Google Search for any City, Country, State, or person.


Classes, blogs, podcasts, videos & webinars, online newspapers, wikis, conferences, magazines and repositories. 
3. INDIVIDUAL's WEBSITES & RESOURCES Descriptions of what the site contains to facilitate research.  We welcome suggestions, Please send to mimilozano@aol.com 
4. GENEALOGY RESEARCH LINKS Links to resources all over the world 


WORK IN PROGRESS, Please send suggestions to: hijodonald@gmail.com 




repared by DON GARCIA

                             ANY COUNTRY'S GENEALOGY DATABASES

    Type in the Google search box the  name of the country then any of the following: ~genealogy, passenger list, library, census, birth record, vital records, probate records, war records, family tree, tax records, land records, coat of arms,      
Russia ~Genealogy,

or Cuban ~genealogy,  England passenger list 1850, Canadian migration.

Mexican civil records
or Russian Church Records, or England Census, or Ireland war   or south America birth records or Russian Birth Marriage Death  or United States Census

or passenger list England "Bob Hope"  Some databases require one to search for the person after  the data base is entered.  In most cases the name can be included in the original search.  Also try the name in reverse order, last name first comma first name, with alternate spellings or with the spellings from the mother country. Note:  the Tilda (~) next to the word genealogy means anything similar to genealogy.


                 Any COUNTY or any CITY or any STATE'S GENEALOGY DATABASE

    Type the name of the City, County or State with any of the following information:  Cemeteries, Newspapers, Passenger List, websites, Genealogy, genealogy society, Library or Archives, Tax Records, Land Records.

An example of this technique:  California"Newspaper Archive"  or Chicago  Death Index

or Moscow Russia "genealogical society"   or Newspapers of Fresno California

Russian cemeteries in new York or Russian Cemeteries in St. Petersburg  or  St. Petersburg Russia Obituaries or  Arizona Obituaries or Kansas City "Probate Records" 

or Anaheim California genealogical society  or ORANGE COUNTY PROBATE RECORDS

or  Kern County California Land Records  or Arizona Probate Records


                  To search for a SPECIFIC PERSON with Google.com as the search engine.

     Type into Google search box the name of the person.  For example:  John Smith ~genealogy or "Henry * Rone" ~genealogy  Note: the * stands for any name. The Tilda has a space in front of it but not behind it.

"John L. Jonson" OR "John Johnson" ~genealogy The capital OR will search for these spellings variations. 

"John * Smith" born 1870   Note: the ( *) stands for any complete name.

"John Smith" OR "Mary Jones"  Note: This search produces either person or both

"John Smith" +"Mary Jones"  Note:  with the (+) both names must be in the search results.  The +sigh must be next to the next symbol, letter or number i.e. no spaces except in front of the plus sign.

     When there are too many search results as determined by the number just below the Google search window add more limiting factors.  Add  the first name of the spouse, then try the State, County or City.  Try the year of birth or death or range with two dot between as follows 1886..1940 or other specific information about the individual.  This is a trial and error technique.  If you see things in the search results that you do not want put a minus sign immediately before that word in the search box.  Then these things will not be in the new search results.


              HINTS AND HELPS

Check www.books.google.com   Free printouts for books that are out of copyright (before 1924).

and www.google.com/news for your family member. Google Newspaper Archive is usually free. And then using worldcat.org you might find the in copyright book in a library nearby.

Check www.worldcat.org for family member, books or newspapers.  (10,000 Libraries)

Note:  The book you want may be in a library near your zip code, so enter your zip code.  If it is far away you can make an inter-library loan and have it sent to the main library in Anaheim on Harbor Blvd. or to the Huntington Beach Library where it can be scanned and copied..


Open WORDPAD or any word processing program. Copy and paste into it the web links you intend to search as well as the web address of the Google search results page.  This helps to make a record of what you have searched and when you find something, copy and past your finding  below that link in your word processing program.  This makes an electronic record and avoids confusion.


Open a New Window or a New tab using a right mouse click and choosing from the window.  This allows you to keep your Google results page.  Some people leave many tabs open and only close a tab when it is well searched.  Some prefer to close the new window and defaulting to the results page. Note:  If you close all tabs, then the search results page also closes. Tabs can be close separately by clicking on the  X in that tab. Note: All Google searches are case insensitive.


Use the CTRL+F keys to search through the database.  This search or find command will

speed up searching for names or places or dates.   Hold the control key down and press the F key on the keyboard one time.  This opens a Find box. It will highlight the name, state or date you enter into the search box, if it is on the page or website several pages into it.  Press Enter or Click Next.


Places to search on the Web and in person.   First find the database you want to search then submit the name of the person you are researching.  Sometimes you can submit the name and the database at the same time.  I find that adding the word FREE to the some searches makes my life easier. Other words that help are INDEX and the spelled out name of the State.



Census, Vital Records, Cemeteries, Military Records, Taxation, Obituaries, Bible Records, Newspapers, Genealogy, Biography, Naturalization & Citizenship, Immigration, Emigration, Histories, Maps, Gazetteers, Probate Record, Court Records, Land & Property Records, Divorce Records, Ethnicity Minorities, Native Races, Societies, History, Periodicals, Church Records, Military Records, Telephone books, Military Retirement, Nobility, City Directories, Civil Registration, Employee Records, Taxation, Previously Compiled Genealogy, Societies, Archives, Libraries, Genealogy Societies and History Groups, NARA,


Don's Family Tree



Prepared by DON GARCIA

1. CLASSES : NIGS   RootsTech   You TUBE   BYU
FamSearch   RootTV   Heritage
2. BLOGS: RandySeaver   BlogFinder   ArleneEakle
3. PODCASTS: GenealogyGuys   GenealogyGems
GenealogyToday   AfricianRoots
4. VIDEOS & WEBINARS: RootsTV   InternetGenealogy   NEGH
Legacy   Geneawebinars   RootsMagic
5.ONLINE NEWSPAPERS: GenWeekly   Genealogybank   Eastman's
Rootsweb   NewspaperArchive   Avptaumi
6. CONFERENCES: FamilyHistoryExpo   SCGSJamboree
NationalGenSociety   BYUconferences   FGS
7. WIKIS: WikiF.S.   JEWISH   Encyclopedia  
Genetics   TREES   F.S.COUNTRY
8. MAGAZINE: InternetGenealogy   GenealogyInTime
FamilyChronicle   About   World-Newspapers
Nancy   Cyndi's   FamilyTree   About
9. REPOSITORIES: PrimarySources   StateLibraries   GoogleScholar  
Don's Family Tree





Database of OVER 200,000 records of  individuals, connected through pedigree and family group lines. Some lines have been traced back 40 generations.  Ancestors of Crispin D. Rendon, Northern Mexico and South Texas
Extensive pedigrees of well-known historical 
figures in the colonization and establishment 
of Northern Mexico and South Texas
Tex-Mex Family Trees by John Inclan
Mexican Researchers, very active online networking and sharing. Facilitated by President, Benicio Samuel Sanchez Garcia
Genealogica del Norte de Mexico 
Series of historical articles to facilitate researching in Mexico, especially indigenous lines.. John P. Schmal 
Abundant and well-documented information on the Spanish soldiers who served in the Americas during the American Revolution. Granville Hough  
Site developed specifically for classroom use in Celebrating Hispanic Heritage Month. Mimi Lozano
Tracing many historical connections of interaction between Africans and Latinos.
Mimi Lozano
Compilation of Spanish terms used in documents.  Very helpful in deciphering archaic terms. Ophelia Marquez & Lillian Ramos Wold
This manual was developed specifically to assist in reading Spanish language documents.
Spanish Records Extraction
Alphabetical listing of the marriages of El Libro de Matrimonios de la Parroquia de Nuestra Señora de Loreto de Burgos  1750-1860.


Transcripción por Carlos Martín Herrera de la Garza



Prepared by DON GARCIA

1. GOOGLE : Google.com   Google NEWS Archives   Books.Google
Google Advanced   Maps   Translate   Gmail
GoogleAroundGlobe   GoogleEarth
2. INFORMATION: WIKI.FamilySearch   Dogpile   BYUB   OrangeFHC.info
freelancers   Probate   Ancestry International
3. Multiple Links: Zroots/links   MOCAVO   Archive$   ANCE$TRY
Familychronicle   Rootsweb   USgenweb   Ancestorhunt
Progenealogist  Protopage   101 Best  Cyndis List
No.1rev.   Patents   SSDI   Indian   Internet   NARA
OliveTree   Mailing Lists   Vital Record$   Steve Morse
Court information
4. NEWSPAPERS Newspapers   WVR$   NewsArchive$   GnBank$
19thCentury   Acces$ible   Ance$try   Chronicaling
news.google   Fulton{NY}   Proque$t   SmallTown
NYTime$   Fold3 $   PaperOfRecord $
5. FREE SEARCHES: FamilySearch   OldFamilySearch   NFS   Pilot.FS   Labs.FS
OrangeFHC/LINKS   LAfhc   RAOGK   W.Marriages
USgwArchives   WorldGenWeb   Cousin   Findagrave  
6. LIBRARY & ARCHIVES: Worldcat.org   OCCGS/HB   CityofOrange/Library
European Libraries   U.S.GenealogyLibraries
Genealogy Libraries  NEHGS   DAR   LOC   Archive$
LibraryOfGenealogy   SoCaResources   OneLibrary



Note: To translate into English, 
copy web address into a Google search and select translate. 
Prepared by DON GARCIA 

  Archive$   FamilyLink$   Kindredculture   geneanet   looking4kin   FamSearchC.Roots   Cousins   RootsWeb   GoogleBooksSurnames   FS-WIKI   FS-HRC   FS-DEATH
A-Z Records   FS-Catholic   GenToday 
CANADA: Ancestry   Census   GenWeb   ECO   Info   CIHM   Passanger
Library   CaGnCtr   OurRoots   W.Ca
Immig   1906   FamilySearch   Ex   Links   Archives   13Ships
Archives   ny-chili   Coshocton   surname   familylink$
FS-Chili   Cyndis   Mail   Cousinsdatabases   GenForum   Book$   FH-CAT   BLOG cityData   An-Board   SurnameNav     RESOURCES
Archive   Google UK   Genuki   UKgenealogy   Tribal   About
GenLinks   Origins   British Isles   GenealogyUK   In England
GenForum   Surnames   family_history_society   Cyndis
Webcrawler   Rootsweb   RootsUK   wikiFamSearch
UKgenweb   GeneaSearch   PRICEgen   DirectGov
NationalArchives   bmd-certificate$   ukBMD   IGI_Batches
findmypa$t   Gene$Reunited   Ance$tryUK   RootsWeb
GenForum   MSG   KindredTrails   familylinks
Genea   Cousins   Myrtle   FamSearch
RootsWeb   Cyndis   WIKI   WIKI-CC   FSrecords   resources  
epodunk   Ancestry$   Marriage   IGI    
GERMANY: ChBooks   Cindi's   Finder   Urmich+   Portal   GGRS
WeeMonster   GenWeb   Internet   Palatines   Roots   Jewish
ProGen1   ProGen2   SWest   Berlin   Embassy   Telephone
Maps   DigMaps   IGI   Locations   Dictionary   A.Board
Pom/Meck   Surname   Census   ZipCode   PLZ   Auswan
Language   E-Learning   Aus-NQ   NARA   BrIsles   Census
Links   HamburgPass   Marriages   Net   Cox/Hessen   GenealogyDatabase   PalAm   FEEFHS   Archives   Rhineland
Nobility   Bavarian   QueriesSW   Lookup   State   Illness
Migration   Stuttgart   Hessian   Bibliothek   Multi   Cemeteries
PennDutch   Lutheran   Mecklenburg   Names  
Reading   OGSA   Ostfriesland   CemeteriesEurope   LinksGoogleCalendar+   Dictionary   Dan/Do n   Translation+   Alsace   FolkhartMennonite   Alsace-Lorraine   Germanna   GenForum   SurnamesDisease   Bad-Wuert   Jornal   Immigration   Maps   Maps+   TipsCajun   Lutheran   Gen+   Hart+   Imm.A-Z   Ostfriesian   PommernLinks   Saxony   Marianne   Samuel   Siebenburgische   lad-bw   cities
Basic   Libraries   Newspaper   ArchiveNews   Moravians
Roots-in-Germany   Genealogy.net   WeeMonster   Hessen
Wggerman   BAWUE   Dictionary   Links   ZeitungsA  
ProGenealogists   kartenmeister   Ausw-Sudwest
Pommernkontakte   FamilyTrees   AKVZ   ZipCode
CityDir   Emigrants   ChurchBooks   IGI   GOOGLE  AddressBook  
Genform   RootsWeb   Kindred   Guide   GGenWeb   FamSearch
Blog   FamilyLink$   GeneaNet   InTime
FS wiki   Cousins   FS CC   database$   FILM   Deaths   Baptisms
IGI   CyndisList  
GenForum   HG&HR   GenPlace   A.Board   Cousins   Kindred
Myrtle   WVR$   UTILA     FS-FILM   FS-WIKI   marriage   IGI   
IRISH: ProGen   Public   USgenweb   Ask   RootsWeb   Census
Cyndi's   Civil   Genuki   Fianna   Emerald   News   Abstracts
NIFHS   FFHS   Origins   Passenger   Belfast Indigo
Tiara   Ancestry   WorldVitalrecords   Footnote
Surnames   OCCGS-SIG
ITALIAN: Italian Roots   Cyndi   ItalianGen   ItalianAncestry
ItalyLinks   WIKI   Passenger   Pointers
Angelfire   Google   Vitalrecords   MailList
About   LOC-Italian   ItalianGenealogy   Extraction
MEXICO: Research Latino   KindredTrails   LOC-Mexico   WIKI
WorldVitalRecords  : 1930 Census   MAIL-LISTS
HispanicGS   Extraction   DC   Cindy's   PARES   Bancroft
GUADALAJARA Census   Heraldry   LOC   Culture   FS-wiki
Centre   NIFHS   RootsWeb   Cindi   About   Emerald
Leitrim   GenealogyLinks   NIDEX   Genforum   Ballymoney
ulster   sgni   NIreland   wikipedia   UKgenealogy   FHC
IRELAND   GenUKI   Connected   NIFHS
Cousinshttp   Antrim   Ancestry   Global$   censusfinder  
RUSSIA: Archives   About   Jewish   DistantCousin
RussianLife   FEEFHS   GermRuss   RootsWeb
suite101   VolgaBook   Avotaynu   CoatofArms
FamilySearch   FamilyName   AHSGR
GoogleBook   RRR   Passenger   VGD   GermansInRussia
S-People   S-Ancestry   S-Family   Cyndis   GenForum
GenLinks   GenUKI   UKgen   Expert   NGS   RegOfc   Royal
Aberdeen   Aberdeen   Scot$Family   GenPro   GlasgoFHS
S-Genealogy   SAFHS   Cora   About   eXpert   Buteshire
Orkney   Rampant   LOOK4kin   dwalker   
WalesBMD   WalesFS   WalesCivilRegFS   N.Y.Welsh
usgwArchivesWales   S.Wales   Alive   FamilyLinkWales
HoustenLibrary   SAG   WAGG   Cen$us   Italiamerica$
SRC-IGI   WVRwales   ScotlandsPeople   Awe$ome
coraweb   geneanet   Links  
Don's Family Tree

Revision: 11/21/2012



1. GOOGLE: Google.com         Advanced Google Search    
Books.Google     Advanced Books Google
Google Image       Advanced Image Search
NEWS Archives   Advanced NEWS Archives  
Translate   Google ESPANOL   Globe   GoogleEarth
Gmail.com     Google Maps     GoogleGuide
2. INFORMATION: WIKI.FamilySearch   BYUB   OrangeFHC.info
NameThesaurus   Dogpile   Archive.org
freelancers   Probate   Ance$try International
Google World Languages and Countries
3. Multiple Links: Zroots/links   MOCAVO   Archive$   ANCE$TRY
Familychronicle   Rootsweb   USgenweb   Ancestorhunt
Progenealogist  Protopage   101 Best  Cyndis List
No.1rev.   Patents   SSDI   Indian   Internet   NARA
OliveTree   Mailing Lists   Vital Record$   Steve Morse
4. NEWSPAPERS Newspapers   WVR$   NewsArchive$   GnBank$
19thCentury   Acces$ible   Ance$try   Chronicaling
news.google   Fulton{NY}   Proque$t   SmallTown
NYTime$   Fold3 $   PaperOfRecord $
5. FREE SEARCHES: FamilySearch   OldFamilySearch   NFS   Pilot.FS   Labs.FS
OrangeFHC/LINKS   LAfhc   RAOGK   W.Marriages
USgwArchives   WorldGenWeb   Cousin   Findagrave  
6. LIBRARY & ARCHIVES: Worldcat.org   OCCGS/HB   CityofOrange/Library
European Libraries   U.S.GenealogyLibraries
Genealogy Libraries  NEHGS   DAR   LOC   Archive$
LibraryOfGenealogy   SoCaResources   OneLibrary
USGWarchives   archive$.com  
ARGENTINA: FS-WIKI   GenForum   WVR$   Imm-rec   Familias
Blog   Jewish   FamilyLink$   OneGreatFamily   Pro$
KindredTrails   Cousin   Census   GeneaNet   A-board  
BOLIVIA: GenForum   Archive$   FamilyLink$   Kindred
culture   geneanet   looking4kin   FamSearch
C.Roots   Cousins   RootsWeb   GoogleBooks
Surnames   FS-WIKI   FS-HRC   FS-DEATH
A-Z Records   FS-Catholic   GenToday
CANADA: Ancestry   Census   GenWeb   ECO   Info   CIHM   Passanger
Library   CaGnCtr   OurRoots   W.Ca   Immigration
Immig   1906   FamilySearch   Ex   Links   Archives   13Ships
Archives   ny-chili   Coshocton   surname   familylink$
FS-Chili   Cyndis   Mail   Cousins  
databases   GenForum   Book$   FH-CAT   BLOG
cityData   An-Board   SurnameNav     RESOURCES
Archive   Google UK   Genuki   UKgenealogy   Tribal   About
GenLinks   Origins   British Isles   GenealogyUK   In England
GenForum   Surnames   family_history_society   Cyndis
Webcrawler   Rootsweb   RootsUK   wikiFamSearch
UKgenweb   GeneaSearch   PRICEgen   DirectGov
NationalArchives   bmd-certificate$   ukBMD   IGI_Batches
findmypa$t   Gene$Reunited   Ance$tryUK   RootsWeb
GenForum   MSG   KindredTrails   familylinks
Genea   Cousins   Myrtle   FamSearch
RootsWeb   Cyndis   WIKI   WIKI-CC   FSrecords   resources  
epodunk   Ancestry$   Marriage   IGI      
FRANCE: WVR$   About   Cyndis   genform   Kindred   GenDir
WIKI   about   Cousins   Look4kin   FamTreeCirc
Ance$try   DistantCousin     Alsace   A.board   linkpendium
FS-WIKI   Surname   FS-France  

GERMANY: ChBooks   Cindi's   Finder   Urmich+   Portal   GGRS
WeeMonster   GenWeb   Internet   Palatines   Roots   Jewish
ProGen1   ProGen2   SWest   Berlin   Embassy   Telephone
Maps   DigMaps   IGI   Locations   Dictionary   A.Board
Pom/Meck   Surname   Census   ZipCode   PLZ   Auswan
Language   E-Learning   Aus-NQ   NARA   BrIsles   Census
Links   HamburgPass   Marriages   Net   Cox/Hessen   Genealogy
Database   PalAm   FEEFHS   Archives   Rhineland
Nobility   Bavarian   QueriesSW   Lookup   State   Illness
Migration   Stuttgart   Hessian   Bibliothek   Multi   Cemeteries
PennDutch   Lutheran   Mecklenburg   Names  
Reading   OGSA   Ostfriesland   CemeteriesEurope   LinksGoogle  
Calendar+   Dictionary   Dan/Do n   Translation+   Alsace   Folkhart
Mennonite   Alsace-Lorraine   Germanna   GenForum   Surnames
Disease   Bad-Wuert   Jornal   Immigration   Maps   Maps+   Tips
Cajun   Lutheran   Gen+   Hart+   Imm.A-Z   Ostfriesian   Pommern
Links   Saxony   Marianne   Samuel   Siebenburgische   lad-bw   cities
Basic   Libraries   Newspaper   ArchiveNews   Moravians
Roots-in-Germany   Genealogy.net   WeeMonster   Hessen
Wggerman   BAWUE   Dictionary   Links   ZeitungsA  
ProGenealogists   kartenmeister   Ausw-Sudwest
Pommernkontakte   FamilyTrees   AKVZ   ZipCode
CityDir   Emigrants   ChurchBooks   IGI   GOOGLE   AddressBook  
Genform   RootsWeb   Kindred   Guide   GGenWeb   FamSearch
Blog   FamilyLink$   GeneaNet   InTime
FS wiki   Cousins   FS CC   database$   FILM   Deaths   Baptisms
IGI   CyndisList  
GenForum   HG&HR   GenPlace   A.Board   Cousins   Kindred
Myrtle   WVR$   UTILA     FS-FILM   FS-WIKI   marriage   IGI              
IRISH: ProGen   Public   USgenweb   Ask   RootsWeb   Census
Cyndi's   Civil   Genuki   Fianna   Emerald   News   Abstracts
NIFHS   FFHS   Origins   Passenger   Belfast Indigo
Tiara   Ancestry   WorldVitalrecords   Footnote
Surnames   OCCGS-SIG
ITALIAN: Italian Roots   Cyndi   ItalianGen   ItalianAncestry
ItalyLinks   WIKI   Passenger   Pointers
Angelfire   Google   Vitalrecords   MailList
About   LOC-Italian   ItalianGenealogy   Extraction
MEXICO: Research Latino   KindredTrails   LOC-Mexico   WIKI
WorldVitalRecords  : 1930 Census   WVR$   MAIL-LISTS
HispanicGS   Extraction   DC   Cindy's   PARES   Bancroft
GUADALAJARA Census   Heraldry   LOC   Culture   FS-wiki
Centre   NIFHS   RootsWeb   Cindi   About   Emerald
Leitrim   GenealogyLinks   NIDEX   Genforum   Ballymoney
ulster   sgni   NIreland   wikipedia   UKgenealogy   FHC
IRELAND   GenUKI   Connected   NIFHS
Cousinshttp   Antrim   Ancestry   Global$   censusfinder
RUSSIA: Archives   About   Jewish   DistantCousin
RussianLife   FEEFHS   GermRuss   RootsWeb
suite101   VolgaBook   Avotaynu   CoatofArms
FamilySearch   FamilyName   AHSGR
GoogleBook   RRR   Passenger   VGD   GermansInRussia
S-People   S-Ancestry   S-Family   Cyndis   GenForum
GenLinks   GenUKI   UKgen   Expert   NGS   RegOfc   Royal
Aberdeen   Aberdeen   Scot$Family   GenPro   GlasgoFHS
S-Genealogy   SAFHS   Cora   About   eXpert   Buteshire
Orkney   Rampant   LOOK4kin   dwalker
LasCulturas   Cyndis   so-am   GenealogyLinksRevisions   Mocavo
Pros   Archives   Research   Blog
GeneaSearch   CTR-SO-AM  
WalesBMD   WalesFS   WalesCivilRegFS   N.Y.Welsh
usgwArchivesWales   S.Wales   FamilyLinkWales   Alive
HoustenLibrary   SAG   WAGG   Cen$us   Italiamerica$
SRC-IGI   WVRwales   ScotlandsPeople   Awe$ome
coraweb   geneanet   Links
Localities Links   GenealogyLinks.htm   globe   worldgenweb
Ance$try.com   Regional$   1Great$Fam
WVR   About   FamilySearch   OtherCountries

Don's Family Tree       Updates for "Genealogy Links"
Please inform me of broken links. You may make suggestions for other great websites that you want added. Thank You.   Email to Don        
To translate a WEB PAGE from one language to another: 1.Highlight the http://address with one click 2.then copy the web address.Right click to copy or paste. 3.Paste it into a Google search box 4.Enter key or click. On the search results select Translate this page.
But, to translate WORDS go to translate.google.com and type or paste in the words.



History at Home: A Guide to Genealogy

by Andrea Davis

By blood or marriage, he had ties to 11 other past presidents. While most people aren't related (even by a shoestring) to a single world leader, tracing a family's history is an exciting journey. Genealogy involves searching for the clues that link relatives from one generation to another. There are some professional genealogy researchers, but anyone who researches family history is a genealogist. Some explore their past just for fun. Others, however, are eager to learn more about their personal health history or answer questions about their heritage.

The term "genealogy" is used in two ways. By one definition, it is the search for family history. Genealogists might start by gathering information about their own families and then learn about past generations. The second way the term can be used is to describe the descendants of a specific ancestor. For example, a genealogist compiles a list of all of the descendants of a great-great-grandfather. This list is the genealogy of the great-great-grandfather.

Every genealogist has their own reasons for delving into the family's past. Some are merely curious, pursuing answers to questions, such as why Grandpa's surname is spelled differently from his brother's. In searching for the answer, the genealogist uncovers more information that inspires continued research. A person who is planning to travel to a location where an ancestor once lived might also want be more familiar with the family tree before making the trip.

Some people conduct genealogical research for health reasons. A family's history might reveal recurring medical issues or genetic traits that put the individual at risk for certain diseases. Patients can share this information with their doctors and discuss ways to address these concerns. Adoptees frequently choose to learn about their biological family in order to complete their medical history and to gain a better understanding of their social and cultural identity.

Genealogy can also play a part in resolving legal and financial matters. An attorney might hire a professional genealogist to locate the heir of an estate or find the owner of abandoned property. While discovering an oil well in the family name would certainly be exciting, most family historians are simply interested in building bigger family trees. As the family learns about its past, there are more stories to share, more pictures to swap, and more people at the next family reunion.

To get started, talk to relatives, identify people in family photographs, and read saved documents, such as letters, diaries, journals, newspaper clippings, military records, maps, and legal papers. One way to keep track of generations is with an ancestral chart. This form contains brackets for each generation and space to write in the family members' names along with birth, marriage and death information. Family group sheets are a form for organizing information about a couple and their children. Use a notebook or computer to write out the family stories and sources of information.

The next step is to research public records, some of which may be accessible online. Look for information about a relative's birth year, occupation, marital status, country of birth, citizenship, and the names of other people living at the same address in census records. Ship manifests, such as those preserved in the Ellis Island archives, are helpful in identifying where immigrant ancestors came from and where they were planning to settle. The U.S. Social Security Death Index is used to confirm information about a deceased ancestor. Birth, death and marriage information might also be available through a state's vital records department.

Land records, probate files, and court cases shed more light on family dynamics. Church records provide information about baptisms, marriages, and burials. If these documents are not online, contact the courthouse or church and ask how the information can be obtained. Provide as much specific information as possible, such as names, dates, case or document numbers, and legal descriptions of property.

Oral histories are another way to enrich genealogy. It may be easier to get a family member to tell their stories verbally than in writing. Set a time and place for the interview and a method for recording it. Decide on a topic or series of questions to discuss, but give the interviewee flexibility to tell their stories. As technology changes, transfer the recording to a more current storage system so that it can continue to be accessed.

Through genealogy, researchers find out more about themselves and their families. The search may seem endless, as one piece of information leads to new stories, places, and people. Genealogy can improve lives by helping people identify and treat health risks. And genealogists hold a special spot in the hearts of their families. After all, genealogists know who to invite to the next family reunion.

Get started on your own genealogy with these resources:

  • Basic Genealogy: This article outlines the core principles of genealogical research and sources of information.
  • Starting Your Genealogy Research: The USGenWeb Project offers step-by-step instructions with links to useful tools and a list of common research mistakes.
  • Top Ten Tips for Starting Your Family History: Try one or more of these tips to break into genealogy.
  • Be a Family History Detective: The PBS show History Detective Special Investigations solves historical mysteries, and this article shares their detective techniques for finding family history clues.
  • Genealogy 101: Family History and More: This article introduces methods for collecting and organizing family research and ways to improve these skills.
  • Ancestry Charts and Forms: Download an ancestral pedigree chart, a family group sheet, and other forms to organize genealogical research.
  • Genealogy Research in Military Records: The National Archives site offers many resources for genealogists, and this article is a guide for researching military records.
  • Personnel Records, Muster Rolls, and Genealogical Research: The U.S. Coast Guard explains how to access service records for officers, enlisted and civilian personnel, and lighthouse keepers.
  • Researching Individual Immigrant Records: Finding the right immigration and nationality records is simplified by this outline of dates and resources from the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services.
  • Genealogical Research Tips: The U.S. Department of Interior explains how to begin a search for ancestors, with a special emphasis on Native American genealogy.
  • Genealogical Research at the Library of Congress (PDF): This article describes what type of research genealogists should do before going to the Library of Congress and what resources they can expect to find in its Local History and Genealogy Reading Room.
  • Ellis Island Immigration Records: Information on millions of ship passengers arriving at Ellis Island and the Port of New York can be accessed through this site: Just click the blue "Passenger Search" button in the upper right corner.
  • Compiling a Family Medical History: The Mayo Clinic identifies the health reasons for knowing three generations of your family history.
  • Learning About Genetic Health: This article details specific medical problems that can be affected by genetics and family history.
  • What is Genealogy?: The Sorenson Molecular Genealogy Foundation merges traditional genealogy with DNA to find more connections in the family tree.
  • Public Health Genomics: Frequently Asked Questions: The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention offers advice on topics such as how adoptees can locate information and how knowing family history can lower one's health risk.
  • The Surgeon General's Family Health History Initiative: According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, the majority of Americans do not have a record of their family's health history, and they can begin to create that record by accessing the My Family Health Portrait Tool on this site.
  • Using Maps in Genealogy (PDF): Maps are an important tool in tracing the movement of a family, and the U.S. Geological Survey discusses how to use maps, the best types of maps, and where to find them.
  • Take a Genealogy Quiz: Have a little fun and test your family research knowledge.
  • Oral History Interview, Questions, and Topics: This is a list of 83 questions that can be used to generate a family history interview.
  • Step-by-Step Guide to Oral History: Check out a comprehensive outline of the process of planning and recording an interview, including tips on how to ask questions, pinpointing problems, and self-evaluation.
  • Genealogy and Homestead Records (PDF): The National Park Service put together this useful guide to researching land records that pertain to the family tree.
  • Ten Things You May Not Know About the Roosevelts:This fascinating article about President Franklin Delano Roosevelt highlights some of the very things a genealogist looks for: interesting relatives, a marriage certificate, and juicy family stories.
  • Family History Research: This introductory guide includes cautions for wise use of the Internet, verifying information, and respecting the privacy of relatives.
  • Caring for Your Family Papers (PDF): Historical documents can be fragile, and this article gives practical advice for preserving photos, papers, and books.
  • Family Business: How You Find It and How You Keep It: This expansive article covers surname origins, cemetery searches and how to take an impression of a gravestone, the difference between primary and secondary sources, African American and Native American genealogy resources, and more.
  • History of Genealogy and Family History: An explanation of the British tradition of recorded genealogies and the development of family history societies can be found here.
  • How to Trace A House Genealogy: Knowing the history of a home can yield clues to the families that occupied it, and this guide demonstrates how to track down the information.
  • Preserving Your Photographs: Windows to the Past (PDF): The curator of sound and visual collections at the Minnesota Historical Society gives advice on how to identify and store photos.
  • Preservation of Artifacts: Discover the factors that can damage historical memorabilia, and learn how to preserve textiles, paper, photos, and items made of metal, leather, or wood.


02/26/2016 09:08 AM


      02/26/2016 09:11 AM