Sunday, September 14, 2008

VINE : Vital Information Exchange

The VINE : Vital Information Exchange is a colleciton of vital records and local history from Indiana libraries, historical and genealogical societies and other related agencies. Recently, I was directed to their site and was quite pleased with what I found.

Although not every county in the state was represented, enough of them in my areas of research were, and I was able to find some potential leads for further research. Lately, newspaper research has become an area of concern for me and through the VINE database I was able to locate information regarding an obituary for an ancestor that I didn't know existed.

For example, I searched for records of the BEALS line and was able to determine that the Tipton Daily Tribune had published an obituary for Elizabeth BEALS on 9/28/1935 page 4. Previously, I had only that she had died in September 1935 in my database. By writing to the Tipton County, Indiana library, I was able to obtain her obituary and add another fact to my database. Since Elizabeth was buried in Hamilton County and her death had been listed in my database as "near Greentown, Howard County", I would not have thought to search in Tipton County.

I found it quite easy to search for obituary records for a particular surname, and the number of hits I received in return made it a site that I will be returning to as I continue to research. Particularly for me, ancestors in Hamilton County, Indiana are listed in this database as the Hamilton East Public Library is a participating member.

Hopefully, other libraries in Indiana will join with VINE to increase the availability of genealogical data to the community.
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