Tuesday, 7 October 2014

How to research your New Hampshire Ancestor, even if you are nowhere near the Granite State

With permanent European settlement that started in 1623, New Hampshire has a long history.  It is also one of the thirteen original English colonies that revolted against King George in the American Revolution.  There are a plethora of documents, records and archives to explore if your American ancestry started in New Hampshire, or passed through here on their way to other states.  Here is a list of ways to access those resources from your home.

Places you can search online:

FamilySearch.org – This website has NH births from 1714 – 1904, Deaths from 1654 – 1949, Marriages from 1637 – 1959, several county probate files, and town clerk records.  Many are complete with scanned images.  There are 18,960 books that came up when I searched for the words “New Hampshire”.   All Federal Census records 1790 – 1940 (except for 1890) are available here. Their research wiki for the state of New Hampshire is: https://familysearch.org/learn/wiki/en/New_Hampshire

Cyndi’s List of New Hampshire resources - http://cyndislist.com/us/nh/

The Lane Library, Hampton, NH- Hampton was founded in 1638 and has a wonderful collection of online resources that include many of the original seacoast communities in Rockingham County.  See this page for their genealogy page: http://www.hampton.lib.nh.us/hampton/genealogy.htm

Linkpendium New Hampshire links:  http://www.linkpendium.com/genealogy/USA/NH/

New Hampshire Deeds Online http://www.nhdeeds.com/  dating from the 1620s to the present

NH Search Roots website http://www.nh.searchroots.com/

The Pelham Historical Society Online Library – from Pelham, NH, this is a wonderful, little known resource of local history records online http://www.pelhamnhhistory.org/library/onlinelibrary.html

Where to Write for New Hampshire Vital Records http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/w2w/new_hampshire.htm

Good books:

Documents and Records Relating to New Hampshire (known as the NH Provincial and State Papers) in 40 Volumes available online at http://www.library.unh.edu/diglib/bookshelf/NHPapers/volume.shtml  the links lead to Internet Archive, and you can read online (searchable) or download several versions of files.  These papers are the accumulated documents from the settlement of New Hampshire to the year 1800.

Genealogical Dictionary of Maine and New Hampshire, by Charles T. Libbey, 1928  available online at http://search.ancestry.com/search/db.aspx?dbid=3166&cj=1&netid=cj&o_xid=0001231185&o_lid=0001231185&o_sch=Affiliate+External  searchable and browsable with paid subscription

Genealogists Handbook for New England Research, 5th edition, edited by Michael Leclerc, NEHGS, 2012

Index to Genealogies in New Hampshire Town Histories, by William Copely, 1988

The New Hampshire Genealogical Record, the journal produced by the New Hampshire Genealogical Society from 1900 to the present.

Social Networking  and Message Boards:

All Things History- Rockingham County, NH on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/200460270133276/

Descendants of the First Families of New Hampshire on Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/groups/NHFirstFamilies/

New Hampshire Mayflower Society on Facebook  https://www.facebook.com/groups/NHMayflower/

NH Genealogy, Digging New Hampshire Roots on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/DiggingNHRoots/

New Hampshire Genealogy Network on Facebook https://www.facebook.com/groups/205180789528062/

(don’t forget that many New Hampshire historical societies have websites and Facebook groups, and some even have Twitter accounts)


American Canadian Genealogical Society    www.acgs.org
Association of Historical Societies in NH   www.historicalsocietiesnh.org
Manchester, NH Historic Association   www.manchesterhistoric.org
New England Historic Genealogical Society  www.americanancestors.org
New Hampshire Historical Society   www.nhhistory.org
New Hampshire Mayflower Society  www.nhmayflower.org
New Hampshire Society of Genealogists   http://nhsog.org
Order of the First Families of New Hampshire   http://offnh.homestead.com/
Strafford County Genealogical Society   www.straffgen.org

Places that can help you by fee:

American Canadian Genealogical Society – located in Manchester, NH, this is the largest resource facility for French-Canadian research in the United States.  See this webpage for their research services http://acgs.org/research/services/

National Archives at Boston, located in Waltham, Massachusetts.  The staff will provide reference assistance to you but also maintains a list of researchers for hire at this link:  http://www.archives.gov/research/hire-help/

The New England Historic Genealogical Society – Located in Boston, it is the oldest genealogical society in the world.  You can reach their research Services department at this link: http://www.americanancestors.org/research-services/

The New Hampshire Historical Society Library- located in Concord, NH, their research services can be ordered online and by telephone or mail.  For details see the page http://www.nhhistory.org/research-services.html or call the reference staff at 603-856-0641.  Photocopies are 35 cents per page for non-members and 25 cents for members, plus $7 for mailing or fax.

The Portsmouth Atheneum – This private library dates from 1817, and is the repository of hundreds of family papers, manuscripts, photographs, and ephemera from New Hampshire and New England.  It is located in Market Square in Portsmouth, NH, and the staff will do quick reference requests as time allows, and in-depth research requests for $30/hour with a 1 hour minimum.  See this link for more information: http://www.portsmouthathenaeum.org/collections.html


Don’t forget your local Family History Library.  You can order microfilms from their website to be delivered to your local Family History Library, and you can look at them there for a small fee. If you need assistance, the volunteers will even help you to search for the records online and help you place your order.  


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World Wide Genealogy Team