Home > Mom's Life > Family Relationships > Family History and Genealogy > Sample Letters for Genealogical Inquiries
|

Sample Letters for Genealogical Inquiries

In This Article:

Page 2

Ordering a Vital Record

If you are writing to the county for records created before state registrations were required, try the example shown below. Don't unnecessarily limit the date when requesting a marriage record. Judge a span of time from the birth dates of children but allow enough leeway, perhaps 5 to 10 years.

    [Your name and address]

    [Date]

    Register of Marriages
    [Courthouse Address here]

    Dear Marriage Registrar:

    I would like to order a photocopy of the marriage application (or license) and certificate for:

    Joseph Cruse (or Kruse) to Virginia Malley, about 1860-1867

    Please let me know the cost and I will remit promptly. [Or, if you prefer, enclose a small check.]

    I enclose an SASE for reply, and thank you for your assistance.

    Sincerely,

Dear Cousin …

If you are writing to a relative for the first time, introduce yourself. Let them know your purpose and what it is you are seeking. You could include a family group sheet with the letter, which may pique interest, but don't flood the cousin with data at this point of the contact.

    [Your name and address]

    [Date]

    [His or her name and address]

    Dear [ ],

    I have been working on the family history for two years, and just found out from a relative that you and I are related as second cousins. We both are great-grandchildren of George Milliken and his wife Susan Masters. My family is through their daughter Jane, who married Jesse Cooper. My mother told me that she lost track of your family after your parents moved—about 30 years ago. I am delighted to now be in touch.

    I was told your grandparents passed away many years ago. Can you tell me when and where they died, and where they are buried?

    I have also been hoping to find someone with a photo of our great-grandparents, George and Susan. Do you have one that can be copied or do you know of anyone in the family who does?

    It would be a delight to hear from you and to exchange information about our families.

    Your cousin,



<< Previous: Page 1
|

Excerpted from The Complete Idiot's Guide to Genealogy © 2005 by Christine Rose and Kay Germain Ingalls. All rights reserved including the right of reproduction in whole or in part in any form. Used by arrangement with Alpha Books, a member of Penguin Group (USA) Inc.

To order this book visit the Idiot's Guide web site or call 1-800-253-6476.


stay connected

Sign up for our free email newsletters and receive the latest advice and information on all things parenting.

Enter your email address to sign up or manage your account.

Facebook icon Twitter icon Follow Us on Pinterest

editor’s picks

jack-o'-lantern creator

Design and print
your own
jack-o’-
lanterns!

GO

highlights

12 Pumpkin Activities and Crafts for Kids
Pumpkins and gourds are perfect for fall fun and games with the kids. Find the best pumpkin activities, crafts, printables, and recipes to enjoy with your children this Halloween season.

Kindergarten Readiness App Wins Gold
Our Kindergarten Readiness app won the Gold Award of Excellence in the educational category at the 2014 Communicator Awards. This valuable checklist comes with games and activities to help your child practice the essential skills she needs for kindergarten. Download the Kindergarten Readiness app today!

15 Best Slow Cooker Meals
Too busy to cook? Try one of these deliciously easy slow cooker meals and have dinner waiting when you get home!

Find Today's Newest & Best Children's Books!
Looking for newly released books for your child? Try our new Book Finder tool to search for new books by age, type, and theme, and create reading lists for kids!