Books About Genealogy and Family Trees
Looking for a little help with family history detective work? These books will answer your questions, offer suggestions for where to find information, help you interview relatives, tell stories about other kids who’ve made family trees, and more.
- Ancestor Hunt: Finding Your Family Online by Nancy Shepherdson (Franklin Watts)
- Climbing Your Family Tree: Online and Offline Genealogy for Kids by Ira Wolfman (Workman Publishing)
- Evie Finds Her Family Tree by Ashley B. Ransburg (Indiana Historical Society Press)
- Family History: A DK First Activity Pack by Chris and Melanie Rice (DK Publishing)
- The Family Tree Detective: Cracking the Case of Your Family’s Story by Ann Douglas (Firefly Books)
- The Great Ancestor Hunt: The Fun of Finding Out Who You Are by Lila Perl Yerkow (Clarion Books)
- Genealogy Just for Kids! by Sherrie A. Styx (Styx Enterprises)
- Kids and Grandparents: An Activity Book by Ann Love and Jane Drake (Kids Can Press)
- The Kids’ Family Tree Book by Caroline Leavitt (Sterling)
- Me and My Family Tree by Joan Sweeney (Dragonfly)
- My Family Tree Workbook: Genealogy for Beginners by Rosemary Chorzempa (Dover Publications)
- My Grandmother and Me (Kids Can Press): Fill-in memory scrapbook; grandfather, mother and father editions are also available.
- My Great-great-great-great-great-grandfather… Was a Warrior! by Margherita Sgarlata (Lobster Press)
- One Tiny Twig by Dan Rhema (Mesquite Tree Press)
- Roots for Kids: A Genealogy Guide for Young People by Susan Provost Beller (Genealogical Publishing Co.)
- Through the Eyes of Your Ancestors by Maureen A. Taylor (Houghton Mifflin)
- Oryx American Family Tree Series (Oryx Press): Genealogical guides for students, covering 12 ethnic ancestries.
- Who’s Who in My Family? by Loreen Leedy (Holiday House)
Books About the Past
Did your ancestors sail across the ocean to America? Travel across the prairies in a covered wagon? Fight in the Civil War? Learn what your ancestors’ lives were like in these books.
- Across America on an Emigrant Train by Jim Murphy (Clarion Books)
- The American Girls Collection (Pleasant Co.): The adventures of seven “American Girls” and their families illustrate 19th- and 20th-century history.
- Children of the Gold Rush by Jane G. Haigh and Claire Rudolph Murphy (Roberts Rinehart Publishing)
- The Civil War for Kids: A History with 21 Activities by Janis Herbert (Chicago Review Press)
- Daily Life in a Covered Wagon by Paul Erickson (Puffin Books)
- …If You Lived in Colonial Times by Ann McGovern (Scholastic)
- …If You Traveled on the Underground Railroad by Ellen Levine (Scholastic)
- …If Your Name Was Changed at Ellis Island by Ellen Levine (Scholastic)
- Inside Laura’s Little House: The Little House on the Prairie Treasury by Carolyn Strom Collins and Christina Wyss Eriksson (HarperCollins)
- Picture the American Past series (Lerner Publications): Describes kids’ experiences on orphan trains, at Indian boarding schools, on the World War II home front and during the Civil Rights era
Books About Culture and Heritage
People from all kinds of places and cultural backgrounds make up America. In these books, you can learn about your own family’s heritage.
- American Origins series (Avalon Travel Publishing): Traces the “roots” of Chinese, English, French, Germans, Irish, Italians, Japanese and Poles in the United States
- Annushka’s Voyage by Edith Tarbescu (Clarion Books)
- The Peoples of North America series (Chelsea House, out of print): Books detailing the history, culture and achievements of nearly 50 ethnic groups, from The Afro-Americans to The Hungarian Americans to The West Indian Americans
- Coming To America: The Story Of Immigration by Betsy Maestro (Scholastic Press)
- Cultures of America series (Benchmark Books, out of print): Books on American ethnic groups, including African, Chinese, Cuban, French, Greek, Irish, Italian, Japanese, Jewish, Korean, Lebanese, Mexican, Polish and Puerto Rican
- I Was Dreaming to Come to America: Memories from the Ellis Island Oral History Project by Veronica Lawlor (Puffin)
- American Family Albums series (Oxford University Press): Historical “scrapbooks” of African, Chinese, German, Irish, Italian, Jewish, Mexican and Scandinavian immigrants in America
Books About Genealogy Activities for Parents and Educators
Genealogy is a great way to get kids excited about history and help them connect with relatives. This page lists books especially for parents and teachers who are working with kids on family history-related projects.
- Creating Junior Genealogists: Tips and Activities for Family History Fun by Karen Frisch (Ancestry Publishing)
- Kids and Kin: The Family History Research Vacation That Involves Kids by Patricia Suter and Corinne P. Earnest (R.D. Earnest Associates, out of print)
- Links to the Past Through Genealogy: Curriculum Activities for the Classroom by Midge Frazel (Linworth Learning)
- One-Day Trips Through History, second edition, by Jane Ockershausen (Howell Press): Heritage adventure ideas in the Washington, DC, region.
- Turning Little Hearts : Over 80 Activities to Connect Children with their Ancestors by Jonah and Charlotte Barnes (Cedar Fort, Inc.)
- Your Travel Guide to Colonial America by Nancy Day (Lerner Publications)
- Youth in Family History by Starr Hailey Campbell (Creative Continuum)