Georgia Research: A Handbook for Genealogists, Historians, Archivists, Lawyers, Librarians, and Other Researchers; Second Edition

Beginning 12 February 1733, more than one hundred years after Plymouth, Savannah became the thirteenth British colony. For the first 19 years, the colony was the under the rule of a board of trustees which sent many Protestant debtors there to settle. While Georgia provided opportunity for these poor to start over, the area was on the frontier and life was difficult. Many died  while others fled to more established colonies.

In 1752, the Crown took possession of the colony and eliminated existing restrictions on slavery, rum, and property ownership. This opened the way for more opportunistically minded settlers to try their hand in the new colony. By 1773, Georgia’s population was still relatively low, but was nearly half slaves, with approximately 18,000 whites and around 15,000 black slaves.

After the Revolutionary War, the new state of Georgia continued to expand. With that expansion, the state seat moved many times; from Savannah to Augusta in 1783, to Louisville in 1795, to Milledgeville in 1805, and finally to Atlanta in 1868. Like the other colonies, changes in government, expansion, and changing government seats, means many genealogically valuable documents have been moved or lost over time.  Researchers depend on the work and guidance of others to help find repositories of records and the means of accessing these records. Thus, the Georgia Genealogical Society, with major contributions by Robert S. Davis and Ted O. Brooke, have put together and published Georgia Research: A Handbook for Genealogists, Historians, Archivists, Lawyers, Librarians, and Other Researchers; Second Edition.

Like so many state specific genealogical resource guides, Georgia Research, lists and describes federal, state, and local level repositories and records of genealogical and historical interest throughout Georgia. The new 2012 second edition is an update to the original 2001 publication. Major advances in genealogical research, available sources, the Internet, and the relocation of both the Georgia Archives and the National Archives in  Atlanta made it clear to the Society a new, updated version was necessary. This new version reflects the changes of the past eleven years, including, new locations and added resources.

The listing of resources in this book is one of the more interest and effective methods I have seen for sharing resource information. The first chapters plainly lists federal and state sources found in Georgia. These are typically the largest and better known repositories, such as the National Archives, state archives, major newspapers, cemetery lists, and more. The second chapter provides descriptions and locations based on time periods. Records start with in modern times and work backwards.

The third chapter details records on a county and local level. Here each county is listed along with the county seat, year and nature of its beginning and when certain record types begin. The counties are listed alphabetically and include a list of major published records pertinent to the area; for example, newspapers, court records, cemeteries, etc. The last chapter offers up other miscellaneous resources. See below for a complete contents listing.


Georgia Research: A Handbook for Genealogists, Historians, Archivists, Lawyers, Librarians, and Other Researchers; Second Edition is available from Family Roots Publishing; Price: $34.30.








Chapter 1 Federal and State Sources in Georgia

  • The National Archives and Records Administration
  • National Archives at Atlanta (Southeast Region)
    • Population Census Report
    • Non-Population Census Reports
    • Military Reports
    • Passenger Lists
    • Naturalization Records
    • Tax Records
    • List of Postmasters
    • Indian Records
    • Court Records
    • Other Federal Sources
  • Guides and Bibliographies
  • The Georgia Archives
    • Government Records
    • Supreme Court of Georgia
    • Court of Appeals of Georgia
    • Other Resources
    • General Name File
    • Miscellaneous Church and Cemetery File
    • Microfilm Library
    • Leon Hollingsworth Genealogical Collection
    • Georgia Society, DAR “Genealogical Records” Collection
    • Private Manuscript Collections
    • Hereditary and Military Descent Organizations
  • Other Statewide Repositories
    • Georgia Historical Society
    • Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library
    • Historic Preservation Division
    • Huxford-Spear Genealogical Library
    • University of Georgia Main Library
    • Washington Memorial Library
  • Maps, Locations, and Place Names
    • Modern Maps
    • Historical Maps
    • Maps of State, County, and Militia District Boundaries
    • Maps of Federal Post Offices
    • Federal Topographical Maps
    • Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps
    • County Boundary Maps
    • Place Names
    • Forts, Ferries, Roads, and Place Names
    • Military Installations
    • Colonial and Coastal Places
    • Early Georgia Places
    • Indian Place Names
    • Civil War Locations
    • Taverns and Inns
    • American Place Names
    • Citations of Visits to Georgia
  • Biographical Source Directories
    • New Georgia Encyclopedia
    • Georgia Biography Card Catalog
    • File II and Related Sources
    • Atlanta Area Biographical and Death Records
    • Business Persons
    • Lists of Professionals and Persons of Note
    • Early Lawyers
    • Medical Professionals and Dental Professionals
    • Military Officers
    • Southern Artisans
  • Fraternal Organizations
    • Freemasons/Mason
    • Other Organizations
  • Special Resources on Women
  • Newspapers and Newspaper Indexes
    • Nationwide Collections
    • Georgia Newspapers
    • Georgia Newspaper Project
  • Cemeteries
  • Church Records
    • Georgia Baptist Convention
    • Primitive Baptist Denomination
    • Catholic Church
    • Jewish Religion
    • Methodist Denomination
    • Presbyterian Denomination
  • Religious Newspapers
    • Baptists Newspapers
    • Primitive Baptist Newspapers
    • Lutheran Newspapers
    • Methodist Newspapers
    • Presbyterian Newspapers
  • Miscellaneous General Sources
  • Internet Genealogy for Georgia

Chapter II Research by Time Period

  • Modern Era, 1917-Present
    • Census Records
    • Vital Records
    • Military Records—World War I
    • Federal Military Records—World War I and Later
    • Prison and Asylum Records
    • Immigration, Naturalization, and Passport Records
  • Pre-Modern Period, 1872-1917
    • Census Records
    • Tax Digests
    • Vital Records
    • Military Records
  • Reconstruction, 1866-1872
    • Census Records
    • Returns of Qualified Voters
    • Pardons and Amnesty
    • Civil War Claims Filed After the Civil War
    • Federal Direct Tax Records, 1865-1873
    • Freedman’s Bank Records, 1868-1874
    • Apprenticeship Records, 1866-
    • Freedmen’s Bureau Records, 1865-1872
    • Racial Violence Records, 1866-1871
    • Other Sources for African American Research
    • Homestead Records, 1866-
    • Relief Bills
  • The Civil War, 1861-1865
    • General References & Biographical Sources
    • Alphabetical Card File Index of the Confederate Pension Office
    • Militia Enrollment Lists, 1864
    • Confederate Compiled Service Records
    • Photographs
    • Confederate Rosters
    • Confederate Unit Histories and Service Records by County
    • Union Service Records
    • Civilians in Confederate Georgia
    • Cemetery, Hospital, and Monument Records
    • Civil War Pension Records
    • Confederate Soldiers’ Home
    • Civil War Miscellaneous
  • Antebellum Georgia, 1812-1860
    • Federal Census
    • State Censuses, 1786-1866
    • Land Lotteries, 1805-1833
    • Military Records
    • Federal Bounty and Pension Claims
    • Poor School and Academy Lists
    • Original Native American (Indian) Records
    • Slave Sources
    • Records of Free Persons of color
    • Gold and Other Mining Information
    • Records on Postmasters and Other Federal Employees
  • The Early Republic, 1783-1811
    • Federal Census Records, 1790-1810
    • Headright and Bounty Grants, 1755-1909
    • Federal bounty Grants for Revolutionary War Service
    • Indian Depredations claims
    • Migration Records Including Passports by Georgia Governors
    • Typescripts of early government Records
    • Fleeing Felons
    • Military Rosters and commissions
    • Federal Direct Tax Records
    • Yazooo Land Fraud Records
  • The American Revolution, 1776-1782
    • Basic Sources
    • State and Continental Accounts
    • Land Grants During the Revolution
    • Bounty Land Certificates
    • Revolutionary War Pension Claims
    • DAR Records
    • Loyalist Records
    • Miscellaneous Records
  • The Colonial Period, 1733-1775 and 1779-1782
    • The First Georgians
    • Land Grants, 1752-1775
    • Military Records
    • Colonial Georgia Books of Record, 1754-1782
    • The Salzburgers
    • Other Groups in Colonial Georgia
    • Passenger Lists
    • Marriage Records
    • Cemeteries
    • Newspapers
    • Miscellaneous

Chapter III Counties, County Records, and Local History Sources

  • Local Government Records
    • Probate Court or Ordinary’s Records
    • Superior court Records
    • Other County Records
  • County Data and Special Sources
  • Georgia Colonial Parishes
  • Georgia Counties
  • Local Histories
  • City Directories
  • Business Directories, Gazetteers, and Almanacs
    • Sherwood Series
    • Late 19th Century Series
  • Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps
  • Photography
  • Sites Visited by the Vanishing Georgia Photograph Project of the Georgia Archives

Chapter IV Genealogical Periodicals and Other Resources

  • General
  • Genealogical Societies
  • Genealogical Periodicals
  • Libraries and Records Repositories
  • Latter-Day Saints (LDS) Branch Libraries in Georgia


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