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Tennessee State Library and Archives

Tennessee State Libary and Archives in Nashville

Back in August of this year, I spent six productive hours in downtown Nashville at the Tennessee State Library and Archives, located at 403 7th Ave. N, between the state capitol and the judicial building.  I knew it was going to be a good day when a parking space right in front of the archives was open!  Parking is limited; I fully expected to have to find a public parking lot and walk, which I was willing to do, but being able to park in one of the few spaces available on weekdays was an added bonus.  The friendly and helpful staff was ready to answer all questions and to give assistance.  I was lucky enough to snag one of the newer microfilm readers that allows patrons to save documents to a flash drive; however, I came prepared with my roll of quarters for the copier, just in case.

I did my homework ahead of time by first going to their detailed website at http://www.tn.gov/tsla.  I was interested in Greene County records, and the website had a 27-page list of all the microfilms for that county.  Had I not seen this online, I could have used the list on display at the archives.  Also, the website has a great “Visitors’ Guide” section.

After a great meal at Noshville, and New York-style deli in Midtown located at 1918 Broadway, it was time to drive by the Parthenon in Centennial Park.  Nashville’s Parthenon is an excellent replica of the famous Parthenon in Athens, Greece.  On this beautiful summer afternoon, the park was busy but not crowded, as visitors rode bicycles or walked the paths and across the green spaces.  A few folks were sitting on the Parthenon’s steps as we drove by.

Nashville’s Parthenon

I look forward to another short trip to the state archives Nashville soon and will be happy to research your Tennessee ancestors for you.  Just send me an email from my “Contact Me” tab at the top of my blog.

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Posted by on Monday, November 12, 2012 in Places of Interest, Repositories, Tennessee history

 

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1940 Census: Southern States Added

The 1940 U.S. Federal Census is still in the process of being indexed; however, many states have been completed and their searchable indexes are available online.  This includes the following southern states: Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, and Tennessee.

While all states are online, the indexes are an invaluable time-and-sanity saver.  One free source is www.familysearch.org.  As of 12 July 2012, the following states are indexed:

AL, AZ, CA, CO, DE, DC, GA, HI, IN, KS, KY, ME, MI, MT, NB, NV, NH, NY, OH, OR, PA, TN, VT, VA, WA, WI

Just when you think you know everything about your immediate family, the 1940 census can yield some interesting surprises.  Some of the information includes:

  • the family’s residence in 1935, their address (name of street and house number)
  • employment information for persons age 14 and older, income earned in 1939 and number weeks employed full-time in 1939
  • whether the home was on a farm or not
  • value of home and whether it was rented or owned
  • race
  • those absent from household denoted with “Ab”

The 1940 census also asked supplementary questions to provide a random sample of about 5 percent of the population. These were usually, but not always, asked of people enumerated on lines 14 and 29.  Some of those questions included:

•birthplace of mother and father

•native language

•veteran status (including widow or minor child of a veteran)

•Social Security details

•occupation, industry, and class of worker

•marriage information for women (married more than once, age at first marriage, number of children

If the state you need is not indexed yet, don’t despair.  There are ways to find the enumeration district if you know some basic information about the family’s location.  Then, it is a matter of scrolling through the pages to find your family.  This is easier to do in a small town rather than a large city, but it can be done.  Or, you can wait for the index to be completed.

 
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Posted by on Wednesday, July 18, 2012 in Online Resources

 

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Alabama’s State Archives

The Alabama Department of Archives and History, located in Montgomery, has a wonderful collection of records that are a valuable resource for anyone conducting research in Alabama.  Their website, http://www.archives.alabama.gov , has a searchable database of records.  It also has a comprehensive list of links to online Alabama resources, maps, and other goodies.  Located at 624 Washington Avenue, the archives is open Monday through Friday and one Saturday each month.  Check it out!

 
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Posted by on Tuesday, July 10, 2012 in Online Resources

 

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