They are regarded as something which is quite traditional, but there’s no doubt that the family tree is still living on and arguably being more popular than ever before.
It’s something that can provide great satisfaction to those who are creating them, and great insight for the rest of the family. Furthermore, through all of the advanced people search tools that are now available, it could be said that putting them together is easier than it ever has been.
Of course, while the tools do exist, it’s still not a process that can be described as “easy”. This is the reason we have put today’s post together, as we take a look at some of the best tips for those of you who are looking to put together your first family tree.
Has anything been done before?
First and foremost, you need to be asking yourself if anything has been done before which could help you along your way. It should go without saying that the last thing you want to do in these instances is simply repeat what another historian in the family has already achieved. As we all know, compiling one of these trees is difficult at the best of times, so redoing the work is an absolute waste of time.
There are a lot of family tree social networks which can help you find this, or the Society of Genealogists library may also have a family tree from your family. Of course, you only need to check these sources if you are not aware of someone who has put together a family tree. If you are, a face-to-face conversation is clearly the way to go.
Always start from the most recent point in time
Something that a lot of new family tree enthusiasts do is set themselves a goal of starting their family tree from a certain date. While ambitious, this is still admirable. However, problems start to emerge when they start to try and collect data from that point.
Instead of this approach, you should be looking to work backwards. Give yourself the biggest possible advantage by talking to people who are alive, and working back in time. You will gradually find that you start to pick up leads, who will point you in the right direction of people who might know more information about your tree.
Don’t neglect the family historian network
Unbeknown to some, there are a lot of family historians out there. This is actually quite a close-knit community, who are more than happy to share information and make the job of others a lot easier. While they are unlikely to have any inside-information on your family, they might know a new source of data which will help your plight no-end. Particularly with the internet, there are now umpteen networks of these family historians and by introducing yourself to them you’ll find that your job, over time at least, becomes a lot easier.