Continuing the series of Iowa’s hidden genealogical treasures:
Iowa Yearly Meeting of Friends, State Office
411 College Avenue
Oskaloosa, Iowa 52577
As the name indicates, this is the state office for the Society of Friends (Quakers) in Iowa. I was greeted by Mary Thury who graciously showed me the vault where original records are kept. This is the treasure chest since Quaker records are some of the most informative for genealogists.
Fortunately, most of the records have been microfilmed. Mary told me that microfilm copies are available at their office, at the State Historical Society of Iowa, Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania, and Earlham College in Indiana. Mary gave me a 17-page listing of the records on microfilm. It is very comprehensive with monthly and quarterly meeting minutes, women’s minutes, men’s groups, memberships, birth and death records, Sunday school records and ministers’ and elders’ records.
Their website gives a list of all churches that are currently a part of the Iowa Yearly Meeting: http://www.iaym.org/churches.
While in Oskaloosa, I also visited Wilcox Library on the William Penn University campus. The Quaker Room contains many published materials for Friends research including the set of Encyclopedia of American Quaker Genealogy by William Wade Hinshaw and several Willard C. Heiss abstract books.
Because many Quakers were among the earliest settlers of Nantucket Island, and then migrated south to North Carolina, some other books also caught my eye:
Coffin, Louis, editor. The Coffin Family. Nantucket, Mass: Nantucket Historical Association, 1962.
Thompson, Ruth F. and Louise J. Hartgrove, compilers. Abstracts of Marriage Bonds and Additional Data, Guilford County, North Carolina 1771-1840, Vol. I. Greensboro, NC: The Guilford County Genealogical Society, 1981.
Thompson, Ruth F. and Louise J. Hartgrove, compilers. Abstracts of Marriage Bonds and Additional Data, Guilford County, North Carolina 1841-1868, Vol. II. Greensboro, NC: The Guilford County Genealogical Society, 1983.