For most genealogists, discovering a reference to the ancestor you are searching for and then learning that there are digital copies of the genealogy records is like Christmas and your birthday all wrapped in one. Unfortunately, just like that six-pack of tube socks from Grandma was a major disappointment, the actual documents we were so eagerly anticipating can also sometimes be a big disappointment when we see them. Some documents are difficult to read because of the handwriting, or the use of Latin or another unknown language, or fire or water damage has made them almost or completely illegible. However, unlike that package of tube socks, disappointment over of a document doesn’t have to be permanent. There are a number of ways to overcome the obstacles of the condition or legibility of a document so that you can make the most of your find and learn more about your ancestors. Deciphering Handwriting in Genealogy Records Let’s face it, most adults do not have the best …Read more
Hand-picked, tested and trained, our professional genealogist team knows how to find your story. We search the world for answers. Find the un-findable. And we’re experts at everything from tracking down rare international records to analyzing DNA test results. Based near the world’s largest family history library in downtown Salt Lake City, we also work with researchers and archives around the globe. Contact us today if you would like help discovering your ancestors!
Brick Walls. We all have them somewhere in our family tree--places in our pedigree where we cannot find the names and dates we need to continue tracing the ancestral line. Sometimes all it takes is time and patience sorting through unindexed records or tracing each of several same-named persons until we find the right one. Many of us have spent years—decades even—doing just that, but without success. This can be frustrating for genealogists of all levels, and stepping away from the struggle and experiencing success for a while may just be the solution. Here are some tips and tricks for taking a break from your discouraging research roadblock. Collateral research on spouses and siblings. Many aspiring genealogists are so intent on extending their direct lines as far back as possible that they neglect spouses and siblings. Every spouse has ancestors and many siblings have descendants that are “ripe for the picking” genealogically speaking. Furthermore, studying these collateral …Read more
This reunion between biological father and daughter is shared with permission from our client. *Names have been changed to protect privacy. Father’s Day in the United States is celebrated on the third Sunday in June—a day filled with honoring and cherishing the special men in our lives. However, for those who feel the aching emptiness of never having known their biological father, it can be a difficult 24-hours cognizant of the void felt far too often throughout the year—a painful reminder of the ever-present absence in their lives. At Legacy Tree Genealogists, we are often contacted by individuals seeking assistance in finding information regarding biological family members. Utilizing advancements in genetic genealogy and thorough genealogical research, we have helped many clients find closure. Recently we helped client Lisa McArthur* locate her biological father, and so for the first time in her life, this Father’s Day is a momentous occasion she looks forward to—the first …Read more
In our Beginner's Guide to British Ancestry, we discussed the difference between “Great Britain,” United Kingdom,” and “England.” We also talked about census records and civil birth, marriage, and death records available through the General Register Office, or GRO. The census and civil records are extremely useful and important for genealogical research in England, but the earliest useful census is from 1841, while the civil records only extend back to 1837. So what do researchers do to trace their English ancestors back to earlier times? How can you find your family if they emigrated in the 1700s or even earlier? Genealogists owe a debt of thanks to King Henry VIII’s chief advisor, Thomas Cromwell. After England’s split from the Roman Catholic Church, Cromwell issued an injunction in September of 1538 requiring every church in England to maintain a register of baptisms, marriages, and burials. The law was followed with varying degrees of consistency until Queen Elizabeth I, and the …Read more