Updated:  Monday, June 02, 2003

"Live Leveraged Links" -- A List of Some Useful Internet (and other Computer Based) Resources

© John W Konvalinka 2002


Please email me john@konvalinka.com  with any broken or problem links -- or any additions you feel would be worthwhile.


The Internet's World Wide Web -- A huge network of Computer "sites" -- many of which contain useful information for genealogists -- especially for finding living relatives.  There are reportedly over 400,000 websites that are somehow involved with genealogy.

Here are links to over 200 sites that I've found particularly useful -- most of them leveraged, that is, leading to many other links.  (Comments in quotes are from the sites’ publicity material or other sources. )    I’ve provided these sites only as a convenience to other genealogists.  I do not/cannot endorse any of the sites listed here.  I do not maintain or control any of these sites, and cannot assume responsibility for their content. 


Table of Contents

(Click on Each underlined caption to go directly to that Section to find live links to other sites;  Use Browser “back” button to return to Table of Contents.)

(Or: Use your browser’s “edit-find” buttons to search the site by keyword.)


General Purpose, "Gateway", "Directory", "Portal", "Starting Point" Sites  

Sites for Genealogists:  

Sites for Finding Specific Information

Other Sites for Locating Living People

Search Engines and "Meta" Search Engines:

Surname Searches

Locality Searches

Mailing Lists

Newsletters and "E-Zines

Other Internet  WWW Services (Some Require Subscription and/Or Fees)

The Various "Detectives" Programs

The "Other" Web Sites -- May Require Membership and/or Fee 

OnLine Census Data

Cemetery Records, Etc

Other "Special Purpose" Sites

Other Internet Resources -- Usenet (Newsgroups)

Other Internet Resources -- Chat Groups

"How-To" Books Magazines and Articles

Libraries and Related Sources

Reunion Aids

For Constructing Your Own Web Site


===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===


Detail Sections:


General Purpose, "Gateway", "Directory", "Portal", "Starting Point" Sites: 

A compilation of Web addresses and descriptive information arranged into categories and subcategories, somewhat like a reference library.

  • Yahoo: http://www.yahoo.com.   general/specific interest; sites included suggested by users and evaluated by staff.  It provides the ability to search its own contents. A failed search (one that yields no results from the directory's own content) often reverts to a search engine.
  • Lycos:  http://www.lycos.com/. develops and provides online guides to locate and filter information on the Internet. Products enable users to accurately identify and select information of interest to them.  Co-branded Ancestry.com and Lycos site for genealogy specific research:  http://ancestry.lycos.com/ -- "more than 274 million names in 1,750 databases."
  • Steve Wood's Genealogy Portal:  http://www.genealogyportal.com.  A good site from which to launch your online searches; a quick and easy method of searching hundreds of genealogy sites looking for names; also has lists of Archives and Libraries, Guides to Research, Historical Sites, Primary Records, and Research Supplies, as well as a list of Software and Utilities.
  • Steve Lacy's Genealogy Gateway:   http://www.gengateway.com  also has a large collection of genealogy-related links "Well Over 70, 000 Resource Listings".


 ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===


Sites for Genealogists -- Some of The Best [Known] Genealogy Sites:

  • Rootsweb:    http://www.rootsweb.com/   The Internet's oldest and largest FREE  Genealogy site (7-00 acquired by Ancestry.com.)  Large collection of tools and links for surname and locality searches and links to other resources and to people who will help with lookups, etc (www.raogk.org )  and a listing of books people own and will do lookups for people  http://www.rootsweb.com/~bwo/   19,000 mailing lists, the hundreds of millions of names in free genealogy databases, the numerous tools for tracing your family history, the tens of thousands of message boards, the thousands of independently authored Web sites.
  • The LDS (Mormon) Family Search Site:  www.familysearch.org A new, huge and active site for searching the LDS (Mormon) data bases  (Ancestral File, International Genealogical Index, Pedigree Resource File, and Web sites) and library -- by name, location, etc.
  • Helm's Genealogy Toolbox:   http://www.genealogytoolbox.com/  Established in February 1995, consists of seven sites designed to provide the tools necessary for genealogists to use the Internet to discover their family's history. Resources on the Genealogy Toolbox include a list of over 70,000 links to genealogical resources on the Internet.


===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===


 Other Worthwhile Sites for Genealogists:


Sites for Finding Specific Information:

  • "Social Security Death Index":  http://ssdi.rootsweb.com/  A large listing of US deaths since the 1960's, useful in providing location and place/year of birth information.  Also useful for finding LIVING persons (descendants, etc.)   Contains >64 million records as of October 2000. 
  • USGenealogy:  http://www.usgenealogy.com/   "where you can trace the past of almost anyone in the USA or the colonies preceding it" (mainly links to RootsWeb, etc)
  • Phone and Address Listings:   http://www.teldir.com/eng/   A large compilation of phone directories on The Internet.  Some are reverse-searchable -- by telephone number and/or address. Limited to LISTED phone numbers.  (It is estimated that 35% of US phone numbers are unlisted or unpublished.)

            If that doesn't work -- try paid or partially paid services: 

KnowX.com: http://www.knowx.com/  "An invaluable tool in genealogical research, KnowX.com is the most comprehensive source of public records on the Internet. Providing access to billions of public records, it offers  information other Web sites can't!"  (You pay for each search you do.  Average:  $5-$20)

Ameridex Information Systems (was CSRA?) http://kadima.com  "database over 260 million names, 225 million with date of birth compiled from public ...sources"  Also SSDI and database of 5 million military personnel.  Requires $50 deposit and statement of intended use.


Other “pay-for-search” services (They do the search from your information -- may or may not be worth the money:)

·         ·     US Search.com  http://www.ussearch.com/   (prices start from about $25 per search)

·         ·    SearchingForPeople.com:  http://www.searchingforpeople.com/  (from 9.95 per search, plus free directory.)

·         ·    BigHugs.com: http://www.bighugs.com/ --  "Last year, more than ONE MILLION FAMILIES asked to reunite them with missing family members. Tell them who YOU want to find! Fill out a 30-second short form and who knows, your  Dream Reunion may be next! (specializing in adoption search)." (8-21-00: I tried a search; only result was a phone call back trying to sell me a comprehensive search for $129.)  

High end search services:

·         Accolaid...  (pay per search; minimum charge $150 per month)

·         AmeriFind -- DCS Information Systems http://www.dnis.com/  " the premier provider of on-line investigative solutions for business and government"  [Application form asks for your Private Investigator License Number]


(See also The Various "Detectives" Programs section of this list)


·         ·        California Birth Index (1905-1995):   http://userdb.rootsweb.com/ca/birth/search.cgi     24 million public records with almost 1 million  surnames

·         ·       California Death Index (1940-1995):   http://userdb.rootsweb.com/ca/death/search.cgi    9 million public records with 500,000 surnames. 

·         ·        Texas Death Records (1964-1998):   http://userdb.rootsweb.com/tx/death/search.cgi       4 million public records with 160,000 surnames 

·         ·       Texas Probate Records:  http://three-legged-willie.org/texas.htm   26,000 probate records for 11 Texas counties.

·         ·        Texas motor vehicle registrations:   http://www.publiclink.com 


 Other Sites for Locating Living People:

·        Military Brats' Registry:  www.military-brats.com.  A place where people who grew up in the military can find acquaintances.  Military Brats Online: www.lynxu.com/brats/index.html  posts reunion messages 

·         ClassMates:  www.classmates.com  "Largest directory of contact information for high school alumni -- also military"   "7.4 million registered alumni; adding 20,000 a day"

===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===


Search Engines -- Indexed compilations of  Web pages collected mechanically  from the WWWeb, indexed using: 1) The Title -- 2) META Tags -- 3) Page Content;  they will go out and look for key words  (like a surname) on millions of web sites.   It is estimated that less than one half of the web's 1 BILLION PAGES is indexed


Some Favorite Search Engines


===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===


Other Interesting Search Engines:

  • Gene Stark's Gendex:  www.gendex.com   not large (17 mil names) but includes dates and places right in the index
  • Internet Karnak:  http://www.karnak.com  "the library of infinite knowledge,"  -- can search the Web for knowledge resources.   Sends you email(s) with the results.  Quite comprehensive
  • Obituary Archive Search Engines: http://www.obitcentral.com/obitsearch/   Keyword  searchable engines that will allow surname searches thru full text obituaries around the US.
  • Obituary Daily Times:  http://www.rootsweb.com/~obituary/
  • Obit Lookups:   http://members.aol.com/sjhcamp/index.html   A list of volunteers all over the world who are willing to search for old obituaries in newspapers that they have access to.
  • AuctionFerret:  http://www.ferretsoft.com   allows fast searches of 12 or more auction sites.
  • Copernic:  www.copernic.com  “Simultaneously consults the best search engines; · Brings back relevant results with summaries.” 
  • FASTSearch:  An emerging favorite (see Drew Smith's "Showdown" Article  Summer 2000 Genealogical Computing]  (see All the Web: http://www.ussc.alltheweb.com/ above)


===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===   ===


Meta Search Engines, etc   (Provide links to, or will do searches on many search engines) 

For articles on doing advanced searches: "Search Engine Searching--Update," by Michael John Neill ("Ancestry Daily News," 6/06/2000): http://www.ancestry.com/library/view/news/articles/1497.asp

And:  http://searchenginewatch.com/facts/math.html