Newspaper obituaries are mini biographies

June 13, 2012 Newspaper obituaries are mini-biographies. By this I mean there are many things about a person’s genealogical record that can be learned from them. I began searching newspaper obituaries back before there were online records of a person’s death. Whether you’re entering information into a genealogy software program or taking notes on an index card,…

Don’t forget to preserve family recipes

April 26, 2012 Don’t forget to preserve family recipes. While interviewing family or at holiday get-togethers are both good opportunities to approach this subject. Many family recipes have been lost through the years because no one took the time to write them down or even show an interest in them. Some cooks are extremely secretive about…

Is there a Romeo and Juliet in your family tree?

April 26, 2012 Is there a Romeo and Juliet in your family tree? By this I mean star-crossed lovers who defied all odds to be together. Once you begin researching your ancestors who lived during Medieval Times (also called Dark Ages or Middle Ages) and the Renaissance, chances are you’ll come across some interesting marriages.…

Mean ancestors and what to say about them

April 12, 2012 What should you say about the mean ancestors you find while researching your family? That’s a good question. I found one reference on Rootsweb.com where a researcher listed her ancestor as “a drunk and a womanizer.” The article went on to tell what a cheat and unsavory person this man was. This…

First name traditions provide clues and create nightmares

April 15, 2012 First name traditions provide clues and create nightmares for genealogy researchers. Allow me to explain why the tradition of naming children may lead to discovering an unknown ancestor or lead to confusion.   It has been tradition for centuries in many countries as to what first name is given a child is determined by…

Mourning customs during the civil war era

April 12, 2012 Understanding the mourning customs during the American Civil War era gives us valuable insight into how our ancestors honored the dead. This time period also broke tradition on the time set aside to grieve before remarriage. Plus I find the subject fascinating.  To understand mourning customs during the Civil War era, we must first…

Free genealogy database for adoptees

April 12, 2012 Research for adoptees is very different from regular genealogy in that you’re going in with very little information. You may only have your own date or birth and the town you were born in. Sometimes searching for a birth mother or child feels like looking for a needle in a haystack. Today…