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101 Places to Research Your Family Tree for Free

Alternatives to Pay-Per-Use and Subscription Genealogy Sites Online


11. British Columbia, Canada - Vital Records

Search for birth, marriage or death registrations in British Columbia, Canada for free. This free genealogy index covers all births from 1872-1899, marriages from 1872-1924, and deaths from 1872-1979, as well as WWII Overseas Casualties, Colonial Marriages (1859-1872) and Baptisms (1836-1885). If you find a record in the index which you would like to request, you can do so by visiting the archives or another agency which holds the microfilms in person, or by hiring someone to do so for you.

12. 1901 Census for England & Wales

Search for free in this comprehensive name index to over 32 million individuals who lived in England and Wales in 1901. This free genealogy index includes the individual's name, age, place of birth, and occupation. While the index is free, viewing transcribed data or a digitized image of the actual census record will cost you.

13. Obituary Daily Times

A daily index of published obituaries from around the world, this free genealogy index grows by approximately 2500 entries per day, with obituaries dating back to 1995. This is just an index, so if you would like the actual obituary you will need to request a copy from a volunteer or track it down for yourself. You can access the list of indexed newspapers and publications here.

14. RootsWeb Surname List (RSL)

A list or registry of over 1 million surnames from around the world, the RootsWeb Surname List (RSL) is a must-visit. Associated with each surname are dates, locations, and contact information for the person who submitted the surname. You can search this list by surname and location, and limit searches to recent additions. You can also add your own surnames to this list for free.

15. International Genealogical Index

A partial index to vital records from around the world, the IGI includes birth, marriage and death records from Africa, Asia, the British Isles (England, Ireland, Scotland, Wales, the Channel Island and the Isle of Man), the Caribbean Islands, Central America, Denmark, Finland, Germany, Iceland, Mexico, Norway, North America, South America, Europe, the Southwest Pacific and Sweden. Find dates and places of births, christenings, and marriages for more than 285 million deceased people. Many of the names were extracted from original records from the early 1500s to the early 1900's. This free genealogy database is accessible through the FamilySearch.org.
Learn More: Searching the IGI | Using Batch Numbers in the IGI

16. The Canadian County Atlas Digital Project

Between 1874 and 1881, approximately forty county atlases were published in Canada, covering counties in the Maritimes, Ontario and Quebec. This wonderful site includes a free genealogy database derived from these atlases, searchable by property owners' names or by location. Township maps, portraits and properties have been scanned, with links from the property owners' names in the database.

17. USGenWeb Archives

Most people researching United States ancestors know about the USGenWeb sites for each state and county in the U.S. What many people don't realize, however, is that most of these states and counties have free genealogy records including deeds, wills, census records, cemetery transcriptions etc., available online through the efforts of thousands of volunteers - but you don't have to visit each state or county site to look for your ancestor in these free records. These hundreds of thousands of online records across the United States can be searched through just one search engine!

18. US Social Security Death Index

One of the largest and easiest to access databases utilized for genealogical research in the United States, the SSDI contains over 64 million records of U.S. citizens who have died since 1962. From the SSDI you can find the following information: the date of birth, date of death, state where the Social Security number was issued, the individual's residence at time of death and the location where the death benefit was mailed (next of kin).

19. Billion Graves

Search or browse over 9 million transcribed records (many including photographs) from cemeteries in the United States, Canada, Australia, and over 50 other countries. The volunteer-run site is growing quickly with hundreds of thousands of new cemetery records added each month.

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