The first thing that you need to do is get yourself a pedigree chart and some family group sheets to begin. You can obtain free copies at this website.
Begin by filling out as much as you can from these charts. Start with yourself and work backwards to your parents and grandparents, etc. Since genealogy is so much fun and interesting, you'll no doubt want to do both sides of your family tree, but, for now, let's do the side where you trace back to your Revolutionary War Patriot.
You'll need to establish proof of all vital records that you are compiling, such as birth, marriage, and death certificates. Census records are also very helpful. Usually after the first three generations it will become harder to provide the vital records and at that point you might find cemetery records, obituaries, well documented genealogies, historical society publications of Bible Records, Church records, etc.
You may want to visit our National website for the step by step process with links to very helpful information. You'll be able to see if your ancestor is already listed in our Patriot indices and if not, what to do next.
You may want to contact the local chapter if you have additional questions or need assistance in filling out your paperwork. Our Registrar is the one who will be able to assist you.
How do I get started in researching my roots?
In the beginning, contacting family members will help you in obtaining much of the needed materials. They should have copies of birth, marriage, and death certificates. If not, you need to visit the county court house, the local library, genealogical libraries, and genealogical and historical societies.
You may also want to visit with us at one of our meetings. They are open and we would love to have you join us. Contact me for the local Mecosta County Chapter meeting dates.
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