May 21 Topic: “Directories and Maps”, by Ed Storey
The whole is considered greater than the sum of the parts and the same is true for genealogical research. There are many sources of information & each provides a glimpse. When these are combined, however, then a more complete picture might come into focus. Here, we will talk about how to use maps, directories and other sources to gain information about where a person lived and what they did. Documents produced close to an event are more likely to be accurate and printed documents are more readable. The key is to know where to find them. We will have examples from several states, with a few excursions overseas. Sanborn maps are especially useful because they show individual buildings and their relationship to those nearby. Still, street names might have changed over time, particularly as a result of WW1. When combined with city directories it is possible to gain more understanding. There will be enough information to enable people to utilize the same techniques. Many of the documents are available online.
Ed Storey grew in in Rochester and lived in El Paso & Beijing before moving to Colorado about ten years ago, with his wife, Nancy. He has been working on genealogy since about 2000 and occasionally writes magazine articles for genealogy magazines. His interest is finding contemporary sources that do more than just provide vital records. He has had good success with online groups and contacts with those who have posted trees. Ed worked for GM for many years before retiring. His ancestors are primarily from England and Germany. He is getting close to venturing into the world of DNA testing.