Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Learn from Local Libraries: Sewickley, Pennsylvania

Local libraries can have some great genealogy resources for you to discover. As just one example, the Sewickley Public Library in a suburb of Pittsburgh provides free access to the Sewickley Herald digital archive for the years 1903 to 2014. It appears this is the only place that gives online access to issues; I didn't see this newspaper anywhere else, and I have to say it again: it's free! If you have ancestors who lived in Sewickley or nearby towns such as Ambridge, Monaca, and Economy, you might find a mention of them in this newspaper.

Historic community newspapers often featured news about local residents that wasn't published in the larger city papers. Here's a great piece from The Herald about a couple who celebrated their 53rd anniversary in 1920:

Sewickley Herald 1920 Article
The Herald (Sewickley, Pennsylvania), February 14, 1920
"Mr. and Mrs. Robert Linwood McPherson are celebrating their 53rd wedding anniversary today at their home in Fountain Street with an informal gathering of their family and friends. Mr. McPherson was born on his fathers farm at the head of Turkey-Foot run, and will celebrate his 83rd birthday on the 3rd of May. On February 14, 1867, he was married to Miss Mary Nash of Sewickley, who was born in Yorkshire, England, coming to this country in a sailing vessel when a young girl.
   Mr. and Mrs. McPherson settled in Sewickley, and their eight children, who are all living, also reside in Sewickley. They are: Mrs. James M. Scott, Mrs. A. J. Hegner, Joseph B. McPherson, S. C. McPherson and S. J. McPherson, the Misses Brittie and Lulu McPherson, and Kenneth McPherson. There are nine grandchildren, and one great-grandchild--Dorothy Jane Deven, daughter of Mr. and Mrs. Lewis Deven of Fountain Street."

Take time to look at the websites of local libraries in the towns where your ancestors lived. You might find that they have similar databases to help you learn more about members of your family tree. If you find anything interesting or useful in the Sewickley Herald archive, post a comment and let me know!

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