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This is a PPT that I used to teach a class at Erlanger.

This is a PPT that I used to teach a class at Erlanger.

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  • 1. Online Genealogy for Beginners
  • 2.
    • We all grow up with the weight of history on us. Our ancestors dwell in the attics of our brains as they do in the spiraling chains of knowledge hidden in every cell of our bodies.
    • -Shirley Abbott
  • 3. Goals
    • It often helps to focus your research if you write down your goals.
    • For example: I am researching my family because: 1.) I would like to know from what countries my ancestors came to America and 2.) I would like to confirm suspected American Indian ancestry in my family
  • 4. Begin with yourself:
    • Collect meaningful items: birth certificate, photographs, diplomas, yearbooks, etc.
    • Write down your memories: places you have visited or lived, stories about grandparents, favorite places in the town where you grew up
    • Look for that same information about your family members
  • 5. IMPORTANT!
    • The Internet is not necessarily the best place to begin your family research.
    • 1.)Interview family members 1 st !
    • 2.)Collect any documents, i.e., birth and death
    • certificates, bible records, pictures or any
    • other documents that your family may have
    • Remember: you will not be able to find everything online.
  • 6. What the Web CAN offer:
    • Indexes and (some) vital statistics records
    • Classified directories and collections of Web genealogical resources
    • Personal family history pages posted by other researchers
    • Genealogical discussion groups
    • City, county and state genealogical or historical society pages
    • Individual library websites with information about locations, schedules and holdings
  • 7. What the Web CANNOT offer:
    • Information about every family or ancestor—if no one has placed it online, it won’t be there
    • Accuracy or authenticity of the information found on any site—always look for documentation to support the information
    • Original documents—although some items, like census records, can be viewed online and copied
  • 8. Also important to remember:
    • Always read over search tips or explore advanced search options
    • Perform the same search on a couple of different sites
    • These tips will save you time and the aggravation of chasing wrong or incomplete information!
  • 9.
    • Something to keep in mind during your research:
    • “ Some family trees have beautiful leaves, and some have just a bunch of nuts. Remember, it is the nuts that make the tree worth shaking.”
    • -Author Unknown
  • 10. www.Ancestry.com
    • Free access inside all 3 KCPL branches.
    • Has alphabetical “card catalog” of all its databases
    • Can download and print family group and tree charts
    • Every U.S. Federal Census between 1870-1930 is now searchable by every individual, not just by head of household!
  • 11. Surname Distribution
    • Type in www.ancestry.com
    • Click on Learning Center at the top
    • You will see Family Facts at the top—click on the link under it that says Learn Helpful Information
    • On the left hand side there is a box titled Facts . Click on Name Distribution (US)
  • 12. Heritage Quest
    • Available via the Library’s website
    • Unlike Ancestry, HQ may be accessed from home
    • Offers census records for searching, from 1790-1930 (NOTE: The 1930 census is not complete on HQ)
    • More than 25,000 searchable family and local history books
    • Features PERSI, the Periodical Source Index, which allows you to search for articles about people and places. Includes a how-to page
    • Also offers Revolutionary War and Freedman’s Bank databases
  • 13. www.familysearch.org
    • Access to records from around the world
    • Excellent for European research
    • A non-profit service sponsored by The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints
    • Free Registration is offered for this site; not required to register to search the site
    • Allows you to add your family tree to the site
  • 14. www.rootsweb.com
    • Oldest genealogy site on the web
    • User friendly
    • Offers SSDI, Kentucky vital records index and some Census images
    • Search family trees and submit your own
    • Search message boards and sign up for genealogical mailing lists
  • 15. www.usgenweb.com
    • Volunteer-maintained, free site for genealogy
    • Site was based on a prototype for Kentucky, so lots of KY information available
    • Offers valuable information that commercial sites like Ancestry will not have, such as family photographs and headstone transcriptions
    • “ Researchers” page offers a wealth of helpful hints
  • 16. www.castlegarden.org
    • New York Passenger Lists from 1820-1913
    • Free access to a database of information on 10 million immigrants. Over 73 million Americans can trace their ancestors to this early immigration period
  • 17. www.ellisisland.org
    • Immigrant passenger lists from post-1892 to 1924
    • Excellent source for “new immigrant” research (Poles, Italians, Eastern Europeans)
    • Website requires registration, but searching is free
    • Make sure to perform your searches on Castle Garden as well and then compare the results—they could be different!
  • 18. www.cyndislist.com
    • A “card catalog” to the genealogical resources on the Internet
    • A pathfinder that will point you in the direction of sites for topics that you need
    • Lots of information divided into smaller, more specific categories for easier and more effective research
  • 19. Genealogy Software
    • Family Tree Maker is one of the most popular genealogy software programs
    • May be purchased via the website www.genealogy.com
    • There is a free web version of the software on this website, but it is limited
    • www.genealogy.com will also allow you to post your trees
    • Some free resources on this site and some by subscription
  • 20. Online and In Person
    • These last sites offer some of their resources online, while others will require a trip to the facility or a request by mail
    • www.kygs.org
    • www.history.ky.gov
    • www.archives.gov/genealogy/
    • www.vahistorical.org
  • 21. Congratulations!
    • You’ve completed
    • “ Online Genealogy for Beginners”
    • Try out your new searching skills and don’t hesitate to ask a librarian if you need assistance
    • Good luck in your research!