Step 3 – Starting your Family tree

This is where all the fun begins!  So, you have gathered all the vital information you could for your family members (mother, fathers, grandparents, great-parents etc.).  Most sites will prompt you to fill in your mother and father’s information.  Then you will take it from there by adding their parent’s names, date of birth, birthplace and marriage date & place if you have it.

You are what is referred to as the home person of the tree and you will grow your tree upwards and outwards creating new branches with relatives directly related.  Hopefully, you have chosen a site which offers suggestions or hints to help you grow your tree.

If you have not chosen a site which helps you move along, you will need to do manual footwork and research to build your tree.  Here are few suggestions:

  1. Contact the town where the person was born and determine what is needed by you in order to obtain the information you are looking for such as; birth certificate, marriage licenses etc.
  2. Perform a search on the internet, looking for their obituary. This is great because it tells you their children’s and the children’s spouses name and sometimes where they were living at the time of death.  (I found many of my relatives information by performing this 1 simple search)
  3. If you need to contact an outside the U.S. source. Make sure you follow their instructions to a tee to obtain what you are asking for.  Noting that all of these sources require a fee.

If you chose a genealogy site, know that they all work pretty much the same way.  I use Ancestry.com but you can choose whomever you feel works for you.

At Ancestry, after I entered a few family members it automatically began to attach “hints” to certain people.  This helps me further my search.  They also provide a search link to be able to search an individual and present in front of you a list of possible matches which you can click on and review and make the decision based on the facts you have gathered whether or not to connect the hint to the individual in question.

Be prepared to get hooked and spend a lot of fun time online doing your research. There is a plethora of information online depending on how you choose to search for ancestors.  I took the easy way!  I pay a minimal monthly fee and the return is well worth the investment!

Happy digging y’all!

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