Google Search Hints

Sometimes I find a blog posting that I wish I had written.

Here is one on “How To” use the search options on Google and other search sites.

I’ve learned so much from this one little posting that I will have to take time off from my regular work to play with all the options Judith Lewis mentions in her posting. The majority of the commands come from: Common Google Search Operators by Roger Warner.

I knew I could search the Google News Archive newspapers using this command:


That search will give me Google News Archive results for any article that had the word George in the newspaper.

I hope the re-blog of the very thorough “How To” posting will help you in your search for … everything.

Thank You.

Jose from Clarkston, Michigan


20 thoughts on “Google Search Hints

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  1. Hello! Your site has been a very useful resource. 🙂 I could use some advice. I have recently found out when my paternal grandfather died and the names of his parents. That information led me to place of birth and residence prior to 1942 when he married and moved to my paternal grandmother’s state and lived there until around the 1950s. They presumably divorced at some point and he ended up back in his birth state. I have his military WWII information and enlistment card which I confirmed by address and serial number. I also know exactly where he’s buried in a National veteran’s cemetary. And here is the brick wall. I can’t find him or his parents on any census in that state except for one really odd entry that’s a “maaaaaybe”. I have tried searching by last known address page by page, but it’s an apartment building with a long list of names that don’t match his surname. I’m having trouble searching by address in the NY city directories. He passed in 2005, but I’ve found no online obituaries. Any idea of where I can find some breadcrumbs?

    1. Yes I think I can help but I will need more information. P-Grandfather Name, Birthdate, Deathdate and his parents Names, Birthdates, Deathdatedates. P-Grandmother’s home location for 1940/50’s His birth state. I will treat it like some obit I’ve found in a newspaper and start a tree for him and from there I should be able to get clues and more records. All the info I ask for would appear in an obit so if you write an obit of him then you should be able to write down all the info that you would like to see in his obit. While I am working up the tree and info you can look at this New York web page that I’ve used for NY people —
      Thanks for posting the question it sounds like a good mystery for me to work on.

      1. Samuel Davis born August 17, 1920 died January 12 2005. New York, New York. Parents Clarence Davis and Stella MacIntyre. Married Gertrude Cruz (later remarried name Fermino) in 1942 in New Bedford, Ma. She was born Jun 3, 1917 and died Jun 6 2006. Samuel enlisted in the nyc national guard and later recruited to the army for WWII. I do not know his parents birth or deaths, it’s why I have been trying to find Samuel on a Census or city directory before 1942. Thanks for any leads you can point me to. I’ve gone cross eyed from looking at so many records.

      2. Thank You for the obit.
        I converted it to a text file.

        This is exactly what I would do with a newspaper, FindAGrave, or blog obit that I found.

        I will create a tree with this information and then start a folder called “Samuel Davis obit Jan 2005 – NY” where I will put everything about this obit.

        I will send you updates on the tree and eventually put you on the tree as editor so you can see all the records we found.

        Thank You again.
        text from Samuel Davis obit

        Samuel Davis
        age 85

        born: 17 Aug 1920

        died: 12 Jan 2005
        in: NY, New York

        father: Clarence Davis
        mother: Stella Macintyre Davis

        wife: Gertrude Cruz
        married in 1942 New Bedford, Ma

        wife 2: Fermino

        born: 03 Jan 1917
        died: 06 Jun 2006

        Samuel military:
        enlisted in NYC National Guard
        later recruited to Army
        served in WWII
        you can E Mail Me

        naujelyk at aol dot com

      3. Just to clarify that Fermino is Gertrudes second married name (not a second wife). It’s just sometimes records might appear for her as “Fermino” and I wanted you to know its the same person.

      4. Just to clarify: Fermino is Gertrude’s second married name — not a second wife to Samuel. Sometimes the hints on ancestry come up with Fermino and I wanted you to know it was the same person.

      5. Okay, This is the update I told you I would send. From here on out I will only send you completed update that is I will work until I can not find anything else and then I will send you (either here or by e-mail) all the information I was able to find. These will be text files of all the records and screen prints of items I thought needed a screen print.
        Thank You.
        History of Tree

        I put in Samuel’s name and abt 1920 abt 2005 NY. then his fathers name Clarence Davis.

        I gave the tree a name: Samuel Davis obit Jan 2005 – NY – Family Tree

        Right off the bat I got a hint for Samuel his SS death record.
        I took that hint and put it on the tree.

        I then added his mother name: Stella Macintyre

        When I did that I got leaf’s (hints) for father and mother, plus some new hints for Samuel.

        father has two hints:
        1. 10 Trees are already on Ancestry with these names

        2. SS Death

        mother has one hint:
        1. 2 trees are already on Ancestry with these names

        Samuel has four hints:
        1. 2 trees are already on Ancestry with these names

        2. US Dept Vet

        3. US Vet Gravesite

        4. US FindAGrave index
        One more thing: I do not take any of the tree hints. That is I do not accept any information off of the Family Trees that are given as hints, because they could have errors in the records. I only view the tree info for clues.

    1. Thank You. I figured as much but I wanted to continue as if I didn’t know anything except what was in the obit. I noticed that Gertrude was the one who remarried. I did find a Gertrude Davis on Find A Grave buried at the same cemetery born 1917 died 1988 Memorial# 4020506 but that is all they have about her. When I find a person on Find A Grave I usually click on the left hand link that says view all “Davis” in cemetery, county, state…. I figure if a person is buried there then maybe others of the family are also there. I get pretty good results; either more people or none in that cemetery, county opens up to other cemeteries and there I might find a relative.
      The reason you could not find him in the 1940 city directory is because New York state, New York county does not have a dir for 1940. They have 1933 then jump to 1948 then to 1953. Prior to 1933 they had almost every year. Now that is just the collection that has so maybe someone else has other years. I tried looking for family in FamilySearch but did not find any good leads. I only looked at the first page so maybe there is a record where they messed up the spelling and that shows up on page 11 or 23. Normally at this point I would update the text file of the obit and put in a link to the tree I created and then send a copy of the information to all the trees who have the same family. Of course some of the hints may not be our family so we don’t send the stuff to them. I would then close up the folder and move on to some other tree or write up a post for the blog if I found something useful in the tree (a lesson for my readers). However with your tree here I will play around some more and see if I can find anything new.

      1. Okay here is the latest; however it is not much:
        There are 11 tree hints for Clarence but none except yours matches my tree.

        There are 2 tree hints for Estella McIntyre one is you and the other is Ashlee Andrade and she does not have much on her tree. She also has not been on Ancestry for over a year; however I did find her name on FB. I sent her a message with a picture of her tree and asked her if she had made that tree. Let’s hope she replies with a YES or NO, either way we have crossed off a clue.

        There are 2 tree hints for Samuel. One is yours the other is Ashlee.

        Maybe this Ashlee will turn out to be a relative… or You… I just thought of that. I don’t know your name. LOL

    2. What is your tree name?

      I found something new:
      1930 United States Federal Census

      Name: Samuel Davis
      Birth Year: abt 1921
      Gender: Male
      Race: Negro (Black)
      Birthplace: New York
      Marital Status: Single
      Relation to Head of House: Son
      Home in 1930: Manhattan, New York, New York
      Map of Home: View Map
      Street address: West 115th Street
      Block: E.
      House Number in Cities or Towns: 207
      Dwelling Number: 67
      Family Number: 425
      Attended School: Yes
      Able to Read and Write: Yes
      Father’s Birthplace: North Carolina
      Mother’s Birthplace: North Carolina
      Able to Speak English: Yes

      Household Members:
      Name Age
      Estelle Davis 42
      Phynia Glee 22
      Samuel Davis 9

      1. Davis-Sparling is my tree name. i have that particular record from 1930 in my shoe box as my “maaaaaybe” 🙂 I have no idea how to confirm it though. Phynia…that’s a particular stumper.

      2. Here is what I found in City Dir —
        U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995
        New Bedford, Massachusetts

        Samuel not on this City Dir
        U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995
        New Bedford, Massachusetts
        New Bedford, Massachusetts, City Directory, 1940

        107 of 556

        ” Samuel emp Hood’s Dairy r258 Coffin av
        U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995
        New Bedford, Massachusetts
        New Bedford, Massachusetts, City Directory, 1941

        130 of 629

        ” Samuel emp Hood’s Dairy r64 Mill
        U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995
        New Bedford, Massachusetts
        New Bedford, Massachusetts, City Directory, 1943

        134 of 241

        ” Samuel S (Gertrude) USA r217 Pleasant
        U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995
        New Bedford, Massachusetts
        New Bedford, Massachusetts, City Directory, 1945

        145 of 643

        ” Samuel S (Gertrude) USA r217 Pleasant
        U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995
        New Bedford, Massachusetts
        New Bedford, Massachusetts, City Directory, 1947

        171 of 679

        ” Samuel S (Gertrude) mill opr r217 Pleasant
        U.S. City Directories, 1822-1995
        New Bedford, Massachusetts
        New Bedford, Massachusetts, City Directory, 1949

        155 of 713

        ” Samuel S (Gertrude) lab Fisk Mill r217 Pleasant
        Samuel not on this City Dir

      3. Yes, that’s all him. As for New york prior to 1942 for Samuel, Clarence, or Stella it’s a ghost town. It’s driving me a little crazy. Thanks for all your help and your efforts. I think what is working against finding these people is that Samuel was born after 1915 so no birth record. I’m guessing Samuel’s parents died before 1940 and he might have had his Army mail sent to relatives. What is a head scratcher is that his SSDI lists them as in “household” in 1939. But that might be an error and that might just be a transcription of parents names put in the household spot. My husband’s side of the tree is the Griswold family tree — it lights up with hints almost constantly. Makes me want to scream with how easy his connections are made. LOL. Ohioans are serious about their family trees!

      4. The city dir for New York are just business not people. I looked at a couple of them and it was all commercial. I will play with it from time to time as I think of some new avenue to walk down.
        One thing you could do is get on the closed FB group pages such as “Genealogy I need help” or “Genealogy” or “Genealogy Greenwalt” and see if they might be able to help with finding records.

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