I'm researching the Vredenburgh family from Manhattan in the early 1800's and have gotten a ton of information from the databases on ancestry.com. I have used Ancestry's new search, the old search (which proved invaluable), used both soundex and my own list of various misspellings in order to locate most census and other records. All-in-all I have 100+ hours of searching time invested...but so far so good.
But now I am completely stuck because I can't find the parents of ANY of my Vredenburghs born around 1810-1820. The census records from that time don't include family member names...ARG.
Through the internet, I've been able to locate the death records for most of people I'm interested in. Unfortunately, not a single one of those records says who their parents were!!!
Although I am new at this, it seems that baptism or marriage records are a good, if not the best, source of information about parents in the pre-1840 era. Is this correct? Is there a better source?
Finally, how do I go about locating baptism or marriage records from 1780-1850 for people in various wards in NYC? I have read that it would be the church that has them. The Vredenburgh's were Dutch, so I am guessing they probably were members of the Dutch Reformed Church, but who knows? And where are those church records now? Do I need to physically make a trip to NYC to find these? Should I try legal/probate records (no idea how to get these)?
I feel like I have really slammed into the brick wall...any and all suggestions on how to proceed are welcome.
The main people I am stuck on are:
* Alonzo Vredenburgh (b. 1811, d. 1889)
* Samuel Vredenburgh (b. 1806, d. 1889)
* John J. Vredenburgh (b. 1813, d. 1864)
* Mary Vredenburgh (nee ???) (b. 1788, d. 1879)
* Sarah A. Gaul (nee Vredenburgh) (b. 1825, d. 1905)
* Harriet Vredenburgh (nee ???) (b. abt 1821, d. after 1880)