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GETTING STARTED

  Researching in Gwinnett County

       
       This is a new page and a work in progress.  If you are a "seasoned" Gwinnett County researcher and would like to share your tips on GA research,  please let me know!    Others will benefit from your experience! Pat Sabin.

        I'm Pat Sabin, your host for the Gwinnett County GAGenWeb.    Because of my avid  interest in the history and genealogy of my ancestors,  I  host a number of genealogy, history and vintage postcard web sites, as well as several mailing lists in different parts of the country.

        My contribution to the Gwinnett County GAGenWeb is in  maintaining and coordinating the web site, and I hope it will always be an evolving and interesting place to visit.  PLEASE NOTE:  Everything I have about Gwinnett County history and genealogy is on this site orlinked from this site.  I am unable to answer personal genealogy research questions.    I hope that you'll find guidance on this here.

        If you have a question about Gwinnett County County research that is not answered on this site, I recommend that you search the archived list messages of the  Gwinnett County Genealogy Mailing List   You may also consider subscribing to this very active list, as there are many dedicated researchers who subscribe.   Also, there are three active message boards for Gwinnett County genealogy, so you'll want to check out these boards and post your queries on these and the surname boards:   Gwinnett County Queries.


 Where to Start on This Site

      If you are new to Gwinnett County, Georgia research, you'll want to review the changes in Georgia county formations.  There are some excellent early Georgia maps online at the University of Georgia and University of Alabama. (Use your BACK button to return here).

       If you are a new visitor to this site, you are welcome and encouraged to explore! If you just want to get to the "bottom line" you may
start here:

1.  Search the Gwinnett County GAGenWeb Site Search.  Note:  this will only find information housed on this site at http://www.oldplaces.org/gwinnettga/ , including transcribed documents, cemetery transcriptions, surname registry, etc.   Any data linked from the Gwinnett GAGenWeb but housed at the USGenWeb Archives, Tombstone Project, or Census Project, or any other off-site page will not be included in the search. It takes approximately a week for the site search to pick up additions of new material, but everything housed on this site will be searched.

2.  Search the Gwinnett County  Queries to see if someone else is researching the same family.  If not, be sure to post your query!  You may also want to check out and post your requests for information on the surname boards for the names you are researching,  Ancestry.Com/RootsWeb, and GenForum are two such resources.  They are free to use, but require creating a user name and password to post messages. 

3.  Browse through the titles listed on the Research page - there may be a linked web site that will be of help.  It  includes links to transcribed documents housed on this site as well as off-site, including USGenWeb Special Projects.  We are very fortunate to have so many census records available for Gwinnett County!


Other Sources Free Of Charge

4. Visit the Georgia Archives VIRTUAL VAULT, where you'll find copies from microfilm of many documents, including marriage records, 1843-1910, death records, images, and many other historically significant materials.

5. If you can't afford a subscription to Ancestry.Com (an excellent resource if you can afford it),  find out if your local public library offers Heritage Quest, which includes many images of Census records.   Some may only be accessible at your library, but many library systems offer home access online with your library card number and password.

6. Check the Social Security Death Index at Family Search.Com (LDS Church) for your family's names and last place of residence.

7.  Check out  RootsWeb's WorldConnect to find information that others may have posted.  As with anything on the Internet, you'll want to  verify any information you find.

8. Search various ways at USGenWeb Special Projects.

9. Search non-fiction Full Books for local histories and published genealogies at Google Books .

10.  Access Ancestry.Com from your local Gwinnett County public library (in library only), OR access Heritage Quest from your home computer by signing into the  Gwinnett County Public Library site using your library card number. Many public libraries offer Heritage Quest, so check with your public library.  If you live in Gwinnett County and have a library card, go to this page and scroll down to Genealogy:  http://www.gwinnettpl.org/ResearchAndHomework/Databases/index.html

11.  Do general searches on Internet search engines.  New information is added every day!

12. Visit FamilySearch.Org to search form records.

If you can afford to subscribe to Ancestry.Com, it is a great resouce.  It generally runs about $14.95 a month.



 
Historical Centers and Research Libraries
If you have a chance to visit north Georgia for a genealogy field trip-
Locations with Web Sites include maps and directions

GWINNETT COUNTY HISTORICAL SOCIETY
Gwinnett Historical Society
P.O. Box 261
Lawrenceville, GA 30046
(Located upstairs in the Old Gwinnett County Courthouse in Lawrenceville)
(770) 822-5174
Fax (770) 237-5616
Office Email: ghs@gwinnetths.org
**Staffed by volunteers - If you are visiting, be sure to check hours.
GHS has a list of books for sale on its site.  Members get a 10% discount on books and CDs.


GEORGIA ARCHIVES AND HISTORY
5800 Jonesboro Road
Morrow, GA 30260
678.364.3700
www.GeorgiaArchives.org
Map to Georgia Archives

GWINNETT COUNTY PUBLIC LIBRARIES
Locations & Hours of Branch Libraries


EAST GEORGIA GENEALOGICAL SOCIETY
East Georgia Genealogical Society, Inc.
P. O. Box 117
Winder, GA 30680
gaeggs@yahoo.com
Books and CDs for sale

ORDERING VITAL RECORDS  State of Georgia

Order Birth Certificate Online (1919 to Present)
Order Death Certificate Online (1919 to Present)
Order Marriage Certificate Online (1952 to 1996 ONLY)

**For marriages before 1952 and after 1996, contact the county of issue.

Gwinnett County Probate Court
75 Langley Drive, Lawrenceville, GA 30045
(Gwinnett County Justice Center off Hwy 29)
770-822-8265




The USGenWeb Project
USGenWeb Project Main Page
USGenWeb Archives Project
USGenWeb Family Group Sheet Project



LDS Family History Centers - How to Get Started

The following was contributed by fellow researcher, Earl Colley, on another mailing list.  It is used here with Earl's consent:

Not all LDS Churches have Family History Centers. But the people at any LDS Church should be able to tell you where to find the nearest Family History Center.

Another possibility is to go to the LDS Web site at www.familysearch.org

What you need to see is the Family History Library Catalog. At the Family History Centers
it can be seen on microfiche or on their computers. I prefer the microfiche. Ask one of the Family History Specialists to show you where the microfiche Family History Library Catalog (FHLC) is kept.  Or ask them to show you how to access the FHLC on the computer. I am a
Family History Specialist at our local LDS FHC and I cheerfully do this for researchers over and over.

Let me use my own recent research as an example. I have an ancestor, Absalom Gilly, who is listed on the 1840 and the 1850 census of Carter County, Tennessee. Now I want to learn more about him.

So I went to the FHLC microfiche drawer and looked for the section for the United States. The whole file is alphabetized, so it is easy to search. In the U.S. part of the file I looked for Tennessee (again, alphabetically). Then among the Tennessee microfiche, I looked for Carter County. Now I see subjects and/or place names. I looked under "C" for Court Records. You would see Census, then Church records, then Court Records and then many other subjects further down the alphabet.

Once I found the list of Court Records for Carter County, Tennessee I selected the date interval of interest to me. Opposite the chosen date interval I found a 7 digit number. If that number begins with 0, 1, or 2, what you want to see is a doll of microfilm. If the 7 digit number begins with a 6, then you want to see a set of microfiche. Sometimes the number
of a film roll will begin with one or more zeros, and for convenience the zeros are not copied, but that does not happen very often.

When I found the 7 digit number for the microfilm roll that reproduces the Carter County, Tennessee Court records for the 1840's I used that information to fill out an order form. I paid the person who was taking orders $3.25 and gave her the order. She gave me the carbon copy of the order and sent my order (by computer modem) to the main library at Salt
Lake City. In a little more than 2 weeks the film arrived at the FHC for my use there for about 4 weeks. If I need more time to search the film I can pay an additional fee to extend the time.

So far, I found that Absalom had been ordered to work on the road near his home, which told me the neighborhood where he lived. I also found that he had been charged with selling whiskey to a slave, but was let off by only paying the court costs. I have now ordered the microfilm for the same courts for later dates, and hope to learn more about the life of old
Absalom.

Among LDS families, boys (and lately girls) just out of high school offer 2 years of their life to service to their church. They get no money for that and must pay their own living expenses, usually with help from parents and relatives. One of the tasks that may be assigned to them is to take a portable microfim camera to a place where historical records are available, and copy those records on film. I think there are now a little over 2 million of those rolls of film which have been made and are filed at Salt Lake City for loan to the Family History Centers all over the world. No local Family History Center would be able to store more than a very small portion of these films. They usually keep just a few of the films that are frequently used.

I have helped hundreds of people access these records. Not every attempt is a success, but most people are happy with their results and find this method more efficient than travelling long distances to visit Court Houses, Church Archives, State Archives, National Archives, etc.

I can never give enough thanks to the people who have made this information available to me, but I try to do so by giving my time to help them help others.



        Good luck and happy hunting!
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