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Recent Genealogy Posts:

The British in India – genealogy database

I discovered an interesting genealogy database recently.  My great-grandfather lived in India in the 1840’s and I was doing some research about his life.  I found a free site called “The India Office Family History Search”.  You can find the website here.

The information in the database is “taken from a card index …available only at the British Library.  The card index was compiled by members of staff at the India Office Records from the mid-1970s on to meet the growing interest in genealogy.”

The India Office Records is the custodian of the archives of the: East India Company (1600-1858); the Board of Control (1784-1858); the India Office (1858-1947); and the Burma Office (1937-1948).

“The collection contain much information of interest to family historians, mainly relating to European and Eurasian people. There are biographical sources for official and non-official inhabitants of the many overseas areas where the East India Company and India Office had influence, and also for home staff based in Britain.”

The records include details for: civil servants, military personnel, mariners, medical staff, chaplains, railway workers, law officers, and non-official inhabitants such as merchants and planters, free mariners, and missionaries.  Included are: 300,000 births, baptisms, marriages, deaths and burials in the India Office records; biographical notes from a variety of sources for mainly British and European people in India c.1600-1949; and for people in other countries connected with the history of the British in India.

It can be difficult to find early records of Americans in foreign lands and, because this database is focused more on the British in India, I did not have any luck with it.  However, it looks like a good resource so I thought I would pass it on – happy research!


By |April 7th, 2017|Categories: Genealogy Blog|

This week’s recommendation – Genealogy Gems!

For those of you interested in genealogy blogs, I would recommend reading Lisa Louis Cooke’s blog found here.  She has regular updates about new resources available online for genealogists (in her most recent blog she mentions a new app titled Remembering WW1 that will be helpful to many genealogists) and she identifies updates to already existing databases, many of which are available for free at  If you are more oriented to audio learning, she also records regular genealogy podcasts.  You can pay for a premium membership to get access to more resources but she provides so many free resources I would start there.  For those who are new to genealogy her website also provides some great beginner guides.  Happy research!


By |March 31st, 2017|Categories: Curtis Library, Genealogy Blog|

Brick Wall Problem Solving

Lynne Holland’s 3/2/2017 genealogy presentation “Breaking Through Brick Walls” can be found here – Breaking Through Brick Walls in PDF format.

If you have any issues opening the presentation, please email or call Mike Gorzka ( 725-5242, ext. 218) or Liz Doucett ( 725-5242, ext. 211).

Thanks for joining us for the February genealogy get-togethers!  We had a great turn-out and we promise that the next set of get-togethers will be held in the Morrell Meeting Room where we won’t be so crowded.


By |March 3rd, 2017|Categories: Curtis Library, Genealogy Blog|

Technology for Genealogy

The Thursday 2/23 Genealogy Get-together at Curtis Library focused on discussing technology that can help in genealogy research.  If you would like a copy of the presentation, click on the link here if you have Powerpoint on your computer – Technology for Genealogy2

If you don’t have Powerpoint on your computer you can get a PDF version of the presentation here – Technology for Genealogy2

If you have any issues opening the presentation, please email or call Mike Gorzka ( 725-5242, ext. 218) or Liz Doucett ( 725-5242, ext. 211).

At the Genealogy get-together Lynne Holland mentioned an additional map resource – here is the link to it –

Next week Lynne Holland will do a make-up Genealogy Get-together session on “Brick Wall Problem Solving”.  The get-together will start at 5:30 in the library’s Seminar Room on Thursday, March 2.  We hope to see you there!




By |February 24th, 2017|Categories: Genealogy Blog|

Below are links to some genealogy resources – please note that HeritageQuest requires a Portland Public Library (PPL) card. For information on getting a PPL card (all Cumberland County residents are eligible), click here. Curtis Library has a card and can use it to get you access when you are in the library. Access to American Ancestors is through Curtis Library’s subscription and can only be used from inside the library.

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