Difference between revisions of "Research Steps for probate records"

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(New page: Portal:United States Probate> Under construction.... Determine the last residence for the testator.)
 
(Copy of text from the research guidance system about probate research steps.)
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[[Portal:United States Probate|Portal:United States Probate]]>  
 
[[Portal:United States Probate|Portal:United States Probate]]>  
  
Under construction....  
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These seven steps may help you find information in probate records.  
  
Determine the last residence for the testator.
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=== Step 1. Determine the county where your ancestor lived.  ===
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Check the following to find the county where your ancestor lived:
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*Family records (histories, pedigree charts, family group sheets, etc.)
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*Published family histories.
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*Censuses.
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Make sure the county existed when the ancestor died.
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=== Step 2. Search for a county index for probate records in the Family History Library Catalog.  ===
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Since an index may be found the record or separately, in the Family History Library Catalog, look for indexes under both topics:
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*Probate Records
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*Probate Records -- Indexes.
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Use the Place Search in the catalog to locate the records.
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If you do not find an index, you may want to look for your ancestor's name in the record itself during the approximate dates after your ancestor died.
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=== Step 3. Search the index for your ancestor's name.  ===
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Find your ancestor's name in the index.
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Copy everything about your ancestor from the index. This information is necessary for you to find him or her in the court record.
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If you cannot find your ancestor's name, check for variations of the spelling.
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=== Step 4. Find the probate records.  ===
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Find the catalog entries for the records. If the catalog entry you printed showed both the index and the records, you will not have to return to the catalog to find the film numbers for the appropriate records.
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Obtain the book or film with the records.
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=== Step 5. Search the record for information about your ancestor.  ===
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Using what you found in the index, find your ancestor in the record.
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=== Step 6. Copy the information from the record.  ===
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Make a photocopy of the page(s) with the information about your ancestor. By copying the entire page(s), you can study the record in depth and save it for future reference. You can analyze the handwriting and note other details you may have missed when you first looked at the record. You may find other relatives of your ancestor.
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Be sure to document the source of the information by writing the title, author, book or film number, and page number on the copy, or photocopy the title page at the front of the book or film. Also write the name of the library, archive, etc., where you found the probate records.
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=== Step 7. Analyze the information you found.  ===
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Study the document. Compage the information to what you already knew about your ancestor.
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*What does it tell you about your ancestor and about the people who were with him or her?
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*Does the record give clues about your ancestor which could guide you to other records?
 +
*Watch for dates, locations, relationships, etc.

Revision as of 22:23, 9 September 2008

Portal:United States Probate>

These seven steps may help you find information in probate records.

Step 1. Determine the county where your ancestor lived.

Check the following to find the county where your ancestor lived:

  • Family records (histories, pedigree charts, family group sheets, etc.)
  • Published family histories.
  • Censuses.

Make sure the county existed when the ancestor died.

Step 2. Search for a county index for probate records in the Family History Library Catalog.

Since an index may be found the record or separately, in the Family History Library Catalog, look for indexes under both topics:

  • Probate Records
  • Probate Records -- Indexes.

Use the Place Search in the catalog to locate the records.

If you do not find an index, you may want to look for your ancestor's name in the record itself during the approximate dates after your ancestor died.

Step 3. Search the index for your ancestor's name.

Find your ancestor's name in the index.

Copy everything about your ancestor from the index. This information is necessary for you to find him or her in the court record.

If you cannot find your ancestor's name, check for variations of the spelling.

Step 4. Find the probate records.

Find the catalog entries for the records. If the catalog entry you printed showed both the index and the records, you will not have to return to the catalog to find the film numbers for the appropriate records.

Obtain the book or film with the records.

Step 5. Search the record for information about your ancestor.

Using what you found in the index, find your ancestor in the record.

Step 6. Copy the information from the record.

Make a photocopy of the page(s) with the information about your ancestor. By copying the entire page(s), you can study the record in depth and save it for future reference. You can analyze the handwriting and note other details you may have missed when you first looked at the record. You may find other relatives of your ancestor.

Be sure to document the source of the information by writing the title, author, book or film number, and page number on the copy, or photocopy the title page at the front of the book or film. Also write the name of the library, archive, etc., where you found the probate records.

Step 7. Analyze the information you found.

Study the document. Compage the information to what you already knew about your ancestor.

  • What does it tell you about your ancestor and about the people who were with him or her?
  • Does the record give clues about your ancestor which could guide you to other records?
  • Watch for dates, locations, relationships, etc.