Last Updated 21 Apr 1997
Getting Started on your Family
I've recieved a lot of email recently from people
asking on how to get started on their own genealogy. I wrote this
page so that it could hopefully answer some of the reader's
questions. I'm just getting started with this page so please bear
with me. If you have any suggestions on things I could place on
this page send email to firstname.lastname@example.org.
In constructing your family tree
there are several basic guidelines you can follow.
- Talk to your older relatatives
and gather as much information as possible.
It is important to get specifics such as birth and
marriage places. In general, the further back you can go
on your own, the easier it will be to find a link to your
ancestors. There are a number of different types of
documents you can check for information. These include
County Civil Records, Church records such as Baptism,
Marriage, and Burial records, Genealogical books based on
your general area of study, Wills and Testaments etc.
- Check out your local LDS
Family History Center
You can check out Tutorial/Intro,
Their international and especially Latin American
collection is quite extensive. They are located
throughout the U.S. For those of you not familiar with
these places, in a nutshell they are like branch offices
for the largest genealogical data collection in the
world. They are sponsored by the Church of Lattter Day
Saints (Mormons) in Salt Lake City, Utah, which is where
there main collection is housed.
- Consider using a computer to
organize your Genealogy.
There are obvious benefits to this, some may
not be so obvious. If you don't already own a genealogy
program there are several Web Sites dedicated to
reviewing and rating Genealogy software. Most software is
available on a try before you buy basis. I use and
Origins for Windows from Parsons Technology,
you can download
a demo here. One of the best selling genealogy
applications is Family Tree Maker, they also have an
excellent site; Family
Tree Maker's Genealogy Site. For a review of other
popular genealogy software titles check the Genealogy
Software Springboard. Another thing to consider is
the use of GEDCOM files which can be exchanged with other
people doing similar research. Most genealogy software
programs are capable of creating (exporting) and reading
(importing) GEDCOM files. Once you contact other people,
perhaps through the internet
- Use Internet Resources to help
with your search.
Check out some of the links on this site like
the list of Search Engines, where
you can search and see if other people are researching
your surnames. One of the main ones that comes to mind is
Surname Finder and RootsBook Server.
Also check with Ancestry
Search-Database Search Index, RootsWeb Genealogical
Data Cooperative, and FamilyFinder
Index from Family Tree Maker. There are also many web
sites dedicated to providing you genealogy resources like
Genealogy Resources on the
Internet, Cyndi's List
of Genealogy Sites, Everton's Guide to Genealogy
and many others for a more complete listing check out the
WWW Links page. As for specific
geographical areas, there are many listings you check.
Hispanic Genealogy Group has an excellent list for
Hispanic researchers, check out Hispanic
Genealogy Crossroads. Also worthy of mention is Cyndi's
List for Hispanic & Latin America, and don't
forget the USGenWeb
Project where you'll find a well organized effort to
organize genealogy materials on the Internet. They have
specific pages for most of the states/counties in the
U.S. like the Texas
GenWeb Project. Most of the pages on the USGenWeb
allow you to post queries The list goes on and on.
- Other Internet Resources
HotLinks A great list of Genealogical links from the
Utah State Archives
HotLinks Also from the Utah State Archives
- Library Catalogs (Search for Books)
Worldwide guide to on-line library catalogs.
You will need a telnet program to access most of these.
You can obtain by downloading it for free off of the
Internet. For more info on Telnet applications you can
check out Stroud's
Consummate Internet Apps List, check under Terminal
- Some suggestions for Internet
Resources by Geographic Area
United States: USGenWeb Project
covers all of the states and most of the counties in the
Mexico and Latin America: Cyndi's
List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet - Hispanic,
Central & South America, and the West Indies
Spain, Portugal & The Basques: Cyndi's List
of Genealogy Sites on the Internet - Spain, Portugal
& the Basques
More to come..
Last Updated: August 30, 2002
This is a work in progress.
Please Email any suggestions, feedback etc to email@example.com.