Sunday, March 28, 2010

Civil War Series on Sunday - Exploring Cyndi's List

This post has a duo purpose: 1) to  participate in 52 Weeks to Better Genealogy - Challenge #13 - Hosted by GeneaBloggers and created by Amy Coffin at We Tree.
2) as a part of my Civil War Series on Sunday.

Subtitle: 1996-2010: Your genealogy starting point online for more than a decade!

There are now said to be over 270,000 links for family history on her site. I became quite active in genealogy on the Internet at about the same time as Cyndi - and, I will admit, I wondered at the time, "why would she want to do this?" She certainly has made it one of the, if not THE, most useful genealogy site on the Internet.

Actually, the biggest challenge for a user, especially a first-time user, is not to be totally overwhelmed by the site. Today, I am doing research on the Civil War, about my ancestors...

First, I noticed the Browse Cyndi's List box on the left with five indexes: Main, Topical, Alphabetical, "No Frill" and Text-Only. on the Main Category Index, Civil War does not appear, but when I got to United States Index there was a sub-category of U.S. - Civil War ~ War for Southern Independence. Clicking on this brings us another Category Index and a Related Categories list. [At this point, I should mention that I also put "Civil War" in the Google Search box, upper right corner, for - and it brought me to this same page.] [Another personal  note... at a search box, I almost always enter my mother's surname, on which I have done so much research, KINNICK. Doing so took me to Cyndi's entry for The KINNICK Project - showing a dead link: "The original link is broken. This link points to an archived copy on the Wayback Machine." This reminded me to send a "new link" to Cyndi on the form provided for my new blog, The KINNICK Project, that replaced the old site dumped by GeoCities at!]

Since most of my ancestors fought for the Union, I went to the Regimental Rosters & Histories - The Union, first. There are many units represented by some really neat pages, but none of the first 6 or 8 I checked, were mine. In looking around, however, I came across this story, that really caught my attention:
A "next door neighbor" to my home town!  ;-)

If your interest is to see the contributions of African-Americans in the War, there is a category list. The list of Battles, Battlefields & Cemeteries is also impressive.
I found the People & Families especially interesting because there are Civil War diaries in our family that are yet to be published. There are some fine examples.

Since I grew up in Iowa, Letters from an Iowa Soldier in the Civil War caught my attention, but there are many, many others.  ;-)

Well, you get the idea. There is a lot out there, if you but have a plan, and follow through!

[Check the label, Civil War, at the lower left, to see other entries in my Civil War on Sunday series, and label, 52 weeks, to see my other entries in that challenge.]

Families are Forever!  ;-)


  1. I have often avoided Cyndislist because I agree, it seems so overwhelming, and confusing for where to begin. I think I will try it again today and see what I can find.

  2. Thank you for stopping by my blog. Nice blogs that you have, I can tell that you stay busy :-)

  3. Thank you for playing along with the genealogy challenge.

  4. I started out with Cyndislist too, way back in 1999! Even then she had the most complete list of genealogy links anywhere! I still use her site when searching for something specific.