U.S. and Canadian Maritime and Genealogy Resources

Boatnerd, Great Links to the Great Lakes
This website offers links to many sites on genealogy, shipwrecks, lighthouses, and databases.

The Great Lakes Historical Society
Inland Seas Museum contains the Clarence S. Metcalf Library, the largest collection of books, periodicals, drawings, records and technical materials devoted to Great Lakes history.

The Association for Great Lakes Maritime History
This is an international organization of museums, historical societies, libraries, archives, and individuals interested in preserving Great Lakes maritime history. This site provides links to all its members.

Bowling Green State University. Historical Collections of the Great Lakes
Included in the collections are materials related to commercial shipping, shipbuilding, navigation, maritime law, commercial fishing, shipwrecks, yachting, labor history, popular literature, freshwater ecology, recreation, and the history of Great Lakes ports. The searchable online vessel database provides access to data on many Great Lakes vessels; some data sheets include photos.

Marine Museum of the Great Lakes at Kingston, Ontario
This is an online searchable database to over 13,000 vessels from 1760 to 1930, basic information on vessel name, port of registry, rig, tonnage, owner, builder, date and place of build.

Maritime History of the Great Lakes
This site has a collection of documents on Great Lakes history. Of particular interest to genealogists is the searchable database to the 1897 and 1903 editions of the Blue Book of American Shipping. These provide listings of owners, captains and masters of Great Lakes vessels. Also provided is a limited searchable enrollment database of almost 6,000 American Great Lakes vessels prior to 1860.

Michigan Family History Network
This searchable Great Lakes Shipmasters database contains over 2,700 Ship Masters of the Great Lakes. Their names have been entered from the Blue Book of American Shipping 1900, which contains two listings for shipmasters, the International Ship Masters Association listings and one compiled by the authors that goes beyond the ISMAʼs.

Downward Bound to Wisconsin Maritime Museum
The Wisconsin Maritime Museum site has several searchable databases. One contains over 2,700 Ship Masters of the Great Lakes. All the Ship Masters on the Great Lakes have been entered from the 1900 Blue Book of American Shipping. This database includes two listings for shipmasters, the International Ship Masters Association listings and one compiled by the authors that goes beyond the ISMAʼs. Other available searchable databases allow searches of the History of the Great Lakes (publisher: Beers), 1899, and a subject index to Inland Seas (check earlier reference).

Great Lakes Shipwreck Research
A forum for historians and divers, this site carries many links not only of interest to divers and wreck locations but to many other Great Lake resources.

Wreck Hunter Shipwreck research sites with historical information and pictures of selected wrecks, designed for researches, divers and armchair adventurers.

Smithʼs Master Index to Maritime Museum Websites
Robert H. Smithʼs world-wide index is graphically based with a map and labels on the home page.

Wisconsin Historical Society
The Society possesses one of the largest genealogical collections in the country. It is not limited to Wisconsin history and genealogy but includes family and local history material pertaining to all regions of North America. The Wisconsin State Historical Society Archeology page provides access to information and videos of interest to divers and historians.

Great Lakes Shipwreck Research Foundation
The purpose of the foundation is to further public awareness of Great Lakes marine heritage through education and research, and promotion of conservation, study and responsible enjoyment of historic Great Lakes shipwrecks by divers and nondivers. The foundation provided programming, data conversion and ongoing web hosting for the WMHS Vessels Enrollment Index at no cost to WMHS as part of the Great Lakes Shipwreck Foundation.

Pier Wisconsin
Pier Wisconsin is dedicated to providing hands on educational access to students and individuals interested in Wisconsinʼs maritime past. The three-masted schooner Denis Sullivan is designated the flag ship of the state of Wisconsin. The Sullivan docks at Pier Wisconsin, 500 N. Harbor Dr., Milwaukee, WI.

Rootsweb Ancestry
On this oldest and largest free online genealogy site you can search directly for ancestors by name. This site contains many links to almost all the genealogy sites of interest on the web.

Cyndi's List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet
It lists links to over 100,000 genealogical sites on the internet.

Family Search Internet Genealogy Service The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints
This site provides online assistance and links to search for ancestors, and includes the 1940 U.S. census, the latest available.

Milwaukee County Genealogical Society
This organization will search for family members for a fee.

Milwaukee Public Library
The Library offers many resources useful for genealogical research, including Milwaukee City Directories, 1848 to present; an index of the Milwaukee Sentinel Newspaper, 1836-1889; Family Surname folders; Civil War Roster for Milwaukee County; Milwaukee County Census Index, 1840 to 1920; Naturalization records; 1895 Special Union Veteran Census; Vital and Probate records; and obituaries.

National Archives and Records Administration
Discover the Archivesʼ nationwide holdings, and research family history/ genealogy, veterans' service records, order reproductions, Government documents and library materials, and more.