Thursday, January 15, 2009

Genealogy 101

If your new to Genealogy research and feeling a bit overwhelmed thinking that your new hobby is going to be an expensive one let me reassure you that there is a lot of free info out there.

With any hobby there is going to be some expense but before you start thinking that this is one hobby that is going to be too expensive for you and you give up before you've ever begun because you think your going to have to join Ancestry because it is the one site out there that can help you fill out your family tree. Ancestry does have millions of records but that doesn't mean that you have to join as soon you start doing your research.


To begin with the only thing you need to start your family research is a spiral notebook and a pen. Simply start by writing down all of your family members names. Start with your parents and work your way backwards. If your lucky your parents or grandparents are still alive and you can get the correct names, places of birth, dates of birth and deaths for as many ancestors as possible.

When I started my research both my parents and all of my grandparents had already passed away. All I had was a piece of paper with both my grandparents names and both  sets of their parents names.

Just gathering the information from your living relatives could takes months. And all you would have spent was possibly a few dollars in postage stamps or some long distance phone calls. You certainly didn't need any subscription to any website for this research. But maybe you are anxious to get started and feel that you already have enough info to get started. There are a few free website's you can start with.


RootsWeb has lots of free info listed on the site.  You can even search the info with out joining the site.This site is now owned by Ancestry but the info listed is still free. Go check it out so you can see what I mean.

Search the World Connect Family Trees and see if anyone has been researching your family name. You may even find a cousin or two.

USE Caution before you start adding any information you find on a family tree on the Internet. You must verify the info before you add it to your own tree. There are many family trees out there that have errors. You do not want to add the wrong info to your own family tree.


The USGenWeb Project has a website for for almost every single county in the US. The information varies with each state and county website. These site are all volunteer generated info.


I've given you a few places to start on your genealogy adventure. See what you can find for free.

Thanks for stopping by!






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