Sunday, January 14, 2007

Tracing Family History in UK

Tracing Family History - UK ancestry research techniques: "Start with what you know. Draw a simple family tree showing your grandparents, parents, yourself and your children. Add birth, marriage and death dates. Ask older relatives for information until you have got as f
ar into the past as possible.
Target your oldest relatives. Write to or telephone those living at a distance. Get to those you don't usually hear from as there is more chance of finding something new (rather than Nan 's same old stories). Great aunts and uncles are a potential gold mine. Siblings of grandparents and great-grandparents usually provide more new information.
Recollections of childhood and family intelligence can vary a lot, but it pays to get it all recorded anyway. Contemporary friends, neighbours and work colleagues of your oldest relatives can also usually contribute. They may have seen much more of them than the family.

Precious Stories

Whatever your eventual aims in tracking down your ancestors it usually helps if you start off in this way. Get as much readily available information as possible on both sides of your family even though your main objective is to research your father's side surname.
Jot it all down in a bound notebook or diary so that nothing gets lost.
You don't know what you may finish up doing in your FH exploits, and easily obtainable information may take on special value in the future - to others as well as yourself. Domestic investigation is good practice for the research skills you will need at an increasing level. If it involves a bit of detective work, even better.
We will cover your specific aims shortly, but the idea is to make a hands-on start and gather all the information you can, which might well influence what you do thereafter.

This is a standard, boring rule but it does pay dividends and you will probably have fun doing it. Make a start, anyway. All too soon older relatives die off and precious stories are lost forever.


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