31 March 2016

Recent Progress...Another 5,488 Records!!

Over the month of March 2016 I have added another 5,488 records to my Pre-1920 Oklahoma Death Index. This includes:
  • Daily Ardmoreite  17 Jan 1910-16 Feb 1910  (62 records)
  • Daily Ardmoreite  30 Nov 1894-26 Aug 1895  (289 records)
  • Cherokee Advocate (Tahlequah) 5 Jan 1883-21 Oct 1893  (363 records)
  • Creek Equalization Records  Creek #8279-#9290  (2,451 records)
  • Harvey Funeral Home (Ardmore)  21 Sept 1898-7 Nov 1904  (1,185 records)
  • J. Wood Taliaferro Funeral Home (Ardmore) 31 May 1918-31 Dec 1919 (96 records)
  • St. Clair Funeral Home (Lawton)  2 Aug 1916-26 Aug 1918  (617 records)
  • South Cemetery (Ardmore) Sexton's Records  1900-1905  (410 records)
  • Woodward Star  1 June 1894 & 29 Aug 1894-19 Sept 1896 (15 records)
My plans for the next several months are to focus on:
  1. Daily Ardmoreite obits and Harvey Funeral Home records (Ardmore area deaths);
  2. St. Clair County Funeral Home records, Ritter-Gray Funeral Home records and Highland Cemetery records (Lawton area deaths);
  3. Creek Equalization Records (Creek Indians, but also quite a few Seminoles);
  4. Cherokee Advocate obits (Tahlequah)
I am making a list of sources as they become available and/or as I "discover" them.

This brings the total to 530,439 death references!!

11 February 2016

Status Update: 4637 New Records added!

As of 31 Jan 2016 my Pre-1920 Oklahoma Death Index has 520,739 total entries, up 4637 from Dec 2015!

Record sets I am currently working on are:
  •  Creek Full Blood Equalization Records...This data set is amazing in the number of deaths recorded. I am roughly 2/3 of the way through the complete file and have over 10,700 pre1920 death references. Many of these are multiple entries for the same person from the proofs of heirship for different individuals. Sometimes the dates match, sometimes they don't. In all cases though, death dates or year are provided for many Creek Indians whose deaths are unlikely to be recorded anywhere else.
  • J. Wood Taliaferro Funeral Home of Ardmore OK starting in 1901. So far I have added years 1901 through 1907. These records vary greatly in the information provided. When researching early funeral home records, one must remember that the purpose of the records was not genealogical, not was the purpose medical. The purpose was to make sure information was recorded so the funeral home could collect payment for services rendered. So keep this in mind when you come across very incomplete information. I get frustrated with this data set since often only a month and year is recorded for the death. Also, often the name of the deceased is NOT recorded, only the person or group who ordered the service. On another somber note, I have extracted obits from the Daily Ardmoreite for this time period. Of the 397 records from 1901 through the end of 1907, only 35% have the death referenced in the Ardmoreite.
  • The Daily Armoreite...I have now extracted obits from July 1894 through 25 Oct 1909, and 1 Sept 1918 through 1 Feb 1919. In all that is over 8400 death references in that one newspaper for the 15 year period.
  • Sac & Fox Estates...These records are very time consuming to go through. I have extracted death information through late 1914. I probably have another 2 months of Saturday research to finish this data set. I have put it "on the back burner" until I have finished the Taliaferro Funeral Home records.
  • I have just turned over the "old records" index I created for Hahn-Cook/Street & Draper Funeral Home in Oklahoma City to the Funeral Home. There are over 30,000 entries covering 1894 through 1966. By indexing ALL their old records, I will likely gain access to the early records held by another funeral home in the OKC metroplex. Combine those records with the Oklahoma Death Register records of 1908 through 1920, then I will have the most complete death index for Oklahoma City with all records in one place.
In  future post I will provide a complete list of sources I am currently researching AND sources on my future "To Do" list. Until then...Be sure to check every source available in your genealogy research!