Guessing a Record Type to UseEdit This Page

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How to figure out which record types to use to document an event on a family group record. Use the Record Selection Table for the nation.

The Record Selection Table for each nation is the best place to get ideas for records types to research to document a specific event. Look up the event you want to document in the table to see the record types to use. For example, the Table shows that for documenting death use Vital Records, Cemeteries, and Probate Records first.

Then use the Family History Library Catalog Place Search to find the place where your ancestor lived. Within that place look up the topic (record type) listed in the Record Selection Table for the event you want to document.

For example, if you wanted to find the birth of children in Newton, Kansas in the 1920s the Record Selection Table says to first try Vital Records. So you would look in the FHL Catalog Place Search to find Kansas, Harvey – Vital Records and see if the Library has births for the 1920s.

If not, try the town, and state level vital records as well. If that doesn’t work try the next record type cited in the Record Selection Table for the same place.

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