When I initially dipped my toe into the enticing pool of family history research, I just started clicking backward on familyhistory.org. As I mentioned in my last blog post, I was able to create over 120 pages of handwritten four-generaton Ancestry Charts.
I don’t know which data on these charts are correct. I’m sure there are mistakes, since I took what I read at face value and have very little in the way of verification, beyond some census forms I found. Rookie mistake, I know.
So now I’m trying to figure out where to go from here. When I think about sitting down and doing family history research, I feel overwhelmed. I have so many names on my charts. Where do I begin?
These are some of the options that occur to me. (Almost all the ancestors I know about were born in the United States.)
- Try to find as many people as I can on censuses, starting with Chart 1 and moving forward (or back, as it were).
- Study a period of time or an event and track my ancestors in it. For example, I could try to trace the involvement of all the ancestors I know about in the Civil War
- Hone in on one particular line and learn as much about it as I can
- Try to connect with relatives in discussion forums
- Come up with some mysteries (I’m sure there are plenty to choose from) and try to solve them
- Choose some software and transcribe all the handwritten data into it
I’ll keep you posted as I figure out what course of action to take. And, of course, I’m open to any advice anyone might have!