Today's Colonial Gift from Whiskers is about finding female ancestors! Whiskers imparts the following advice for all of you who are working so hard to find your female ancestors.
Many of you face this problem when working on your lines. Rub your whiskers, and dig in to this morsel here. The issue is that women usually change their names when they marry. However finding a maiden name is essential to the full development of a family line. The best place to locate a maiden name is on a marriage record. If that is not available, other vital records may have the information. In various times in history, the legal and social status of women has changed much.
So Whiskers suggests you look for the birth certificates of her children, her death certificate, even her husband's death certificate. You may also have luck with the marriage or death certificate of her children. In addition, Baptism records may also contain the mother's maiden name, even in older church records. Look for unual middle names for her children, as naming a child with the Mother's maiden name is often seen. For example, if her son is named, Robert Bolling Jefferson.
You can smile....
Another possible source is her obituary, which might mention surviving brothers. Also look for obituaries of sisters or men you believe are her brothers. Continue to look for wills, as a woman may be mentioned in her father's or mother's will.
Good Luck, with patience and methodical research, you will succeed!