Wednesday, April 19, 2017

Mortality Schedules

What are mortality schedules?

Mortality schedules list people who died during the previous 12 months. Mortality schedules were taken along with population schedules during the 1850, 1860, 1870, and 1880 censuses, and in six states (Colorado, Florida, Nebraska, New Mexico, North Dakota, and South Dakota) in 1885. (Family Search Wiki)

And for people researching their ancestors, mortality schedules can be an alternative to official death records which didn't exist for much of the 1800's in many parts of the U.S. Generally, New England states started registering births and deaths much earlier, as early as 1780. Southern and Western states didn't require state registration until much later. Some as late as the early 20th century. Ohio didn't require deaths to be registered until 1867.

Listings for Ohio are not comprehensive:

  • 1850 - Only the counties Hamilton through Wayne Counties
  • 1860 - All of the Ohio counties
  • 1870 - NO Ohio Counties
  • 1880 - Adams through Geauga Counties
  • 1885 - NO Ohio Counties

What information can be found in the mortality schedules?

It varies depending on which schedule you are searching. 

It is always important to remember why the records were originally created. In the case of death records or the mortality schedules they were created to obtain a picture of the spread of epidemics and the overall health of the communities. The information collected reflects this focus.

1850 Schedule asked this information:
  • Name
  • Age
  • Sex
  • Color
  • Free or Slave
  • Married or Widowed
  • Place of birth
  • Month in which died
  • Profession, Occupation or Trade
  • Disease or cause of death
  • Number of days ill
1850 Mortality Schedule for Spencer Township, Medina County, Ohio. As with all written records, interpreting the handwriting can be difficult. Does that look like Urrin Frimier to you? Only 2 years old, he died of dysentery,
a disease caused by unsanitary bathroom habits.

1880 Schedule:
  • Name
  • Age at last birthday 
  • Sex
  • Color
  • Marital status: Single, Married, Widowed, Divorced
  • Birthplace of this person
  • Father's birthplace
  • Mother's birthplace
  • Profession, Occupation or Trade
  • Disease or cause of death
  • How long a resident of this county?
  • Where contracted the disease if not at this place
  • Name of attending physician
1880 Mortality Schedule for Guyan Township, Gallia County, Ohio. John WILLIAMS (second line down) is my 3X great grandfather and he died at the age of 84. He was the oldest person listed on this page. The average age was 14 years old.

Mortality schedules are available on Ancestry and Ancestry Library Edition, available at the library. From the Ancestry home page, go under the Census Search and then use U.S Federal Census. Under "Included Data Collections" the mortality schedule is near the bottom of that list.

Family Search has the 1850 mortality schedules HERE. And the 1872 Canadian mortality schedules is also at Family Search HERE

And a quick reminder that this Friday, the Medina Library is hosting a Genealogy Lock-In. There are still spots available. See below for more information. And if you are interested in signing up, click on this LINK.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

Library Funding

Despite what you might have read or heard, libraries are needed now more than ever!

1. Everything is NOT online.
2. Not everyone has online access and not everyone has a smart phone.
3. In economic hard times, use of the library becomes critical (Read this article on the importance of LIBRARIES from the last economic depression)
4.  A LOT of people need help finding information and using the latest technology. Where do those people go?

To the library.

Want some proof?

Take a look of some statistics for the Medina County District Library system for 2016:
  • 711,966 people visited the Medina Libraries. Obviously, some of these were repeat visitors!
  • Over 9,000 children played the Summer Reading Game.
  • 4,908 public meetings were held at the libraries, with 101,059 people attending those meetings.
  • 3,066 passports were issued. Did you know that you could apply for your passport at the Medina, Brunswick and Lodi libraries?
  • 2,700,042 items were checked out. Look at that statistic again. That is over 2 MILLION! Nearly 15% of those items were digital media like digital books, music, magazines, and videos.
  • 336,547 logins were tallied on library computers. The library is the ONLY place you access the internet if you don't have a home computer AND and internet provider or a smart phone.
  • The libraries offered 2,942 programs on topics ranging from lap-sit story times, basic computer skills to robotics. 107,620 people attended those programs!

So libraries are as important, pertinent and even more necessary than ever. Right!!?

Why bring this up?

On May 2nd, the Medina County District Library system has an operating levy renewal on the ballot that accounts for nearly 60% of our operating budget. 60%. Over half. A lot. A WHOLE lot.

The levy money (property taxes) is represented by the teal arc in the pie chart below.

2016 budget statistics on the Library's revenue

This money pays for staffing the libraries, running & repairing six separate buildings & a bookmobile, programs, AND materials (i.e. the books, DVDs, audiobooks, magazines, e-media, etc)

The last operating levy was passed in 2007 and has lasted for 10 years. But now it is up for renewal. Without the renewal, the libraries would look very bleak:

Without that money, the picture is very incomplete.

60% fewer materials, 60% fewer open library hours, 60% fewer programs and 60% fewer staff.

The library is also requesting a small increase; an additional .25 mill, which is the equivalent of about $8.75, or the cost of a paperback book.

Learn more about the library levy HERE and remember the library on May 2nd.

In other library funding news:

  1. Ohio Governor Kasich has proposed rollbacks in library funding while at the same time saying libraries should be "continuous learning centers" which libraries already are:  Columbus Dispatch article  
  2. President Trump has proposed doing away with Federal library funding  (Institute of Museum and Library Services): ALA News ReleaseThis money pays for the Ohio Library for the Blind and many of the most used databases, such as Ancestry Library Edition, Sanborn Fire Insurance Maps and the EbscoHost databases.
We will have to monitor those proposals.

Wednesday, April 5, 2017

Genealogy Lock-In


Lisa and I are NOT being punished, yet...

The spring Genealogy Lock-In will be Friday, April 21st from 6:30-10:30 p.m.

Click HERE to sign up.

This spring we are going back to the basics with "Starting your Quest". Discover all the information you already have in your home or in your head.

Then you will learn how to organize your research." Family history research generates a lot of paperwork and files. With Lisa's help you will be able to find any of your information in the blink of an eye!

Then Kathy will guide you through how to locate birth, marriage and death records to further your research in "Vital Records"

If you are not "new" to genealogy, join us to refresh your skills and learn about the latest techniques.


Share this program with someone you know who wants to get started and doesn't know how.

As always, light refreshments will be served and there will be DOOR PRIZES!

We look forward to seeing you there!