WorldVitalRecords.com is pleased to have Michael Brown’s New Jersey Newspaper Indexes online. These indexes will be free to access for ten days (until December 13, 2007). Click here to access the databases.
Michael Brown’s New Jersey Newspaper Indexes includes the following newspapers: Political Intelligencer and New Jersey Advertiser 1783-1786, Times and New Jersey Union 1859-1868, and the New Brunswick Daily Times 1872-1881, 1887-1891.
These indexes are a compilation of obituaries, marriage and death announcements, injuries, accidents, arrests, social happenings, and other significant local and regional items of interest.
From An Interview With Michael Brown
Brown began indexing the material many years ago while working as a reference librarian in The New Brunswick public library in New Jersey. While there, he expanded and developed the local history collection. As part of this collection, he purchased microfilm of the old New Brunswick newspapers and also created the indexes for better accessibility. These indexes contain extensive information about people who moved, were injured or arrested, won an award, ran for office, etc.
“I wanted to add flavor for the people who were doing genealogy, not just the typical information on vital records. For instance, I was indexing recently about a tornado in 1830. The microfilm had the property damage of everyone involved. It contained little snippets of the people’s lives. That is hard to get otherwise. It fleshes out the black and white picture that people may have of their ancestors and gives them more of a personal face,” said Michael Brown, Owner, New Jersey Newspaper Indexes.
Brown claims he has spent many hours on the indexes, averaging about 100 names per hour.
“With 15,000 records, that’s a lot of hours. You have to read the microfilm, transcribe it, and input the information into the computer,” Brown said.
Brown’s index is valuable because much of it contains information that is not available anywhere else.
“I frequently index information on weddings, for example, one day you see the notice of the marriage, and the next day you can read about the wedding, such as the guests who were there, where they had the wedding, and the circumstances of the wedding,” Brown said.