Tuesday, April 04, 2006

where in America?

Would you like to see a map of the distribution of your last name (surname) from 1850 to 1990 in the United States? Go to this site, type in your last name and you will discover just how common your surname was, and where, at various points in American history.

The database of surnames for the map is not comprehensive (nor is it particularly helpful with a name like mine ["Smith"], but if your name isn't generic like mine or rather rare, you can get some good out of this tool if you're a genealogy researcher. This site would have saved me some serious hours a few years back in "narrowing down the field" with the locations of some of my ancestors!