Let’s explore one of the genealogy databases available for free with a GCPL library card!

MyHeritage.com is one of the four big genealogy websites. Geauga County Public Library patrons can access the website’s historical records for free through My Heritage Library Version, including remotely, with a GCPL library card. To access, go through the GCPL website, click on the Resources and Research tile. Click on the MyHeritage Library Version link. If you are not in the library, you will need to enter the barcode from your library card, when prompted, and choose your library.

MyHeritage Library Version provides access to over 9 billion international records, with more than 2.4 billion names from their internationally diverse family trees.  The website is deep in European records, a real plus for U.S. patrons researching European ancestors. But they also have millions of U.S. records: the complete U.S. Federal census (1790 – 1940), a growing digital newspaper collection (including some Ohio newspapers), over 450,000 digital books, military, immigration, and passenger lists, etc.

Their search tools and matching technologies are highly effective.

If you have Ohio ancestors, you might want to search the Ohio digital newspapers for mentions of them. The Painesville Telegraph newspaper, included in the collection, covered much of Geauga County from the 1800s to the mid-1900s. To search Ohio newspapers, under “Categories”, click on “Newspapers”, then choose “Ohio Newspapers”. Fill in the search fields, click on “Search” and check the results.

Watch the MyHeritage tutorial available on the home page to get a better understanding of what is available on the website and how to search. Happy Hunting!

Cheryl is the Geauga County Public Library genealogist. She is currently reading Ruthless Tide: Heroes and Villians of the Johnstown Flood, America’s Astonishing Gilded Age Disaster by Al Roker, of which she says, “This new release by nationally-known weather commentator, Al Roker, is a “can’t put it down” account of real people who died, survived, rescued, aided, helped cause or were otherwise caught up in the horrible tsunami that destroyed Johnstown Pennsylvania.”