It took me two years to find my great-grandfather in Ellis Island’s passenger database. I finally found him after getting his naturalization papers, then using the arrival date reported in those papers and Steve Morse’s passenger search to browse records by month.
It turns out my ancestor was listed under a short form of his birth name—not the name he used in America—and both he and his wife made themselves two years older.
Almost half of all Americans have a relative who immigrated through Ellis Island, making its passenger records a key source for linking your family tree to the old country. But if your ancestors fibbed, used an unfamiliar name, didn’t arrive when you think they did, or were mistranscribed in the passenger database, you’ll have a hard time finding them.
Our July 21 webinar will help you overcome these challenges by sharing the secrets to finding your ancestors in a sea of records. Presenter Lisa A. Alzo will show you how to identify Ellis Island immigrants, take you around the EllisIsland.org website, and demonstrate tools to help you search efficiently.
And we’re giving registered attendees $25 off our Family Tree University course Tracing Immigrants: How to Research Your Family’s American Arrivals.