When is the last time you checked . . .?

Today’s electronic world of history, archives, and genealogy offers us many ways to learn about new offerings, finding aids, accessions, classes, indexes, and other things helpful in our family history searches.

When is the last time you checked an ancestral state’s historical society or state archives website? (or of a county historical , genealogical society, regional archives, or local history collection, etc.?) Is there a periodical electronic newsletter you can sign up for? Is there a website section that lists recently acquired records or updated finding aids? Are there publications you should be reading regularly, both online and off?

The website of the U.S. National Archives includes a section listing acquisitions and record openings. The list for the 1st Quarter of 2008 includes these Minnesota connected records at the federal regional archives in Chicago:

Chicago—NARA’s Great Lakes Region Contact archival operations, 773-948-9001.
Records of District Courts of the United States (Record Group 21)20 cubic feet Federal courts in Minnesota:Third Division of Minnesota, St. Paul Division. Naturalization Index, 1930–88; Declarations of Intention, 1969–87; Naturalization Petitions, 1970–91; Naturalization Transfer Petitions, 1970–92.Fourth Division of Minnesota, Minneapolis Division. Naturalization Index, 1930–88; Naturalization Index, 1989–92; Declarations of Intention, 1970–85; Naturalization Petitions, 1970–91; Naturalization Transfer Petitions, 1970–92; Correspondence Relating to Naturalization Transfer Petitions, 1977–85.Fifth Division of Minnesota, Duluth Division. Naturalization Index, 1927–92.Sixth Division of Minnesota, Fergus Falls Division. Naturalization Petitions, 1978–88.

The online lists go back to mid-2001. One place to find earlier lists is in Prologue, which is still published quarterly by the National Archives. Iif you subscribe by April 1st, the cost is only $20.00. If any of these records pertain to your family history, put a trip to Chicago on your spring or summer schedule.

© 2008, Paula Stuart-Warren. All rights reserved.

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