An In-Brief Guide to New York Genealogy

A new research guide is now available as a PDF file. The following announcement was written by the folks at the In-Depth Genealogist Store:


The In-Depth Genealogist (IDG) is pleased to present their newest in-brief research guide in the research series by writer, Larry Naukam, entitled “An In-Brief Guide to New York Genealogy”. Larry writes the column “Doing it Ourselves” for The In-Depth Genealogist’s digital magazine, Going In-Depth. Larry holds degrees in Geography, Library Science, and Divinity. For more than 30 years he has worked in libraries and information centers, using various techniques and technologies to enhance access to historical materials. As technologies have developed he has used them to make collections more accessible for students and researchers.

An extremely important item to remember about research in New York State is that there is New York City, and the rest of the state. Many vital and other records concerning the five counties which comprise today’s New York City itself are not kept in other parts of the state. European settlements in the eastern and southeastern part of the state date from the early 1600’s, while parts of the western area were not fully established until the 1860’s. New York has mandated historians at the village, town, city, county and state level since the early 1920s.

“An In-Brief Guide to New York Genealogy” is available now as a PDF ($2.75). Pre-orders of the printed laminated guide, 8.5” x 11” ($9.95 + shipping) are through The In-Depth Genealogist Store ( IDG has published sixteen guides which are all available as 4-page PDFs and laminated print versions. Subscribers to the digital magazine, Going In-Depth, receive a 10% discount on purchase of each guide.


Is this guide to NYC or NY state? Sorry, not clear from the description. Thanks.


Have not seen this particular one yet, but it appears to be another in IDG’s excellent series of quick reference guides to genealogy research in various places of interest, and appears from the description and the portion of the first page visible on the website to cover the whole state. The guides are usually about four 8.5″ x 11″ pages, laminated for durability, and designed to easily slip inside a notebook or be called up on a portable device when a researcher is either in the field, or just in a hurry. As quick reference guides, they are not intended to be exhaustive discussions of every resource available in all situations a researcher is ever likely to encounter. Instead, they are handy summaries of the most commonly needed resources, and some lesser-known resources (like the NY Military Museum) that a broad spectrum of researchers might not know existed, but would likely find interesting and useful if they did. For the price of $2.75 you can hardly go wrong.

If you are going to spend a lot of time, going to great depths in your NY research, you will probably eventually need to consult the NYG&B’s “New York Family History Research Guide and Gazetteer.” But that is a very expensive door-stopper of an 8.5″ x 11″ book, almost 2″ thick, and not at all handy to carry into the field on a research trip. (It definitely won’t slip conveniently into your notebook, and just think of the overweight luggage charges its presence in a suitcase might trigger….Oy veh!).

I’d be inclined to buy the IDG guide for my personal daily use and then lobby my local public library to acquire the NYG&B book for its permanent reference collection, where I (and other descendants of the large number of families who migrated westward by way of NY) could consult it when necessary, without actually having to buy a copy.


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