Posted by Ancestry Team on December 12, 2013 in Research, Website

I’m glad I waited until Mockingjay was released before I started reading the Hunger Games trilogy as I would have hated the wait between books! As I was reading them, I could easily picture the different districts of Panem that the characters traveled through. Author Suzanne Collins did a remarkable job with the imagery.

If you compare the map of Panem to the United States, Collins’ roots are firmly in District 3. Indiana, to be specific. Her great-grandmother Anna Woods Brady came to the United States from Ireland just after the Irish Potato Famine; she was living in Indianapolis by 1910.

Anna’s 1910 census entry tells quite a story. Not only had she come to the United States in 1852 (at the age of 4), but she was also married at age 15. Tragically, she lost six of her 12 children by 1910.


Anna’s migration was typical of Irish immigrants to Indiana, many of whom came during or just after the famine. Many settled in areas where there were internal improvement projects under way, and were employed building the state’s roads, canals and railways.

Long known as the “Crossroads of America,” Indiana has been home to numerous ethnic groups, as well as migrants from eastern and southern states. Countless Americans can trace their family trees back to the Hoosier State. Fortunately, there are some wonderful records and resources for Indiana research.

Our free research guide “Indiana Resources: Family History Research in the Hoosier State” includes a general history, timeline, and links to Indiana collections and resources. Be sure to take a look at the Indiana state page for even more links, including collections for specific counties.

Enjoy researching the Hoosiers in your family tree!


  1. Samuel Leggett

    I would be considered a brief Hoosier. My parents were traveling back from New Mexico and, being short on money, decided to stop in Indiana to look for work to aid in their trip back to New England. My father found work at a local gas station in Indianapolis, my mother being quite pregnant with me stayed at the apartment.

    I know of a quick story that my mother has told me about being in Indianapolis at that time, before I was born. One night my patents-to-be stepped out for a night on the town, and stopped at a place to dance. While my mother was on the dance floor, she was approached and asked if she was pregnant. She, being obviously pregnant, said “yes”. She was then asked to leave that dance floor, as at that time it was illegal for a pregnant woman to be dancing in public.

    Anyway, I was later born at St. Vincent Hospital. Being quite small at full term, some would say of a premature size, I stayed awhile in an incubator. I was later released to my parents, before Christmas, and stayed at a large and lavish home in Muncie, Indiana where my mother’s aunt lived. The house belonged to a Euna “Bee” Boling-Douglass. My parents have an 8mm film of them throwing snowballs at each other in the driveway of that estate, and of me wrapped in a blanket lying in a shoebox, and place on the door of the kitchen oven to keep me warm.

    We later moved to Hartford, Connecticut, and then up to Manchester, New Hampshire where I grew up.

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