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Looking up family in Savannah

pqh
helen, Nj
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Looking up family in Savannah

I will be down to savannah in a few weeks and I was interested in looking up some information about my mothers family. We know she was born at home (in Thunderbolt) but we are looking for census records, newspaper announcements, etc. Should I focus on the libray in Thunderbolt or should I focus my reseacrh at a library in savannah?. I only ask becuase I think savannah is like the "hub" of thunderbolt.

Savannah, Georgia
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1. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

The main branch of our public library has a good sized genelogical section. Microfilm census and newspaper records. Also city directories,etc.

The library branch at Thunderbolt is much smaller. I really don't know if it would have anything that wasn't at the Main Branch. I doubt that it would.

My husband was also born in Thunderbolt. Actually, we tease him about it. His father went for help, thinking he had plenty of time. He didn't. His mother couldn't make it to the bed. So my impatient spouse was born without assistance ON THE FLOOR....In Thunderbolt. The house is still there. And he still doesn't like to wait.

Savannah
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2. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

Was his mother named 'Flo'?

'Cause that's where she had her baby: on the flo'.

memphis, tn
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3. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

We tried once to get a birth certificate for my mom who was born in Savannah in 1920 at Telfair or Candler hospital. The Health Dept told us that the lots of birth records burned in a building fire many years ago and were no longer available. Depending on the year of your mother's birth, you may have a similar experience if the records were in the same building that burned.

pqh
helen, Nj
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4. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

Well my mother was born in 1940 in thunderbolt we know that, and at home. Essentially, I have some names of some people I think are relatives, but I need to make sure so I thought looking up census records, newspaper announcements (of birth) would help. So I should go to savannah then?. Do you think people made birth announcements back then in thunderbolt?

Savannah, Georgia
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5. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

You might also want to check with the Georgia Historical Society while you are here. They have tons of census records, etc.

Their building is at the corner of Whitaker and Gaston in Savannah.

Savannah, Georgia
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6. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

I am pretty sure that the birth would have been registered in the Chatham County Records. Thunderbolt doesn't have a newspaper, and I doubt if any legal records would have been on file anywhere at the Thunderbolt City Hall. It was just a bit larger than a good size closet. I am almost certain that it didn't even have a public library at that time.

Your best place to start would be the newspaper files of the Savannah Morning News and Evening Press at the Main Library.

Thunderbolt sits between Savannah and the Thunderbolt River. You can't get to it without going through Savannah as it is surrounded by the city. It's quite small.

pqh
helen, Nj
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7. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

Thanks everyone. SO I will check with the Historical group. Does that happen to be close to the library (walking distance)?.

One last question, because I confuse myself easily...Should I also go to the Savannah records Dept?. Is that at a municipal builing or would the library have that? I guess I am looking for newspaper announcements, census records, addresses (deeds, etc).

pqh
helen, Nj
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8. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

Sorry , one last question. How about high school yearbooks?. Are they assembled at the library?. I know you all have several high schools, so this might not be available. I am generally looking for the years 1960 to 1970.

Savannah, Georgia
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9. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

Please go to the Main Library FIRST if you want to see microfilm copies of newspapers for birth annoucements, census records, city directories and things like that. They really have tons of that sort of thing. they will help you get started looking and then you can take days if you want. Not everyone would have a birth announcement in the paper, but it would be worth while to look if you know the actual date of her birth. The announcement could be days or even weeks after the actual birth.

Then, you would want to go to the Chatham County (not Savannah) Records, which I think is in the County building on Eisenhower drive. This is where the actual record of her birth will be. However, I don't know if such information would be available to you. It wouldn't hurt to ask. It might cost you a few bucks to get it. That type of record is not usually open to the public. It also could be filed at the Court House Record department at the Main Court house on Bull Street in the Historic District.

I don't think the official 1940 Census records are available to the public yet. If she was born in 1940, she would probably be in the 1955-1960 high school year books. You would want the old Savannah High School, or Commercial High. I don't know if Jenkins or Groves was built then. I don't think that they were. If she were Catholic, there is a chance that she went to St. Vincent's Academy. I have no idea where such yearbooks might be.

Savannah, Georgia
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10. Re: Looking up family in Savannah

Unless the current law is changed, we will be allowed to see the 1940 census in the year 2012. For a fee you can have the Census Bureau do a hand search for the needed information, if you qualify. All the details are at www.census.gov/genealogy/www/bc-600.pdf

If the fees have not gone up it is $65 for the first person and $10 per additional person in the same household.

You could also check with your local library to see if they provide public access to Ancestry Library Edition and/or HeritageQuest. Both have scanned images of the 1790-1930 censuses, but not 1940 or later.