The Everything Guide to Online Genealogy: Trace Your Roots, Share Your History, and Create Your Family Tree

The Everything Guide to Online Genealogy: Trace Your Roots, Share Your History, and Create Your Family Tree

by Kimberly Powell


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Use online tools to discover your family's history! Thanks to the overwhelming number of genealogical records available online today, it's never been easier to trace your family history and find your roots. But where do you begin? With all that information, it can be impossible to know where to start! In The Everything Guide to Online Genealogy, 3rd Edition, genealogy expert Kimberly Powell guides you through the process of finding your ancestors, helping you:

  • Effectively search various websites
  • Decipher census data and other online records
  • Choose the best way to share data with family members
  • Connect with other genealogists through social media
Packed with tips on using free databases, new websites, and a growing number of genealogy apps, The Everything Guide to Online Genealogy, 3rd Edition has everything you need to scour the Internet and find your ancestors, going back generations!

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781440570681
Publisher: Adams Media
Publication date: 01/18/2014
Series: Everything Series
Pages: 304
Sales rank: 235,322
Product dimensions: 7.90(w) x 9.10(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Kimberly Powell is the winner of the 2013 Silver Tray for Excellence in Genealogical Publishing. She is vice president of the Association of Professional Genealogists and a member of the National Genealogical Society and the International Society of Family History Writers and Editors. She has written about genealogy for since 2000, and she is the author of The Everything Family Tree Book, 2nd Edition and The Everything Guide to Online Genealogy, 2nd Edition.

Table of Contents

Introduction 11

01 Click Into Your Past 13

Family Tree Basics 14

Plan Your Project 14

Collect Information 18

Evaluate Your Evidence 21

Organize the Search 22

Record Your Progress 27

Document Your Findings 31

02 Begin Backward 35

Interview Yourself 36

Rummage Through the Attic 38

Question Your Family Members 40

Has It Already Been Done? 44

From One Generation to the Next 47

03 Learn How to Search 49

Search Engine Basics 50

Database Search Strategies 53

Get Creative with Names 56

Connect with Living Kin 58

More Search Tools and Tactics 59

Find the Right Tree in the Forest 61

Spread the Wealth 62

04 Online Starting Points 65

What Is and Is Not Online 66

Find Family at FamilySearch 66

Explore More Free Databases 70

Seek Out Subscription Sites 73

Discover History at the National Archives 76

Look at the Library of Congress 78

Search State Libraries and Archives 79

05 Dig Into Death Records 81

A Good Place to Begin 82

Search for Obituaries 82

Social Security Death Index 86

Death Certificates and Online Indexes 88

Visit Virtual Cemeteries and Funeral Homes 90

Put It Into Practice 94

06 Check the Census 97

The U.S. Federal Census 98

Access Census Images and Indexes Online 100

Census Research Tips and Caveats 104

Follow Census Clues to New Records 106

Special and State Censuses 109

Utilize Census Alternatives 112

Put It Into Practice 114

07 Hunt Down Family Connections 117

Marriage and Divorce Records 118

Birth and Baptismal Records 120

Unearth Wills and Estate Records 122

Chase Down Court Records 125

Identify Adoptions and Orphans 127

08 Look Local 131

Maps and Geography 132

Land and Property Records 134

Historical Newspapers 142

Libraries and Societies 146

Churches and Schools 149

09 Mine the Web for Military Records 155

Find Clues to Military Service 156

Compiled Military Service Records 157

Pensions and Bounty Land Warrants 160

Discover Revolutionary and Civil War Ancestors 163

Research Twentieth-Century Conflicts 168

Bone Up on Military History 172

10 A Nation of Immigrants 175

Find the Birthplace of Your Immigrant Ancestor 176

Plunge Into Passenger Lists 177

Naturalization Records 186

Ethnic Research 191

Put It Into Practice 192

11 Reach Out to Others 195

Make the Most of Boards and Lists 196

Ferret Out Family Trees 199

Ask the Right Way 203

Share Your Research 206

Take a Class 207

Connect with the Pros 210

12 Dig Deeper 215

Books, Magazines, and Blogs 216

Occupational Records 218

Membership Organizations 221

Photos and Postcards 223

DNA and Genetic Genealogy 228

13 Locate Records Abroad 235

A Nation of Immigrants 236

Canada 236

Mexico, Central America, and South America 239

British Isles 240

The Rest of Europe 247

Australia and New Zealand 255

Asia and Africa 256

14 Putting It All Together 259

Evaluate What You've Found 260

Protect Your Family History from Disaster 266

Publish Your Family History 268

Dos and Don'ts of Online Genealogy 272

See It in Action 275

Appendix A Further Readings 277

Appendix B Examples of Family Trees 285

Appendix C Genealogical Standards 289

Index 295

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