Kentucky Periodicals

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Overview[edit | edit source]

A periodical is a regularly published magazine, newsletter, or journal. Several valuable periodicals concerning Kentucky genealogical research exist. Many genealogical and historical societies publish magazines and newsletters. The articles in these periodicals often include the following:

  • Family genealogies and pedigrees
  • Helpful articles on research methodology
  • Transcripts or indexes of biographical sketches, censuses, church records, migration lists, military records, obituaries, wills, vital records, and more
  • Historical background
  • Current and historical maps
  • Information about local and national records, archives, and services
  • Interesting articles about social life and customs
  • Book advertisements and book reviews
  • Advertisements of professional researchers
  • Queries or requests for information about specific ancestors that can help you contact other interested researchers

Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Among the periodicals for Kentucky at the Family History Library are:

  • Bluegrass Roots 1973–. Published by the Kentucky Genealogical Society, P.O. Box 54704, Lexington, KY 40555-4704. FHL Book 976.9 B2b. This periodical covers the entire state. The entire set of publications, from 1973-2021, is available to members in PDF file format on the website of the Kentucky Genealogical Society. The publication transitioned from a PDF to a members only blog in 2021.
  • The Bulletin 1968–. Published by the West- Central Kentucky Family Research Association, P.O. Box 1932, Owensboro, KY 42302. FHL Book 976.9 D25b. Information in this quarterly periodical focuses on 19 counties, from Union to Christian Counties on the west to Breckenridge and Allen Counties on the east.
  • The East Kentuckian: A Journal of History and Genealogy 1965–. Harold, KY: Hall Printing, P.O. Box 24202, Lexington, KY 20524. FHL Book 976.9 B2e. Information in this periodical focuses on 40 counties lying east of a line, from Maysville to Monticello, Kentucky.
  • The Filson Club History Quarterly 1927–. Published by the Filson Club Historical Society, 1310 South Third Street, Louisville, KY 40208. FHL Book 976.944 B2f. This journal publishes articles on the history of Kentucky. It also includes material on the Ohio Valley and the upper South as they relate to the state of Kentucky. Genealogy articles were reprinted in a book.
  • Kentucky Ancestors 1965–. Published quarterly by the Kentucky Historical Society, 100 West Broadway, Frankfort, KY 40601. FHL Book 976.9 B2ka; vols.1–7 on FHL Films 924765–6. This periodical covers the entire state. It contains transcripts of court records, vital records, censuses, newspapers, journals, and research helps.
  • The Kentucky Genealogist 1959–1986. Washington DC: Martha Porter Miller, 1959–1986. FHL Book 976.9 B2kg. This periodical covers the entire state and contains abstracts of Bible, cemetery, census, probate, court, church, and military records. Each volume is indexed. It ceased publication in 1986.
  • Kentucky Pioneer Genealogy and Records: A Genealogical Journal Devoted to Kentucky 1979–. Published by the Society of Kentucky Pioneers, 11129 Pleasantville Rd., Utica, KY 42376. FHL Book 976.9 D25k. This quarterly includes a 1979 index and indexes in the last volume of each year. It contains research helps; book reviews; and abstracts of cemetery, Bible, tax, census, and other county records.
  • The Register of the Kentucky State Historical Society 1902–. Published by the Kentucky Historical Society, 100 West Broadway, Frankfort, KY 40601. FHL Book 976.9 B2k; on 28 FHL FHL Films, beginning with 169079. This periodical covers the entire state and includes a separate index for volumes 1 to 43. It contains articles on various aspects of Kentucky history and culture.
  • Traces of South Central Kentucky 1982–. This is a continuation of South Central Kentucky Historical and Genealogical Society Quarterly, which was published from 1974 to 1981. Published by the South Central Genealogical and Historical Society, P.O. Box 80, Glasgow, KY 12141. FHL Book 976.9 B2s. This periodical presents genealogical and historical information from south central Kentucky counties centered by Barren County, Kentucky.
  • Western Kentucky Journal 1994–. Newburgh, Indiana: B.J. Jerome, P.O. Box 325, Newburgh, IN 47629–0325. FHL Book 976.9 D25j. The periodical contains records from 17 counties bounded on the east by a line between Henderson and Christian Counties.

Obtaining Periodicals[edit | edit source]

Copies of periodicals are available from the local societies that publish them. Major archives with genealogical collections will have copies of many periodicals, particularly those representing the area they serve. The Periodical Source Index, or PERSI, is the largest subject index to genealogy and local history periodical articles in the world. PERSI is available online and is especially useful because it refers to countless items published in thousands of family history periodicals worldwide. Learn more at the PERSI wiki page here:

  • Periodical Source Index (PERSI). Ft. Wayne, Indiana: Allen County Public Library Foundation, 1987-. (Family History Library book 973 D25per; 40 fiche 6016863 (1847-1985); 15 fiche 6016864 (1986-1990).) Partially indexes over 5,000 English-language and French-Canadian family history periodicals. The microfiche indexes are cumulative; book indexes since 1986 are year-by-year. For further details see the PERiodical Source Index Resource Guide (34119).
  • Findmypast Researchers can use the Internet edition of this index at Family History Centers via their site.

Once you locate an article in a periodical, check the FamilySearch Catalog and regional or local libraries for available copies. The Family History Library has collected many periodicals, with some available in digital format and accessible online. Kentucky periodicals may be found in the FamilySearch Catalog with a Place and Subject search, as found here: Kentucky-Periodicals. They can also be found by using:

  • Place Search of the country, state/province, and county
  • Title Search of the periodical
  • Keyword Search for the publishing society name.

Also find Periodical resources available at other libraries via WorldCat. As with the FamilySearch Catalog search, search WorldCat using society names, locality names, and periodical title names. Learn more about how to search WorldCat and the Introduction to the FamilySearch Catalog on our Wiki pages.