| United States > Migration Internal
Wagons were bumpy—most pioneers walked or rode horseback beside the oxen pulling their wagons.
Value of Migration Research
Mountains, forests, rivers, and the gaps between them channelled migration into predictable settlement patterns. Events like gold or land rushes, and Indian treaties also affected settlement.
Understanding the transportation systems available to ancestors can help genealogists better guess their place of origin. Connect the place where an ancestor settled to the nearby canals,waterways, trails, roads, and railroads to look for connections to places they may have lived previously.
Migration research may help you discover:
- a place of origin, previous hometown, or place where an ancestor settled
- biographical details such as what they experienced, or with whom they traveled on their journey
- clues for finding other records
Contents of U.S. Migration Records
Blank forms for the US Census
Migration Records for Selected States
Key Reference Sources
- William Thorndale, and William Dollarhide, Map Guide to U.S. Federal Censuses 1790-1920 (Baltimore: Genealogical Publ., 1987) [FHL book 973 X2th]. Shows county boundary changes in each state from 1790 to 1920, and which census areas were lost or still exist.
- William Dollarhide, The Census Book: a Genealogist's Guide to Federal Census Facts, Schedules and Indexes: with Master Extraction Forms for Federal Census Schedules, 1790-1930. (Bountiful, Utah: Heritage Quest, 1999)[FHL book 973 X27d]. An online edition is at HeritageQuestOnline. Discusses indexes, regular, and non-population schedules.
- G. David Dilts, "Censuses and Tax Lists" in Kory L. Meyerink, ed., Printed Sources: a Guide to Published Genealogical Records (Salt Lake City: Ancestry, 1998), 300-52. Strategies for finding elusive ancestors, and history of indexing.
Things you can do
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