October has been officially designated as Family History Month in the United States. It is a great time to get into your family history as there are several online resources being made available for those who want to who research their family history. Here are a few of the FREE resources I've been able to locate online.
For the entire month of October, Ancestry.com is offering 15 days of free records daily from October 1st through 15th to celebrate their 15th anniversary. While you are there, you can create a free account with Ancestry in order to access and create family trees. This is a limited time free offering of Ancestry's records.
Family Search is one of the best free online genealogy resource tools available. The website offers record collections from the Americas, Asia, Africa and Europe. The best part about Family Search is that it is absolutely free 100% of the time! They currently have two websites for records searches.
HeritageQuest Online is another great resource for researchers. The website offers collections including census records, books, The Freedman's Bank, Revolutionary War records and PERSI. This is free, but only if you access it from your local library, school or college.
If you are looking for your African-American ancestors and want to connect with others who are looking for their families or need help in this specialized area, Afrigeneas is where you should be. In addition to a sizable collection of documentation related to African-Americans, Afrigeneas has live chat discussions three times a week; Tuesday, Saturday and Sunday. Notable African-American genealogists such as Angela Walton-Raji, Drusilla Pair, Arthur Thomas and founder Valencia King-Nelson contribute frequently to the chat discussions and message boards. The message boards cover topics on specific areas of African-American genealogy. One of the best features is the "Beginner's Guide" written by the late Dee Parmer Woodtor, another pioneer in the area of African-American genealogy. Awarded the Family Tree magazine "Best African American genealogy website" consecutively over the years, Afrigeneas is one of the best resources available on African-American family research.