Back in May, Jill Ball issued a geneameme challenge on GeniAus to share five favorite books used in our own research. She’s even posted Five Faves Geneameme – The Responses, but as I wasn’t off a ship and home until June 4 and then have scrambled to catch up with everything, I am a bit behind the times with my list.
As Jill is Australian, many of the responses cited books closely related to Australian research and history. I would love to see some American/European bloggers take on the Five Faves challenge and share titles that they’ve found useful.
Here is my list:
My all time favorite reference book is The Source: A Guidebook to American Genealogy, Third Edition by Loretto Dennis Szucs and Sandra Hargreaves Luebking. Every page is chock full of information about types of records, repositories, societies and organizations that one might need in his/her own research.
Next on my list is Over the Portage: Early History of the Upper Miramichi, Revised Edition by William R. MacKinnon, Jr. I have a number of Loyalist ancestors, including some who settled on the Miramichi. This little book talks about the early history, including the families who came to stay. Little has been written about this area, at least little that I’ve been able to access, so I treasure this book.
Third – two books that perhaps my son will someday enjoy, learning about the history and times in the city in which I was born: Wonderful Passaic: Memories and Recollections by Bob Rosenthal. Bob is older than me, but Passaic hadn’t changed much between his childhood and mine. Bob followed his first tome up with Climbing the Rainbow: 28 Glimpses of Growing Up in Passaic. To my surprise, two of my childhood friends contributed stories and one of them mentioned an early friend – me! Passaic hasn’t fared well with time, as the poverty level is extremely high there, but it was a great place to be a kid in the 1950s and I love reading all the stories.
Fourth place is a multi-way tie of a small collection of books that help me date old photos. I’d be lost without them. Tintypes Kwik Guide and 19th Century Card Photos Kwik Guide, both by Gary W. Clark, Family Chronicle’s More Dating Old Photographs 1840-1929 by Zapletal and Moorshead, Care and Identification of 19th-Century Photographic Prints by James M. Reilly and two by Maureen A. Taylor – Finding the Civil War in Your Family Album and Fashionable Folks: Hairstyles 1840-1900.
Last, but not least on my list would be a methodology book: Elements of Genealogical Analysis by Robert Charles Anderson, FASG from the New England Historic Genealogical Society. After 37 years of research, I find reading about advanced case studies and methods the best way to hone my own skills.
That’s it! Please share your own favorites in the comments or, if you are a blogger, please write a post of your own.