New on my bookshelf, June 2014

I have purchased quite a few books in the past six months, from a number of sources. Not all of them are new, but they are new to my library. Here are a few that are noteworthy:

Board for Certification of Genealogists. Genealogy Standards: Fiftieth Anniversary Edition. Nashville, Tenn.:, 2014. This is without question the most significant new book that any genealogist can purchase this year. For almost fifteen years, The BCG Genealogical Standards Manual (Ancestry Publishing, 2000) has literally been the defining measure of quality genealogical research. This new edition offers substantial reorganization and revision of the standards of our field, clarifying and consolidating them to improve understanding. Recommended for the bookshelf of every genealogist. Kindle edition also now available.

Buggy, Joseph. Finding Your Irish Ancestors in New York City. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2014. This book provides detailed practical information on researching the Irish in New York City, including strategies for researching the Irish, lesser-known New York City records, detailed information on New York City Catholic churches, etc. A necessary addition to the bookshelf of anyone researching Irish families or New York City families, and especially those researching Irish families in New York.

McCartney, Martha W. Jamestown People to 1800: Landowners, Public Officials, Minorities, and Native Leaders. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., 2012. In over 400 pages, this volume presents encyclopedic biographies of every individual appearing in seventeenth- and eighteenth-century Jamestown records. Some entries contain a single sentence; others cover multiple columns. Each entry provides abbreviated citations to all records sources used.

Schreiner-Yantis, Netti, and Florene Speakman Love. The Personal Property Tax Lists for the Year 1787 for Gloucester County, Virginia. Springfield, Va.: Genealogical Books in Print, 1987. These small booklets are available for most Virginia counties. I purchased this one for a large client project currently in progress. The real strength of these editions is that the tax lists are presented both in their original alphabetical order and in chronological order by the date of assessment. This second version of the list provides insight into who was assessed the same day, and therefore likely lived near each other.

Little, Barbara Vines. Inheritance in Colonial Virginia. 2nd edition. Richmond, Va.: Virginia Genealogical Society, 2014. In its 30 pages, this booklet provides necessary information on its subject. Includes extracts from the colonial laws, diagrams of intestate descents, brief case studies, definitions of terms from Black’s Law Dictionary, etc. [I purchased this at the VGS booth at the 2014 National Genealogical Society annual conference, but cannot find it on Amazon or on the VGS website.]

Gobble, MaryAnne. Chicago Manual Of Style Guidelines (Quick Study). [Boca Raton, Fla.]: BarCharts, 2012. All writers should have the Chicago Manual of Style within reach. Possibly also Turabian’s A Manual for Writers. This QuickStudy guide—six laminated pages—condenses many of the most important rules of CMS for easy access. Included are sections on “Preparing a Manuscript” (Document Layout; Illustrations, Tables & Charts), “Copyright & Fair Use,” “Style & Usage” (Bias-Free Language; Tactics for Achieving Gender Neutrality; Punctuation; Capitalization; Abbreviations & Acronyms; Quotations), “Tricky Words,” and—every genealogist’s favorite subject—“Documentation” (Citing Sources).

Beidler, James M. The Family Tree German Genealogy Guide: How to Trace Your Germanic Ancestry in Europe. Cincinnati, Ohio: Family Tree Books, 2014. I haven’t read this one yet, but it looks like a good overview of German research. A cursory flip through the books shows that it contains a lot of online resources which may become dated, but also has a lot of discussion and images of original records.

Henderson, Michael Nolden, with Anita Rochelle. Got Proof!: My Genealogical Journey Through the Use of Documentation. Suwanee, Ga.: The Write Image, 2013. I purchased this book directly from the author when I met him at a recent speaking engagement in Atlanta. This book is a memoir of the author’s research into his own family history in Louisiana. I had been reading Mr. Henderson’s blog for a few years, as he dove into the difficulties of researching Louisiana Creole families of color in Spanish and French colonial Louisiana. This book offers more of this, culminating with Mr. Henderson’sacceptance into the Sons of the American Revolution and ultimate election to the presidency of the Button Gwinnett Chapter, Georgia Society SAR.

Archives de France. Les archives notariales: Manuel pratique et juridique. Paris: La Documentation Française, 2013. There is a serious dearth of books on French genealogy. Wanting (and needing) to learn more about the subject, I was forced to come up with a unique solution. Visit — the French version of There, I found a lot of books on genealogy, written in French for French audiences. This particular book, the first of what will likely be many additions to my library, covers notarial archives (which is where you will find most French land records). When purchasing foreign research books, it is helpful if you can read the language.

4 thoughts on “New on my bookshelf, June 2014

  1. Can you recommend other French books to help in French genealogy research? I am French, but I am the only one of my family living in the US and interested in genealogy. I too get books at once in a while, but this is expensive and would appreciate some recommendations. Thanks,

  2. Michael, I want to thank you for telling me that Helen Leary’s North Carolina book was a must-have. I am learning so much from it. Now it is one of my favorites.

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