Biographical Resources for Genealogists
In a previous post, I outlined one source of biographical information for your family research. There are additional sources of biographical indexes and dictionaries. WorldCat connects you to the collections and services of over 10,000 libraries worldwide. These materials may be available through your local library. Some of these are available in hard copy or eBook.
If you are looking for resources to search for notable women in the family, try these:
Women in World History: a Biographical Encyclopedia, by Anne Commire and Deborah Klezmer. It contains individual information on women from around the world, living and dead. Some of the 10,000 articles contain only basic genealogical data such as birth, marriage, children, and death dates. Others are more expansive. There are a number of volumes.
Notable Women in Mathematics: a Biographical Dictionary, by Charlene Morrow and Teri Perl. It contains biographical essays on 59 women from around the world who have made significant contributions to mathematics.
Notable Women in the Physical Sciences: a Biographical Dictionary, by Barbara S. Shearer; Benjamin F. Shearer. This book contains substantive biographical essays on 96 women scientists from around the world who have made significant contributions to the physical sciences throughout history. It includes how they were influenced, obstacles they overcame, and their significant contributions.
If you are looking for politics or world leaders:
Biographical Encyclopedia of 20th-century World Leaders, by John Powell. It examines the lives of 483 20th Century leaders from 98 countries, included extraordinary deeds, good and bad. It is composed of 5 volumes, A-Z format.
Biographical Dictionary of Modern World Leaders 1992 to the Present, by John C. Fredriksen. From the Cold War Up Through Present Day, this book contains 400 biographies of leaders from around the globe, including at least one entry from each of the 190 countries of the world, and more.
If you are looking for military:
World Military Leaders: a Biographical Dictionary, by Mark M. Grossman. This book profiles influential military leaders including strategists: Alexander the Great, Charlemagne, and Napoleon and tacticians: including Decatur, Hannibal, and Rommel.
German U-boat Commanders of World War II: a Biographical Dictionary, by Rainer Busch and Hans-Joachim Röll. Details the service records of 1,400 officers of the German Kriegsmarine who commanded a U-boat between June 1935 and August 1945.
The Biographical Dictionary of World War II Generals and Flag Officers: the U.S. Armed Forces, by R. Manning Ancell and Neil M. Heyman. A biographical dictionary of American generals and flag officers who served active duty from December 7, 1941 to September 2, 1945, including officers of the US Army, the US Air force, the National Guard and the US Marine Corps.
And a variety of other biographical sources:
Encyclopedia of World Scientists, by Elizabeth H. Oakes. It contains short biographies of almost 1,000 scientists from around the world who made great contributions to science throughout history.
Biographical Dictionary of Evangelicals, by Timothy Larsen, David Bebbington and Mark A Noll. It includes biographical articles of people born in or before 1935, with careers in the ‘English-speaking world’.
Renaissance and Reformation, 1500-1620: a Biographical Dictionary, by Jo Eldridge Carney. This volume focuses on figures such as religious leaders, scientists, artists, writers, musicians and scholars who contributed to the culture of Western civilization during the Renaissance and Reformation.
Pioneer Aviators of the World: a Biographical dictionary of the First Pilots of 100 Countries, by Hart Matthews. This volume provides information about the first pilots from a hundred countries. A brief biography and a description of his or her attempts to fly are provided for each early aviator, if found.
People of the Underground Railroad: a Biographical Dictionary, by Tom Calarco. This book contains biographical information on 100 major individuals involved in the Underground Railroad including Harriet Tubman, Frederick Douglass, and Thomas Garrett.
As you can see, there are a lot of biographical resources out there. WorldCat can help you find them. Happy Searching.