Explore Your Family Roots With Ancestry Library Edition

Created by Linda Tripp, collection development librarian

Most people have a set of truths about themselves and their family’s roots. But what happens when a new truth is discovered that turns long-term beliefs topsy-turvy?

When genealogy research undertaken by my niece a few years ago revealed that my grandfather’s name was altered before he emigrated to America from Poland, all of us were shocked, including my mother, his daughter. We presume that he may have changed his surname in order to avoid conscription into the military, shortly before he emigrated to America from Poland in 1913, but sadly, we’ll never know the exact reason. This family secret was revealed almost a century later by examining the passenger manifest of the ship on which my grandfather Martin sailed into New York harbor, so we know that this was not a name change that occurred at Ellis Island, as sometimes was the case for immigrants. Seeing the images of the passenger manifest of the SS Rotterdam, and my grandfather’s 1926 United States Naturalization form showing both his original and “new” names is something that still gives me goosebumps. If only we could go back in time to speak to him and hear his story firsthand! 

Who knows what mysteries you may uncover when you dig into your family background? Get started today with Ancestry Library Edition. Typically only available in the library, remote access has been temporarily expanded to SCLSNJ cardholders through March 31, courtesy of ProQuest and its partner Ancestry, so you can work from the comfort of your own home 24/7. This tutorial from Niche Academy gives tips on how to use Ancestry Library Edition.

Every family has a story, what’s yours? Explore your family tree with SCLSNJ’s resources for genealogy and local history, and learn more about subjects, including DNA testing with these books.