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Thursday, January 15, 2009

Looking for Robert McMorland on Ships Passenger List Scotland to New York

Diana wrote:
QUESTION: Just wondering if you would please do a lookup for Robert MCMORLAND on a ship's passenger list? He emigrated from Scotland with his wife, Margaret and their two or three children to the United States about 1859 and settled in New York State.

MY ANSWER: Hi Diana. I don't generally do lookups but in this case, it's a great chance for me to get on my soapbox again about not limiting your searches when looking for an ancestor.

Robert is in Ancestry.com Ships Passenger Lists. He's been badly MISindexed although to be fair the original manifest DOES look like the name the transcriber came up with --

He is mis-indexed as ROBERT M. MORELAND, sailing 13 Jun 1859 from Liverpool, England to New York on the ship White Star. Oddly enough his wife is not with him but three children are:

Janet, 5
Maggy, 3
John, infant

Robert is listed as age 24, a laborer. He and kiddies came in steerage.

Here is a tutorial called Using Search Engines to Find Ancestors which you may find helpful. If you are having trouble finding someone, it's always a good idea to use wildcards if allowed (check each Search Engine's HELP section) and even leave out last names. Try searching just under first names, or years of birth. In short, be creative and don't get too hung up on what you know (or think!) the spelling of your ancestor's name is.

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