Illinois Migration Routes

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Migration Routes

Value of Migration Research

Mountains, forests, waterways, and the gaps between them channeled migration into predictable settlement patterns. Events like gold or land rushes, and Indian treaties also affected settlement.

Understanding the transportation systems available to ancestors can help genealogists better guess their place of origin. Connect the place where an ancestor settled to the nearby canals,waterways, trails, roads, and railroads to look for connections to places they may have lived previously.

Migration research may help you discover:

  • a place of origin, previous hometown, or place where an ancestor settled
  • biographical details such as what they experienced, or with whom they traveled on their journey
  • clues for finding other records

See also Gotoarrow.png Illinois Emigration and Immigration

Migration Routes

Canals

Rivers and Lakes

  • Illinois River
  • Mississippi River
  • Ohio River
  • Wabash River
  • Lake Michigan
    • The United States Vessel Enrolments for the Great Lakes The transcriptions are from a project that involved an attempt to transcribe all steamboat enrollments for Great Lakes ports prior to 1861, all vessels for Detroit and Cleveland up to 1861, and Buffalo up to 1841 are included in the file. The set includes 5741 enrolments in which just under 2000 individual vessels are named, over 6000 people (owners, captains, shipwrights) were identified.

Trails and Highways

Railways

SEE ALSO Illinois Emigration and Immigration