If you have a genealogist on your gift list, your shopping will be simple: Give her or him a reference book. If you are the tree shaker, compile your wish list now so your family knows which books you would like for your personal library.
Here are some suggestions:
"Map Guide to the U.S. Federal Censuses, 1790-1920" by William Thorndale and William Dollarhide, will please any genealogist. It shows all U.S. county boundaries of this period, includes nearly 400 maps with old county lines superimposed over the modern ones, highlighting the boundary changes at 10-year intervals.
Accompanying each map are explanations of boundary changes, notes about the census and keys to finding specific localities. In addition, there are inset maps that clarify territorial lines and a state-by-state bibliography of sources. An appendix outlines pitfalls in mapping county boundaries and the index lists all present-day counties, and nearly all defunct counties or counties that were later renamed.
"Map Guide" is indispensable in solving the problem of what county to find your elusive ancestors in census records. As so often occurs, your family didn't move at all--but rather the county and/or state boundaries changed. This book is superb both in context and layout.
Published by Genealogical Publishing Co., 1001 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21202, it is available for $51.95 postpaid.
The revised edition of Donald Lines Jacobus' "Index to Genealogical Periodicals" by Carl Boyer III, will be of immeasurable aid to any genealogist.
As the author points out, "A major difference between the successful genealogist and those who have had little success lies in the use of indexed works to determine what research has already been done by others."
Boyer's book is a great new source that every serious family historian will consult many times--especially if you have old American lines. It is arranged by a surname, place and topic indexes, making it handy to use.
Order from the author, P.O. Box 333, Newhall, Calif. 91322 for $22 postpaid.
If Quakers hang upon your family tree, there is an important new book called "Our Quaker Ancestors."
Written by Ellen Thomas Berry and David Allen Berry, a husband-wife team of certified genealogists, it includes a short history of the Quaker movement, their migrations to and within America, the special types of records available for research and how to locate and use these records.
"Our Quaker Ancestors" is available for $19.50 postpaid from Genealogical Publishing Co., 1001 N. Calvert St., Baltimore, Md. 21202.
If your Southern roots go back to Georgia, as so many do, you'll find "Georgia Genealogical Research" by George K. Schweitzer, 407 Regent Court, Knoxville, Tenn. 37923 of great value.
It includes more than 1,300 sources for tracing your Georgia ancestors and detailed instructions on how to carry out the research.
It's available from the author for $9 postpaid.