Today I'm sharing the last of my tips and gleanings from the 2017 NGS Family History conference. Don't worry if you were not able to attend. This post is full of tips applicable for all genealogy researchers - whether you attended the conference or not.
Genealogy Research

Genealogy Tips From NGS 2017 Family History Conference – Part 3

 

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The NGS 2017 Family History conference is well…..history.

Over 2000 genealogists all talking and learning about our family was exhilarating (and exhausting!).

Today I’m sharing the last of my tips and gleanings from the conference. Don’t worry if you were not able to attend.  This post is full of tips applicable for all genealogy researchers – whether you attended the conference or not.

In other words, this post is for you!

More Genealogy Tips and Gleanings……

Sitting through each lecture and talking with other researchers, general themes emerged throughout the conference.  Let’s look at a few.

Think Outside of the “Genealogy” Box

Breaking down your genealogy brick walls will almost always take you into “non-traditional” genealogy records. You must seek these out!  Researching in areas of significant record loss, the “out of the box” records are crucial.

What might non-traditional records include?

  • Records of the Antebellum Southern Plantation  – An excellent resource for African American and southern states research.
  • PERSI – (Periodical Source Index) – The largest periodical source index for genealogy and local history articles.

(Watch for future posts on these!)

Create That Timeline

Readers of Are You My Cousin? know I love making timelines.  (Read more about timelines here.)  Timelines are a effective genealogy research tool to track your ancestor through time and see patterns within their lives.

But…..

Consider creating a timeline for the existing records for your ancestor’s time period.

Before beginning research into your ancestor, determine what records exist for the appropriate time period.  Place these on a timeline. Be sure to include non-traditional records, too.  Your records timeline will serve as your research plan and checklist.  You will be thorough and more efficient with its use.

Read the preface/introductions at the beginning of record sets.

When I started out in genealogy research, I skipped right over those important notes at the beginning of record sets. This was a big mistake on my part. The introduction of a record set provides vital information on what is held in the records, what is missing and any other idiosyncrasies of that particular record set.

The introduction will save you time, energy and a lot of frustration when you search! If the date range you are researching is indicated as a missing record time, you can quickly move on to the next item on your research agenda. Don’t waste time searching for a record that is known not to exist.

Use the Help sections.

Many readers supplied me with questions to ask genealogy vendors including the “big ones”: Ancestry.com, FindMyPast and MyHeritage. (Watch upcoming blog posts and Facebook posts for answers to these questions.)

One theme particularly stuck out among the questions and the answers.

If you are having difficulty navigating around one of their sites or a particular feature is not working quite right, check the Help section.  You will usually find a tab in the toolbar at the top or bottom of the page.

These Help sections have a lot of useful information.  Of course, each of the vendors encourages you to contact them if you cannot find your answer in the Help section.

Similarly, take advantage of any tutorials the company may offer.  I continually pick up new tips for specific databases doing this.  Technology and websites change and this is a good way to stay on top of things.

Read more about tips and gleanings from the NGS 2017 Family History conference in these posts:

Genealogy Gleanings From NGS 2017 Family History Conference – Part 1

Genealogy Gleanings From NGS 2017 Family History Conference  – Part 2

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Today I'm sharing the last of my tips and gleanings from the 2017 NGS Family History conference. Don't worry if you were not able to attend. This post is full of tips applicable for all genealogy researchers - whether you attended the conference or not.

 

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2 Comments

  • Martha Mooney

    Thanks to your training , I helped a cousin, that found us through dna, find her mother and 8 of her 10 siblings. Herr mother was my husband’s half aunt that we had no contact with. She had passed, but using the ideas you gave me in your course I found one of her siblings and then she then gave her the rest of the family. THank you Lisa! Marty

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