Women’s History and Female Ancestors Resources

By Sharon DeBartolo Carmack


American Memory: American Women

About Women’s History guide to links.

American Women’s History: A Research Guide
This site gives you citations to more than 2,100 print and online reference sources (including collections of primary sources, such as letters and diaries) for furthering your research. You can browse indexes organized by state and subject, and follow links to more online listings, such as government documents, newspapers and oral histories.

Cyndi’s List — Female Ancestors
Nearly 100 links categorized by general resource, military, foremothers, societies and groups, and women’s history resources.

Ethnic Women of Cleveland Oral History Project

The Feminist Chronicles, 1953-1993

A Guide to Uncovering Women’s History in Archival Collections
University of Texas’ guide to online archives, libraries and other repositories that have primary source materials by or about women.

Hearth: Home Economics Archive

H-Women Archival and Manuscript Collection

The Literature on Women Immigrants to the United States

Lost Female Ancestors
GeneaSearch’s forum of queries on female ancestors.

National Women’s History Project
Here you’ll find a quiz, details on commemorative events and profiles of this group’s National Women’s History Month honorees. You also can shop for goodies such as Robert P.J. Cooney’s book Winning the Vote (American Graphic) and a Rosie the Riveter action figure.

Notable Women Ancestors
Hundreds of biographies of famous and everyday female ancestors.

Pathfinder for Women’s History

University of Arkansas Libraries: Women’s Studies

What Did You Do in the War, Grandma?

Summaries also contributed by Diane Haddad

Historic Sites

Eleanor Roosevelt House and Center at Val-Kill

The Susan B. Anthony House

Women’s Rights National Historic Park  


Narratives that focus on women’s lives

“A Good Poor Man’s Wife”: Being a Chronicle of Harriet Hanson Robinson and Her Family in 19th-Century New England by Claudia L. Bushman (University Press of New England)

The Way of Duty: A Woman and Her Family in Revolutionary America by Joy Day Buel and Richard Buel Jr. (W.W. Norton & Co.)

Growing Up in the 1850s: The Journal of Agnes Lee edited by Mary Custis Lee deButts (University of North Carolina Press)

Rachel Calof’s Story: Jewish Homesteader on the Northern Plains edited by J. Sanford Rikoon (Indiana University Press)

The Murder of Helen Jewett: The Life and Death of a Prostitute in 19th-Century New York by Patricia Cline Cohen (Vintage Books)

Good Wives: Image and Reality in the Lives of Women in Northern New England, 1650-1750 by Laurel Thatcher Ulrich (Vintage Books)

Separate Lives: The Story of Mary Rippon by Silvia Pettem (The Book Lode)

General guides for discovering female ancestors

A Genealogist’s Guide to Discovering Your Female Ancestors by Sharon DeBartolo Carmack (Betterway Books)

The Hidden Half of the Family: A Sourcebook for Women’s Genealogy by Christina K. Schaefer (Genealogical Publishing Co.)

A version of this article appeared in the April 2001 issue of Family Tree Magazine.