Technology has made major improvements, the ability to translate a Foreign Language or Website, making it possible to converse with about any one, any where.
I have assisted Genealogy Researchers (beginners, novice, experienced) via my Genealogy Research site, that of Rootsweb's Mailing Lists and word of mouth.
At Last Count from 27 States & 11 Countries, AR, AZ, CA, CO, CT, DE, FL, IA, ID, IL, IN, MA, MD, MT, ND, NE, NJ, NY, OK, OH, PA, TN, TX, VA, WI, WV, WY
Australia, Canada, Egypt, England, Finland, Ireland, Israel, New Zealand, Russia, Scotland, Slovakia, and Sweden...for over 650 researchers and thousands of Ancestors, not of my own. I am of Hungarian, Portuguese (Azores), Irish, English & Scottish Descent.
In 20 years, I have connected to Cousins, Uncles, Grandmothers & Grandfathers, Siblings in touch with biological parents & grandparents, Niece, Nephew & my own Son. I have found the living and the deceased, you are only limited by how much you want to learn, know and find out.
Main research ingredients are:
- Time available to devote to Research
- Computer & Internet accessibility
- Genealogy Software for tracking your Lineage, documents, notes, names, places, dates, and events
- Old School - Notebooks/Binders, protector sleeves
- Start with yourself, your parents, grandparentsBack Up Back Up - Store in 2 locations - 1) Online is Good 2) at Work
For now focus on the Tree Trunk (direct lineage), Main Limbs as yourself & your siblings, save some of the Branch lateral lineage for later. It is important to have a good foundation to work from, that of the roots.
Do you Remember their Names, When and Where Born ? even about years born, and location is a start. Family Bible or other historical records researched by other members of your family, if possible to interview, record those living, same of photo albums, etc.
Searching records could be challenging as Names may have been indexed / spelled many ways, error in transcribing the actual records, condition of the documents, recording official's penmanship, spelling, inks spots, smudges, looping J L G Y M's looking like N, D's like O's and with the census the Head of House may not be the one to always provide the information to the Enumerator/Census taker.
Not every Spouse knows about their Spouse's family, there maybe family secrets, only know what they have been told, and be prepared for surprises. Information that does not match Family Stories.
Most Record Databases record Name, When and Where born, Where living at the time of Record Event you seek to know/find about your Ancestor. It is helpful to know Full Name if possible, if they have a Middle Name or a middle Initial, Surname/Maiden, about the Year born, and where i.e. County/State or Country.
Same information of any siblings, parents, and their children. Developing good Organization Skills, as one can become overwhelmed or frustrate, tired, and if you type making a mistake in spelling, there is a good chance so did the Recording Official make with Pen & Quill, Pencil or if a typewriter used.
The year is 1620 (MDCXX) a leap year starting on Wednesday, the date 31 Jul - Pilgrim Fathers depart (through England) to America,
15 Aug - Mayflower sets sail from Southampton with 102 Pilgrims
19 Nov - Mayflower reaches Cape Cod & explores the coast
21 Nov - Pilgrim Fathers reach America: Provincetown Harbor, MA
21 Nov - Mayflower Compact signed by Pilgrims in Cape Cod, MA
11 Dec - 103 Mayflower pilgrims land at Plymouth Rock
26 Dec - Pilgrims arrived at Plymouth, MA
Some Historical moments/events affect changes in life for our Ancestor's as above, however Your Ancestor's may have arrived later before the Revolutionary War, Presidency, War of 1812, Texas declares independence from Mexico, 1846 War with Mexico, 1849 California Gold Rush, 1859 Oregon admitted as State, 1861 Civil War, 1898 Spanish American War, 1903 Wright Brothers First Flight, 1906 San Francisco Earthquake, 1914 World War 1, 1939 World War 2, 1961 Vietnam
Understanding a Period in Time or History, Records taken, of their Emigration, Migration, Immigration, The Great Depression, etc...depending on how far back in time you wish to travel on this Journey you are about to Embark on, if Irish the "Great Famine" a period of mass starvation, disease and emigration between 1845 and 1852.
Another "Great Famine of 1315–1317", the first of a series of large scale crises that struck Europe early in the fourteenth century. Affecting continental Europe, extending East to Russia, South to Italy and North to Great Britain.
Irish Famine (1740–1741), sometimes called the "Forgotten Famine" or the Scottish Famine (1780-89), last widespread famine across Scotland, India, Ethiopia, Chinese, Russian, etc...and Wars changed the course of our Ancestors.
Faces of America - PBS - the dynamic and shifting relationship America had with her new immigrants in the 20th century DNA is a good way of knowing about your Ethnicity, Locations throughout the World we may have came from
Men - Highest level of Y-DNA tests = 111-marker matches are highly likely to be related within the past 4 generations.
Women - the Mitochondria test to learn about your maternal line origin and find matches in your direct maternal line.
Determine if two people are related
Determine if two people descend from the same ancestor
Find out if you are related to others with the same surname
Prove or disprove your family tree research
Provide clues about your ethnic origin
10 Things Our Genes Tell Us - Discovery
And what Genealogy Research can lead to