Genealogy research might sound hard, but it’s mostly just time consuming. And pedigree charts might sound fancy, but they’re really just family trees. Pedigrees aren’t only for royalty and purebred dogs!
Here are the top 10 reasons why genealogy might be for you:
- First of all, it’s interesting and fun. No wonder it’s the #2 hobby in America! (Can you guess what #1 is? Keep reading to see if you are right.)
- It can bring your family closer together. Share your research (and photos and stories) with your family. Interview your elders before it’s too late. Teach your children about history in a personal way.
- Genealogy can be part of organizing for your legacy.
- It combines well with other hobbies and interests such as reading, writing, travel, photography, geography, history, sociology, scrapbooking, etc.
- It might inspire you to organize your photos and keepsakes, as well as your vital documents (birth, marriage, death) and other important items.
- It’s free. Or, at least, it can be. There are lots of free online resources. Try familysearch.org, google.com, and cyndislist.com for starters. Also, don’t forget free brick-and-mortar libraries, including LDS Family History Centers, which are open to the public. Here’s a free Family Group Sheet to get you started. HINT: Start with yourself and work backwards one step at a time.
- You can put your own twist on it. Did you know there are people who specialize in specific regions, ethnic groups, or religions? Some researchers focus on one-name studies, or they specialize in military history, adoption, or property records (think house detective)! Such specialties can apply to professionals and amateurs alike.
- You can call yourself whatever you like: Genealogist, Family Historian, Ancestry Detective, Blood Line Sleuth, Family Tree Climber, Seeker of Dead Relatives, etc.
- You can do it yourself. Want to DIY with a little help? Read Puzzling Out Your Family History to learn the pleasures and pitfalls of doing genealogy research. Even if you are already the family historian you might need some help organizing your photos and records.
- You can hire someone to help you. A pedigree chart, in a family history binder, makes a great gift for yourself, or for a loved one! To learn more, read The Gift of an Organized Family History and Family History Research Services.
So, what is America’s #1 hobby? Gardening. (Did you guess correctly?)
Are you a genealogist? Curious about your roots?
Please share what you love about it (or want to know) in the comments below!
Copyright 2017 by Hazel Thornton, Organized For Life.
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