Tips for Beginners

Roger Barnes' Tips for How to Begin Ancestry Research
  • A good way to begin is to interview your parents and other family members.
  • It is helpful to work on one surname at a time
  • Look through family photographs and records, looking for birth, marriage, death certificates, and wills.
  • Visit cemeteries to gather information from tombstones and records in the cemetery office.
  • Attempt to find a library that has a good collection of genealogy records.
  • At the library see if they subscribe to or heritage quest online.
  • Find as many U.S. Census records as you can from or another online source with these records.
  • Read a good book about doing genealogy research such as The Geneologist's Companion and Sourcebook by Emily Anne Croom.
  • Write to court houses, usually at the probate section, sending them self-addressed stamped envelopes in order to obtain death certificates, wills, and marriage records.
  • Libraries that have large genealogy sections contains books with old church records that have birth and baptismal records.
  • Libraries with large genealogy sections often have family histories, tax records, and city directories among other records.
  • Go in person or have somone else go in person to obtain property records at court houses.
  • Join an association for a surname in your family. They usually have their own archives with many records.
  • Look up free web sites such as and the Mormon genealogy sites at
  • A valuable link at is the one concerning family trees. You can sometimes find distant relatives who have posted family tree information about your family. (by Roger Barnes)

Local Genealogy

Morgan County Genealogy Sites
Morgan County Newspaper
Mooresville Newspaper
RootsWeb for Morgan County
USGenWeb Project for Morgan County:

Morgan County Indiana Vital Records
Morgan County Clerk

PO Box 1556
Martinsville, IN 46151
Phone: (765) 342-1025

Indiana State Library

County Newspaper Holdings (in Indianapolis)
Images from the County
Indiana Cemetery Locator Database
Indiana Biography Index
Index of Indiana Marriages Through 1850
WWII Servicemen Index

Indiana Resources

African Ancestry in Indiana
Allen County Public Library strength is in genealogy research
Indiana INGenWeb Project
Indiana State Museum
Indiana State Archives
State Historical Society

Broader Resources - some free content, but mostly pay
Castle - immigration manifests starting in 1830
Cyndi's List - Databases a-plenty!
Ellis Island
Family Search
Genealogy Today
Genealogy Toolbox
HeritageQuest - Available to MPL library card holders
National Genealogical Society
National Archives Genealogy Notes
Roger Barnes' tips for how to begin Genealogy Research - associated with, Free!

Related Resources

Most states have searchable archives - The following are selected because many Indiana settlers came from these geographical areas.
New England Ancestors has the direct tax records.
North Carolina
West Virginia