As you’ve probably discovered in your own research, sometimes the only way to scale a brick wall is to use genealogy’s version of a back door. For me, this meant tracking down families who married into my family—and then researching the allied families’ roots.
One of my major research achievements was the recovery of a lost line, accomplished by finding a marriage record and then using that record to trace the bride’s family back another few generations until I found my own family again.
Over time, I’ve collected an extensive list of online marriage records, and thought you’d be interested in exploring them. Please note, this is by no means a complete list-just the ones I’ve found in my own research. E-mail me if you’ve found other online sources for free marriage databases—I’d love to create a Web site that links to all of them.
• Marriage Records (not a database, but a good introduction to marriage records for genealogists)
• GeneaLinks (35,000 marriage records)
• Early Quaker Marriages
• AncestralFinding Free Marriage Record Lookups
• Free BMD (births, marriages, deaths in England and Wales)
• Illinois Statewide Marriage Index 1763-1900
• Western States Historical Marriage Record Index
• 4 USGenWeb Marriage Project
• Marriage Record Index at Ray Brown’s Place (links to several New England marriage indexes)
• Kentucky Vital Records Index
• A Marriage Database for Northern England
• Indiana Marriage Database (through 1850)
• Putnam County, Tennessee Marriage Database
• Baker County, Oregon Marriages 1862-1980
Nancy Hendrickson is a contributing editor for Family Tree Magazine. She also is a family historian, freelance writer and the author of two astronomy books. Her Web site is at www.ancestornews.com. E-mail her at firstname.lastname@example.org