I've always been interested in family history, I guess. I always liked to hear my relatives tell stories about each other and their parents and grandparents. And I was always wanting to see the pictures in the old photo albums. I never really thought about pursuing it any further than a passing fancy until I received the book "To Our Children's Children: Preserving Family Histories for Generations to Come" by Bob Greene (Thanks Liz!). This book has all kinds of questions to get you thinking and to pose to your family to get a better idea of "their life story". I then began to ask questions, but I set it aside. Then my dad became ill and I saw an opportunity slipping through my fingers. He was always interested in the family lore and knew a lot of the old stories that others weren't around to tell. Unfortunately, he passed on before I could really ask him many questions. It was shortly after that I decided to pursue it more than casually, partially in remembrance of him.
Now, I have been working with my Aunt Sue (my dad's sister) and others in my family to piece together old stories and acquire family photos. It has been quite a journey, even in the few short months we have been working on this. I bet you'd be surprised to find out how much someone in your extended family has compiled already! My grandmother (maternal) gave me a branch of my family tree dating back to 1660! So before you start digging, find out if anyone has done the work already.
So, If you've been thinking about this very same thing, start today, there's no time like the present!!
Now, on to the heart of the matter...
surnames, information, and pleas for help!
Resources I Have Found Useful:
Books: "To Our Children's Children", by Bob Greene; Published by Doubleday, 1993.
Software: Family Tree Maker, by Brøderbund
Family Album Creator, by Creative Arts
Websites: Rootsweb | Ancestry.com | PBS | Family TreeMaker Online | Cyndi's List of Genealogy Sites on the Internet | Treasure Maps | Slovak Gen |
Janyce's Root Diggin' Dept. | Surnameweb | GenRecords | Other Interesting Links
Other resources: newsgroups, bulletin boards, Social Security Death Index, World Family Tree. Courthouse records, family bibles and pictures, and old letters and documents. Contact your local genealogical society or library for more resources.