| Charts | Getting Started | More Helps |

Click here to listen to an Interview with
Mary EV Hill (requires Real Player).

Getting Started     Click here to listen to text using real audio.

Step 1.

Make a shopping list of the items that you need to buy. Or use the shopping list we have created for you.

Step 2.

Gather together all family history items you already have.
Find a place that you can put a simple box to place genealogically-related documents, pictures, letters, and so forth as you find them. Make quick notes or list of items that other family members might have in their possession and place them in the box. The purpose of this box is to have one place to find all your unorganized genealogy.

Step 3.

Fill in a pedigree chart with as much information as you can.
Write down your name and the names of your parents and grandparents. Include birth, marriage, and death dates and places if you know them. Add any information about your great grandparents and other ancestors further back. You will want to do this using a family history management software if at all possible.

Step 4.

Create temporary holding containers for each of your 4 grandparents. Divide up the items you found by the family surnames of your ancestors and place in containers. Make sure to use your grandmothers' maiden name as the surname on their containers.

Label temporary containers such as shoe boxes or manila envelopes with the surnames or last names on your pedigree chart. Depending on how much information you have, you may have a large, small or several containers for each family surname.

Example:

Box for Father's Father
Box for Father's Mother
Box for Mother's Father
Box for Mother's Mother

Step 5.

Update your pedigree charts, and make family group records.

Look at what is in each container and see if you can find additional information about births, marriages and deaths of your ancestors. Using the information you find, add any additional names, dates, and places to your pedigree chart. Make family group records for each family on your pedigree chart. If you have a computer genealogy management program, enter your family information into it.

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