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Try-It! Illinois Database Season is Now Live! – Thrifty Thursday

Try-It Illinois LogoKick off your fall research season with the Try-It! Illinois Database Trial!

If you’re an Illinois resident with internet access of any kind, you are eligible to access the immense amount of information available during the this year’s trial. Thanks to the generous sponsorship of the Secretary of State and State Librarian Jesse White, the Illinois State Library, and numerous electronic resource vendors, Illinois residents can sample, evaluate, and utilize resources free of charge.

Every year, I like to highlight several of the databases for genealogical researchers. This time, however, I would like to highlight some of the best resources available on this year’s trial:

MyHeritage Library Edition
Digital Sanborn Maps Geo Edition
FOLD3 Library Edition
Historic Map Works Library Edition
Historical Chicago Defender (1909-1975)
Historical Chicago Tribune 1849 – 1992
Historical New York Times 1851 – 2012
Image Quest
Newspaper Archive Library Edition
ProQuest Newsstand
ProQuest Obituaries
Trench Journals and Unit Magazines of the First World War

There’s an amazing selection of new African American genealogical research resources, most notably ProQuest’s collections Black Freedom Struggle in the 20th Century: Federal Government Records, Organizational Records, and Personal Papers (1895-1996)  and the NAACP records pertaining to annual conferences, staff files, campaign files, youth department files, and other special records.

What is notably missing from this year’s selection is Ancestry Library Edition, 19th Century British Library Newspapers, 19th Century U.S. Newspapers, and Heritage Quest.  If you would like to see them added to this year’s trial, send an e-mail to the Account Representatives for Gale Cengage and ProQuest.

My favorite new database award from this year’s trial goes to Image Quest, for it’s amazing array of photographs from museums and archives all over the world.  You will not want to miss the amazing collection of photographs from the Chicago History Museum, which is the single largest source of pictorial information for the Chicago metropolitan area from the early 19th century to the present.
Chicago History Museum
It also includes an extensive collection of photographic and print images related to American history before 1870.  You can browse, search, and save photos from the site quickly and conveniently.  I spent several hours today browsing through collections posted from the Chicago History Museum, British Library, National Portrait Gallery, Nativestock, National Geographic, and Panoramic Images.  This is a site you will definitely want visit and linger over.

Remember, you only have until November 30, 2014 to enjoy these databases for free from the comfort of your home.  If you think Fold3, Image Quest, or any of the databases on Try-It! Illinois would be a great addition to your local library’s databases, you will want to call or drop by the library to share your suggestions!

The next Fountaindale Public Library Genealogy Club Meeting will be held on Wednesday, October 14 at 7 p.m. in Meeting Room A.   Gloria Flathom, the DAR District IV Director will be presenting a program on how to research revolutionary war ancestors entitled Three Generations Without Documentation.  The Isle a la Cache chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution will also be available to assist you with some of your application or research paperwork before and after the meeting.

All Genealogy Club meetings are free and open to the public. Light refreshments will be served. For more information on Genealogy Club events, please call the Fountaindale Public Library District at (630) 685-4201.

See You At the Library!


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