Skip to Main Content

Genealogy: Useful Websites

A guide to the Genealogy resources at the Alvin Sherman Library


Family Search

Based in Salt Lake City, the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints houses the world's largest collection of genealogy materials. Part of this collection is available for searching and browsing at the LDS' Family Search Web Site. Here, genealogists have access to key resources such as the International Genealogical Index, the Social Security Death Index, and a variety of census records including the 1880 U.S. Federal Census. Users can also explore LDS member-contributed data such as Ancestral File and the Pedigree Resource File. In addition, users can search the LDS' Family History Catalog and download an array of free genealogy forms and guides to aid their research.

Cyndi's List

What began a decade ago as a "hobby" for webmaster Cyndi Howell, her web site now boasts over 250,000 links to genealogy web sites. Her site is considered a primary genealogy resource and is a great starting point to conduct research. Indexed alphabetically and topically, the site is easy-to-use and offers something for every family historian.

Historical Newspapers Online

Search America's historic newspaper pages from 1836-1922 or use the U.S. Newspaper Directory to find information about American newspapers published between 1690-present. Chronicling America is sponsored jointly by the National Endowment for the Humanities and the Library of Congress. Search here!

Can't fnd it in Chronicling America? Try this site from the University of Pennsylvania.

Immigration Records

Castle Garden 

Produced by the non-profit organization The Battery Conservatory, the Castle Garden Web Site offers access to 12 million searchable digital images of passenger lists and ship's manifests travelling to New York harbor from 1830 through 1892. During this period the "castle" - now a national moment - was the United States' primary port of entry for the east coast.

Ellis Island 

Located in New York harbor, Ellis Island was once considered America's "Golden Door" of immigration. From 1892 until 1924, Ellis Island processed over 20 million immigrants from all regions of the world. This site provides access to over 25 million searchable digital images.

Ship Passenger Lists

From, a collection of search tips and additional resources for searching for family members using ship passenger lists. Many thanks to Janice for identifying and sharing this very useful guide.


Irish Genealogy