Genealogy Committee Seminar | Navigating New York Research

Event Details:

Title: Navigating New York Research

Presenter: Jane E. Wilcox

Date/Time: Saturday, May 8, 2021, 9am-4pm

Format: Zoom

Cost: $10


Enjoy four presentations from the comfort of your own home to help you research your New York ancestors. The presentations cover records and repositories for both New York City and New York State.

Lecture descriptions:

The New York Gateway: Immigration, Emigration and Migration

New York has been the heart of U.S. immigration since the 1600s. Discover the origins of key immigrant and emigrant groups and settlers and where they went through 1940. Learn the New York migration routes and transportation modes that your New York ancestors may have taken. Putting your ancestors in the context of their times is key for researching them. Some research resources and ideas are featured.

New York City and State Governmental Vital Records

New York is a notoriously challenging state to find birth, death and marriage records. Navigating New York City and State governmental vital records requires a “quick sheet” to make sure you have looked in every possible place to find the indexes, the records and possible alternatives. Civil registration jurisdictions need to be clearly understood and considered, plus the key dates for laws and regulations that give context to what was actually collected, and when. And importantly, learn what is accessible today and how to order records.

Early Probate in New York: From Colonial Dutch and English to Statehood

New York has a notoriously complicated court system that affects all records, including early probate records which are of particular interest to genealogists. That New York’s probate system is difficult to navigate is an understatement. This talk will help demystify the first 225 years of estate records in New York (to 1848) by taking a journey to learn how and where to find wills and administrations through the centuries — from Dutch and English provinces to early New York State. We’ll explore Dutch notarial and provincial records, town records, and various court records including Mayor’s, Prerogative, Chancery, Common Pleas, Probate, and Surrogate’s and more found at the New York State Archives, county offices, online and more. Essential resources important for successful searching and examples using probate records will be featured.

Uncharted Waters: Diving into the Holdings of the New York State Archives

The New York State Archives (NYSA) at the Cultural Education Center in Albany holds a diverse collection of state governmental records. Come learn about both familiar and obscure resources that will help you advance your New York research. A demonstration for using the Finding Aids on the NYSA website will be featured to assist researchers in locating records at NYSA that could be pertinent to your family history.


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