Databases Available Through the Library
Genealogy & Local History websites
Subject Headings and Call Numbers for Genealogy
The Newton Free LIbrary, like many public libraries, uses the Dewey Decimal System for cataloging and shelving non-fiction books. Each number represents a subject category. This allows you to go to the shelf looking for one book and finding others that may be of interest. Below are Dewey numbers relating to genealogy and family history.
929.2 Family History: The history of family groups as opposed to the biography of an individual.
929.3 Genealogical Sources
929.4 Personal Names: the origins and/or the history of last names (surnames) or first names (forenames).
929.5 Cemetery Records
929.7 Royal Houses
Genealogy -- Handbooks and Manuals ["How to" books]
Genealogy -- [Place]
[Place] -- Genealogy -- Handbooks and Manuals ["How to" do place related research]
Note: A place can be a country, state, county, or town. For subject headings Massachusetts is abbreviated at Mass., not MA.
Genealogy and Family History
Is there really any difference between the terms family history and genealogy?
Actually, there is. Genealogy is solely concerned with direct ancestors: your parents, grand parents, great grand parents going back in time. Sound simple? Remember that every time you go back a generation, you double the number of ancestors. You have two parents, four grand parents, eight great parents, sixteen great, great grandparents... How do you reseach such a vast number of people? Ancestor by ancestor, family by family, line by line starting with you and going back in time.
When you refer to family history, you exclude no one who is part of a particular household. Keeping track of brothers, sisters, even boarders, is not only interesting, but comes in handy in a pinch. At some point in your research you will come to what is known as a brick wall. There seems no record that links to the next generation. Sometimes going sideways, looking at the records of a brother, sister, or uncle, may lead you to that one record that makes the leap backwards. And that boarder. You would be surprised how often a border ends up becoming an ancestor through marriage. And don't forget adoptees and others living within the family.
Interested? Click on the tabs above to see what resources are out there (and in the library) to begin or to continue your search.