Somebody Stop Me! Finding New York Family History in Newspapers

By Diane Haddad

New York was on my mind today because of our upcoming Best New York Genealogy Research Strategies webinar this Thursday, Oct. 22, with New York genealogy expert Jane Wilcox. I added it to my calendar because my husband’s dad’s family is from the Lockport, NY, area, and Greg has been prodding me to work on his family a little.

Then on Facebook, someone shared a 2013 article about the homegrown website Old Fulton NY Postcards and the man who runs it, Tom Tryniski. The site, which started with old postcards, now has more than 33 million digitized newspaper pages from New York (and even some other states) you can search for free.

This site has been a repeater on our list of 75 Best State Websites for genealogy, but I hadn’t tried it until today, when the universe seemed to want me to.

I’m not finished going through all 798 search results (and the unique last name means it’s likely a lot of them are relevant), but among my finds were obituaries for Greg’s grandfather, great-grandfather and great-uncle; news of the parade when the grandfather returned from serving in World War I; property transfers; so-and-so visiting so-and-so; and more.

Here’s the Sept. 22, 1923, obituary for the above-mentioned great-grandfather, Anthony Solly:

This July 9, 1954, Niagara Falls Gazette article reports on an auto accident Greg says his dad used to tell stories about (the other car was the one that ran the stop sign):

If you’re researching New York ancestors, our Best New York Genealogy Research Strategies will show you techniques and resources (like the one where I struck gold) you need to know about. The webinar happens Thursday, Oct. 22, at 7 p.m. Eastern (that’s 6 Central, 5 Mountain, 4 Pacific). All registrants receive a PDF of the presentation slides and access to view the webinar again (and again).

Visit Family Tree Shop today to learn more!