Tuesday, June 14, 2016

Who Lived in Your House?

Ghost Image from The
Funny Side of Physic
, 1874
I've written before about how helpful it is to search for your ancestors' addresses and not just their surnames. Searching for a specific address in newspapers can be especially enlightening, since it can tell you a little bit about the people who used to live there, including non-relatives.

I used this tip recently in searching for information about the house of one of my sisters. To protect her privacy, I won't share the address, but it was built in a Pittsburgh suburb around 1930. At one point, my nephew thought the house was haunted. And my sister mentioned that she heard vintage music after getting into bed that stopped when she sat up. So great! (Well, at least I think so, but I don't have to live there.)

Anyway, by searching Newspapers.com for the address, I found a few mentions of some of the people who used to live there. One was a young soldier who died in a car accident overseas and left behind his parents and two brothers (1964). Another was offering Dachshund puppies for sale (1938). One was an amateur photographer (1955). And most interesting, there was a young lady in the early 1930s who used to host bridge parties in the house when she was home from college. Hmm, perhaps with music?

You never know what you might find by searching for an address...

Related Post:  Search for Old Addresses, Not Just Names


  1. I researched the house I grew up in. It was built in the 1890s. I still haven't shared the information, but I need to. I found some really neat stories! And an old fire map. Houses can have interesting histories, just like people!

    1. Lucky you! I wish I had lived in an older home, so I could dig into its history. Thanks for commenting, Dana!


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