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Finding Adoption Answers

By Clark Kidder Premium

Q. My great-grandmother was adopted in the 1880s. I believe the adoption took place in Michigan. I do know her birth and adopted names. How do I find out more about this?

A. Your first course of action should be to determine exactly where the adoption took place. The county courthouse usually handled adoptions. If you know the county where the adoptive parents resided at the time of the adoption, the probate court would be the likely place to start.

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You shouldn’t have any trouble accessing the adoption file for that early date, though you may be asked to prove your relationship to the adoptee. A call or visit to the appropriate courthouse will provide you with specific information on how to proceed.

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In addition, you can write to the Department of Social Services (235 S. Grand Ave. Box 30037, Lansing, MI 48909) for more information.

These Web sites may help you in your search:

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