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Old 08-01-2017, 03:34 PM
 
6,007 posts, read 5,543,602 times
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My advice is simple:

1) Start with yourself then work backwards (too many people want to start backwards then move forwards)
2) Don't believe anything you read, see, or hear without corroborating evidence. Even primary sources can be inaccurate.
3) Keep records of everything you do so that you don't find yourself doing the same research over and over because you didn't keep track of what you've already done. The paper forms are simplest and cheapest, but if saving your research on-line or in a genealogy program works for you, cool. Also, make copies or scans of every original document you use.
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Old 08-01-2017, 04:20 PM
 
5,240 posts, read 4,547,963 times
Reputation: 11404
Quote:
Originally Posted by 601halfdozen0theother View Post
My advice is simple:

1) Start with yourself then work backwards (too many people want to start backwards then move forwards)
2) Don't believe anything you read, see, or hear without corroborating evidence. Even primary sources can be inaccurate.
3) Keep records of everything you do so that you don't find yourself doing the same research over and over because you didn't keep track of what you've already done. The paper forms are simplest and cheapest, but if saving your research on-line or in a genealogy program works for you, cool. Also, make copies or scans of every original document you use.
This.

Also use your phone to take pics of photos or pages in books. You can get a scan app.

Always keep track of sources, so you can go back again.

When copying census info, transcribe the entire page of entries AND the page before & page after your ancestor. There will turn out to be other relatives, allied families, & future spouses in those pages.

Get 2 or more sources to confirm/collaborate data from records.

My go to resources are censuses--federal, state, local, death records, marriage records, probates, naturalization if an immigrant, land records, military records, & land records/military land bounty records. Passports are a very valuable source worth looking for.

Last edited by historyfan; 08-01-2017 at 04:28 PM.. Reason: edit
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Old 08-01-2017, 05:57 PM
 
Location: Illinois
3,168 posts, read 4,473,019 times
Reputation: 5596
Do your own research.
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Old 08-01-2017, 07:37 PM
 
Location: USA
1,758 posts, read 712,734 times
Reputation: 3848
Quote:
Originally Posted by suzy_q2010 View Post
They are part of the family story even if not related by blood, and their descendants may have information on your blood relative.

Keep in mind that the further you go back, the more ancestors you have. You reach a point eventually when the world population was much smaller and therefore the number of potential ancestors was, too. Then you must have ancestors who appear multiple times in your tree, and you share those ancestors with many people living now.
Fascinating, thank you Suzy. I wish I didn't read the whole thread... you may make me an ancestry addict! Dang!
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Old 08-01-2017, 07:59 PM
 
Location: Colorado (PA at heart)
9,269 posts, read 14,335,220 times
Reputation: 12085
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roselvr View Post
I've never used a family tree program like Roots Magic. Does it offer any hints like Ancestry, My Heritage or Family search? I've gotten pretty far with hints even though I haven't paid on ancestry
RootsMagic is just tree building software. It is not a records resource like Ancestry, FS, etc.
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Old 08-01-2017, 09:01 PM
 
Location: Georgia, USA
25,516 posts, read 30,220,413 times
Reputation: 31693
Quote:
Originally Posted by A.Typical.Girl View Post
Fascinating, thank you Suzy. I wish I didn't read the whole thread... you may make me an ancestry addict! Dang!
You are welcome!

When I was in school I was not very fond of history. I think I never really had a teacher that made it come alive, though I memorized the dates and made good grades. Then I got hooked on the genealogy and all of a sudden the history was real. I had flesh and blood who traversed oceans, helped build new communities, and bled in wars. I never expected to find I had ancestors in North America before the Revolution, but I did - a lot of them.
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Old 08-01-2017, 09:49 PM
 
Location: Living rent free in your head
33,931 posts, read 15,591,286 times
Reputation: 24534
Quote:
Originally Posted by HappytobeinTroy View Post
I've always been interested in Genealogy. I'll take any suggestions on how and where to begin. I'd prefer info with no cost but that isn't a deal breaker.
Start by talking to every older person in your family, don't overlook any of them. Ask them to tell you stories about their youth, about your parents or grandparents, and either record the calls or take notes. If they are receptive to talking to you ask if they have any old photos, birth or death certificates, military records etc. Offer to reimburse them for scanning them and sending them to you. Don't overlook cousins, aunts uncles- call them all!

The things that will help you the most are going to be birth marriage and death certificates. Without some actual records you can pay for an Ancestry membership and spend years 'thinking' people you find on there are related to you when they actually aren't. I spent about 10 years working on my husband's genealogy and couldn't get past his great grandmother, her death certificate showed her first name as "Louie" which made no sense at all but a few years later we went to Ohio and found her marriage license, her first name was actually "Lovie" and once I found that out I traced that side of his family all the way to the Mayflower and beyond!

I use Ancestry and have for years, but you have to be careful not to add people to your tree just because their surname is the same as yours. Never assume & only add people to your Ancestry tree if you can confirm their relationship with some form of documentation. I also use Family Tree Maker, it's a stand alone program and doesn't help you research anything but if you sync your Ancestry family tree with it and keep a copy in a safe place when you die your grandkids will have a permanent record including photos and documentation of all the genealogy work you did without them having to subscribe to Ancestry

I admit I didn't read every post here but in case it hasn't been mentioned the Mormon Church has a great genealogical database that is free to use https://familysearch.org/search/ I've even found information in that database that isn't on Ancestry
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Old 08-01-2017, 11:29 PM
 
Location: USA
1,758 posts, read 712,734 times
Reputation: 3848
Quote:
Originally Posted by suzy_q2010 View Post
You are welcome!

When I was in school I was not very fond of history. I think I never really had a teacher that made it come alive, though I memorized the dates and made good grades. Then I got hooked on the genealogy and all of a sudden the history was real. I had flesh and blood who traversed oceans, helped build new communities, and bled in wars. I never expected to find I had ancestors in North America before the Revolution, but I did - a lot of them.
You're a doll, cheers for your reply & patience with my q's. I was lucky in that in my earlier years, I had good teachers & loved history (mostly Aztec, Inca, Mayan)... family history is the stuck point.

I never thought of looking for ancestors as both parents were from Europe, 1 eastern, 1 western & no one ever said anything about their pasts, even if asked. My immediate "family" has always been estranged & today, no siblings communicate with each other & haven't since we were children. I've never met a 1st cousin, although my da' had 12-13 siblings, each with 5+ kids, all always estranged & I have nieces/nephews, some who also have kids, whom I've never met & never will.

That being the case, I don't know details & never heard stories of grandma/pa... they were long gone before I was born... & I couldn't care less about my brother's 5th wife's family or my sister's 3rd husband's lineage... they have no kids together & I really don't consider anyone non-blood a relation. I know I'm in the minority, I know. Like I said before, relatives who marry for 1-mo/yr then divorce... what??? Why mingle their entire lineage into mine? I'd only be interested in learning of blood kin. Again, I know that's not what most people search for, but that would be all I'm interested in. As you mentioned before... if you include marriages w/no blood kin, going back to a time when there were less people... well, go back far enough & virtually every one of us is related... although, all my kin are in EU, so I don't know how that would factor into finding blood relatives.

As 1st generation American sans close family... who knows? I don't even know in which country my da' was born... Wales, Ireland? His lineage is both... I didn't know him. It seems an insurmountable task to trace back. I envy those who stayed put for generations and/or have close families... you're very lucky, indeed.

Sometimes I think, maybe I don't need to know, for whatever reason. But, I am a bit curious about blood kin back generations ago. They were probably simple folk... farm people... like most, I'd imagine. I do know my mother's great-uncle worked for a king in E/EU... would be interesting to trace back before his time to find out how he got his job, if he were a non-royal. Maybe someday.

Cheers for your replies, Suzy. You're very kind.
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Old 08-02-2017, 08:04 AM
 
Location: Arizona
6,297 posts, read 5,771,576 times
Reputation: 19459
Quote:
Originally Posted by A.Typical.Girl View Post
You're a doll, cheers for your reply & patience with my q's. I was lucky in that in my earlier years, I had good teachers & loved history (mostly Aztec, Inca, Mayan)... family history is the stuck point.

I never thought of looking for ancestors as both parents were from Europe, 1 eastern, 1 western & no one ever said anything about their pasts, even if asked. My immediate "family" has always been estranged & today, no siblings communicate with each other & haven't since we were children. I've never met a 1st cousin, although my da' had 12-13 siblings, each with 5+ kids, all always estranged & I have nieces/nephews, some who also have kids, whom I've never met & never will.

That being the case, I don't know details & never heard stories of grandma/pa... they were long gone before I was born... & I couldn't care less about my brother's 5th wife's family or my sister's 3rd husband's lineage... they have no kids together & I really don't consider anyone non-blood a relation. I know I'm in the minority, I know. Like I said before, relatives who marry for 1-mo/yr then divorce... what??? Why mingle their entire lineage into mine? I'd only be interested in learning of blood kin. Again, I know that's not what most people search for, but that would be all I'm interested in. As you mentioned before... if you include marriages w/no blood kin, going back to a time when there were less people... well, go back far enough & virtually every one of us is related... although, all my kin are in EU, so I don't know how that would factor into finding blood relatives.

As 1st generation American sans close family... who knows? I don't even know in which country my da' was born... Wales, Ireland? His lineage is both... I didn't know him. It seems an insurmountable task to trace back. I envy those who stayed put for generations and/or have close families... you're very lucky, indeed.

Sometimes I think, maybe I don't need to know, for whatever reason. But, I am a bit curious about blood kin back generations ago. They were probably simple folk... farm people... like most, I'd imagine. I do know my mother's great-uncle worked for a king in E/EU... would be interesting to trace back before his time to find out how he got his job, if he were a non-royal. Maybe someday.

Cheers for your replies, Suzy. You're very kind.
I don't think you are in the minority. On my tree I only list spouses if it was the only one they had or if they had kids with them. I do not list steps.

If someone wants to make a detailed family history I could see including them but I have no interest in that. I don't really care if a 3rd Great Grandfather liked to read or had a farm. Maybe if he was a Duke or was hanged but not the normal stuff.

There is one person I remember as a kid and I wanted to ask my aunt, the last of that generation about it the next time I called her. She died 3 days after our last call. Still haven't connected him. So when you have someone with information get it then. You never know what may happen.
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Old 08-02-2017, 10:03 AM
 
3,995 posts, read 3,484,814 times
Reputation: 12302
I list everyone even though I may not fill out all of their information. My family is related to itself several times over in past generations. It's interesting to come across those names again. Some of those last names come in handy when I'm looking through stories and documents. Some of the women in my family married and then had children with some interesting stories. I wouldn't have caught on to the relationship if I didn't include last names outside of my direct line.
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