Wednesday, April 25, 2012

New on the Shelf : How To Do Everything Genealogy

No matter how many how-to books published about genealogy, each additional title offers new ideas for resources, documentation tips, creative methods of organization, potential brick wall solutions, and author insight into what has become a life-long passion for us all. 

In addition to learning what you can about traditional research methodology, contemporary books on the topic have the added bonus of bringing us further into the 21st century by referencing the myriad of online & technological tools available to us today. 

How To Do Everything Genealogy, by George Morgan is one of the latest on the market, the third edition having been published earlier this year.  You may recognize George's name as one of the Genealogy Guys who co-hosts the longest running weekly family history podcast in the world.  The book is edited by his online co-host, Drew Smith.

The volume is divided into three main parts:
  1. Begin Your Family History Odyssey
  2. Expand Your Research
  3. Learn Research Methods and Strategies
Each part is broken down into smaller sections some of which include:
  • Balance Traditional and Electronic Research
  • Extend Your Research With Advanced Records Types
  • Use Alternative Research Strategies to Locate Difficult Records
  • Use the Latest Online Resources and Social Networking in your Genealogy Research
George has highlighted certain search strategies in the form of case studies where he demonstrates how he tumbled some of the brick walls in his own pedigree.  He is meticulous in listing sources that should be consulted at home, on site, and online, which supports my ongoing advice to you about creating research checklists. 

Throughout the book there are little side notes such as the "Did You Know?" snippet on page 287:  Ellis Island wasn't the first immigration processing center in New York.  Ellis Island opened on 1 January 1892 and replaced Castle Garden.

Other topics addressed are DNA, contacting living family, working with forms & charts, foreign country references, dissecting or interpreting records, and discussions about wikis, podcasts, webinars.  He also addresses online social medium such as Facebook and Twitter, and advises about the use of search engines.

I've not read the book through, but in paging through for this post, I'm inspired to propose that this may be the best handbook for genealogical research that I've seen since the The Source : a guidebook for American genealogy, by Loretto Szucs. 

This 448-page book published by McGraw-Hill Company would be a great gift for mother's day to the person in your life who may be just embarking on their family history search, or to the veteran genealogist. Treat yourself to a copy or check it out from your local a chapter an evening, and learn how to open doors to learning more about your family.  For more information about how to check this book out from the Van Buren District Library, please contact us.

Nameless Picture of the Day
 two small children
Photographer - Mitchelson, Lawton

Can you identify the children in this cabinet card?  Do you have any knowledge of the photographer?  Please contact us if you have any information and we will publish it in a future blog.  Please include the photo's catalog number with your e-mail.

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