Keeping Up With the In-Laws
In tracing the family tree of family members of collateral lines, (i.e., the descendants of your aunts and uncles of various degrees), usually one can run through the standard list of indexes, books, records, and databases for a person’s name to find the usual birth, marriage, and death information one needs, but if you are researching a relation who is suspected or known to have been married and the couple moves away from their home county or out-of-state, you may lose all trace of your research subjects using local records, with perhaps one exception, the in-laws, who may have remained “at home.”
While not a part of every person’s family tree research, it does prove useful to keep track of the parents of every person who marries into a family tree. Look for the same set of records for them, at least vital records such as birth certificates, marriage records, death certificates, funeral home records, and obituaries, as you would for any other member of the family.
Oftentimes, the death certificates will give the name and address of the informant, usually a relative, and maybe the one you lost track of and are looking for. Funeral home records and obituaries usually list all the survivors of an individual, where they lived, etc., and so, in this way you may be able to follow the movements of younger generations by locating the death records and obituaries of older generations.
And, so, in keeping up with the in-laws, you may be able to discover just where your aunts, uncles, and cousins disappeared to.
Philip A. Naff
Indianapolis, Indiana Continue reading