Whether you have been researching your family tree for many years or are new to family history, it is always worth reminding ourselves of the fundamental principles of research. Follow the five steps below and you will be heading in the right direction!
Be organised with your notes. Get yourself a ringbinder and large notebook (hardbacked if possible). Write in pencil initially. When you obtain copies of certificates, store them in acid free plastic pockets . Come along to our next meeting on Saturday 29th February at Solihull Library Theatre and we will be happy to go through the process with you. Copies of the 6 generation pedigree chart and Family History Group forms are also available at the meeting.
5 Steps of Family History Research
- Write down what you Know
- Search your own memory
- Ask Family/Friends/Elders
- Gather Information – family bibles, school records, in homes etc..
- Write/Record on Family History Forms
- Decide what you want to Learn
- Follow Fundamental Rule of Family History – always start with generation closest to you and work backwards
- Generate Research Questions/Objectives
- Choose a Source of Information – (3 types only)
- A person
- A Record/Document (though many different types of these)
- An Object
- Learn from the Source
- Search the Record
- Question/Interview the Person
- Study + Copy from the Object
- Write down what you learn
Use the Information
- Evaluate it
- Organise it
- Look for Clues
- Use it (to add to family tree or use 5 steps again)
- Share it (with other relatives/researchers etc..)
Most of all – enjoy your research!!