I just wanted to send out this email today since we are approaching Thanksgiving, a holiday full of family and friends.  Many of our family members are spread out across the country, but would still like to complete family research on our ancestors that lived in the Smyth County area.  I wanted to send this email to provide you all with some ways you can do that if you are unable to travel to where your ancestors lived to perform your research.  Just because you do not live where they lived doesn't mean that you can't research them too!  Big shout out to Katy Davidson for helping me with this!  
   If you would like to look at some of the collections that the Smyth County Public Library has to offer, but can't make it to the library, or do not have a library card through their system, you can still access some of their collections online.  You just need to go to the following website to begin:
  Once there, on the left hand side you will see a link for "SCPL Digital Collection".  Once you click on this it will take you to a new website where you can search the library's collections, of which they have many.  This page will contain specific directions on how you can search the collections.  At the top of the page is the box where you can type in whatever names, or other key words you are searching for.  If you have any questions about this you can email here and I will do my best to try and help you!  If you are searching outside of the Smyth County area, try looking into the library system for that region.  Often libraries will have a treasure trove of local genealogical information.
   You can also do basic searches on for free.  You can search their records and see some of the information, but they will limit what you can see without paying.  It can still prove to be beneficial though.  Another website you can use is  This is website is completely free (to the best of my knowledge) and is also very beneficial.  There are many other great online resources out there, but these are just a few that I have found to be helpful in my own research.  If you have found any other resources that you have found helpful please let me know!
   I hope everyone has a great Thanksgiving full of great food and time with family and friends.  Please stay safe!
Your cousin,
Elizabeth Siebold
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