Sunday, February 13, 2011

Creating a Search Checklist

To help us provide better service for requests for history of Cambridge and surrounding area residents, we are developing a checklist of our sources.  The current version is shown below so we and you can work with it.  Please let us know your experience with it and how we might improve it. 

Background:  What does the requester know about the topic already?  And what would they like to know?  Any dates, events, locations, etc.will help suggest sources to check or ignore.

Searching for individuals and/or families:
  1.  Are they in our books?  The expanded table of contents for the Sesquicentennial and Schools books may help.  Also, we have begun a name index for the Sesquicentennial book.
  2. Are there any Family Histories of interest?  Our Family History holding are being listed.
  3. Are they a veteran?  The Sesquicentennial book lists many of the Cambridge veterans.  A Civil War Veterans working page is available.  Also see the Veterans binder.
  4. Check the obituary index and the alphabetical binders.
  5. Are they buried in local cemetery?  We have the 1992 listings from the Story County Genealogical Society for many of the local townships.  These each have indexes by name and readings of the gravestones at the time.
  6. Check binder(s) for particular years.
Also, outside sources that may be useful include:
  1. Check History of Story County Vol 1 Vol 2 (Google Books)  We have parts of these; however, by using the Google Books links you can search within the books.
  2. Check Nevada Community Historical Society Family Trees.  Despite its name, many other Story County residents are included.
  3. Check Roland Record.  You can search and view these papers online.  If searching for Cambridge, do not include Iowa.  Most of the entries assume Iowa for Cambridge.
  4. Check Story County Genweb.  They have a variety of materials available.
  5. For World War II Veterans, check the Ames Historical Society Index to WW2 Veterans.
As we update this checklist, you can see the most recent version here.

    Friday, February 11, 2011

    Family Histories at the Cambridge Historical Association

    As part of our collection, the Cambridge Historical Association has a number of family histories.  Some of these are genealogies and others are collections of articles or other materials from or about particular families.  We are listing these holdings in a series of entries on our website.  Those whose name begins with A - B can be found in our earlier post.

    While we are doing this, we are also creating what will be a list and description of our complete holdings in this area.  See this page on our wiki to follow the ongoing creation of the list.

    Part of what we are adding to the complete list are cross-references from other family names to help us locating pertinent material for requests.  Please let us know what other information might help you in using this.

    Friday, February 4, 2011

    2010 Meeting with County Supervisors

    The Story County Historical Alliance meets with the Story County Supervisors each year to describe our accomplishments.  This year the Ames Historical Society hosted a meeting with Jane Haliburton, Wayne Clinton, and Paul Toot on November 23, 2010.  You can read a short summary of the other historical societies programs here.

    The accomplishments we reported were:
    • Moving the Cambridge Historical Association into the building donated by the Masons.
    • This has lead to an increase in Life memberships and artifacts donations
    • It also provided a location for expanding our displays for Jubilee Days open house
    • Updated our Veterans list to work with the American Legion and American Legion Auxiliary for Memorial Day
    • Working with Civil War Remembrance group for the Civil War Sesquicentennial
    • Added a current events website Cambridge Happenings to announce upcoming local events
    • Obituaries index being updated and expanded
    • Our volunteer hours are approaching 500 this year (before the end of the year we did pass 500 hours!)
    Thank you to the Supervisors for their continuing interest and support.