Climbing the Branches of the Family Tree

 

Family treeCurious about your ancestry? Sorting out your family tree can require some tricky digging. Fortunately, resources are available to help you trace your roots. There are many online genealogy sites, although many of them charge for their services. Still, it is entirely possible to build a family tree by investing nothing more than time. Family tree software and online chat rooms can help you get started. The website My Heritage offers a family tree template at www.myheritage.com/family-tree.

There are many online genealogy sites, although many of them charge for their services. Still, it is entirely possible to build a family tree by investing nothing more than time – and help is close at hand. Family tree software and online chat rooms can help you get started. Google offers a family tree template at www.ggldocfamilytree.com. You can click on YouTube for easy how-to explanations.

Once you’ve decided to dig into your roots, begin with what you know – your family. Ask questions to discover names, spellings, and birthplaces. Go through family albums. Visit graves and scour religious records. If a relative has done any research, use this as a starting point. Trace your ancestry lines as far back as you can, adding relevant details such as birthdays, marriages, and death dates. Here are a few tips as you work your way up the family tree.

Begin with a direct route, starting with yourself; then add your parents and grandparents, and add branches from there. A simple web search may help with details.

Search the census records. Since names and their spellings may have changed along the way, be diligent. Find your most recent ancestors on each census, and then work your way into the past.

Use documents and physical records such as naturalization papers and marriage and birth certificates. And remember, if you get stuck, you can always try a genealogy service.