Finding Living People in the United States
What are the best sources for finding living friends and relatives in the United States?
Partly due to privacy laws, most of the Family History Library's collection covers the time period before 1931. However, several sources outside our library are helpful in locating living family members and friends.
You can use the Internet to help locate a family member or friend. For example, Cyndi's List includes a category about 'Finding People'. It has dozens of links to sites that give ideas for locating living people. Some sites help you do the search.
Internet message boards allow you to post a question to be viewed by large groups of people. You can find message boards using the following websites:
- CyndisList of links to Mailing Lists and Message Boards
- Ancestry's Message Boards for surnames, localities, and topics.
- RootsWeb's Message Boards for surnames, localities, and topics.
- Genealogy.com has Genforum Message Boards
- Intelius.com/ The information on this site comes from public records. Payment is required for in depth information, but the basic search results are free. Often the basic results can give you clues which allow you to search for the individual in an online directory such as http://www.dexknows.com/, http://www.switchboard.com/ , http://anywho.com or http://whowhere.com
- Finding the living among the dead: Using the internet to find your living cousins
Additional online resources for searches involving living people include:
- PeopleSearch on Google Search is a front-end to a much more focused full Google Search; it also has an option to search across the top 50 or so people search sites with ONE search.
Online Telephone Directories are some of the best sources for locating living persons. You may want to search several directories because each publisher has a different list of names. Remember to search for the name with and without initials. You can use the Internet at most public libraries. Some of the best directory sites are listed on the Internet at: