About the Author

First Steps.

Whether you live in England or Wales, Scotland, Ireland, Europe, the United States, or Australia, it will be just as important to follow these basic steps in your quest to trace your family history. The information you put together in these early days will be the basis for all your future research.


Record what you already know. 
It is amazing what information you will already know or have at hand. Draw a rough family tree on paper, and write down what you know already, like birthdays, names of grandparents, parents, uncles and aunts, cousins, family addresses, phone numbers etc etc If you are familiar with Microsoft Word, record the information on computer, so you may print it at any time.
View Tree

Check out your photographs. 
On the back of family photos mark the names of the persons lightly in pencil. Never mark them in ink as this will eventually seep through.


You or other members of your family may have various family certificates, including birth, marriage and death certificates, copies of wills etc. These certificates can hold a lot of useful information. I will deal with these one at a time.


Other family members. 
 The more effort and time you put into this one the more you will get out of it. In particular, speak to the elder members of your family, and ask them for the same information that you have asked for yourself, and it will be an extended version of the same thing. Ask to see and copy family photos, making sure to mark the back of each photograph lightly in pencil. In particular ask them for copies of any certificates that they may have.


Family History Societies.
It is a good idea to join your local family history society, whose members will be only too happy to help you with your research. They will have many records on hand, and will have transcribed local church M.I's (monumental inscriptions) amongst other things.


Ready to Begin.
You should now have as much information as is possible to begin your research. Your aim now is to trace your families back to beyond 1901. If you can already do this, then click on the Censuses button below. If not, then click on the Archives button below. At any stage. click on the "Finding Aids" button and familiarise yourself with the several research aids.




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