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Questions tagged [research-methods]

For questions about how to conduct genealogy research and best practices for genealogy research.

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Tracking down father not listed on birth certificate?

I am a 31 year old male, my mother is deceased, there is no father on my birth certificate and my last name is that of a prior marriage of my mother's. Over the years the only details I have gotten ...
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1answer
30 views

Half Sibling Centimorgans

I recently had contact with a person who was matched as a possible first cousin on Ancestry. We only share 753 Centimorgans and we originally thought we may be half siblings/ I am adopted and she saw ...
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1answer
49 views

Identifying which husband of my great grandmother my father came from

My father was adopted. I believe that I have located his mother. Her father is my GREAT GRANDMOTHER's first husband. I have tested 3 1st cousins once removed??(Female 1 cm=673 on 29seg/female 2 cm=...
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Searching for half-sisters from Switzerland?

I would like to locate my two half-sisters. My father (born in Kabul, Afghanistan) is their birth father from his first marriage to a Swiss born woman woman. My mother and father got married years ...
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3answers
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Using shared cM to determine likelihood of misattributed paternity?

My ancestor Harriet Smith was born in the mid-1850s in England. Her birth certificate shows both of her parents (John Smith and Sarah Johnson). For the purposes of the birth registration, John and ...
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70 views

Researching genealogy in Peru?

I am trying to research my mom's family in Peru. My mom was the only one that immigrated to the US and the rest of the family remained in Peru. I do have some relatives that moved back to Spain and ...
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Researching genealogy in Turkey?

I already signed up for a free trial in Ancestry.com but is not helpful except for creating the actual tree. I got the data from the e-Devlet app but there's a lot of info missing, i.e. occupation, ...
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81 views

Determining if Ancestry DNA results support Half Sibling relationship? [duplicate]

Ancestry DNA results came back on my possible half sister. We're showing 1,329 cMs with 34 shared segments. All it indicated was we were "close relationship - 1st Cousins" Tracing indicates a good ...
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1answer
283 views

How do I determine when to search for non-conformist birth/baptism records?

I'm searching for the baptism on my ancestor Mary Darby, who was born between 1811 and 1818, and am trying to assess whether I should search in non-conformist records as well as Parish/Established ...
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2answers
85 views

Tracking sources of photos obtained through MyHeritage.com?

I've accepted matches that include photos into my tree on MyHeritage. Now, I'd like to review the sources of some of those photos (for example, I'd like to know the tree each photo came from or the ...
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60 views

Evaluating birth year when different on SSDI and gravestone?

The Social Security Death Index (SSDI) states 1883 as birth year and grave stone says 1882. Which should I believe?
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1answer
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Where did my 2nd great-uncle William Morris go after 1914?

My 2nd great-uncle, William Morris was born 10 May 1887 in Ashton-under-Lyne, Lancashire. His parents were Henry Morris and Mary nee Green Morris. I have his birth and baptism. He is found on the ...
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2answers
116 views

How do spatial analysis (GIS) and genealogy overlap?

I'm working on my Ph.D. which will hopefully expose some ways in which spatial analysis (using the tool I know - GIS) can prove useful to genealogical research. At present I am still struggling with ...
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2answers
55 views

How do I search for the surname SPEAK and not the verb speak?

I'm researching family history and whenever I'm try to search for the surname SPEAK, I always get results with the verb speak included, particularly from newspaper articles, conferences etc. So how do ...
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2answers
190 views

Next steps once DNA match is found

I've recently made contact with a DNA match I found on myheritage.com. The match is shown as: Estimated relationships: 1st cousin twice removed - 3rd cousin once removed DNA Match quality: 1.3% (93....
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3answers
230 views

What can analyze a tree and suggest what your next research goal(s) should be?

I've been wishing that a program/website existed that would look at my tree and tell me what I should research next. Should I try to find the birthdate of my great-grandfather, or should I try to find ...
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0answers
47 views

Batch person search by place of residence in historical US census?

My database contains the names of a long list of individuals and their place of residence, and I would like to retrieve the demographic information (gender, race, age, etc.) about the individuals the ...
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1answer
255 views

I can't see the original images on the website — now what?

It happens to us all -- we read a local history or a genealogy book from the late 1800s, or someone gives us a list of records they have seen, or we collect links to records from a website, and then ...
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188 views

Finding ancestor Nathan Cohen who was born in Russia and immigrated New York City 1900-1905?

My Great Great Grandfather Nathan Cohen was born in Russia. He had a wife Lissie Bernstein with whom he had a daughter Minnie, born in Vilna sometime around 1886. Lissie died about 2 years later in ...
5
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1answer
160 views

Does the available evidence support these assumptions?

I'm devising a complex search strategy to identify the birth and parents of my great-grandmother Mary Ann Harper. She's already discussed here: Where was Mary Ann Harper in the 1881 England census? ...
5
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1answer
138 views

Determining what records are available about a individual?

This is a companion to Determining what records are available in a particular locale? We've all been there. We've asked, or been asked, "What do you want to know about your research subject?" only ...
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1answer
140 views

Starting pre-1837 research in England and Wales?

What are some effective research strategies for England and Wales, when you are making the transition from the era of civil registration and censuses to the period before civil registration begins? ...
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2answers
90 views

How to encourage higher standards of genealogical research on a message board?

Everybody is entitled to pursue a hobby like genealogy the way he or she wants to. A lot of genealogist also know: “Genealogy without proof is Mythology.” (attributed to Mary L. Henke) With this ...
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4answers
107 views

Standardizing place names when city sprawls across county borders?

Some genealogical software draws on the API for Google Maps so the user can plot the events on a map. This might be a desktop-based application such as Calico Pie's Family Historian, or a web-based ...
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1answer
166 views

How do I visibly make people aware that a connection is only tenuous and further research is needed?

Is there some sort of standard or accepted manner in which to indicate that an ancestor's connection to your family line is not fully supported. YET! That it is still in research mode. I'm thinking a ...
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1answer
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Seeking census records earlier than 1900 for Indiana ancestor named Delmain?

I have hit a brickwall trying to research my GG Grandfather. The first census I can find him on is a 1900 census. It says he's from Indiana and I've even went through the ENTIRE census for that county ...
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100 views

Finding archival records for tracing father of illegitimate child in mid 1880s County Down, Ireland?

In a couple of weeks, I will be travelling to Ireland for a two-week vacation. Part of my trip will be spent in the Belfast area, visiting both the General Register Office for Northern Ireland (GRONI)...
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19 views

Wanting to trace family online? [duplicate]

I want to trace my family but am limited on funds. What is the best way to trace my lineage online?
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2answers
146 views

Resources for researching family from Greene County, Tennessee?

I am researching my family tree and am stuck because my ancestor, Henry Harmon, was 24 in 1850 so he is already living with his wife Catherine and child George. The 1840 census doesn't tell me ...
2
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1answer
82 views

Is there a centralized Historical Society index / database for the United States?

Is there a centralized directory or database of local historical societies or organizations for the United States which shows the information and services they provide in a consistent format for each ...
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2answers
443 views

How does one search a very specific source on Ancestry.com?

I have been trying to find a simple way to search a specific source on Ancestry.com without hitting the generic 'all sources' queue and getting thousands of results I do not want to see.. but more so ...
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2answers
244 views

Best practices for producing document abstracts or summaries?

I usually transcribe documents or manuscripts in full so that I do not miss important details. However, often these documents ramble on for pages and pages of legal jargon, so it is useful to produce ...
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1answer
56 views

Are there any tools to search unstructured, digital data?

While I have been searching for ancestors in early America (late 1700s) I have found multiple records that have been OCR'd and made available online. These are extremely useful, however all that data ...
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1answer
93 views

Seeking online resources to do collateral research on Internet?

I'm sure that genealogists know what collateral research, the study of family members, along with members of the ancestor's community, is. However, I do not know of any online resources that use ...
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2answers
136 views

How can I estimate which of my ancestors were literate?

For the vast majority of my ancestors, when going back in time the sociocultural level gradually decreases until I end up having poor farmers. The rate at which the level decreases depends on the ...
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2answers
142 views

Using signature comparison as genealogical evidence?

Often when I am clutching at straws to determine the relationship between individuals or families, I will compare signatures from the relevant documents. There is an inherent bias in my interpretation ...
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4answers
254 views

How do you record fuzzy facts?

Most of my prior genealogy research was based on family records. Very little of it came from hard sources like census records. Some folks would claim that what I have is not genealogy, but folklore. ...
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1answer
282 views

Methods to organize medical genealogy information?

An aspect of genealogy that I have recently become very interested in is medical genealogy. Numerous sources give me information about my medical family history, such as: anecdotal evidence (for ...
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1answer
163 views

Organizing geographical reference material for English parishes?

My main research is kept on my computer -- I attach sources to Ancestry's and Find My Past's online trees primarily as a means to keep track of what records I've already found on Ancestry and Find My ...
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2answers
107 views

History of German small town of Angloh?

I found the town of Anglo in Germany but nothing is left of it other than a spa. I tried searching for weeks throughout the web but couldn't find anything about it other than coordinates. How do I ...
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38 views

Looking for German Ancestors earlier than 1700s? [duplicate]

I am a beginner and have been using Ancestry.com but German records seem to come to a halt at the WWI. What can be used to search further back?
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2answers
136 views

Making Research Plans for studying the Genetic Genealogy of an Adoptee?

I have accounts on 23andme, gedmatch, ftdna, and ancestry.com's ancestrydna (all autosomal at this point). I also, even though I'm adopted (from bulgaria, have the full name, most recent address (as ...
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1answer
216 views

Searching databases for ancestors with aliases?

I have a probable ancestor about whom I know very little, except for the fact that he used an alias and he is mentioned in his father-in-law's will. The two names are quite common - something along ...
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1answer
93 views

Finding Professional Genealogist in Germany knowedgeable on Kaiser Wilhelm?

I would like to find a Professional Genealogist to: work with all the time and so that when I make a trip to Germany in a couple of months time I have places to see and points of interest to help me ...
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25 views

Etiquette for asking loved one to share life story before death [duplicate]

This might be a bit of an odd question, but I figured that at least one or more persons here have been in the situation that I am now. My question is as follows: What is the (if any) 'proper ...
4
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1answer
60 views

Identifying ancestor believed to have been born ca 1830 in New Mexico, USA?

The best candidate for my 3rd great grandfather Juan Jose Garcia appears to have: been born in the New Mexico Territory in 1830 been married to either Juana Ma Garcia or Maria Juana Garcia (thought ...
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2answers
120 views

Is “mythological” information relevant?

I am currently trying to get as far as possible in my Ahnentafel. Thanks to a couple of online sources, I have been able to find a lot of ancestry, google helped me get up to this website which offers ...
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1answer
47 views

Obtaining Belgian pre-1796 information

Thanks to Napoleon, a lot of registration regarding births, baptisms, deaths, marriages, etc started to happen in Belgium from 1796 on. This helped me get to a point where I know all names (and often ...
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1answer
501 views

Finding New York City Police files?

My great-grandfather may have been the victim of an unsolved homicide in 1907. I have a death certificate which confirms the family story that he was hit over the head and died, but that is as far as ...
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2answers
117 views

Making a plan for using German civil records in the Family History Library?

This is a follow-up to a previous question Finding online parish records for churches in Werdau, Saxony, Germany. One of the answers said that a search of the town's records yield better results. At ...