Digging through those dusty china cabinets may strike one’s curiosity after discovering those old photo albums handed down from an elderly family member. Perhaps a conversation with a local retiree prompted a full-on investigation into the study of one’s family history and descent.
It typically happens to everybody at some stage in their life. For instance, schools may require students to compile ancestral information to craft a family tree. This could spark a curiosity that lasts well into adulthood, which may lead to a career in genealogy. Genealogies, or the recorded family history of a person, may be referred to as lineages or pedigrees.
Genealogical research encompasses a variety of objectives, including identifying ancestors and their family relationships. The basic level of identifying ancestors may involve: listing the date and birthplace, finding out the names of the parents, researching the date a place of the ancestor’s marriage and who they married, obtaining the names of their children, and locating the place of death.
These core facts will equip the researcher with the bare bones in order to flesh out the details of the dead relative’s life. After compiling this basic information, then the genealogist can move forward with extensive research and investigation.
A beginner genealogist can refer to the list of standards created by the National Genealogical Society, which specifies the right methods for conducting advanced genealogical research.
The ten-step process involves recording the source of each collected item, testing a hypothesis or theory against credible evidence, seeking original records and reproduced images, rejecting all known fraudulent records, using compilation and published works as source material, stating something as a fact only when supporting evidence exists, limiting word usage that seems less convincing, avoiding the intentional misleading of other researchers, expressing honesty in the results of all research, recognizing constructive criticism, and considering alternative conclusions, instead of honing in one.
The benefits of charting an individual’s family history may vary according to the wishes of the people who are pursuing the hobby. Schools force students to engage in family-related projects in order to help them learn important aspects about themselves.
It also reinforces lessons dealing with immigration and patriotism. Other benefits may include understanding a family’s medical history with extensive traces of genetic deformities and disorders. The biggest benefit stems from honoring one’s ancestral lineage and embracing familial ties.
- The United States GenWeb Project
- Missing Birth Family Registry
- AfriGeneas: African Ancestored Genealogy
- Vital Records: United States Birth Certificates, Death Records & Marriage Licenses
- Find a Grave: Cemetary Research
- National Park Service: Soldiers and Sailors Database
- British Royal Family History
- Family Tree Search Engine
- The Freedmen’s Bureau: A Database of Emancipated Slaves
- The Federation of Genealogical Studies
- RootsWeb: Finding Our Roots Together
- The National Archives: Resources for Genealogists
- Kindred Roots Genealogical Society
- Cyndi’s List: A Comprehensive List of Genealogical Resources on the Internet
- The American-Canadian Genealogical Society
- Becomming a Professional Genealogist
- The International Commission for the Accreditation of Professional Genealogists
- The Board for Certification of Genealogists
- Using Google as a Genealogical Search Tool
- Great River Genealogical Society: A Categorical Index of Yellow Jacket Articles
- The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh: Biography and Genealogy
- Free Tools for the Family Historian
Genealogy for Kids
- Genealogy for Kids: Turn Kids into Family Historians
- Family Tree Printable Worksheet
- Family Tree Kids Magazine
- Children’s Genealogical Research
- What is Genealogy?
- PBS Kids: Grow Your Family Tree Game
- Pedigree Analysis: A Family Tree of Traits
- Think like an Archaeologist: Create a Family Tree!
- Drawing a Family Tree
- Genealogy For Children
- Family Fun with Genealogy
- Free Genealogy Forms and Charts