5 Things to Help You Get the Most from U.S. Probates on Ancestry

Posted by Juliana Szucs on September 4, 2015 in Collections



With the launch earlier this week of our U.S. Probates and Wills collection, we have been fielding many questions about how best to navigate the more than 30 million records and 170 million images.

Because there is such a wide variety of documents included in an estate file, sometimes it’s tough to know exactly what you’re looking at. Understanding the probate process can help. We’ve put together some tips to help guide you through the maze of probate research. In it you’ll learn a little about the process and why certain records were created, the importance of getting familiar with the places your ancestor lived and its part in the probate process, how laws can impact the records that were created, and how to learn about the arrangement of the records so that you can find your ancestor in unindexed portions of the collection (plus some search tips!).

For those researching African Americans during the slavery era, these records can be very helpful, especially when used in conjunction with other records.

Download the free guide, 5 Things You Should Know to Get the Most from the Probate Collection on Ancestry

Leave a comment

Past Articles

Murder and the Family Story

Posted by Ancestry Team on September 3, 2015 in Stories

This is a guest post by Jennie Kaufman which originally appeared in Ancestry Magazine.  When seven-year-old Annie Lemberger was murdered in 1911, the mystery surrounding the crime reverberated throughout the community. Ninety years later, a distant relative discovered exactly what happened to Annie—and how it affected his own family’s history. Magdeline Lemberger rose before dawn on… Read more

U.S. Probates are here!

Posted by Juliana Szucs on September 2, 2015 in Ancestry.com Site

What if I told you there was a record that could walk you through your ancestor’s house and tell you what he (or she) owned, room by room? What kind of tools he used in his business? How much livestock he owned? Would you be interested? Or what if there was a record that told… Read more

The Kopp Sisters: A Crime-Fighting Trio Uncovered on Ancestry

Posted by Amy Stewart on September 1, 2015 in Research

This is a guest blog post by Amy Stewart, the award-winning author of six books, including the bestsellers The Drunken Botanist and Wicked Plants. She and her husband live in Eureka, California, where they own a bookstore called Eureka Books. Most people come to Ancestry in search of their family. I went looking for three complete… Read more

The New Ancestry: August 29th Feature Update

Posted by Ancestry Team on August 29, 2015 in Ancestry.com Site

Welcome to our weekly update on the new Ancestry. Last week we covered the location issues and the solution we put in place. This week we introduced some exciting enhancements on Family Events in the Facts view. As always, we have also included links to articles and videos at the end of this post that will… Read more

How Bad Photos Can Make Good Genealogy

Posted by Denise May Levenick on August 25, 2015 in Ancestry.com Site

by Denise May Levenick, The Family Curator Sometimes you don’t have a choice when it comes to finding your ancestor in old photographs. You are happy to take anything, even if it’s a tiny face in a crowd of college grads or a stern-faced soldier in the back row of long panorama. Group photos present… Read more

Who Do You Think You Are? Recap: Finding Ancestors Who Don’t Want to Be Found with Bryan Cranston

Posted by Ancestry Team on August 23, 2015 in Celebrity, Who Do You Think You Are?

A frustrating occurrence in many genealogical research projects is when an ancestor disappears entirely from the records. You have a great line of sources proving your conclusions back to the 1800s, but there’s one person who is holding you back. Maybe he ran away from his family to start a new life or find adventure.… Read more

The New Ancestry: August 22nd Feature Update

Posted by Ancestry Team on August 22, 2015 in Ancestry.com Site

Welcome to our weekly update on the new Ancestry website. Last week we covered the location issues, why they were happening and possible solutions. This week we rolled out a product fix to resolve it. As previously mentioned, we require a certain amount of information about the place in order to properly place it on the map. When a… Read more