August 2021 Program - How to Navigate the Pennsylvania State Archives’ Online Resources
By Aaron McWilliams, Pennsylvania State Archives
This presentation provides a detailed overview of the Archives’ finding aids, research guides, and online records. It covers how to use the new finding aids and research guides to explore the collections and find specific records, as well as the Archives’ digital collection and how to navigate them.
Aaron McWilliams is head of the Public Services Section at the Pennsylvania State Archives. He is responsible for handling research inquiries at the Archives and frequently represents the agency at genealogical events. His areas of expertise include Pennsylvania state land records, Pennsylvania’s Revolutionary War militia, and genealogy. He has appeared on WITF’s Radio Smart Talk and contributed to both “Who Do You Think You Are?” and “Finding Your Roots.” Prior to joining the Pennsylvania State Archives, Aaron worked as a reference archivist at the Maryland State Archives and as a professional genealogist.
This archived presentation may be watched here.
Summary of the August 29, 2021 program, “How to Navigate the Pennsylvania State Archives’ Online Resources”
by Becky Anstine.
- Starting on the home webpage, select from the “Top Pages” column, “Research Online”
- Aaron recommends that people start with “Get to know our new catalog” before starting research. This heading has a variety of topics that explain new search terms, what can be found online, how to search the collections, etc.
- Under the same guide, next select “Browse or Search our new Catalog. ” This provides the option of limiting the search to just the digital collections or the entire archive collections.
Learning to navigate this new search engine will take some time, but as the archives continues to add to the digital collections available online it should become easier to use. If you do not have a subscription to ancestry.com, you can search the collection by going to Ancestry through the Archive website. Archive records can also be found through FamilySearch.org. The Archives are not duplicating records that can be found on either of these sites on the Archive website.
Information about visiting the archives and other information can be found on their website: www.phmc.pa.gov.