Monday, October 23, 2017

Query: Jesse and Elizabeth Preble, Orlean, IN

            I am interested in locating decedents of Jesse and Elizabeth Preble. Jesse was the son of Bernard and Elizabeth (Maddox) Preble (Pribble). They were living in Olean, IN, in 1833. Jesse was a child at the time.

            I have a book, The Memories of the Jesse and Elizabeth Preble Family, by Salvation Army Brigadier Harry Ulyat, born 1908. I would like to pass this book on to a descendant who is involved with the family genealogy. Thank you,

James Bouchard

Query: Adoption, 1926, Forrest Bales and Jeanette Pein

               How do I find a name of a child adopted in 1926. It is very important that we find the name of the child prior to his adoption This is in regards to my father. His mother/father that adopted him were Forrest Orval Bales and Jeanette Pein. 

               This is all the information I have on my father, but his mother, who I believe lost custody, was Viola Willoughby or Wade; she had many last names. She was not one who could truly be followed because of the names and so many changes in her birth year, but a census taken in the 30's shows that she was born in 1908.

               I pray you can help. She may have used a false name for the birth father.

Dr. Joan Lademan


Saturday, October 21, 2017

Focus On: Pike County

Congratulations to the Pike County Historical Society! They just received Digitization Kit #28 from IGS. We understand that several groups in that area now operate out of the Museum building, and that equals many volunteers to scan local documents. We look forward to seeing lots of excellent Pike County resources on our website--and all FREE to researchers!

Sunday, October 15, 2017

Query: Veternarians, Dearborn County

            I am doing genealogy research, and going back several generations, we had family in the Dearborn County area - Guilford to be specific. 

            Some information indicates that a great grand uncle was a Veterinary surgeon.  I have not been able to turn up much on him.  Is there a Indiana Veterinary Association with records going back to the early 1900's? Thanks.

Deana Ponso

1008 W. Bellamy Drive

Quincy, FL.  32351

Query: Caroline Ross, Greene County

            I am searching for the parents of my gr-gr grandmother, Caroline Ross, who was born in Jackson, Greene County, IN, on March 3, 1852 (according to her obituary).  I have a lead/theory based on census records but need some type of record to prove it.  I believe her mother was Martha E Ross, daughter of James P Ross and Rebecca (Miller) Ross. 

            I believe Caroline's father was Aquilla Edington (Eddington).  Caroline was born before Martha and Aquilla were married.  I do have a DNA match with an Edington descendant which possibly proves my theory.  Any help will be greatly appreciated.  Thank you for your help.

Debbie Vandenbroek

8103 Cardiff Dr 

Dublin CA  94568

Monday, October 9, 2017

Focus On: Jasper County

IGS just delivered Digitization Kit #27 to the Jasper County Historical Society. Be on the lookout for lots more great resources out of that area--and be sure to visit their Museum in Rensselaer.

Does your organization have genealogical materials that need digitizing? IGS would love to help! Apply today for an Indiana Genealogy Digitization Project grant. Your group could receive a new laptop computer, flatbed scanner, and storage device. Details and application are on the IGS website.

Tuesday, October 3, 2017

ISL Genealogy Fair Returns on October 28

[Visit the IGS table at GenFair and let's chat. Member volunteers are requested to help spread the word. Email to reserve a time. Thanks.]

The Indiana State Library will host the annual Indiana Genealogy and Local History Fair in downtown Indianapolis. Admission is free and open to the general public. This year’s theme is “Sacrificing and Shaping the Future,” commemorating the Centennial of the Great War and examining military resources and history. 

Over 30 organizations and exhibitors will be in attendance.  Visit the tables in the exhibition hall to collect information from genealogical and local history organizations, and shop the commercial vendors.

Highly acclaimed, internationally known speakers and genealogy consultants, Kathleen Brandt and Katherine R. Willson, will present.

The following fabulous door prizes will be given away:

1 annual World Explorer individual membership to Ancestry

1 annual subscription

1 annual Basic subscription

1 AncestryDNA kit

Visit the Events page for more information.

Friday, September 29, 2017

Query: Jeremiah Horan, White County

            Looking for info on Jeremiah Horan. Died, remarried? Born around 1828 in Ireland; Was in the 1870 census in Monticello, White County, married to Ellen; Not in the 1880 census; she remarried a Michael McDonald. Would your databases have any more info than ?

Michael G Horan

687 Summer Top Cir.

Fenton, MO 63026

Query: Nancy Wyett/Alvah Wheeler, Owen County

            Searching for Wyett Family. Only info I have is Nancy Wyett married Alvah Wheeler 17 Nov 1871 in Spencer, Owen County, Indiana. He was on 1870 census Washington Township,  Owen County, as railroad laborer. They moved to Maine between 1871 and 1880 where they appear on the Maine census with children. Where did she come from?         

Nancy Pike

287 Beach Rd.

Lincolnville, Maine 04849

Query: David McDaniel/Hester Johnson, Blackford County

             My second great grandparents David McDaniel and Hester Johnson were married in Blackford County on 21 Apr 1861.  My source info is from "Indiana Marriage Collection, 1800-1941".  The citation source is Blackford County IN Marriage Records Book A 1839-1857, Use Corrected Book A, page 88". 

            I need a complete marriage record.  I am hoping that the record lists parents of the bride and groom.  I am willing to pay a reasonable amount for this record.  Please advise.  Thank you. 

Ed Jennings

248 Huber Village Blvd

Westerville OH 43081

Query: Burr Adrian Welker, Vigo County

            I am looking for my great-grandfather Burr Adrian Welker’s birth certificate. He was born on Sept 13, 1884, in Indiana. It stated on his Certificate of Death Registration that he was born in Indiana; other than that detail, I do not know any other facts about his birth.

            I have contacted the State of Indiana but was told that since he was born before 1907, I should contact you. He died in Terre Haute, Indiana, on April 5, 1945. Burr Welker is my paternal grandfather's father. Please let me know the status if you can/cannot help me, so I can move on. Thank you kindly for an email or phone reply.

Rebecca Welker Ivatury

210.685.5222 ( cell)

Wednesday, September 27, 2017

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

State Archives Debuts First Online Catalog

State Archivist Jim Corridon announced on Tuesday that the first ever online Catalog for the Indiana State Archives is now live and ready for use.

Go to and take a look. There is also a short video on how to use the new catalog.

Genealogists should find the new tool of great use in their work. Congrats to Mr. Corridon and IARA!

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Research Tip: Indiana's Courts of Conciliation

If you've done research in Indiana's Court of Common Pleas records, you may have come across a reference to another court in the county: the Court of Conciliation.

The Indiana legislature passed "An act to establish Courts of Conciliation" on June 11, 1852, to go into effect on January 1, 1853. It called for the judge of each county's Court of Common Pleas to preside over a Court of Conciliation, to be held concurrently with the Court of Common Pleas. These courts of conciliation could hear cases about libel, slander, malicious persecution, assault & battery, or false imprisonment.

Unlike the Circuit Court and the Court of Common Pleas, the two parties who came before the Court of Conciliation could not be represented by an attorney. Parties were to appear on their own behalf. The only exceptions to this rule were if a party was under the age of 21 (in which case they had to be represented by their guardian) or was a woman (in which case she had to be represented by her husband or male friend). And in contrast to the other county courts, the decision of the Court of Conciliation could not be appealed – it was final.

The focus of the Court of Conciliation was also different from the Circuit Court and Court of Common Pleas. Rather than determining fault, the purpose was to get the two parties to reconcile their differences or effect a compromise. If the judge was successful in this, he would receive a $5 fee, which was to be paid equally by the two parties.

One example of a Court of Conciliation case occurred in Dearborn County in 1854, when Nancy Woolford sued Milton Beach for slander for words said by his wife. The compromise was that the wife denied saying the words, but her husband agreed to pay Woolford $75.80 in damages and court costs. Beach later unsuccessfully appealed to the state Supreme Court to void this agreement.

Courts of Conciliation existed in Indiana counties from January 1, 1853 until November 30, 1865, when the law was repealed.

This article originally appeared in the June 2017 issue of "Indiana News," IGS' free monthly email newsletter. Click here to subscribe and stay up-to-date with Indiana genealogy research tips and news.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

Archivist of the United States to Lecture At Purdue

David S. Ferriero,
Archivist of the United States
On Thursday, September 28, 2017, David S. Ferriero, Archivist of the United States, will present "Preserving the Past to Inform the Future: The View From the National Archives." 

This program is presented by the Purdue University Libraries. It is free and open to the public.

Thursday, September 28, 2017
Hiler Theater, Wilmeth Active Learning Center
Purdue University Campus, West Lafayette

Questions: or (765) 494-2849 

About David S. Ferriero
David S. Ferriero was confirmed as the 10th Archivist of the United States on November 6, 2009. Created in 1934, the National Archives and Records Administration (NARA) is responsible for preserving and providing access to the records of the U.S. Government. NARA has 43 facilities across the country, including 14 Presidential Libraries, containing approximately 13 billion pages of textual records; 42 million photographs; miles and miles of film and video; and an ever increasing number of electronic records.

Previously Mr. Ferriero served as the Andrew W. Mellon Director of the New York Public Libraries and held top library positions at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and Duke University. 

Mr. Perriero earned bachelor's and master's degrees in English literature from Northeastern University and a master's degree from the Simmons College of Library and Information Science. Mr. Ferriero served as a Navy hospital corpsman in Vietnam.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

New on the IGS Website: 31 Free Databases from Across the State

The Indiana Genealogy Digitization Project continues to generate more materials for Indiana genealogy research! Check out the latest databases, all available for FREE on the Indiana Genealogical Society website.

Bartholomew County:

Contributed by the Yellow Trail Research Center, Hope, Indiana:
See all Bartholomew County databases here.

Greene County:

Contributed by the Bloomfield-Eastern Greene County Public Library:
See all Greene County databases here.

Henry County:

Contributed by the East Central Indiana Genealogy Alliance:
See all Henry County databases here.

Marion County:

Contributed by the Samuel Bryan Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution, Beech Grove, Indiana:
See all Marion County databases here.

Parke County:

Contributed by the Parke County Historical Society:
See all Parke County databases here.

Sullivan County:

Contributed by the Sullivan County Public Library:
See all Sullivan County databases here.

College Records:

See all college databases here.

Does your organization have Indiana genealogy materials that need digitized? Apply for an IGS Indiana Genealogy Digitization Project grant, for a new scanner, computer, and related materials.

Photo of men from History of Farmersburg, Sullivan County, Indiana.

Friday, August 25, 2017

New Databases: Delaware, LaGrange, and LaPorte Counties - and More!

The newest set of databases on the IGS website includes college graduates, common school students, and Civil War soldiers. Check out these new additions to the IGS website.

Note: All of these are members-only databases. IGS members can log in to use them. Not a member? Join today and get access to these and more than 2,000 other databases, plus other member benefits.

College Records:

- Graduates of Franklin College, Franklin (1942)
A list of graduates, as published in the school's August 1943 bulletin. This database includes the student's name, hometown, and the degree they received.
- Graduates of University of Notre Dame, Notre Dame (1939)
A list of graduates, as published in the school's June 4, 1939 commencement program. This database includes the student's name, hometown, and the degree they received.
- Graduates of Tri-State College, Angola (1939)
A list of graduates, as published in a June 1939 newspaper article. This database contains the student's name, hometown, and the degree they received. NOTE: Tri-State College later changed its name to Trine University.

Delaware County:

- Students of Beech Grove School, Delaware County, Indiana (1899)
A list of students in grades 1 through 8, as published in a school souvenir for the 1898-1899 school year. NOTE: Beech Grove School was District No. 4 in Harrison Township.

LaGrange County:

The following are handwritten lists of men who joined various Indiana Legion companies in LaGrange County. The Indiana Legion was the state militia that was created during the Civil War to protect Indiana's borders. Membership was open to every able-bodied male in the state who was not already serving in the military.
- Roster of LaGrange County Sharpshooters, Indiana Legion, LaGrange County, Indiana (1861)
- Roster of Volunteers, Indiana Legion, LaGrange County, Indiana (1861-1863)
- Roster of Wolcottville Guards, Indiana Legion, LaGrange County, Indiana (1863)

LaPorte County:

The following are handwritten lists of men who joined various Indiana Legion companies in LaPorte County. The Indiana Legion was the state militia that was created during the Civil War to protect Indiana's borders. Membership was open to every able-bodied male in the state who was not already serving in the military.
- Roster of LaPorte Cavalry Company, Indiana Legion, LaPorte County, Indiana (1861-1863)
- Roster of Union Guards, Indiana Legion, LaPorte County, Indiana (1863)
- Roster of Westville Volunteers, Indiana Legion, LaPorte County, Indiana (1861-1863) 

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

IGS Names 3 New County Genealogists and Legislative Chair

The Indiana Genealogical Society is pleased to announce the appointment of three new Indiana County Genealogists and a new chair for the Legislative Committee. Indiana County Genealogists (ICGs) act as a liaison between the IGS District Director representing that area and the local societies and individuals in that county. The Legislative Chair works to monitor legislation in Indiana that can impact the genealogical community.

Steve Smith, Hendricks County ICG
Steve Smith is currently working at the Danville Public Library in the Genealogy Department helping patrons with their family history in Hendricks County. He has worked with the Hendricks County Heritage Project contained on the Indiana Memory website. Steve is not only a member of several genealogical and historical societies, he also belongs to the  Association of Professional Genealogists.

Margaret "Peggy" Biltz, Kosciusko County ICG
Peggy Biltz is a volunteer with the Kosciusko Historical Society. She has been doing research for over 30 years, and helping others for more than four years.

Teresa K. Price, Boone County ICG
Tersea  is currently the President of the  Boone County Genealogical Society, she has a enormous amount of knowledge of the records in the Boone County recorder's office. Teresa has been doing research for over 40 years. 

Michael Maben, Legislative Chair
Michael Maben is Immediate Past President of the Indiana Genealogical Society. He is an Associate Librarian and Lecturer in Law at the Maurer School of Law at Indiana University.

Contact information for all of the current ICGs and information about the ICG program can be found on the IGS website.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Query: William J. Davis, Hancock County

            I am looking for my great-great grandfather William J. Davis family.  I have William J being born in 1820 in Hancock County.  But Hancock was formed from Madison in 1828, and Madison was formed in 1823.  My question to you is-what county should I be looking at in 1820 for census records for the Davis family?  I really need a history lesson!  Thank you for any nudge you can give me.  Susan Larsen

Susan Larsen

1110 Belgrade Court

Plattsmouth, NE  68048

Query: Frederick Kysar/Kizer, Jennings-Bartholomew Counties

            Searching for records to prove "family connection" (parent/child relationship) between Frederick Keiser/Kiser/Kizer/Kyser/Kysar (b. 1761, Berks, PA; d. aft. Jan. 20, 1841, Jennings, IN; bur. - Kysar Family Cem.) & wife, Meriba/Mariba (Cornwall/Cornell; b. abt. 1766, KY?; d. May, 1841, Jennings, IN) and their 10 children: Solomon, William, John, Thomas Russell, Elizabeth, Phoebe, Samuel (my line), Jacob, Frederick Jr., & Sarah. (family lived in Nelson, Jefferson, Bullitt, Henry, Fayette - KY; & Jennings, Bartholomew - IN)

            Contact - 

- probate/will/intestate records for Frederick Kysar?

- church records - membership, births, deaths?

- death date for Frederick Kysar; & coroner's records, doctor's records, death notice/funeral             notice/obituary- newspaper clippings?

- old family bible records?

- last known records: 1840 US Census (Frederick Kyser, Jennings Co, IN); land deed- dated Jan. 20, 1841; NOT listed in 1850 census, so assume he died between Jan. 20, 1841 & before 1850 census.         


Kysar, Kyser, Keiser, Kizer, Kiser, Keyser, Kayser, etc.

Solomon (wife- Sarah/Sally Stucker)

William (wife - Sarah/Sally/Polly Hopkins)

John (unknown if marr.; may have died as young adult)

Thomas Russell (2 wives: Rebecca Hopkins & Hannah Hall)

Elizabeth (was kidnapped abt. age of 3 by Indians, maybe in/near Henry Co, KY; marr. a Native Amer. Indian)

Phoebe/Phebe (husb.- William H. Hopkins)

Samuel (wife- Rebecca Arbuckle)

Jacob (wife- Mary/Polly Hendrix)

Frederick Jr. (wife - Jane Cobb; her 2nd husb. - Stephen Patch)

Sarah (never married)

Eileen Cox

3212 SW Atwood Ave.

Topeka, KS  66614

Query: Peter Blackford Lennen, Hamilton County

            I have been attempting to trace my Lennen Family lineage. I have managed to trace the following Lennen Family Line to Peter Blackford Lennen and his wife Mary Ann (Ford) Lennen.

            Peter was born around 1821. Some indications are that he was born in Maryland, USA. Other sources indicate Indiana as his birthplace. Mary was also born around 1821. Some sources indicate her birthplace as Maryland as well. They were married in Hamilton County, IN, around 29 March 1842.

            Peter died in service (Union Army) during the Civil War, on 10 February 1863, in Grand Junction, Tennessee. Mary died in March 1897, in Hamilton County, IN. Peter was buried in Corinth National Cemetery, Alcorn, MS. Mary was buried in the Woodward-Gwynn Cemetery, Hamilton County, IN. They had seven children: Benjamin (1843), Sarah (1844), Ann (1848), Martha (1851), Mary (1852), Peter B. (1855), James Madison (1859).

            Any information welcome. I look forward to hearing from you soon.

Troy Lennen

6590 Dublin Circle

Colorado Springs, CO 80918

Query: Mary Eugenia Graves, Indiana (Modern)

             Mary Eugenia Graves was born 1951/1952, daughter of James Graves. She married ? and had a daughter Joann Tara ? b. Dec 2 1971. Who was Mary Eugenia Graves husband? Indiana county unknown. Thanks.

Jerry Frazier

1161 Debbie Hill Rd

Cotati, CA 94931

Saturday, August 12, 2017

Focus On: Owen County

If you are in the Owen County area this month, this looks like an interesting session.
[Thanks to Randi Richardson for this item.]

Saturday, August 5, 2017

New Databases: 11 Counties, Indiana University, Revolutionary War Vets and More

The latest set of databases on the IGS website includes materials for 11 counties across the states, four colleges, Revolutionary War veterans, and the Rebekah Assembly. Let's take a look:

Free Databases

Union County
- Students of Short High School, Liberty, Union County, Indiana (1938)
- Teachers of Short High School, Liberty, Union County, Indiana (1938)

Members-Only Databases

(IGS members can use these databases after they log in. If you're not a member yet, join today and have access to these and more than 2,000 other databases!)

College Records
- Evansville College, Evansville - Graduates (1939)
- Indiana University, Bloomington - Graduates (1881-1884)
- Valparaiso University, Valparaiso - Graduates (1953)
- Wabash College, Crawfordsville - Directories of Students and Faculty (1948)

County Records
- Allen County - Huntertown High School Teachers (1941)
- Benton County - Marriage Book Index (1841-1858)
- Clinton County - Kirklin Schools Students (1928) and Teachers (1928)
- Decatur County - Phone Directories for Clarksburg and New Point (1945)
- Johnson County - Union township High School Graduates (1888-1940)
- Marshall County - Liggett School Students (1904) (Note: this was in Center Township)
- Montgomery County - Crawfordsville High School Students (1943)
- Porter County - Valparaiso High School Students (1907)
- Switzerland County - Phone Directories for Vevay and Patriot (1955)
- Washington County - Salem High School Students and Teachers  (1932)

Military Records
- Revolutionary War - Indiana Veterans Denied Pensions (1840)

Statewide Records
- Fraternal Organizations - Rebekah Assembly Members in Indiana (1945)

Wednesday, August 2, 2017

New Free Databases: Jasper, Lawrence, Morgan, and Washington Counties

Thanks to the partners in the Indiana Genealogy Digitization Project, there are six new free databases on the Indiana Genealogical Society website. Here they are:

Jasper County

The following were contributed by the General Van Rensselaer Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution:

Lawrence County

The following was contributed by the Genealogical Society of Marion County:

Morgan County

The following were contributed by the Ten O'Clock Line Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution:

Washington County

The following was contributed by the Genealogical Society of Marion County:
The Indiana Genealogy Digitization Project is sponsored by IGS and awards a digitization kit for $500 to qualified Indiana non-profit groups. If your organization has genealogical materials that need to be digitized, please visit the IGS website for more details.

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

Query: Benjamin Franklin Timmons, Clinton County

            Hi, I am trying to track down a reference on FindAGrave to "Brinkhoff Funeral Home records". I'm helping a DAR applicant find the records to verify her information.

            Specially looking for Benjamin Franklin Timmons 1817-1895 and his wife Sarah. Findagrave has them buried at the Manson Cemetery in Clinton County but no gravestone picture. I assume the stones have been lost to time but somehow these records exist somewhere.

Any help will be greatly appreciated.

Mary Pat Berry

PO Box 227

Port Tobacco, MD 20677

Query: William Linden Wilson, Howard County

             Can you find any record of Dr. William Linden Wilson (1860-1945) ever having lived in Kokomo or Howard County?  He and his entire family were born and raised and some died and were buried in Hamilton County.  However, my grandmother, Louva Otilla Wilson Baker (1888-1976), clearly remembered watching Elwood Haynes driving his 'horseless carriage' around Kokomo and how her teacher would let them go to the classroom window and watch.

            I only know that he went from Bakers Corner to Clarksville (Hamilton Co.) to Adams (Decatur Co.) and on to Scipio (Jennings Co.).  Nothing to substantiate if and when they lived in Kokomo.  Any info would be greatly appreciated.

Max Benson

603 Arbor Trail

Euless, TX 76039

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Hendricks County Probate Project Update

The Indiana Genealogical Society, in partnership with the Hendricks County Clerk, the Town of Danville Clerk-Treasurer, and the Allen County Public Library, is working to digitize the Hendricks County probate records from 1824-1900.

There are now more than 1,000 probate files that have been digitized and made available for free on the IGS website.

Probate is more than just wills. It includes settlement of estates without a will, guardianships, adoptions, partition of land, etc.  The images below is part of a guardianship record for Alice, Louisa, Samuel, and Harriet Adams, minor heirs of David B. Adams, deceased.

Keep checking the database, as more files are continually being added.

Hendricks County, Indiana Probate - Guardianship

You should also see the other Hendricks County materials available on the IGS website.

Friday, July 21, 2017

Focus On: Ohio County

When you are doing family history research in Ohio County, Indiana, be sure to stop in at the Museum shown below. They have lots of local history materials plus a good county genealogy collection. (Of course, a couple of casinos in driving distance doesn't hurt either!)

Friday, July 14, 2017

IGS Website Now Has More Than 2000 Databases

The Indiana Genealogical Society recently hit a milestone. There are more than 2,000 databases on the IGS website! Each county has at least 8 database (most with many more), plus databases in the Military Records, Statewide Records, College Records, and IGS Records portions of the website.

Here are the newest databases on the IGS website:

Free Databases

Clay County
- Graduates of Bowling Green High School (1924-1965). Contributed by Randi Richardson.

Elkhart County
- Abstracts of Naturalization Records (1907-1918)

Greene County
The following were all contributed by the Bloomfield-Eastern Greene County Public Library.

- Bloomfield City Directory (1939).
- Bloomfield City Directory (1960)
- Graduates of Common Schools in Smith Township (1906)
- Index to Census of Greene County Poor House (1870)
- Index to Census of Greene County Poor House (1880)
- Index to Census of Greene County Poor House (1900)
- Index to Census of Greene County Poor House (1910)
- Index to Census of Greene County Poor House (1920)

Henry County
- New Castle City Directory (1894). Contributed by East Central Indiana Genealogy Alliance.

Monroe County
- Index to Photographs in Yearbooks of Stinesville School (1929-1939). Contributed by Randi Richardson.

Scott County
- Index to Plat Book for Johnson Township (1915). Contributed by Randi Richardson.

Sullivan County
- Merom Phone Directory (1918). Contributed by Sullivan County Public Library.

Members-Only Databases

The following databases are available to IGS members. Not a member? Join today for access to these and more than 2000 other databases!
Monroe County
- Veterans of Spanish-American War. Contributed by Randi Richardson.

Putnam County
- History of the Cataract/Mt. Zion Methodist Episcopal Church (1927)

Washington County
- Marriage Records of Quakers in Washington County (1816-1920). Contributed by Randi Richardson.

You can find a list of all of the databases on the IGS website by clicking here. Be sure to explore!

Tuesday, July 11, 2017

Research Tip: Federal Tax Assessment Lists

By July 1862 the federal government already faced mounting debts from fighting the Civil War. As a result, Congress passed the Internal Revenue Act, which imposed federal taxes on an individual's income, as well as on the purchase of many products and service.

Indiana tax lists from the 1800s were based on how much property someone owned, usually real estate, but sometimes also personal property (such as livestock) if it reached a certain minimum value.

However, the federal taxes that were assessed during the Civil War focused on those who owned personal property such as a horse and wagon, or professionals such as doctors and lawyers who received a license from the state. As such, these federal assessment lists from the 1860s can give you insight into a different group of ancestors than those that were included on Indiana's property tax lists from the same period.

An 1862 federal tax assessment list for Johnson County, Indiana:
Johnson County, Indiana federal tax assessment, 1862. Image courtesy Click here for full-size PDF (will open in new tab.)

The National Archives has microfilmed these federal tax assessment lists. Indiana's portion covers 1862 through 1866. Digital images are available at both (subscription required) and FamilySearch (free): 

For the FamilySearch database, you must browse the digital images; they are not yet indexed there. The records are arranged by state and then by county.'s database does have a searchable index, but if you also want to browse the digital images, be aware that they are arranged by state and then Congressional District, not by county. We have a table (PDF format) of Indiana's 92 counties and what Congressional District they were in from 1821 through 1911.

You might want to compare the quality/legibility of the digital images on the two sites. Here is the same Johnson County 1862 list, as viewed on FamilySearch:

Johnson County, Indiana federal tax assessmet, 1862. Image courtesy FamilySearch. Click here for full-size PDF (will open in new tab).
This article originally appeared in the Indiana Genealogical Society's free monthly email newsletter, Indiana News, which features news and information about Indiana genealogy. Click here to subscribe for free, so you can stay up-to-date and learn about Hoosier family history resources.

Monday, July 3, 2017

Digitization Kit #6: Bloomfield Sends Additional Files

What is really gratifying to us is all of the groups who send in data files above and beyond the minimums required. The Bloomfield-Eastern Greene County Library just sent in this file plus another and the Paoli Library also sent in an extra file the other day. Thanks much to both and to others from IGS. We're sure many researchers join us in saying, "Keep 'em coming, guys!"

Friday, June 30, 2017

New Free Databases for Howard and Morgan Counties

IGS is happy to announce several new free databases on the website. All of these were produced as part of the Indiana Genealogy Digitization Project.

Howard County:

Both of these were contributed by the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library.
- Graduates of District Schools in Howard Township, Howard County, Indiana (1908)
- Graduates of District Schools in Liberty Township, Howard County, Indiana (1911)

Morgan County:

Each of these were contributed by the Ten O'Clock Line Chapter, Daughters of the American Revolution, Martinsville.
- Graduates of Martinsville High School, Morgan County, Indiana (1901)
- Graduates of Martinsville High School, Morgan County, Indiana (1905)
- Graduates of Martinsville High School, Morgan County, Indiana (1906)
- Graduates of Martinsville High School, Morgan County, Indiana (1908)
- Graduates of Martinsville High School, Morgan County, Indiana (1909)
- Graduates of Martinsville High School, Morgan County, Indiana (1913)
- Graduates of Martinsville High School, Morgan County, Indiana (1914)

IGS' Indiana Genealogy Digitization Project provides digitization equipment to organizations with Indiana genealogy materials. In exchange for the equipment, the organizations agree to allow the images to be provided for free on the IGS website. We are grateful for the Kokomo-Howard County Public Library, the Ten O'Clock Line Chapter, DAR, and all of the partners in this project for helping make more records available.

If your organization has Indiana genealogy materials that need digitizing, please consider applying for a digitization kit.

Monday, June 26, 2017

Query: George James Shaw, Wabash County

             My grandpa was born Sept. 9, 1885; his name was George James Shaw, which may have been given to him at the orphanage in Wabash County. He was left at orphanage a few days old; had a sister too-he was told. My mother is still alive, and I would like to find out as much as I could about my grandpa, but not sure where to look.

            He said his father was born in Scotland and his mother in Ireland. Any help you can give me will be greatly appreciated. Thank you

Mert Richardson

706 - 6th Street

Hoquiam, WA 98550