Sunday, August 14, 2011

Church Record Sunday: American Church History Bibliography

One of my favorite things to look at when I read a book is the bibliography. (Most of those who know me also know that I love footnotes).  A bibliography provides you with options for conducting your own research.  It guides you to resources you may not have found otherwise, or at least would have taken you time to uncover.

Genealogy is so much more than hunting down names, dates and places. It is about having an understanding of how the ancestor lived and what life was like for them in a specific place and time. That's why to me, Church Record Sunday is more than uncovering archives, manuscript collections and documents; it's about learning more about the religion of our ancestor's locality and how that religion informed their life.

The American Church History Bibliography, from the Harding School of Theology Library website,  has some great resources for better understanding your American ancestor's religion. While this is intended to be a resource for university students, some of the titles have applications for the family historian. Resources like, Bibliography of Religion in the South; Religion and American Life: Resources; Yearbook of American and Canadian Churches; Atlas of American Religion: The Denominational Era, 1776-1990; and Encyclopedia of African American Religions, just to name a few.  Once you find a title you would be interested in, contact your local library or use WorldCat to find a library with that tile.

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