New Hampshire Biography

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Online Resources[edit | edit source]

A biography is a history of a person’s life. In a biography you may find the individual’s birth, marriage, and death information and the names of his or her parents, children, or other family members. Biographies often include photographs, family traditions and stories, clues to an ancestor’s place of origin, places where he or she has lived, church affiliation, professional accomplishments, military service, and activities within the community. The information must be used carefully since there may be some inaccuracies.

Biographies in Local Histories[edit | edit source]

  • Biographical information is often found in state, county, and town histories.
  • Towards the end of the 19th century, began publishers soliciting short biographical/family histories from local founding families, offering to publish them in an upcoming local history. This then became an incentive for family members to buy a copy of the book.
  • Families represented were not necessarily prominent. Practically everyone living there, especially in the Midwest, counted as an early settler.
  • These biographies often start with the first member of the family to settle in the area, and detail their descendants at the time of publishing. They may tell where the family moved in from. Children's marriages often are given, with maiden names included.

Finding Biographies[edit | edit source]

  • The county Wiki page lists several county histories. It also lists local libraries, and societies which probably have copies of local histories.
  • Many histories are no longer under copyright and can be found in the following online, digitized book collections. Search with keywords "History" and "the name of your locality" (state, county, or town).
  • The FamilySearch library has extensive collections of these local histories. Many are digitized. Search the FamilySearch Catalog under your locality for the topics "Biography" and "History".

Major Biographical Collections[edit | edit source]

A large collection of published biographies for New Hampshire is at the New Hampshire Historical Society and the Family History Library.

New Hampshire Historical Society. New Hampshire Notables Card File. Salt Lake City, Utah: Genealogical Society of Utah, 1988. (Family History Library films 1570255-62.) This file is an index to biographical sketches of people who were born in New Hampshire or spent a large portion of their lives there. It also indexes a collection of obituaries and brief biographies found in New Hampshire newspapers. There are about 30,000 cards, which contain full names, places and dates of birth, and titles of the source. Cards are being continually added to the file.

New Hampshire Notables: Presenting Biographical Sketches of Men and Women Who Helped Shape the Character of the Granite State. Concord, N. H., the Concord Press, 1955. This source contains detailed biographical sketches of men and women who have helped shape the character of New Hampshire. It includes portraits and an index. Similar volumes were published in 1919, 1932, and 1986. The persons involved are listed in the New Hampshire Notables Card File listed above. See their On-line Catalog and type in New Hampshire Notables. You will then see the book call numbers.

Biographical Encyclopedias[edit | edit source]

Following are some of the biographical encyclopedias that list persons who lived in New Hampshire. These books are indexed in the New Hampshire Notables Card File mentioned above.

Biographical Sketches of Representative Citizens of the State of New Hampshire. American Series of Popular Biographies. New Hampshire Edition. Boston, Massachusetts: New England Historical Publishing, 1902. (Family History Library film 1697374.)

Metcalf, Henry Harrison. One Thousand New Hampshire Notables. Concord, New Hampshire: Rumford Printing, 1919. (Family History Library film 1697374 item9.) This large volume contains brief biographical sketches of New Hampshire men and women who have been prominent in public, professional, business, educational, fraternal or benevolent work. It includes portraits and an index.

Metcalf, Henry Harrison. New Hampshire Women. Concord, New Hampshire: New Hampshire Publishing, 1895. This source is a collection of portraits and biographical sketches of women, both residents and daughters of residents, who are worthy representatives of their sex.

Moses, George H. New Hampshire Men. Concord, New Hampshire: New Hampshire Printing, 1893. (Family History Library ( film 1033785 item 10.) This work is a collection of biographical sketches, with portraits, of residents and sons of residents who have become known in commercial, professional and political life.

Pillsbury, Hobart. New Hampshire: Resources, Attractions, and Its People: A History. 5 vols. New York: Lewis Historical Publishing, 1927. (Family History Library book 974.2 H2p; volume 5, film 1550085.) Volume 5 contains biographical information, portraits, and an index.

Sketches of Successful New Hampshire Men. Manchester, New Hampshire: John B. Clarke, 1882. (Family History Library film 1000197 item 4.) Includes extensive biographies and genealogies, portraits, and an index.

The Surname Search of the FamilySearch Catalog will lead you to biographies and published family histories on specific surnames. Using the term “New Hampshire” in the Keyword Search will help limit the extent of the search to families in New Hampshire.

The Family History Library has many collected biographies and local county histories with biographical sketches of residents. These can be found in the FamilySearch Catalog Locality Search under: