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Subject: [TSL] Look up = Grandfather Patrica Sullivan
Date: Thu, 15 Dec 2011 12:54:46 -0500 (EST)

Date: Wed, 14 Dec 2011 10:02:49 -0500
From: "Sullivan & Co." <>
Subject: [TSL] look up
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Hi All,

I am trying to find info on my grgrandfather, Patrick J. Sullivan. He
states that he arrived, NY in Sept. 1868. He would have been about age 17
at the time and would have been traveling from England. Any ideas or

Thanks in advance


Eileen Sullivan


Not clear exactly what you are looking for. If you are trying to track
him across America after his arrival or just his arrival information?

One of the best places to start in the USA is with the Census done every 10
years. I would try the 1870 US Census and see if he is listed, where he
is living, etc. You can follow him forward in 1880, 1900, etc. The US
1890 Census was destroyed in a fire so you have to work around 1890 and how
you do that depends on where he was living, etc.

Even if you are just looking for his arrival the Census is still a good
starting point. If you are using something like his naturalization papers or
memories to get the arrival date people are notoriously bad at
remembering/recording the dates later on.

Naturalizations are also a good tool for establishing time frames of
arrival in the USA but the challenge is that before the 1900s naturalization was
a very localized system in the USA. People could go to many different
courts to naturalize in the 1800s in the USA. You need to confirm a person
did naturalize, the Census asks the question, and also have some idea where
the person was living to begin to search for a naturalization. (Minor
children and wives in some time frames were automatically naturalized on a
father/husband's naturalization.) Later naturalizations, i.e. the 1900s asked
people to provide proof of their arrival which makes them a bit more
accurate on the arrival versus the 1800s naturalizations which often have no
specific information on arrivals. A person in theory had a waiting period in
the US after arriving before they could file for naturalization and then a
second waiting period between filing their first papers and completing the

Problem with the 1860s and 1870s passenger lists is that they are much less
complete than the later arrivals into New York. One branch of my family
arrived in the 1870s and I have had no luck in locating them on the
passenger lists.

Ancestry dot com is a good place to work but it is a paid site. is a good site for later arrivals as is which
covers the earlier lists. Some libraries offer Ancestry in the library for free
or sometimes the site does a free trial period. Not sure where you are
located so I can not tell you more specifically what other tools exist.

I do this type of research for people on a compensated basis.

Hope this helps and gives you some direction.

Allan Jordan

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