I'd like to start researching my family genealogy, but I don't have much information.

I just know the name of my parents and grandparents and their home state, almost nothing apart from that.

My (grand)parents are from the state of Minas Gerais in Brazil. They lived much of their lives in the countryside.

Is there value in me looking for and then speaking to people that knew my grandparents in their hometown?

  • 2
    Welcome to G&FH SE! A Q&A which has much overlap with yours is genealogy.stackexchange.com/questions/2988/…
    – PolyGeo
    Feb 11, 2016 at 5:49
  • 4
    I think the question about researching individuals in the state of Minas Gerais, Brazil should also be separated out into its own question independent of the overlapping / duplicate getting started question.
    – CRSouser
    Feb 11, 2016 at 6:29
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    I agree with CRSouser -- plain answers to the question "how do I get started" makes this too much a duplicate of the question we already have on site. However, there are special challenges involved when your family has recently moved to a new country, and if the answers to this question addressed those issues, that would make it a distinct question.
    – Jan Murphy
    Feb 11, 2016 at 7:27
  • 1
    @CRSouser Rather than separating out the Brazil question and making this into a duplicate of getting started generally, I have edited it to be about getting started in Brazil.
    – PolyGeo
    Feb 11, 2016 at 10:22
  • This Q&A may be useful for finding useful sites to Brazilian genealogy: genealogy.stackexchange.com/questions/1981/…
    – PolyGeo
    Feb 11, 2016 at 10:24

1 Answer 1


Start by talking to every old person in your family. Write down everything they know. And talk to anyone who knew your grandparents. Pick a genealogy package and enter your family, and as much back history as you can. Record sources for everything you can, even if its just "Aunt Maria said grand-dad was born on May 15th".

Then look at the https://familysearch.org/ for folks who were dead before about 1940. I have no idea how good their coverage of Brazil is, but they have a lot of stuff and its free.

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