Step-by-step demos for searching GenealogyBank.
You’ll find GenealogyBank relatively easy to navigate around. (See our GenealogyBank Web Guide
.) Here’s a guide to the areas of the site you’ll want to use.
Search Secrets: Basic Searching
The simplest way to search GenealogyBank is to enter an ancestor’s last name and first name in the boxes on the home page and hit Begin Search. Here, we’re looking for Garrett Oglesby.
2 If your search has found potential matches, the site will show you how many hits you have and in which collection(s). To go straight to the results in any collection, click on the blue link.
Or you can refine your search by typing keywords to include (or exclude). Place names work well as keywords. You can also narrow your results by typing a date range.
3 When you have a manageable number of results (here we narrowed it down to 109 items, all in Historical Newspapers), click to see the list of your hits. You can sort by oldest or newest items using the Sort By link at the top of your matches list.
Click on the headline (or “No headline”), or in Historical Newspapers, the preview image, to see the document.
4 You can zoom in or out; move around the image by dragging it with your mouse or clicking on the thin gray bars framing the image.
A bull’s-eye icon re-centers the page. Click the newspaper icon and then on part of the page to center there. Click on the PDF icon to download the image to your computer, or the printer icon to print. The article itself may not contain the newspaper title and date, so be sure to note this information on your printout or in the article’s file name.
Search Secrets: Searching Within a Collection
1 Click Historical Newspapers on the home page. Click the box by one or more states if you want to search papers from the entire state, or click the state name to see cities with coverage in GenealogyBank’s collection.
2 Click the box by a city to search all papers from that city—the map will show you a big dot where the city is located. Or click a city name to see newspaper titles covering the area.
3 Click the state or city name in the breadcrumb trail to return to either listing. Or you can click a newspaper title to see coverage years. Click boxes by one or more newspaper titles to search just those papers, or leave them blank to search them all.
Once you’ve reached the state, city or newspaper where you want to search, type in your terms and then
Search Secrets: Searching Obituaries
1 Click the America’s Obituaries collection title on the GenealogyBank home page. This database recognizes names as a special type of data, rather than just a keyword. Try entering only the person’s last name. If your family’s name has several possible spellings (such as Stow and Stowe), use wildcards.
2 If you get too many hits, you can add keywords such as the person’s occupation, employer, organizations or religion to narrow the search. The dropdown box lets you limit the search to publications from any single state.
3 The addition of a few extra search criteria can quickly hone your results to a more manageable number—and may put the article about your kin right on top of the list, because Best Matches is the default. You also can sort your matches by oldest or newest items.
Clicking on the obituary headline jumps to a complete transcription. To print an obituary, use your browser’s Print command.
From the December 2009 Family Tree Magazine.