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Genealogy is an endeavor that many people begin with tremendous enthusiasm, but which an almost equal amount might quickly abandon due to the confusion that often surrounds the pursuit. After all, our family trees have very complex branches, and it takes special tools and lots of effort to uncover the past.
Fortunately, for Alabama genealogy enthusiasts there is an enormous amount of information available online. It is important, however, to understand the different records required.
A Good Beginning for Alabama Genealogy - When you conduct any investigation for Alabama genealogy, regardless of your actual location, you need to consider your resources that are online and "offline". Remember that there is not a lot of smaller town or local archives that have been converted into online digital entities, and that means the first step in any research for Alabama genealogy is to make a list of the different records that you actually can investigate.
This discussion is going to provide you with complete details about the sources available to anyone doing research for Alabama genealogy. First, it is important to know that the basic list that all researchers for Alabama genealogy will use includes:
Resources for Alabama Genealogy - There is an impressive range of resources for Alabama genealogy. There is also the Alabama Genealogical Society that gives all kinds of useful support for Alabama genealogy work, and they can be found at:
Lastly, websites such as those listed below will provide state-specific genealogical details that can work wonders for Alabama genealogy enthusiasts.:
The FHL and the Alabama Department of Archives and History each have microfilmed copies of county records on file. Both the quantity of records and the quality of records can be quite different from one county to the next. Some are fairly complete, and others are missing large chunks of information. Some have also disappeared entirely. The Samford University Library, University of Alabama Library and Alabama Department of Archives and History collections contain a few of those records.
There are local county archives that contain useful information in the following counties: Blount, Cullman, Lawrence, Madison, Morgan, St. Clair.
Many records for Alabama counties have also been lost in fires. Ten counties were hit particularly hard by fire damage. Although, some records still exist.
The county seat circuit court holds county court records. However, not all county court records have been surveyed. Researchers should also note that probate and land records vary greatly from one county to the next.