MIDDLEBURY-Have you ever been curious to learn more about your family's origins?
Maybe your great-grandfather who fought inWorld War I or your great-grandmother who used to make all her own clothing? Where did they come from, what did they look like, where did they settle once they came to America?
Folks digging into their family background will want to spend an afternoon in Ilsley Public Library in Middlebury. The library just unveiled a new database called the Ancestry Library Edition.
The new library tool is free to residents of Addison County; there is no other well-organized database like it in the area. The resource is especially good for beginners just starting out in family tree research.
"This database is for those both starting out and for experienced genealogists," said Chris Kirby, librarian for adult services and technology at Ilsley. "It can only be accessed in the library but it is available on all of our public computers."
The Ancestry Library Edition collection has over 6,000 databases, including key collections such as U.S. Federal Census images and indexes from 1790 to 1930, plus vital, church, court and immigration records.
Some databases provide historical background, and others include census data, birth, marriage and death documents. Researchers can also find leads to a variety of other materials, like books, that are aides for research.
If you want to do genealogical research from your online computer at home, Heritage Quest Online is available remotely, however, only those with an Ilsley Public Library card will be able to access the service this way. It includes the digitized UMI Genealogy and Local History Collection and the 1790-1930 U.S. Federal Census.
Ilsley staff members will offer two free workshops on the genealogical databases: Friday, April 8, at 3 p.m. and Saturday, April 9, at 10:30 a.m. No registration is required.
The new Ancestry Library Edition at Ilsley was made possible by the Friends of the Library thanks to a donation of a member.