Google Books

I am librarian and I just opened the December 2013 Library Journal. Authors Guild filed  suit against Google Books claiming they violated copyright laws by scanning books into their digital database. However, the lawsuit against Google Books has been dismissed by a Judge Chin.

I am really glad to hear that.  ‘Google Books’ is a great resource for genealogical users. I often use this when I am teaching students how to find research information about their ancestors.

I have found information about one of my ancestors. I have a John Roberts (5th great grandfather) that lived during the Revolutionary time period. He was hung as Tory. So I went to Google Books: and type in “John Roberts, Pennsylvania Tory”. By placing this information in you are narrowing your search and it helps to pin point exactly where your person was at the time. There were quite a few books mentioned ….

Colonial And Revolutionary Families Of Pennsylvania – Page 453
John W. Jordan – 2004 – ‎Preview – ‎More editions

John W. Jordan. and County of Caernarvon; my mother being Margaret Evans, daughter of Richard Evans, of the Parish of This John Roberts was the grandfather of the John Roberts hanged as a Tory in the early part of the Revolution.


Merion in the Welsh Tract: With Sketches of the Townships of …
Thomas Allen Glenn – 1896 – ‎Read – ‎More editions

This instrument is endorsed “ William Penn to John ap John and Tho. Owen, aged 16 years, daughter of Owen Humphrey, of Llwyu du Merionethshire, and was the grandfather of John Roberts, the noted Tory of Revolutionary times.

There were many other options but I choose these two as I am familiar with them.

John Roberts was married to Jane Downing (her father was the founder of Downingtown). They had at least 10 children. I am writing this from memory right now. I know this story like it was the back of my hand. He was farmer, resided in Lower Merion, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Later it became part of Montgomery county.

He had mill and it stated he had ground flour and put glass in it and was hung for it. Then they went in and much like today when there are tornados or earthquakes etc. where people will go in and help themselves to other people’s property. The same thing happened to my relative, they went in and they didn’t care that he had a large family and wife. The confiscated his cows, horses, and many of his farm animals,

If the book is not available to read on Google Books – they will refer you to an owning library. What is great about this is then you can see if you can borrow this book thru  Interlibrary Loan from your hometown library. It is an over all good resource.

I also like this as I can’t travel to these places like I use to, so it is great that I can read sections of this from my home computer at my own pace and not have to worry about the time of day or library hours.

until later Mary


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