Illinois, Macon County, Decatur Public Library Collections (FamilySearch Historical Records)Edit This Page
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|This article describes a collection of historical records available at FamilySearch.org.|
Access the records: Illinois, Macon County, Decatur Public Library Collections, 1879-2007 .
Collection Time Period
This collection covers the years 1879 to 2007.
The collection consists of images of card indexes from the Decatur Public Library. The records include:
- Obituary indexes (1879-2007) - Arranged by year
- Military indexes (1917-1919)
These obituaries generally contain the following information:
- Name of deceased
- Date and place of death
- Names of family members
- Cause of death
- Date and place of burial
The World War I Soldiers Cards contain:
- Names of soldiers and enlistees
- Death information
How to Use the Record
To begin your search you will need to know the following:
- The person’s name
- The approximate death date
- The person’s last known residence
Once you have located your ancestor’s obituary, carefully evaluate each piece of information given. These records are often brief so it can be easy to confuse individuals. Compare what information is given with what you already know about your ancestor to make sure it is the correct person.
Next, look at the pieces of information given in the obituary for new information. Add any new information to your records of each family. You should also look for leads to other records about your ancestors.
- Use the birth date or year to search for birth records.
- Use the birth date along with relative’s names to find the family in census records.
- Use the locality and relative’s names to locate church and land records.
- The name of the undertaker or mortuary could lead you to funeral and cemetery records, which often include the names and residences of other family members.
- Compile the entries for every person who has the same surname; this is especially helpful in rural areas or if the surname is unusual.
- Continue to search the records to identify children, siblings, parents, and other relatives of the deceased who may have been buried in the same cemetery or nearby. This can help you identify other generations of your family. Repeat this process for each new generation you identify.
- When looking for a person who had a common name, look at all the entries for the name before deciding which is correct.
- If the person was in the military use the listed information to locate their military records
If you are unable to find the ancestors you are looking for, try the following:
- Check for variant spellings of the surnames.
- Search the indexes and records of nearby cemeteries.
Newspapers included obituaries from their beginning issues.
Why the Record Was Created
Obituaries were written as a public announcement of death.
The information is generally reliable, but may contain some inaccuracies.
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Contributions to This Article
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Citation for This Collection
The following citation refers to the original source of the data and images published on FamilySearch.org Historical Records. It may include the author, custodian, publisher, and archive for the original records.
Illinois, Macon County, Decatur Public Library Collections, 1879-2007. Decatur Public Library, Decatur, Illinois. FHL digital images, 45 digital folders. Family History Library, Salt Lake City, Utah
Information about creating source citations for FamilySearch Historical Collections is listed in the wiki article Help:How to Create Source Citations For FamilySearch Historical Records Collections.
Citing FamilySearch Historical Collections
When you copy information from a record, you should list where you found the information. This will help you or others to find the record again. It is also good to keep track of records where you did not find information, including the names of the people you looked for in the records.
A suggested format for keeping track of records that you have searched is found in the wiki article Help:How to Cite FamilySearch Collections.
Citation Example for a Record Found in a Collection
"Illinois, Macon County, Decatur Public Library Collections, 1879-2007" digital images, FamilySearch (https://www.familysearch.org: accessed 24 February 2012). Adolph G. Schwertd, drafted May 27, 1918; WWl Soldiers>World War l soldiers card file, 1918, s-z>image 45; Decatur Public Library, Decatur, Illinois, United States.
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