Utah Resource

State Archives can provide some of the best free genealogy resources on the web. The Utah State Archives are no exception. In an effort to provide "archives without walls," a term coined by the National Archives, Utah has put a good number of their records online.

The Board of Pardon's Prisoner's Pardon Applications Case Files database covers the years 1892 to 1949. Case files contain letters to the Governor, application for pardon, petitions and letters of support. Earlier files may also contain court documents, prison evaluations and biographical sketches. The database has a couple options for viewing. You can search by name, view all files within a specific year or browse the entire database.

The Brand Books don't offer much genealogical information, but are still interesting. These books document livestock brands and ear marks that were registered with the Department of Agriculture between 1849 and 1930. The only reason I'm including this database is the fact that it gives the owner's name and residence, which can be helpful if you know an ancestor lived somewhere in Utah, but are not sure exactly where. However, this is only helpful if they registered. You can search by name, view all files within a specific year or browse the entire database.

If an ancestor was part of a case in the Fifth District Court in Beaver County between the years of 1896 and 1998, you may find them in the case indexes. Book 1 and 2 covers the years 1896 to 1950, the first book indexed by defendant and the second by plaintiff. Book 3 covers 1950 to 1998 and has sections for both defendant and plaintiff. The books only list the name, not what the case is about, but it can still be helpful as a free genealogy resource as you can use the books to determine if your ancestor was involved and then look up the case if they are listed.

The Sanpete County Death Register can be helpful if an ancestor passed away in the county. It only covers a brief period, 1898 to 1904, but will give you name, date and place of death, length of time the individual resided there, color, race, age at death, occupation, cause of death, marital status, birthplace, last residence and the name of the informant. Be sure to look at both the A and B page as the information starts on the A and continues to B.

Death certificates for the entire state are available for the years 1904 to 1958. The initial search result gives the name, alternate name, death date, sex, age and county. Below that, you can click on the image to view the actual death certificate. More information is available in it including death place, residence, marital status, spouse's name, date of birth, age, occupation, place of birth, the name and birthplace of parents, name and address of informant, death date, cause of death and related information, and date and place of burial. Some certificates may have more information than others.

There are other items in the digital archives, but they are more recent and not likely to be helpful as free genealogy resources.


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