Washington State Genealogical Societies

The Washington State Genealogical Society
P.O. Box 1422
Olympia, WA 98507
(360) 352-0595

The Tacoma-Pierce County Genealogical Society
P.O. Box 1952
Tacoma, WA 98401
(206) 572-6650

The Seattle Genealogical Society
6200 Sand Point Way N.E.
Seattle, WA 98115
(206) 522-8658

Washington-specific Databases

WA Biographies Project: part of the US Bios Project, aimed at transcribing biographies of Washington residents from sources no longer copyrighted.

Washington Census Records: lists free census records available online for Washington state, as well as other helpful resources.

Washington History: Historic Records Search: the Washington Secretary of State's office has transcribed and posted online a large collection of records, including territorial censuses (1851, 1857, and others), a complete index to the 1910 Federal Census, and more.

Death notices: from the Seattle Times and Seattle Post-Intelligencer; archived for one year and updated daily.

The Political Graveyard has an interesting listing of political figures buried in the state of Washington.

HistoryLink.org: The Online Encyclopedia of Washington State History: one of my favorite websites. This is a professionally-done, meticulously-researched (and FREE!) resource for all things historical in Washington state.

Washington-specific Resource Guides

Cyndi's List of Genealogy Sites for Washington State: an excellent, well-organized collection of valuable links for Washington researchers. Be sure to check out the other sites on her page, as well!

ROOTS-L United States Resources: Washington.

Washington State Department of Health: instructions for ordering birth, death, marriage, and divorce certificates.

Washington Vital Records: information on what vital records are available in the state, and how to obtain them.

Books We Own-Washington: a listing of volunteers willing to provide lookups from resources in their personal libraries.

Of General Interest

FamilySearch.org: Gateway to the massive collection of genealogical records held by the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints. Online records include their International Genealogical Index, the 1880 US Census Index, 1881 Canadian Census, 1881 British Census, and searchable catalog for the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, UT.

Rootsweb Genealogical Data Cooperative: a valuable source for genealogists, including the complete ROOTS-L archives, the Roots Surname Location lists, hundreds of surname- and geographic-interest mailing lists, as well as a growing collection of searchable databases.

WorldConnect: A Rootsweb-sponsored project that allows researchers to post their gedcoms online.

U.S. GenWeb Archives: an all-volunteer effort to make public-domain documents available free of charge on-line. Check out the records, and perhaps make a contribution of your own!

Census Online - Links and Censuslinks on the Internet: two sites that aim to list every census record available online.

American Cemetery Records online: a large (and growing) database that provides links to many sites that offer cemetery records online. It also has many databases on its sites, primarily listings from national cemeteries (including some from Washington state).

Nationwide Gravesite Locator: burial locations of military veterans and their family buried in national cemeteries.

Find-A-Grave: user-contributed database of burial sites.

Social Security Death Index: hosted by FamilySearch.org.

"Chronicling America" - Database of historic newspapers, digitized by the Library of Congress.

Online Newspapers: listing of newspapers with an online presence from around the world; part of the Internet Public Library website.

Obituary Lookup Volunteers: listing of volunteers from around the USA (and some internationally) who are able to do lookups of specific obituaries. Please be sure to read the site's FAQ pages before making a request. They also need volunteers!

WPA Life Histories: has full texts of biographies and interviews conducted as part of the Federal Writer's Project, 1936-1940. Even if you don't find your own relative, the biographies offer fascinating insights into life in the late 19th century and early 20th century.

The National Archives: an important source of primary records for genealogists, the Archives is charged with preserving all records pertaining to US History, including census, immigration/naturalization, military and other records. This site provides a wealth of information on how to use the Archives' resources, how to request materials, and locations of regional branches of the Archives.

US Gazetteer: provides maps of designated locations, as well as population statistics taken from the 1990 census.

USGS Geographic Name Server: allows you to search for specific features (such as all populated places within Lewis County, WA), provides a list of results, and displays a map of specific selections.

Geographic Names of Canada: for researching Canadian placenames.

Tombstone Birthday Calculator - allows you to calculate the date of birth when you know the date of death, and age at death (in years, months and days).