Marleta Childs
P. O. Box 6825
LUBBOCK, TX 79493-6825

     Sustaining its huge popularity, the “Genealogy at a Glance” series is continually adding new titles. The latest booklet focuses on the Northwest Territory. Ohio Genealogy Research, compiled by Michael A. Ports, furnishes an overview of fundamental data that family researchers should know in order to navigate successfully through the various genealogical resources of the state.

     Since the proficient study of genealogy is closely tied to a basic knowledge of local and national history, Ports supplies general but concise background facts about Ohio’s early settlement, transportation, immigration patterns, and ethnic groups. He explains, for instance, that Ohio was originally part of the Northwest Territory, which also encompassed Indiana, Illinois, Michigan, Wisconsin, and the northeastern section of Minnesota. Although opened for settlement in 1787, Ohio did not have its boundaries formally established until 1803, when it became a state. By 1850, Ohio had become the third most populous state.

     Ports also briefly explains how rivers, railroads, canals, and roads influenced both the changes and growth in the state’s population. During the first half of the nineteenth century, for example, the majority of pioneers were Germans and Scots-Irish from the Mid-Atlantic states, especially Pennsylvania. Other settlers included Southerners, mainly from Virginia, and New Englanders, who were primarily English and made their home in the Western Reserve area. An influx of immigrants in later years brought in many people of French, Canadian, Irish, and Swiss lineage. Since the various ethnic groups often congregated in specific places in the state, genealogists who know these facts will be able to locate records and use them correctly.

     Fortunately for family researchers seeking information about their forebears in Ohio, genealogical records are fairly complete, particularly the early land records and the quadrennial enumerations of all white male inhabitants, which were taken every four years from 1803 to 1911. As expected, the author emphasizes traditional state and county sources. Briefly, he describes the historical background, contents, and location of materials concerning vital statistics, land and court records, and naturalization documents. For most of the categories, he also provides titles of publications for further reference and helpful research tips.

     In case genealogists wish to get in touch with some of Maryland’s major repositories, Ports furnishes the names, phone numbers, mailing addresses, and websites of the state’s major archives, societies, and libraries. He also gives the websites for a few online resources and briefly tells what kind of services they offer.

     Following the standard format of the series, Ports condenses into four laminated pages an enormous amount of information into its key elements. Like his other “Genealogy at a Glance” publication concerning Maryland, Ohio Genealogy Research is a handy, compact guide that will be useful to family researchers whose roots extend back to the Buckeye State.

     To the guide's price of $8.95, buyers should add the cost for postage and handling charges. For U. S. postal mail, the cost is $4.50 for one item and $2.50 for each additional copy; for FedEx ground service, the cost is $6.00 for one copy and $2.50 for each additional item. The guide (item order 4667) may be purchased by check, money order, MasterCard, or Visa from Genealogical Publishing Company, 3600 Clipper Mill Rd., Suite 260, Baltimore, MD 21211-1953. For phone orders, call toll free 1-800-296-6687; fax 1-410-752-8492; website

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