues as quickly as possible, but if you want to ensure that you don’t miss another post, your best bet is to resubscribe to your favorite blogs manually.
NARA implemented a simple double opt-in system that will ask you to confirm your subscription request via an email link. While this is an extra step for readers, it will help cut down on the vast quantity of spam the blogs receive and lets NARA be sure that its subscriber lists represent real people who care about the work being done at NARA.
To sign up for notifications, visit each blog homepage and enter your email in the Subscribe to Email Updates box in the right hand side bar, and click the Submit button.
Once you submit your address, you’ll get a message alerting you to check your email for a confirmation link.
Please check your email and follow the link to confirm your subscription.
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National Archives Hosts Genealogy Series in May & June
Participate in our genealogy series – free and online!
WHAT: WASHINGTON, April 19, 2021–In lieu of the autumn 2020 Virtual Genealogy Fair that could not be held due to the COVID-19 pandemic, we are pleased to offer a new Genealogy Series! Instead of a single-day event, the program sessions will be broadcast individually during May and June. You are invited to watch and participate in real time with the presenters and family historians from around the world on YouTube.
Over the two months, the sessions will offer family history research tools on federal records for all skill levels. The May sessions are broad and will appeal to the beginner and beyond. The June sessions are focused on specific topics and may be better suited for the experienced researcher. All are welcome! Session descriptions, videos, handouts, and participation instructions are available at the Genealogy Series web page.
WHEN: May & June—all sessions begin at 1 p.m. ET
May 4 — Preserving and Digitizing Personal Photo Albums and Scrapbooks
May 12 — Finding Genealogy Resources and Tools on Archives.gov
May 19 — Tips and Tools for Engaging Family with Your Research Finds
June 1 — From Here to There: Researching Office of Indian Affairs Employees
June 8 — Civil War Union Noncombatant Personnel: Teamsters, Laundresses, Nurses, Sutlers, and More
June 15 — Merchant Marine Records at the National Archives at St. Louis
WHO: Staff experts in government records from National Archives facilities nationwide.
WHERE: Anywhere! The series will be broadcast on the U.S. National Archives YouTube channel.
HOW: Visit the Genealogy Series web page to watch the broadcasts on YouTube. Participants can watch individual sessions, download materials, ask questions, and interact with presenters and other family historians. No need to register—just click the links on the schedule to view the sessions! Videos and handouts will remain available after the event.
Captioning: Live captioning will be available online with StreamText. If you require an alternative or additional accommodation for the event, please email KYR@nara.gov.
Background: The National Archives holds the permanently valuable records of the federal government. These include records of interest to genealogists, such as pension files, ship passenger lists, census, and Freedmen’s Bureau materials. See “Resources for Genealogists” online.
Follow the National Archives on Twitter @USNatArchives and join the Genealogy Series conversation using #GenieSeries2021.
Here are Ten Things that Terrify Archivists and records conservators, too! True tales and tails from the National Archives. Happy Halloween!
Today’s post comes from Catherine Brandsen, National Archives Innovation Hub Coordinator Earlier this month, the Innovation Hub uploaded its 300,000th page for inclusion in the National Archives Catalog. Amazingly, this milestone took less than three years to achieve. Digitization opens up access to our records. Of the 13 billion paper records in the National Archives,…
If you were intrigued by the horse sales records mentioned in a recent post, there are plenty more records in the U.S. National Archives that are unusual, unexpected, or unknown to most persons, that are just waiting for researchers to examine and make good use of.
I’ve outlined search strategies in an article entitled, “The National Archives Catalog” which I hope you’ll try for yourself. Hint: URLs in “green” colored text in the article are clickable links!