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Old 12-04-2017, 12:05 AM
 
Location: Cushing OK
14,545 posts, read 18,219,558 times
Reputation: 16829

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I've found Ancestry's search feature very useful. If fact, it amazed me when it came up with an unfamiliar name with a segment from the 1920 census.

My grandmother always said her father was English, and he died young. The father of her sister has a different name and was American. The whole family lived in socal, just streets away from each other and I knew them all. My aunt Ethel said her father was American, and she was the youngest. My grandmothers father was an Englishman names Smith. But a lot of people list the American father as the only one.

Then I saw this message, someone's search of the 1920 census. It has to be them since its got their address. And it shows Grandma with an English father named Smith, and her sister with an Irish father named Smith, who was an American citizen then. Bingo. Sometimes I wondered if Mom had been told a family story, but it linked to documents where their mother and her kids, before the 20's after losing the second father, had worked in a boarding house in Texas, where the family had said they were from but most people didn't. They were listed there as 'servants', but it was commonplace for boarding places to provide homes for families cheaply by having them do some sort of job in the house.

It's given me a reason to go back and do another chart on paper like the one which dissapeared in moving, except this time that part of their history is actually backed up. And adds a new element in teaching how people lived a century ago and might help others sort out the stories from the real ones.

Because Ancestry is so big, and it does pull in related searches, it can find gold.
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Old 12-14-2017, 08:13 AM
 
Location: Penobscot Bay, the best place in Maine!
1,895 posts, read 5,361,255 times
Reputation: 2667
I like Ancestry, but you always have to keep in mind that many people put false facts into their family tree (mistakenly inserting one William Smith for a different William Smith, or connecting families that are not at all connected), so in order to use it and create a family tree for yourself, make sure to look at the supporting evidence for each entry- and in my opinion, someone else's family tree does NOT count as a valid resource. If *they* have supporting evidence, then by all means, view that and use it if it is valid to your tree, but don't just add something because 10 other people have mistakenly added the same mistake to their own tree. In about 80 different trees on Ancestry, my grandmother is attributed to having 5 more siblings than she ever actually had, because someone assumed that her father, and a man who lived about 20 miles away of the name name, were the same person and merged their files.

In short, if you find that Ancestry.com is incredibly easy to use, and you are finding matches upon matches without much effort.. you may be doing it wrong. lol
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Old 12-18-2017, 07:38 PM
 
9,285 posts, read 5,519,664 times
Reputation: 9542
i have gotten where I dont care for ancestry, it not anything the site has done. Its all the people in the DNA matches that wont post there tree or keep their lock up tight. so you have a match that claims its first or second cousin, from your dads home town, but it lock tight as a drum

so why should i even bother, I have thought about delected my tree. The site is pretty dead.
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Old 12-18-2017, 09:02 PM
 
1,587 posts, read 1,884,242 times
Reputation: 2152
Ancestry is better because there are so many people participating. Can find out a lot more. You have to put a tree in though to get the most benefit. It will match you up with hints, although many of them are incorrect matches, many are correct. 23andMe hits you with survey questions all the time asking things like, "Do you like chunky peanut butter or creamy?" There are fewer in the 23andMe database. If you want health reports, 23andMe is the place to go. 23andMe used to have a better site until they upgraded it. Seems to have lost some of the previous functionality.
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Old 12-19-2017, 05:40 AM
 
Location: NJ
12,570 posts, read 22,536,604 times
Reputation: 11488
Quote:
Originally Posted by brownbagg View Post
i have gotten where I dont care for ancestry, it not anything the site has done. Its all the people in the DNA matches that wont post there tree or keep their lock up tight. so you have a match that claims its first or second cousin, from your dads home town, but it lock tight as a drum

so why should i even bother, I have thought about delected my tree. The site is pretty dead.
My tree is private. I have DNA relatives that want to see my tree yet don't offer to show me theirs. I don't have any close cousin matches, they're all descended from my grandparents siblings or father then that.
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Old 12-19-2017, 07:22 AM
 
16,206 posts, read 8,489,355 times
Reputation: 8331
Quote:
Originally Posted by Roselvr View Post
Never heard of it or used it. I believe this is the link
HeritageQuest Online

I use Heritage Quest in between my subscriptions to Ancestry since they have a lot of census and city directories for free and I prefer the search options from ancestry (HQ is an ancestry company) versus Family Search because on HQ and ancestry you can really narrow down your search to focus on a specific city or county or general area. I use FS for death and birth and marriage records primarily and other records. Ancestry I primarily use for social security application information for people who were born very early but whose death certificate may not mention their parents. If they had an social security number, they would have had to fill out an application for one and list their parents and where they were born, etc. So this is a greater resource to me than DCs for many people I research who died and their grandchildren or some other more distant relative was the "informant" on the DC who stated they "don't know" the parents of the deceased. This has been particularly helpful for me for people born in the late 1870s and later but who died in the mid to late 1900s and their children/grandchildren didn't know the name of their parents. This information was on the SS application.

Most major cities seem to provide access to those who are library card holders for free to HQ. I have to go through the library's main website first, use my library card number/PIN and then I have access to HQ records.

I primarily use Family Search and every other year or more often, I subscribe for a month to Ancestry.com. I also have a subscription to Newspapers.com since it is cheap and I've been doing a lot of newspaper research.

Other places for great resource info for me are pretty sporadic and are specific to local history websites/archives/societies.

I have a lot of Virginia ancestry and the Virginia archives site is just amazing with the information they have digitized.

I have a lot of ancestry from Chester County, PA and they also have excellent information online (FWIW for those with PA ancestry, you can get access for free to all the PA data on ancestry.com if you have a PA zip code and go through the PA archives website). Chester County, unfortunately does not have original documents online, but they do have a lot of indexes and you can request for them to email you digital copies of records either for free or for minimal fees.

I am a member of the Ohio Historical Society, which is $40 a year and it gives me access to their online information as well.

Once people have built a decent tree on ancestry or family search or whatever program they are using, I always encourage them if they are serious to really dig into the local and state archives for each family they are researching to build a greater history of that family.

Last edited by residinghere2007; 12-19-2017 at 07:30 AM..
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Old 12-19-2017, 09:40 AM
 
Location: Colorado (PA at heart)
9,255 posts, read 14,295,728 times
Reputation: 12070
Quote:
Originally Posted by deerislesmile View Post
I like Ancestry, but you always have to keep in mind that many people put false facts into their family tree (mistakenly inserting one William Smith for a different William Smith, or connecting families that are not at all connected), so in order to use it and create a family tree for yourself, make sure to look at the supporting evidence for each entry- and in my opinion, someone else's family tree does NOT count as a valid resource. If *they* have supporting evidence, then by all means, view that and use it if it is valid to your tree, but don't just add something because 10 other people have mistakenly added the same mistake to their own tree. In about 80 different trees on Ancestry, my grandmother is attributed to having 5 more siblings than she ever actually had, because someone assumed that her father, and a man who lived about 20 miles away of the name name, were the same person and merged their files.

In short, if you find that Ancestry.com is incredibly easy to use, and you are finding matches upon matches without much effort.. you may be doing it wrong. lol
This is really true for any website that hosts family trees though, not just Ancestry. I see the same thing on sites like Geni, MyHeritage, etc. FamilySearch and Wikitree are universal trees (one big tree everyone works together on), so errors don't get copied to multiple trees, but they still exist.
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Old 12-19-2017, 02:51 PM
 
2,892 posts, read 1,241,681 times
Reputation: 5791
There are a multitude of excellent sources. You will go through possibly hundreds once you get more experience. Ancestry is based more toward people emigrating to the US. It is still a very good place to keep your developing tree and add information to from other sources. They have a very good detailed community resource helping you connect to others who are searching for the same things. In my opinion based on my 17 years experience familysearch.org is one of the most inclusive genealogy sites out there. They are Mormon (LDS) and part of their religion is to find all their relatives that died before John Smith arrived and ensure the dead will find entrance to heaven. Well that is the gist of it. Different genealogy websites help each other fill in holes. If you don't find the info you want on one site ,try a few others: Geni.com (works with languages other then English, Geneanet, Ellis Island, Gross Isles, infoUK, AncestralQuest is a stand alone program to with you can add any kind of information to and is linked to familysearch.org.
Word of advice, don't just assume that other people's data is necessarily correct unless there is a citation or legal document used to verify it.

Happy hunting.
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Old 01-14-2018, 01:44 PM
 
Location: Wasilla and Bozeman
54 posts, read 35,356 times
Reputation: 215
You can go to any LDS site around the country and use their computers and subscriptions. I have my own Ancestry account, but found some more information on FindMyPast which was available to me for free at the LDS family research centers. There are thousands of family research centers https://www.familysearch.org/wiki/en...istory_Centers
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Old 01-14-2018, 02:28 PM
 
Location: SC
8,796 posts, read 6,065,929 times
Reputation: 12870
I abandoned Ancestry.com because there were no appropriate ways (to my needs) of getting reports out.
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