Find your Ancestors more Quickly

Jeannette Holland Austin
1 min readApr 30, 2021

There is more to finding the ancestors than viewing census records. Census records began in 1790, however, only provide the name of the head of household. Likewise, the census from 1800 to 1840 contains the head of household and age ranges of the children, both male and female. The real meat of the family history does not begin until 1850 when everyone is named in the household, along with the ages and place of birth.

NEXT, and this is quite important, one begins their research in county records wherein the ancestors resided across each time period. In other words, you follow them from state to state, and county to county. With the covid issue and so many county courthouses unavailable to researchers, there is relief. has the county records of the following states online: Alabama, Georgia, Kentucky, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee and Virginia. The earliest surviving records of old deeds, estates, marriages, etc. are easy to read and download. This intense project commenced in 1995 and is still ongoing. The merger of Genealogy-Books into the website includes images of out-of-print genealogy and history-related-books of every state.

If you want to see exactly what records are available, say, for Virginia, you would go to and viewing the listing for each county therein. The following is a more exact list: (Tennessee, Florida and other misc states)

Jeannette Holland Austin

Author of 100+ genealogy books. Owner of 8 genealogy websites available by subscription.