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Family History 101
Transcript of Family History 101
Step 1: Familiarize yourself with your family tree
Now you are ready to begin discovering your heritage!
Step 3: Search through records
Lean more about your ancestors
When you find a matching source, attach it to your family tree.
This is just the beginning!
There are many other resources to help you learn more about your ancestors, feel their love, and preform saving ordinances in their behalf.
Ancestry.com - Members of the LDS church can have free acounts
BYU Family History Library
What if you can't find any holes in your family tree?
Family History 101
An introduction to learning about your family history
Create a free account!
If you are a member of the LDS church, your lds.org user name and password and Family Search accounts are the same.
Click on family tree
Start to add family to your tree
1. Click on "add husband" or "add wife.
If you are adding a
to your tree, you must change the setting to "add person."
3. For a living person, add in all the information you know
4. For someone who has
, make sure to first "find person" in case someone else has already added them into family search.
Once you add in all the family members you know about, you are ready to begin your work.
Make sure your email is public to family search users. This way you can communicate with distant cousins who might be working on your same line.
1. Go to settings in the upper right hand corner.
2. Click on the "contact" tab at the top of the page.
3. Make sure your email is correct and check as "public."
Family Search has wonderful tech support!
Also, try contacting your ward family history consultant or checking out local family history groups.
can be a great way to meet others involved in family history work.
If you don't know how to find the closest ward or local family history consultant, visit www.mormon.org. Then click on "chat."
Always begin with a prayer, asking Heavenly Father's help in directing you to find your ancestors.
Step 2: Prayerfully decide where to start.
My favorite way to do this is to use www.TreeSeek.com
You won't have to make an account, because Tree Seek uses your Family Search account.
Just click "log in"
Choose a chart type. I like to use the "9 Generation Fan (color).
Look at my beautiful family!
This is me!
Prayerfully decide what part of your family needs your love and
This is my pioneer heritage. Since there are lots of people working on this line, there are not very many visible gaps. However, there is still work to be done here! When I feel the promptings of the spirit, sometimes I choose someone from this line to work on.
Here, I have a few gaps in my chart. Sometimes, when I feel prompted by the spirit, I choose someone from this part of my family tree.
If I wanted to find the missing parents here, I need to start with the person I do know (the child.)
Now that I have chosen a person to start with, I need to go to their Person Page in Family Search.
In your family tree, click on your chosen person, then click on "person."
That should open up a page like this.
Familiarize yourself with the Person Page.
I am currently on the details page.
Click here to see the status on this person's temple work.
In the "vital information" section,
you will find information on birth, death, christening, etc.
Here is the second half of the Person Page.
Other information, such as alternative names, etc.
Here is her spouse and their marriage information.
Here I would find information on an additional spouse and children.
If I had information on her parents or siblings, they would appear here.
Let's look at an example.
This is Olive Houle's daughter.
Selected person is bolded.
Only one child. I wonder if they had more?
Selected person is again bolded.
Three Objective of searching through records
To find new people to add to your tree (missing parents, siblings, children, etc.)
To learn about your ancestors (where they lived, marriage dates, nicknames, stories, etc.)
To attach sources (census records, grave pictures, immigration records, etc.) to your Family Search.
First, you should always check for duplicates.
Another Family Search user might have the same person with more information.
I want to know if there are any duplicates for Lazare Gallant.
Click "possible Duplicates"
This grey box is the information I have for Lazare.
This first person looks like a match. All the information matches. I can click on the possible match if I want to take an even closer took.
This second person does not look like a match. The spouse could be correct because Catholics often take on the name Mary, but the birth date is way off. I can click "not a match."
Since I know this is a match, I am going to click, "review merge."
Information that I have for Lazare
Information the duplicate has for Lazare.
If there is any information the duplicate has that I do not, I will add that information over.
When I am finished, I will click, "continue merge."
On the Person page, click on "search records" on the right sidebar.
This top bar scrolls with me and includes the information I already have about Olive.
I can use this sidebar the restrict results by type, date, place, etc.
Since I am trying to find Olive's parents, I might want to look at Census records when she was under 20 years old.
I am going to scroll through these possible records and see if any match the information I have for Olive. If I find one that matches, I will take a closer look by clicking on details.
It looks like many of these records are for Olivier (a male), so we know those are not matches.
This third source is for a mother. She did live in Canada. Her spouse's name is Jean (not John), but Jean is the French version of John. Let's take a closer look at this source.
Click on details to see a typed up version or camera symbol to view the actual record.
This looks like a death record for Frank Noel. He died in Massachesettes at age 60. His mother was Olive Houle and his father was named John, probably John Noel. My ancestor was Jean Provencher. This doesn't seem like a match to me.
However, if I think the source is worth looking at again, I can add it to my source box.
This looks like a match.
I am going to click on details to take a closer look.
After taking a closer look, I am sure this is my ancestor, Virgil, and his family.
Click on "Attach to Family Tree"
A sidebar might come up and ask you to select the correct person.
If this happens, click "select" for the person correct person.
Information from the record (United States 1860 Census)
Information I already have in my Family Tree.
Click "Add" to move information over from the record to your family tree.
There are some other people on the record. Do I already have these people in my family tree? If not I have found a new person, someone who was missing from the family. If they are already in the tree, I should attach them like I did for Virgil.
For example, it looks like Estha C Linnell is the same is Esther C Buck. Buck must have been her maiden name. Estha could have been her nickname or it was indexed wrong.
I am going to drag Estha up to align with Esther.
Then click attach.
Do the same for the children.
I had to click "open" to get to the children.
If I found a child that was on the record, but not on my family tree, I would add him or her like shown above.
However, this is the same Sarah Linnell, so I am going to drag it up and attach it.
Try Puzzilla.org to do descendancy research
Sign in using family search!
This is me
These are my ancestors
Step 1: Prayerfully decide which ancestor to start with. Click on their dot.
Don't choose dots with grey squares by them because their descendants might still be alive.
Don't choose dots with yellow dots by them because that person died before ago 16. They probably didn't have any children.
Choose a dot from your ancestors. Click on that person, and click view descendants.
This will take the selected ancestor and move them into the middle. Then it shows all of that person's descendants.
Some of the lines go pretty far, but some lines stop. This means the children are missing in family search and someone you could try to find. Choose a descendant that has not children, and click "view in Family Tree."
Here is another one of my ancestor's descendants. Almost all the lines are pretty full or the children died young, but there are a few people who lived to an old age, but there are no children in family search. These people are worth looking into. Maybe they had children!
For example, here is someone worth looking into. I am going to click "View in Family Tree" and follow the previous steps of searching for duplicates and searching through records.
Log with you Family Search information
Change the generations to see further back.
You can look at the countries in which you ancestors for the past 10 generations were born.
You can also look at statistics of where they were all from.
Don't forget to keep a log of the research you are doing so you can keep track of everything!
The memories page might have stories, pictures, journal entries, etc.