Best Genealogy Websites for Tracing Immigrant Ancestors
If your ancestors were some of the millions of immigrants to the United States, check out these resources to finding their immigration records.
The free Consolidated Jewish Surname Index here lets you search information about 699,084 surnames in 42 different online databases totaling more than 7.3 million records. You also can read 2,900 articles online in the Anthology of Jewish Genealogy ($35).
Can't find your immigrant kin at Ellis Island? If they arrived in New York City from 1820 through 1892, look here instead. Now totaling 11 million records, this database indexing arrivals through the predecessor to Ellis Island is at last almost complete.
Even if your ancestors don't live in Chicago, they may have gone to the big city to file their naturalization paperwork. This site serves up more than 500,000 naturalization petitions covering 1871 to 1929, primarily declarations of intention. Search by name or partial name, birth date, birthplace and even occupation.
This landmark immigration website is expanding to add the more than 40 million arrivals through the Port of New York/Ellis Island from 1925 to 1957, after the Immigration Act of 1924 slowed US immigration. In the meantime, search 25 million earlier records, from the peak era of US immigration, for free - and check out the State of Liberty Torch Cam.
Founded in 1987, this site affiliated with the Museum of Jewish Heritage includes the Yizkor Book Master Name Index, Family Finder database of 500,000 surnames and towns, KehilaLinks (formerly ShtetLinks) for 200-plus communities, the Family Tree of the Jewish People and the Online Worldwide Burial Registry.
Though this clever collection of "one-step" search tools also covers census and vital records databases, it really shines in drilling down into the Ellis Island, Castle Garden and other immigration databases. 
Back to the 101 Best Websites of 2014 main page.
From the September 2014 issue of Family Tree Magazine
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