Friday, December 6, 2019

How Many Hoosiers Have Irish Ancestry?

If you are like me, you have lots of ancestors on the Emerald Isle. Dick Eastman had an interesting article in his last Newsletter detailing an enormous effort to recreate the Four Courts fire loss. I plan to follow this project closely. How about you?

Saturday, November 30, 2019

Lineage Societies Deadline December 31.

Just a little heads-up: If you are working on an application for either The Society of Civil War Families of Indiana or The Territorial Guard Society of Indiana, you have about 30 days to have your envelope postmarked in 2019.

Monday, November 11, 2019

Investigate Your Culture At Ethnic Events

If you want to add depth to your lineage research, you might visit some of the many Indiana ethnic festivals held around the state every year. Documents are fine as far as they go, but you can't lose sight of the fact that those names were living people. IGS was at the Indy International Festival last week and especially enjoyed watching the folk dancing. Below is a Bulgarian dance group displaying a taste of their culture. Would some of your ancestors be doing this?  

Wednesday, October 30, 2019

African-American Genealogy Group Celebrates 20-Years!

Curt Witcher of ACPL and IGS will be the featured speaker at the IAAGG Anniversary Celebration in Indy on November 16th. See registration info below. See you there.

Saturday, October 26, 2019

Join IGS At The International Festival

Every year the Nationalities Council of Indiana presents an International Festival at the Indiana State Fairgrounds in November. This year the Indiana Genealogical Society will have an outreach booth at the Festival. Since genealogy is an international and ethnic activity, we thought is would be a natural fit. If you've never been there, we encourage you to attend and see some of your ancestry in action.

[We need several volunteers to help staff our booth #505, which has to be attended from 9am to 9pm all three days. If you can give a few hours any day, email Ron Darrah at before Nov. 7th. You'll be glad you volunteered and attended!]

Saturday, October 19, 2019

Invitation to Cemetery Dedication, Whitley County, Nov 10

[Special From IGS Director Sue Caldwell]

Last year IGS gave a $1,000 grant to the Whitley County Genealogical Society for the Friends of Concord Cemetery for restoration work at the Concord Cemetery.  Yesterday I received an invitation to attend a dedication ceremony.   Before and after photos of the cemetery are amazing. 

The dedication will be held at Concord Cemetery, Johnson Rd. and 150 N (Carroll Rd) near Columbia City  in Whitley County on Sunday Nov 10 at 2 PM.  "The 30th Indiana Volunteer Infantry Re-enactors will be dedicating our eight Civil War veterans buried at Concord.  The ceremony will include a laying of the wreath gun salute, along with a horse drawn coach from Sheets and Childs Funeral Home in Churubusco."

Jim and I will probably attend as we recently discovered that I have a 3rd gr. grandmother buried in a nearby cemetery and that he has a couple of members of his Baker family buried in the same county.

If you and other IGS members did not receive the invitation, will you please pass this information on to our group. 

Tuesday, October 8, 2019

Lots of October Genealogy In Hamilton County


Tues, Oct. 15 – Gen Forum Explore the Indiana State Library” 1:00 – 2:00 PM – 1st Floor Program Room -- Join Bethany Fiechter, Head of Rare Books and Manuscripts at the Indiana State Library, for an introduction to the library’s collection. Learn about resources that will help you in your genealogy research and how to access materials both in person and online.

Tues, Oct. 29 – Database Learning Session 3 – “American Ancestors for Genealogy” – 2:00 – 3:30 PM – 2nd Floor Training Room Join us for a basic demonstration of one of the most widely used online genealogical resources in the country, featuring searchable online collections and information on over 135 million people. You’ll have some class time to gain hands-on experience with the database, so bring information about your ancestor and see what you can find. We’ll show you how to print or save your data. Class is limited to 10 people. Registration is required by calling the Reference Desk at (317) 844-3362. Clay Township residents will have priority; nonresidents will be placed on a waiting list and will be invited to attend if space permits.

Tues, Nov. 12 --  Database Learning Session 4 – “Searching the Internet for Genealogy”   2:00 – 3:00 PM -- 2nd Floor Training Room  -  The library is always a great place to start your research, but the internet can also be a good genealogical resource.  Come check out this basic overview of a few helpful databases that can be found right on the web, including WorldCat, Google Books, and HathiTrust.  Registration is required by calling the Reference Desk at (317) 844-3362.  Clay Township residents will have priority; nonresidents will be placed on a waiting list and will be invited to attend if space permits.

Tues, Nov. 19 – Gen Forum -- “Probate Records: “Dying to Help Out” -- 1:00 - 2:00 PM -- Program Room  --  In this session, Ron Darrah from the Indiana Genealogical Society will introduce Indiana wills, estates, and probate procedures. We will see what records were created and how to use them.

Every Tues, & Thur.  -  Computer Lab - The Training Lab on the Library’s 2nd floor is open for genealogy research every Tuesday, 10 a.m.-1 p.m. and every Thursday, 6 – 8:45 p.m.  Skilled volunteers are there to help guide you with your genealogy research and help you use the library’s special genealogy databases.

Wednesday, September 11, 2019

Digitization Workshop, State Library, September 27

Registration is still open for the 2019 Indiana Memory DPLA Fest, which will take place on Friday, Sept. 27, 2019 from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. at the Indiana State Library. This annual conference brings together librarians, archivists, museum professionals, educators and others to celebrate Indiana’s Digital Public Library of America Service Hub. This year's keynote presentation is titled "State of the Hub: Past, Present and Future."

A recap of last year's IMDPLA Fest, which featured keynote speaker John Bracken, executive director of DPLA, can be found here.

Click here to register. Registration closes on Monday, Sept. 16, 2019. Free parking will be provided. Click here for a full schedule of the day's events.

Looking for a Part-Time Archivist Position?

Monday, August 19, 2019 Adds Wayne County Marriages

[This notice came to our attention from Ancestry via Dick Eastman's Newsletter.] Web: Wayne County Indiana Marriage Records, 1811-1903 [database on-line]. Lehi, UT, USA: Operations, Inc., 2019.

Original data: Wayne County Indiana Marriage License Database. Richmond, Indiana, USA: Wayne County Indiana Government.

About Web: Wayne County Indiana Marriage Records, 1811-1903

All data in this third-party database was obtained from the source’s website. does not support or make corrections or changes to the original source.

Wednesday, August 14, 2019

New Indy African-American Marker To Be Dedicated Saturday

The State of Indiana installed the marker on August 12, 2019, and it will be dedicated on August 17, 2019, at 11 am. 
Northwest corner of West 21st Street at N. Boulevard Place.
            It is at the bottom of the North bound I-65 on ramp at 21st Street, just north of Methodist Hospital. Come honor this great Hoosier hero.

Monday, August 12, 2019

Monday, August 5, 2019

Check Your County For WW1 Women's Cards

Hoosier volunteers are working on creating a great new database for Indiana women. Please check around your local archives, museums, libraries, and societies to see if there are any additional cards to add to the database. You'll be glad you did! Thanks.

Saturday, July 27, 2019

Indiana DNR Improves SHAARD Cemeteries Map

          The Indiana Historic Buildings, Bridges, and Cemeteries map (IHBBC) is a great resource! This new map, which replaces the former SHAARD GIS map, is run by Esri and can be accessed online within the Division of Historic Preservation and Archaeology via the SHAARD Online Database link.

          Once you get to the SHAARD Database page, click on the Indiana Historic Buildings, Bridges, and Cemeteries Map link. This will allow you to launch the app and the user can begin to explore the map.
          For returning users, this map has many new features and improvements to the old SHAARD GIS map. A User Guide is available and will be updated as new features and updates are added to the map.

          Contact Megan Copenhaver ( for specific questions or suggestions concerning the map. Thanks and happy searching!
SHAARD Map of Sullivan County

Click on the gray triangles for cemeteries

Thursday, July 25, 2019

State Library Adds Fire Insurance Maps Subscription

          The Indiana State Library has a new resource, Fire Insurance Maps Online (FIMo). 

          It contains Sanborn, Baist, and other insurance maps for over 300 Indiana cities and towns covering the mid-1880s to mid-1960s.  The best feature is that you can put in a modern address or geographic coordinates and it will show you what maps are available for that location and allow you to overlay the historic map over modern Google imagery.  You can then download images to a flash drive or print them. 

          This subscription resource is only available on location, but the trip to the Indiana State Library in Indianapolis is worth the trip!

Monday, July 22, 2019

FamilySearch Digital Library Update

I picked up a printed copy (remember those?) of the Ohio Genealogy News 
at the OGS booth during the Midwestern Roots Conference. 
Kip Sperry had a page there about the following resource, which led me to check it out.
If you were not aware of it, FamilySearch for years has been partnering with many repositories to digitize their genealogy and history books collections. 
By now this resource is beyond huge, 
and among other items is packed with family histories.
Login to (accounts are free), open the Search tab, and then Books. 
Keep coming back, because hundreds of folks and scanners are adding to this collection every day...every day...every day!.

Monday, July 8, 2019

Probates Sorting Day, Plainfield, Friday, July 12

If you have some free time near Hendricks County, IGS volunteers could use some help. 
C'mon Down! 

Friday, June 14, 2019

Indiana State Archives Open on Saturday, July 27

The Indiana State Archives will be open on Saturday, July 27 from 10:00am - 4:00pm.

From S. Chandler Lighty, Executive Director:

The Indiana State Archives will be open on Saturday, July 27 from 10-4.
We’re opening that day for a small group, but we wanted to extend the opportunity to other researchers who might take advantage of a Saturday research day at the Archives. We’re using this opportunity, and probably a few other dates later in the fall, to gauge whether or not folks will take advantage of Saturday research hours. 
 If you want Saturday hours at the State Archives, we encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity!

The Archive is located at 6440 E. 30th St., Indianapolis, IN 46219.

You can find their website at

Wednesday, June 12, 2019

Explore Your Native-American Ancestry, June 22-23

Genealogical research isn't all just documents; it should also be exploring the lifestyles of your ancestors-dress, language, art, music, food, games, and fun.  
Visit the Eiteljorg Museum in Indianapolis to see culture brought to life. 

Saturday, June 8, 2019

Any Hoosier Ancestors Attend A School Like This?

Indiana used to have hundreds of small one- and two-room schoolhouses, very much like the Morris School in Tippecanoe County. If you have never seen one and/or you would like to help preserve one, check out this project in West Lafayette. Picture your great-grandparents here...

Monday, June 3, 2019

Muncie Is The Place To Be On June 15!

IGS will have a table at the Genealogy Fair in Muncie, so be sure to stop by when you are in the area. Lots of other good resource groups will also be there to help you with your questions and puzzling situations. Don't miss this FREE event!

Wednesday, May 29, 2019

State Library Hosts Summer Lecture Series

The Indiana State Library Summer Lecture Series:

Topics of Historical and Genealogical interest.

            Join us at the Indiana State Library, as we host a series of lectures on our open Saturdays during the months of June, July, and August.  The lectures are free and open to the public.  Parking is available in the Senate Avenue parking garage across from the library.  Light snacks will be provided. 

All talks will begin at 11:00 a.m.

Each lecture is worth 1 LEU.

Registration required.

June 8 – Dr. Michella Marino and Jill Weiss Simins from the Indiana Historical Bureau present “How Did We Get Here? Why History Matters and How to Start Researching It”.  Registration deadline is Wednesday, June 5.

July 13 – Professional genealogists John Barr and Amber Oldenburg dig deep into land records.  Broaden your understanding of land records, the clues they can provide, and how it all fits into your genealogical research.  John Barr presents “Map reading for Genealogists: When North isn't...” and Amber Oldenburg presents “Land Records: A Family Historian’s ‘Bread and Butter.’”  Registration deadline is Wednesday, July 10.

 [Note: Amber Oldenburg is the Central District Director of IGS.]

August 10 – Nicole Poletika from the Indiana Historical Bureau presents “Unigov: The Creation of Modern Indianapolis and Its Suburbs.”  Registration deadline is Wednesday, August 7.

            Registration information can be found here:

 Let me know if you need further information.

            Thanks,  Jamie Dunn, Supervisor, Genealogy Division, Indiana State Library

Monday, May 20, 2019

Lake County Must-Visit: Merrillville History Museum

When you're in northwest Indiana, we recommend exploring the Museum in Merrillville. Lots of great stuff, especially if your folks settled in that area--or if they didn't!

Wednesday, May 15, 2019

How to Commemorate Your Indiana Civil War Ancestor

Did you know that the Indiana Genealogical Society offers a way for your to commemorate your Indiana ancestors who fought in the Civil War?

The Society of Civil War Families of Indiana is open to any IGS member who descends from someone who fought in an Indiana unit or who lived in Indiana when he enlisted in a unit from another state.

Members of SCWFI are recognized at the IGS annual conference, receive a certificate, and have their application and documentation placed on file at the Allen County Public Library. That makes applying to SCWFI a great way to not only commemorate your ancestor, but also preserve your research for future generations!

What Do You Need to Prove

You need to document the connection of each generation from you back to the Civil War ancestor. You also need to prove his (or her) service.

You can find the Rules of Evidence, which outline what is and isn't acceptable evidence, on the IGS website.

Deadline for Applying

Applications are due December 31 for induction at the next year's IGS conference. Applicants are advised to apply early to allow time to obtain additional documentation, if needed.

Apply Today

You can get more details about SCWFI and the application form at

Tuesday, May 14, 2019

Miami County Ancestors?

If you have family history from the Peru area, you should drive over to the Miami County Museum. Maybe some of your folks are featured in their huge collection.

Friday, May 3, 2019

Indiana Huguenot Society Met In Indianapolis Last Week

If you have any French Protestant ancestry, you might want to contact this Indiana society.

Saturday, April 27, 2019

Underground Railroad, Rising Sun, Indiana

 We found this interesting brochure down in Ohio County this past week. Anyone's family down there?

Friday, April 12, 2019

Query: Anna M. Springman, Oldenburg and Muncie, Indiana

            I am searching for information on the Springman family who migrated to Oldenburg, Indiana from Bavaria. I would like to find information starting with Anna M. Springman (Yohler married name) Born: 8/6/1881 Oldenburg, In and died 10/22/1975 in Muncie, Indiana.

            I have located an obituary but would like to learn more. I'm researching for my Grandfather, and he just learned that Anna is his Grandmother on his biological father's side of the family.

            Please let me know if you have any tips or advice and if you are able to assist in our search. We are very grateful for your time and consideration! Thank you. 

Jen Ellison

Query: Harry William Osborn (Busick), Franklin County

            Re:  Harry William Osborn  (Harry William Busick)  birth/adoption  (Born September 10, 1888)

            Harry William Osborn who was the father of my favorite uncle, Norbert G. Osborn who told  me that he didn’t know anything about his father’s side of the family since his Dad had been adopted.

            My uncle died many years ago, but with his son’s encouragement, I am searching to find out who exactly were Harry William’s birth parents and who were his adoptive parents.  It appears from the records, that Harry William could have been born in either Franklin County, Indiana or Franklin County, Ohio.

            To find the truth about Harry William, I want to hire a genealogist expert in handling Harry William’s situation who knows how to research adoption records.  Do you know genealogists who may be interested in helping find the truth about Harry William?

            If you know genealogists who would be willing to pursue this line of inquiry, please let me know.  If you know approximately the amount of charges, I would like to hear that as well.

            If you need more information, please let me know.  I appreciate your taking time to read and consider my request.

Sandra Henselmeier Funk

Indianapolis, Indiana

Query: Seeking Ford, Indiana

            I have found some ancestors who were born in Ford, Indiana. I cannot find any information on such a place. Do you have information on this town? I will appreciate any information that you can give me. Sincerely,

Barbara Collingwood Pruitt

2118 North Wilmar Drive

Quincy, Illinois  62301

Query: Female Workers, WW2, Hammond, Indiana

            My mother worked in one of the factories during WW2 in Hammond, Indiana. She was the first woman overhead crane operator. Do you have any information on this.

Luzetta Catherine Pettet

2118 North Wilmar Drive

Quincy, Illinois 62301


Thursday, March 28, 2019

Today St. Louis, Tomorrow Indiana?

The below article was posted Tuesday by Dick Eastman on his EOGN newsletter. I immediately pictured the Indiana State Archives being featured in a similar article in the near future. Since the Archives collection is in a rickety building at the far end of its service life, which was never intended to be a secure archival structure, a fire at that location would be a disaster beyond imagining. Do you think the Indiana Legislature ever reads the fire statistics? Do you think the legislators can add 2 + 2?

Monday, March 18, 2019

Query: Mateus Maryak, Lake or Vigo Counties

           This is a long shot for sure.  My grandfather Mateusz Mariak in Poland, and Mateus Maryak when he came to the United States, arrived here in 1907 and lived for some time in Philadelphia 

            A story from my grandfather and uncle identifies that Mateus went to Gary, Indiana, or Terre Haute, Indiana, and became partners in either a haberdashery or Dry Goods store (on a corner lot in Gary per my grandmother). 

            Are there any resources that might indicate some type of business ownership approximately between 1907 and 1917?  By 1920 he was already living again in Pennsylvania.  Thanks in advance.

Gerard Maryak

970 Fifth Street

North Huntingdon, PA 15642

Query: George F. Miller, Decatur County

            Hi,  Do you have a collection of obituaries?  Or do you know where I might find one for George F Miller who died in 1929 in Greensburg (Decatur County)? Thanks for your help.

Andrea Betts

Sequim, WA>

Query: Susan/Susannah Gilaspy/Gillespie, Clay County

            I am trying to locate records regarding my four times great-grandmother Susan or Susannah Austin Gilaspy (Gillespie).  She died in Clay County, Indiana in 1880, but I have not been able to locate a death record for her. 

            I am trying to establish that her parents are Hannah Doty Austin and Aaron Austin.  Thank you!

Denise Gillespie Blair

1783 Bay Leaf Drive

Saratoga Springs, UT, 84045

Thursday, February 28, 2019

Query: John Davis/Catherine Whitesel, Randolph County

     I am looking for John Davis, born 1840-1846 in Ohio; married Catherine Whitesel in 1881 in Randolph County, Indiana. They had a son Franklin T. Davis, born 1884 in Jackson Township, Randolph County.


5764 W Caffey Ln

Homosassa, FL 34446

Query: Joseph & Ann Baylie, Lawrence County

            Joseph Baylie, my third Great Grandfather; born abt 1827 in Switzerland. Arrived in 1848 from Glasgow, Scotland; 1850 U S Census lived in Davidson County, Tennessee; 1880 U S Census Lived in Mitchell, Lawrence, Indiana. He was a confectionary (Baker).

            He had a daughter Sarah Ann Baylie, born 5 Mar 1862 in Nashville, Davidson, Tennessee. (My Great Grand Mother)

            She was married at the home of Joseph and Ann Baylie in Mitchell, Lawrence, Indiana, on 3 Aug 1886, to Charles Hyde Webster, my Great Grandfather. This is the last record of Joseph & Ann Baylie. They didn't appear in the 1900 census.

            I'm looking for any assistance to locate any information about their deaths.  I'm not sure how to collect land deed records. I would appreciate any guidance you could provide. Thanks

Charles K Webster

Postal Address: 13017 Fencerow Rd

Fort Worth, TX 76244-8103

Wednesday, February 13, 2019

Bible Question From The Kokomo Library

[Anyone have a good answer for Amy Russell in Kokomo?]      

      We offer a service of scanning family Bible genealogy pages for anyone who brings one in.  We ask if we can post their information publicly on our Howard County Memory Project.  Occasionally, someone will *gift* us with Bibles.  This is beginning to become a storage problem.  If the book itself has no historical value, with the exception of the family pages, is there a respectful way to get rid of the book? 

            I know this is a very touchy issue because I have tried to get an answer on disposing of Bibles with mold (in my personal collection).  I have been told that the books can be burned in the same manner a flag would be burned.  I have also been told to bury the books. 

            So, what do I do with the Bibles gifted to us and taking up space in storage? (After we *harvest* all the genealogically significant information.)

            Thanks for your insight,

Amy Russell

Head, Genealogy & Local History Dept

Kokomo-Howard County Public Library

220 N. Union St. Kokomo, IN 46901


Know Any Jewish Civil War Soldiers?

[We received this email about a Civil War demographic not usually mentioned. Pertain to your family?]
Good Morning,

        My name is Eliza Kolander, and I am writing to you on behalf of the Shapell Manuscript Foundation, with regards to our Roster Project, a comprehensive database of Jewish-American soldiers and sailors who fought in the Civil War for both the Union and the Confederacy. Our starting point was Simon Wolf’s 1895 The American Jew as Patriot, Soldier and Citizen, and over the last decade, we’ve verified the names he included as Jewish or not, identified their accurate military service, and added more than a thousand soldiers that Wolf omitted.

        The result of more than 25,000 hours of research, we are convinced that the Shapell Roster will be of interest to academic scholars, descendants, and anyone interested in Jewish American history. We hope to engage the public with primary source material--the human side of history--while significantly modifying the scholarship on Jews in America in the 19th and early 20th centuries.

        Based on your mission, I thought that your organization might be interested in this project, which we hope to make available to the public for the first time in 2019. Our searchable database, which will be free to the public, will go live with a limited set of records. As we complete additional research, more records will become available. We are so excited, and hope institutions like yours will be, as well.

        Through my communication with you, I hope to connect with

  • descendants whose ancestors served during the American Civil War and/or
  • organizations and institutions with information and sources relating to Jewish-American Civil War Soldiers. 
  • If you have any thoughts or questions, please do not hesitate to reach out.

Thank you,

Eliza Kolander

Shapell Roster Project

Shapell Manuscript Foundation

Monday, February 11, 2019

Query: John A. Williamson, Marion County

      I am writing a family history of John A. Williamson, B. 1841, Kentucky. He is listed with his wife Susan on the 1880 census living on Brookside Avenue, Indianapolis, Marion, Indiana.      
      They had 4 children, Annie A., Clara B., Ida M. (my husband's grandmother), and Bertha. I am interested in adding to the historical perspective of Indiana's pioneer families by publishing my research.

      Any sources interested in publishing histories of pioneer families that you can direct me to in Indiana would be most helpful. Thank you!

Dorothy Seehausen

366 West St. Joseph St. #14

Green Bay, Wisconsin

Wednesday, January 30, 2019

Have A Civil War Pension File Stashed Away?

If you are like hundreds of Indiana genealogists, sometime in the past you have ordered a Civil War Pension file from the National Archives for an ancestor of yours. After you squeezed all your family info out of it, did you put it away in an envelope or folder and never looked at it again? Yeah, me, too.
How would you like to share that file (that probably cost you a mint!) and help other researchers working on their relatives? You might even discover a relative yourself.
IGS recommends that you dig out that dusty file and send it--original, printed copy, or digital file--to the Allen County Public Library, so they can put it on the below page of their website.
Go to, then tab Databases, tab Free Databases, tab Our Military Heritage. See "Share Materials" at the bottom right? Select that link and follow the directions. Easy as pie and thankyouverymuch!
                               [ACPL says 300 dpi TIFF images work the best.]

[Actually, you can share all kinds of military records here; spend a little time looking around and see what you might have that someone else could use. Maybe there's even something that you can use!!]

Sunday, January 27, 2019

State Archives WW1 Project: Work From Home!

If you have a few spare hours and want to increase Indiana's World War One online resources, go to and sign up to work from home at your own pace. Did your ancestor march and sing "It's A Long Way To Tipperary?"