5 Tips on Conducting Genealogy Research in USA
Conducting genealogy research can be exciting and an incredible journey. However, it can also take a lot of effort and be quite time consuming. To make your research as successful as possible, it’s a good idea to keep a few helpful tips in mind. Here are a few great research tips that can help you out as you work on conducting genealogy research.
Before You Get Started
Before starting your research, here are a few important steps you should take. First, create a research journal so you can keep track of the different steps you take throughout the research process. It’s also a good idea to create a file for your research. There you can keep your photos, interviews and documents. Keeping information organized can be extremely helpful when you want to find information fast. If possible, join various Genealogy newsgroups on the internet in states, countries or cities where you are searching. They often will provide support and excellent resources that may help you out.
Tip #1 – Don’t Forget Your Own Household
In the dash to get started conducting genealogy research, many people forget to begin with their own household. You want to start with the information you know, including information on yourself. Start making a family tree chart from memory, which will help you identify who may be missing. Information to collect includes the full name, important dates and locations. This will help you get started with your research.
Tip #2 – Talk to Others Within Your Family
Don’t forget to take advantage of your other family members and the knowledge they may have. Interview them with questions that can help you with the research you’re conducting. Just make sure you are considerate of their views and privacy, treating them with plenty of respect. Here are a few question ideas you may want to ask when interviewing members of your family:
- Where did you grow up?
- Do you know marriage, death or birth dates for family members?
- Find out locations where relatives may be buried.
- Has anyone else in the family done a genealogy search?
- Are there family photo albums I can take pictures of?
- Are there other living relatives?
Tip #3 – Check Death Records
In most cases, your family won’t have important records, so obtaining them is a great idea. You can get death records from ancestors to help you discover important genealogical information, since they include place of death, date of birthday, social security number and more. You can write for death records by contacting the state’s vital statistics registration office. Once you have these records, you can follow up on any clues you gain.
Tip #4 – Acquire Other Records
Death records can be helpful as you conduct genealogy research, but other records can be helpful as well. Consider finding birth records and marriage records as well. Often you can find these records on a country level or the state level. Local churches may have records that may help you out as well.
Tip #5 – Search Through Census Records
Searching through census records can help you to conduct your research as well. Census records can often help you locate the place where one of your ancestors may have lived in the past. After 1840, census records also list place of birth, spouse, age, children, occupation and other helpful information. Keep in mind that census information isn’t released until 72 years after the census to help protect the privacy of individuals.
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Filed under: Genealogy Research
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