Notable Genealogy Blog Posts, 4 March 2012

The following recent blog posts are those that I consider important or notable. Unlike other similar blog lists, I cannot guarantee that they will all be from the past week. (Some weeks I simply do not have time to read any blogs.) But I will try to write this on a fairly regular basis.

Malissa Ruffner, “Treasure Hunt – Using the WPA/HRS Index,” Family Epic blog, posted 14 February 2012 ( : accessed 29 February 2012). I was immediately drawn to this post because it discusses the recent resurrection of the Baltimore City Archives in Maryland. (I can remember several years ago when the old Baltimore City Archives was closed because of poor archival conditions.) But Malissa also discusses a name index for Baltimore City created by the Works Progress Administration during the Depression. Do researchers in other areas know of other similar indexes?

Malissa Ruffner, “(Loose) Paper Chase,” Family Epic blog, posted 21 February 2012 ( : accessed 29 February 2012). Another great post from Malissa! This one contains the trifecta: slave research, research in loose court papers, and researching historic laws.

Brenda Joyce Jerome, CG, “Free or Slave?,” Western Kentucky Genealogy Blog, posted 16 February 2012 ( : accessed 3 March 2012). Ms. Jerome discusses an example of a “certificate of freedom” in Kentucky, granted to a free black man born to a white woman. As she reports, the status of children followed the status of their mother, so anyone born to a free woman was also therefore free. This is a seldom-mentioned law that existed throughout most of the country.

James Tanner, “Distance — a misunderstood concept,” Genealogy’s Star blog, posted 29 February 2012 ( : accessed 3 March 2012). In this post, Mr. Tanner describes the importance of physical distance (rather than political boundaries) and travel time in researching our ancestors.

And I also must mention two blogs that exemplify the possibilities of how blogs can be used to educate and demonstrate key genealogical skills:

Rachal Mills Lennon, M.A., CG: Finding Southern Ancestors at Ms. Lennon uses case studies to explore advanced research methods, particularly the “FAN Club” (family, associates, neighbors) principle or “cluster genealogy.”

Margaret G. Waters: Orangeburgh Plats: Orangeburgh District, South Carolina Land Records at Ms. Waters has been platting early surveys in Orangeburgh District, South Carolina, using topographic maps. If you are researching in this area, this site is an essential resource. Even if you are not researching in this area, the examples set and methodology used by Ms. Waters will help.

7 thoughts on “Notable Genealogy Blog Posts, 4 March 2012

  1. Thanks for the mentioning my posts, Michael. I particularly thought of you as I worked on slavery law. I almost emailed you once or twice with questions!

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