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Compare Genealogy to Putting Together a Puzzle

Think of your genealogy project as if it were a big puzzle. Even puzzles start with a goal. We make a mental plan about what we want to do. The majority of genealogy goals regardless of ethnic group focus upon:

  • Finding the parent's names.
  • Finding an individual's birth date or place.
  • Finding a marriage date or place.
  • Finding a death date or place.
  • Finding a spouse's name, or maiden name.
  • Finding the names of siblings.
  • Finding background information on the family.
  • Finding information about the culture, environment, geography, etc. that will lead to the above goals.

Step One: Organize & Set Goals - Lay out the puzzle pieces to see what matches!

Organize & Set GoalsSuccess in genealogical research requires the careful planning and successful recording of information. All you need is a spiral bound notebook and a pencil to start. Put information about only one family on each page. Later you can tear out the pages, sort the information by individual families, then chronologically, and finally by goals in priority order. We thus organize our thoughts about every individual we wish to research. We can then take stock of the priorities we have left to accomplish, formalize our plan of action by using a good Research Planner to record essential information, and work our plan with confidence.

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