Monday, March 15, 2010

A Book Review: Itawamba County, MS: World War I Draft Registration Records

by Terry Thornton

Cover of Martha Reece Bone Lake's recent book.

Mississippi genealogist Martha Reece Bone's Itawamba County, MS: World War I Draft Registration Records with selected information from censuses, cemetery books, and Social Security death indexes is a treasure-trove of information about the Hill Country.

Written and privately published by the author in 2007, hard-bound copies of this 232 page reference book are available for purchase at the Itawamba County Historical Society for $20 each to help raise funds to benefit the Society. Copies of this book may also be obtained direct from the author (contact her by email for specifics).

Researched over a period of several years, Martha transcribed information from the WWI draft cards complied on individuals from Itawamba County. She then added information about the individual which she gleaned from various census reports, burial information (from Betty Burton-Cruber's Cemetery Markings), and data, if available, from the SS Death Index.

Typical page from the book shows two columns of information per page

A typical entry in the alphabetized list of individuals for whom draft registration cards were prepared includes name, address, age, place of birth, race, occupation, family information including marital status and often name of spouse, physical description (size, built, eye and hair color), voting precinct, date of registration, and additional information from the census, burial information, and Social Security Death index.

Of particular interest to many researchers are the various given names or nicknames under which Martha found information about the individual ---- and she provides those various names. Inconsistencies in spelling of name, date of birth, and age of individual from the various records examined in this research are noted

Also included are a list of the registrars for Itawamba Country. The book ends with an alphabetical list of World War I veterans from Itawamba County.

On a personal note, Martha Reece Bone Lakes is retiring and making plans to move out-of-state. We wish her much happiness and contentment in her new location --- and with many thanks for her contributions to family research in the Hill Country of Northeast Mississippi.

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