101, Getting Started
Instructor: Bob Dawes
(All downloadable items on this
page require Adobe
Getting started in Family History
research can be both very daunting and extremely rewarding. Where do
you start, how do you keep track of everything and how can you get
help? Quinte Branch has started this Genealogy 101 basic instruction
on the website to help you get going. You will find helpful tips and
hints, research guides, downloadable charts and articles on genealogy
extracted from The Quinte Searchlight, our quarterly newsletter in the
Course Materials. For more research resources explore
the links to other websites in the Tool Kit
for up-to-date genealogy news, finding aids, resource and research guides,
"how-to" articles and helpful reference.
The Basic Rules
with yourself and work backwards. Record everything you know
about your ancestors.
organized. Record your information in a logical format using memo
books or index cards and identify where you found each bit of
your living relatives to fill in the blanks in your tree identify
new areas of research.
focused on one family line at a time. The shotgun approach
only leads to confusion and frustration.
about surnames and their origins.
society or take a course to expand your horizons.
computer and the internet to reach into remote places from the
comfort of your home.
To help you get started we have included
three downloadable forms that are used by all genealogists:
or Ancestral Chart which tracks your direct ancestors back from
you. Start with yourself and work backwards.
Group Sheet which allows you to fill in the details of each
family on your Ancestral Chart.
Combo Chart where you can record both direct ancestors and
Always fill in your charts with a pencil because
you'll be making lots of changes as you delve deeper and deeper
into your past.
From a technology standpoint, there is no
easier way to record and keep track of your family tree than on a personal
computer. To get started you don't need to spend any money on software as
there are several free programs that will do everything you need.
Two of these can be found at:
101 Course Outline
by Bob Dawes
This handout for the Quinte Branch OGS Beginners Course discusses using
basic charts and forms, the seven golden rules of research, what records
are useful, local area repositories, computer programs and using the