What if my Ancestor isn't in the Database?

Don't panic, this just means that you will have to do a little research on your own. It turns out that you now know two important facts. First, your ancestor is not listed on any index for the major U.S. ports, so you can assume that they entered through New York between 1847 and 1897, the time period for which there is no index. Second, your ancestor was not on board any of the ships indexed by Filby and Glazier which covers about 90% of the ships from German ports that landed at New York in this time period.

If you want to try searching the New York Passenger Lists on your own, here is the recomended way to do it.

  1. Estimate the year of arrival based on census returns, naturalization records, year of marriage, age of their children, whatever information you have available.
  2. Go to a major library that has a copy of the German Immigrants to America series.
  3. Make a list of all the ships from Germanic ports (Bremen, Hamburg, Stettin, Rotterdam, LeHarve) that are in Filby and Glazier for that year. This list will be quite long, but remember, these are all the passenger lists that you DON'T have to research.
  4. Go to a genealogical research center that has a copy of the New York passenger lists (national archives, national archives regional branch, LDS at Salt Lake, local LDS family history center, Newberry Library, Allen County library, etc).
  5. Look at the New York passenger lists for the year that you identified. Pick out the ships sailing from German ports that are NOT on your list. There will be approximately 1 - 2 rolls of microfilm per month depending on the year you are researching. Each roll will contain several hundred passenger lists. However, most of these are for ships that came from ports that are either not of concern (such as England, Australia, South America) OR they are already on your list and don't need to be searched. There are typically only about 5 ships per month that you will meet your search criteria.
  6. Scan for the name Bauerschmidt in the passenger lists of ships that meet your criteria. Bauerschmidt is a long and distinct name and is pretty easy to spot. Since most of the passenger lists on your roll of microfilm are not of concern to you, the search will not take as long as you think.
  7. Do others a favor, If you find a Bauerschmidt name, write it down. Even if it is not your ancestor. Send that information in and it will be added to the immigrant database, once verified. That way, no one else will have to repeat your research.

What If I Am Still Stuck?

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Fri Mar 31 14:34:26 CDT 2023