Looking for Genealogy tips and tricks of the trade? Boy are you in the right place. Just let me say after being in the family history research business for nearly twenty years, you definitely learn a few things.
It's sort of one of those, "If I only knew then what I know now," type sentiments. Most often people learn from trial and error. They keep what works and disregard what doesn't. Lucky for you I've already done most of the leg work...I sometimes get aggravated when I see people sitting (right where I was many years ago) in one of those uncomfortable, hard, wooden desk type chairs in front of a stack of never ending books. Endlessly searching for something that in all likelihood they will never find. It's sad really, sometimes I just want to go up to them and say, "Don't you know there is a better way." Yes, my friends you heard me a "better" way.
Now if you are one of those people who loves spending countless hours at the library perusing through stacks and stacks of books, by all means go ahead, but that's just too slow for me. Especially when you know where to look and what to look for...There is a wealth of information out there just waiting to be found so lets get right to it.
What are you looking for? Who are you looking for? When did they live? Where did they live? Where are they buried? These are some of the things you will need to know or at least as much as possible. You would not believe how many times I've had people say, "I'm looking for my great grandmother. All I know is her name was Ida and she lived in Tennessee somewhere." Are you kidding me? There has to be more. Something, some piece of information that you are overlooking...."Oh and I know she had a brother named Chip." Well there you go. "And I know she was born around 1916." Well there you go again. Now we're getting somewhere. Facts add up.
Without all the pieces, a puzzle will not properly fit, but to get the pieces to fit, you must first have the pieces (or at least be able to find them). That is where someone with experience comes in. For help in that area contact us! If you wish to continue your search on your own, I would suggest scouring search engines, online birth, death and marriage records, funeral home records, census records, voters records, military records. These types of documents are what you need to stay focused on.
Just remember that while you can get useful information from Secondary documents, they are by no means a substitute for Primary (most reliable) resources. For more information on Primary and Secondary documents just consult a search engine or send me an email. You can also email me with other questions you may have or for help with your search.