Thousands of Probate Records Are Free Right Now on the NEHGS Website

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Thousands of Probate Records Are Free Right Now on the NEHGS Website


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The New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) is offering free access to thirty-two probate-related databases on its website right now. Access to these wonderful collections starts today, April 18th, and lasts one week.

The databases being offered by the NEHGS contain some of the earliest probate records of colonial Massachusetts and other New England colonies and states, as well as New York and New Brunswick, Canada. The collections provide a wide variety of information on the use of such records in family history research and bring the probate research expertise of NEHGS staff to genealogists of all levels.

Probate records can be a powerful resource for genealogists and other researchers. These papers document legal decisions that explain how an individual’s estate is distributed to heirs, dependents, and creditors. Probates may list a person’s spouse, children, and other relatives. They may also contain important clues to a person’s financial status, by including a list of worldly possessions at the time of death.

To take advantage of the free records visit the probate page at AmericanAncestors.org and register as a Guest Member.

The free record access ends on Tuesday, April 25th.

NEHGS is also providing a free webinar about using these records. Using New England Probate Records, a sixty-minute webinar presented by David Allen Lambert, Chief Genealogist at NEHGS, is available free to all visitors to the site. The webinar offers guidance on how to get the most out of all probate records.

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About American Ancestors and New England Historic Genealogical Society

New England Historic Genealogical Society (NEHGS) is America’s founding genealogical organization. Established in 1845, NEHGS provides comprehensive family history services through an expert staff, original scholarship, educational opportunities, world- class research center, and award-winning website, AmericanAncestors.org, to help family historians of all levels explore their past and understand their families’ unique place in history.

A member-based, nonprofit institution serving more than 220,000 members, NEHGS is dedicated to advancing the study of family history in America and beyond, by educating, inspiring, and connecting people through our scholarship, collections, and expertise.

NEHGS’s resources, expertise, and service are unmatched in the field and its leading staff of onsite and online genealogists includes experts in early American, Irish, English, Scottish, Italian, Atlantic and French Canadian, African American, Native American, Chinese, and Jewish research. AmericanAncestors.org offers more than 1.3 billion searchable family history records spanning twenty-two countries covering the United States, the British Isles, continental Europe, and beyond.

The NEHGS library and archive, located at 99-101 Newbury Street in downtown Boston, is home to the largest collection of original family history research materials in the country with more than 28 million items dating from the fourteenth century to the present, including diaries, letters, photographs, books, and microfilm.

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