|Value. These Wiki pages introduce the principles, search strategies, and record types you can use to identify an immigrant ancestor's original hometown. These principles apply to almost any country. Finding an immigrant ancestor's place of origin is the key to finding earlier generations of the family. It provides access to many family history resources in that home area. Once you know a former place of residence or a birthplace, you may be able to add more generations to your pedigree. Read more of the Introduction . . .
Country of Arrival Obituaries. Obituaries are an excellent source of biographical information about immigrants. In addition to names and death dates, you can learn about surviving family members, church affiliations, spouses, parents, occupations, burial places, and hometowns in the old country. Even if a place of origin is not given, an obituary may provide additional research clues, such as the date or ship of immigration or traveling companions. Much of this information cannot be found in other sources. For many immigrants, an obituary is the only “biographical sketch” ever written about them.
- Huguenots (French Protestants) settled Florida in 1564, 43 years before Jamestown.
- The Statue of Liberty was a gift from France to the United States.
- More people have come from Italy to America than from any other nation, except Canada.
- More immigrants arrived at Philadelphia than at New York City prior to 1800.
- More than 3/4 of American colonists arrived as indentured servants, convicts or slaves.
- The National Archives has records of both Canadian and Mexican border crossings.
- Library and Archives Canada has border crossing records of Americans into Canada.
- Some American colonists had their wills sent back to England for probate.
- Up to 90 percent of Irish and Greek immigrants went back home from America.
To get started searching for your immigrant ancestors try:
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