Early in the twentieth century, New York Genealogical and Biographical Society members were asked to complete a four-page, ledger-sized questionnaire regarding the member's life and family.
The stated purpose for the requested information was "the preparation of the Biographical Sketches of Members of the Society." Members were asked to provide "full and specific" replies and to use extra pages to complete the information when necessary. This member requirement was relatively short-lived, from the 1890s until the 1940s.
However, those New York Genealogical and Biographical Society members who dutifully filled out and sent back the forms, often accompanied by family trees, press clippings and other ephemera, gave the Society a wonderful resource regarding their personal family histories.
The questions asekd in each survey cover:
- Date and place of birth
- Residential address
- Civic association
- Military service
- Published books, pamphlets or other literary works
- References to works containing personal biography and/or ancestral history
- Marital information
- Information about member's children (including spouses of children)
- Information about member's parents (including birth and death)