Monday, October 23, 2017

October: Family History Month in the U.S.

October is Family History Month in the U.S. (Photo: Ernest J. Moynahan and grandson Dan M.)

Since being passed by the United States Congress in 2001, Family History Month as been observed annually during the month of October.

"Funeral service professionals, community groups, historians, storytellers, and genealogical and historical societies promote and celebrate National Family History Month as way to commemorate each family’s rich and deep history." (Source: NFDA)

This is exciting for folks like me who have ancestors in U.S./Canada border cities like Windsor, Ontario and Detroit, Michigan.

The Detroit Society for Genealogical Research Facebook group (DSGR) has been placing daily posts about researching your ancestors in Detroit and the state of Michigan. The series is called "31 Days of Detroit Family History Tips" and I am enjoying it so much that I thanked them and have decided to do a list of r
online Detroit genealogy resources here to make it easier for me to find them again in the future AND to share with others with ancestors in the Windsor/Detroit area.

Some examples of the DSGR posts:

DSGR Facebook: "31 Days of Detroit Family History Tips": Day 22

I have often taken out a one month subscription with the Detroit Free Press. It is only $7.95 for one month and I have received LOTS of information about my ancestors through articles and obituaries found there. The search field can be found at

 Some DETROIT ONLINE Resources

Online Book List
Detroit History
Land and Maps
  • Patron Directory of Wayne County 1876 Land owner directory from the Plat map book titled: "Illustrated Historical Atlas of Wayne County, MI 1876". Patron Directory of Wayne County 1876
  • Michigan, County Marriages, 1820-1935 22,188 Wayne County marriage records 
  • Michigan, Marriages, 1822-1995 440,926 Detroit marriage records
    659,434 Wayne County marriage records
    While this electronic index collection is not complete for all of Michigan, it is a wonderful resource for Wayne County. 
  • Michigan, Marriages, 1868-1925 596,637 Detroit marriage records 748,724 Wayne County marriage records Name index and images of marriages recorded in the State of Michigan. This is an excellent resource for Detroit researchers since the collection doesn’t just contain marriage records but marriage licenses, applications, registers, and certificates as well.
  • Marriage/Divorce -

Naturalization Records

  • Naturalization Record Index This Naturalization Record index was compiled from the Detroit Society for Genealogical Research Magazine. From the spring of 1991 through the fall of 2008, the society published transcriptions of Naturalization Records of the Recorder's Court, Detroit, Michigan in their quarterly magazine. In total over 5000 surnames were cited. These records contain a wealth of information for novice and advanced researchers alike. The index is alphabetized by surnames, while also providing volume, date, and page the information can be found upon in the magazine.
  • Windsor Public Library obituary listing (index from the Windsor Star).
  • Livonia Observer Obituary Index Currently, this index covers obituaries from the Livonia Observer newspaper from June 1955 - December 31, 2014.Last Name begins with: A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z
  • Detroit News Obituary Index
    Currently, this index covers obituaries from the Detroit News newspaper from January 1, 1980 - December 31, 2001. Please Note: we are in the process of converting our index to pdf format in alphabetical order by last name. As new letters are completed, they will be added below.
    Last Name begins with:
    A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 
Police Department Records
School Records
  • School records, Yearbooks, teacher files and so much more! How much more? The finding aid for this collection at the Walter P. Reuther Library is 42 pages!! (DSCR Tip: Day 2)

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