Questions tagged [research-methods]

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

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3 votes
1 answer
190 views

Newspaper archive search for person whose last name is also a common word

This may be an unresolvable question, but I am looking for advice on how to search archives for a person with a surname that is also a common word. Specifically, newspaper archives, etc. in which the ...
2 votes
2 answers
43 views

How to search a key name with close correlation to other names?

I've been researching one particular ancestor who is proving a little tricky. His name is John Jude Taylor* (FamilySearch, Geneanet). He was posted to New Zealand as part of a military contingent (the ...
9 votes
1 answer
880 views

Where might I find General Orders No. 77 dated 11 Nov 1943?

I have found a document that notes the renaming of Edinburgh Field, Trinidad to Carlsen Field (click image for full size): To get more information about the renaming (and the individual behind it) I ...
-3 votes
1 answer
41 views

Finding Moroccan ancestors [closed]

I would like to find some family members, but I don`t really know if they exist or not. I only have our last name and my grandpa's name, who I have never met. His name is possibly Adnane Toujjani, ...
4 votes
1 answer
335 views

Searching family roots in Bihar, India?

Could anyone provide clues as how I could trace my roots back to Bihar, India from where my great grandfather emigrated to Mauritius around 1847? My great grandfather named "Fakun" emigrated from ...
0 votes
1 answer
35 views

Searching tree by birth or death location

In building my tree, I've found some very interesting groupings of families on both my paternal and maternal lines that intersect in specific areas at specific times. How can I search my tree to find ...
6 votes
2 answers
248 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 ...
7 votes
1 answer
427 views

Citing online image copies with inadequate information or provenance

In a recent blog post, Elizabeth Shown Mills asked the question Do You "Just Trust" Citations Offered by Digital Providers? EE hopes your answer is no. Today’s image demonstrates why. Not ...
15 votes
5 answers
833 views

Determining what records are available for a particular locale?

A common question that any researcher asks themselves is, "What records are available?" How can that question be easily answered for a particular locale and time period? I know that I could inspect ...
0 votes
2 answers
201 views

What are the tools and methods actually used by genealogists in their work? [closed]

I am under the impression that amateur genealogists, like most amateurs undergo a rite of passage before turning their hobby into a passion. One of these rites of passage is finding a tool that works ...
2 votes
1 answer
232 views

Finding more information about Brecon Arms pub and when specific individuals had occupancy as landlords

The Great-Grandparents of my wife were landlords of "The Brecon Arms" in Llanelli, Wales. I know this for two reasons: I heard this information first hand from another elderly relative, ...
1 vote
1 answer
121 views

Do I have the right to share these records?

I have used several researchers who paid $$$ to have sets of records from the archives of Eastern European countries scanned for them. The researcher then personally did the work of translating and ...
4 votes
1 answer
297 views

Determining what records are available about an 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 ...
9 votes
3 answers
322 views

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 ...
7 votes
4 answers
260 views

Finding residence information for Toronto in the 1840s?

I am trying to fill out the timeline of tailor George Hindley, his wife Ann/Hannah Drake, and their family between 1841 and 1847. A rough timeline of the family can be seen by putting some of the ...
0 votes
3 answers
1k views

Is it ethical to perform research on living people's ancestry without their knowledge?

Assuming you do not store, post, or record any information about a living person, is it ethical to use a living person other than yourself or your direct line as a kick-off point to begin research? ...
13 votes
6 answers
127k views

Determining ethnicity according to ancestry

My sister, cousins, and other relatives speculate that my mom's grandmother was Jewish (for various reasons). I've heard people say at times things like, for example, "I'm 50% German" or &...
3 votes
2 answers
190 views

History of German small town of Angloh?

I found the town of Angloh 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 ...
10 votes
1 answer
232 views

Organizing geographical reference material for English parishes?

Abstract: I prefer to standardize place names in Family Historian to take advantage of modern geo-coding and mapping features, and to record historical place names in research notes. But how do I ...
1 vote
1 answer
116 views

Does FamilySearch.org prohibit freelance genealogists from charging clients for research services utilizing their platform to do the research?

If I want to hold myself out as an independent researcher willing to receive for-hire compensation to research a client's family history, and I want to use FamilySearch.org as my primary research ...
10 votes
4 answers
9k views

Which FHL microfilms are available to view online?

My research subjects are two sisters who lived in College Point, Queens, NY. For the sister who died in 1902, I have the date of death and certificate number from the collection "New York City, ...
2 votes
1 answer
46 views

Determining if Medal Card is for relative William James Truckle or another man of same name

I don't know if it is possible to shed light on this record but I don't like to blindly attach a reference to a person without some valid basis to do so. This question relates to Confirming if ...
5 votes
2 answers
570 views

Finding records from the 'manor house'

I have an 1881 Census record for one of my research subjects where he appears as a servant at the local Manor house. Mark Herber's Ancestral Trails has a section on finding manor house records ...
2 votes
2 answers
449 views

Researching family/genealogy records in Taiwan and China

My parents are Taiwanese and are reluctant to share or do not know much family history. Much of the information they do share is vague or does not lend itself to searching on the internet using sites ...
7 votes
4 answers
584 views

Finding 20th Century vital records in Germany?

Every person I look for with few exceptions I find no records for. For example: First: Heinz Last: Zaun Birth: Germany Date: 1928 Death: Germany Date: 1957 I know this to be true, his son is ...
3 votes
1 answer
81 views

Representing large pedigree chart as spreadsheet?

I'm working on a family history pedigree that is very wide with over 30 generations. I need to take a lot of notes about the various members and I need to see the pedigree in a semi-graphical manner ...
5 votes
1 answer
191 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? ...
6 votes
1 answer
170 views

Why doesn't my research meet the Genealogical Proof Standard?

I posted a related question here so it might be helpful to read it: England 1700s - how to decide between two good record matches? Thomas Fowler B: unknown England Marriage: 1766 Stillingfleet ...
6 votes
4 answers
180 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 ...
4 votes
1 answer
94 views

Recording Research Logs / Plans

I am looking for some guidance on how best to record the research I have completed so I do not duplicate the same research. I will also use the logs to plan future research. Can anyone point me in ...
0 votes
1 answer
83 views

Term for researching one's own life in detail?

I'm a bit obsessed about recording my own life in detail. I have pretty much all the dates of the main events and eras of my life since I was 7yo. I have also preserved documents, messages, people etc....
4 votes
1 answer
74 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 ...
2 votes
2 answers
90 views

How to find additional information pertaining to little known ancestors?

I have an Irish ancestor having a surname of Lynn. Anna Lynn is my Great Grandmother and 100% Irish. Her parents came to either New York or New Jersey around 1870. At some unknown point the family ...
11 votes
4 answers
135 views

Retrieving online source about WWII pilots which has vanished?

I recently discovered a source online for WWII pilots has vanished: http://planesandpilotsofww2.totalh.com Some of the information there I found valuable in research. I wanted to try and ...
33 votes
10 answers
3k views

Transitioning from person-based genealogy to record-based genealogy?

When we start genealogy we know the persons who are closest to us in time so we are comfortable using software where each person record is a unique "conclusion" person. We create a person record for ...
2 votes
1 answer
126 views

Possibility of tracing my great grandfather's wife's homeland

I have heard stories about my great grandfather's father who was a merchant and traded between India and the Islands nearby Indonesia. Once during some incident probably the World War all the travel ...
0 votes
1 answer
58 views

Changes in place names of birth [duplicate]

How should one report "place of birth" (or death) where the location has legally changed over time? Many locations experienced county name changes, or birth occurred in an area that later became a ...
1 vote
1 answer
87 views

Norwegian naming conventions

I'm looking for a comprehensive explanation of Norwegian naming conventions, specifically relating to multiple given names and middle names, etc., as opposed to Surnames, patronymics, etc. (even if ...
3 votes
1 answer
115 views

How to identify 19th century birth record in England when uncertain of parent's given names?

This question refers to people in a previously posted question about the identity of the mother of Elizabeth Cowan, b. 29 Sep 1824, England, and d. 14 Oct 1896, Ohio, USA: Could "Our Mother" ...
2 votes
1 answer
104 views

Finding name changes and surname usage for children?

The following are from Queensland Australia records. Margaret married James in 1886. They had 3 children between 1888 and 1895. From 1897 to 1907 Margaret registered 4 more children. There was no ...
3 votes
1 answer
677 views

Managing MyHeritage messages

I'm wondering if I'm somehow missing/unaware of some features for managing my MyHeritage messages... I consider myself a full-time amateur genetic genealogist. I need to contact a lot of matches to ...
6 votes
1 answer
191 views

Is my source the document or where I obtained it?

Up until now, I have recorded the source of an event, such as marriage, as where I obtained the document eg Registry of Births Deaths Marriages, date obtained and respective location. I then include ...
4 votes
3 answers
153 views

Reducing risk of confirmation bias with DNA test results?

This is a follow-up question to Using DNA to link individuals after a name change My cousins and I are pretty sure my great-great grandfather, Everett T Malcom, changed his name when he moved west. ...
1 vote
1 answer
275 views

Medical Family Tree - Information to Obtain [closed]

For most people I'm not going to have any information on them. For anyone with medical information, I find that I'm only going to get the cause of death. But for those people who I can obtain more ...
2 votes
0 answers
43 views

How to find German battle accounts

I’m wondering if someone can point me in the right direction. My uncle was shot down by a German night fighter, which was apparently confirmed by obtained German documents a year after. The documents ...
15 votes
2 answers
11k views

Where can I find information on buildings that have been demolished?

I'd appreciate suggestions from anyone who has traced the history of houses, multi-family residences, and commercial buildings, on how to find more information about buildings which no longer exist. ...
16 votes
2 answers
874 views

Are there checklists or templates made for visiting the Family History Library in Salt Lake City?

I am on my first research trip to Salt Lake City and my first few days in the FHL has been quite a learning experience. I watched the into video and met a number of very friendly, helpful volunteers ...
2 votes
2 answers
145 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?
2 votes
2 answers
63 views

Finding German birth father who emigrated to Canada?

I was adopted in 1961. I think that my birth father was born in Germany and was around 19-20 years old when he emigrated to Canada and met my birth mother. They didn't marry and she later returned ...
6 votes
1 answer
122 views

Working with DNA results for multiple profiles across multiple sites

I manage a number of DNA profiles (for related individuals) across a number of sites: FamilyTreeDNA (5 profiles) MyHeritage (5 profiles) LivingDNA (2 profiles which will increase to 5 in the near ...