Roots & Branches

The Official Archives Blog

Finding Collections on

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Searching across all 2.6 billion records on is easy. But how can you find out what collections are available? This video will show you all about the Collections page, including the section on new and updated collections and how to find collections for a specific location. Read More » Launches 5 Million U.S. Vital Records

Category - is pleased to announce the release of more than 5 million birth, marriage, and death records to its members. If your family tree reaches into Alabama, Arizona, California or the District of Columbia, you will want to search in these records. The new collections include... Read More »

Using the 1850 Mortality Schedule

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You've probably thought of using the census to find your ancestors living with their families. But have you thought about using it to find when an ancestor died and their cause of death? In certain censuses, such as 1850, you can do just that. Read More »

Rhode Island: Vital Records in the Ocean State

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Rhode Island is the smallest of the 50 states, but it has a lot of genealogy. Recently, launched three Rhode Island vital records collections. Let's take a look at them and how they can help your genealogy. Read More »

5 Fantastic Collections from 2013

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It's the time of year when people start feeling nostalgic. (It seems natural for a genealogist to look backward!) Here's a look at five fantastic record collections that were added to during 2013. Read More »

Will the Real Jack Frost Please Stand Up?

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It can be fun to look up famous people in the census. With so many holiday songs playing right now, it seems like a good time to look up that harbinger of winter: Jack Frost. Read More »

Highlight: Massachusetts Collections

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Pilgrims are popular this time of year, but there is a lot more to Massachusetts genealogy. As Thanksgiving approaches, let's take a look at some of the Massachusetts collections on Read More »

New Collections: Delaware, Rhode Island, South Dakota, and D.C.

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What do Delaware, Rhode Island, South Dakota, and the District of Columbia have in common? Besides all of them having the letter "A" in their names, they all have new record collections on! Read More »

Second Cousins and Removed Cousins: What's the Difference

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What is a first cousin once removed? Is it the same as a second cousin? The short answer is "No, they're not the same thing." Let's take a look at what those cousin terms mean and how you can figure them out in your family tree. Read More »

This Is Why You Don't Skip Censuses

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It's tempting to skip something like the 1870 census because it doesn't list relationships. It's also tempting to think, "Oh, I know what's going to be in that record, so why bother looking for it?" The thing about genealogy is that you never know what's going to be in any given record. Read More »

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