Retirement Hobby: Document Family History

by Wendy
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I joined recently as a free member. I am adding all my family members simply as a historic record to try to gather as much as possible for future generations. Oh, how I WISH I had started this years ago, before we lost the older members of my family!

I am not doing big searches, just watching for whatever records they send as possible matches.
It's really amazing at how these little green leaves pop up on some people -- just like on the tv commercials. It's hard to see the tiny green leaves in the photo above,.. but they are there on the top right corner of some people.

Click on the leaves and they lead you to many resources -- some are your family member (birth/death records, immigration records, and more) and some are incorrect. So you can either approve it, or say it's ignore and it will be deleted from your family records.

A green leaf appeared for my own father. I was so surprised as I knew his information already... I had already added his birth date, his date of death, locations, etc. When I clicked, the record showed my fathers nickname "Coop"... and I immediately was WOW'd! Imagine the internet knowing my dads nickname... how did that happen?

As a free member, most often, the green leaves won't reveal much until you are a paid member... but they do allow a few free teasers to hook you. So I just HAD to know how they found his nickname... it was from the newspaper obit that we had published in 2005. He is now linked to that obit.. is that amazing or what?

For every person on your family tree, there are areas for comments, fact sources, and types of media -- you can upload audio, video, photos, stories etc.

Genealogy for future generations will all be online. Can you imagine, years from now, a family member who finds lots of work already done for them? The answers on their family history all laid out before them? That's why I'm doing what I can, as a hobby, to document the information I have right now... and its fun too!

Comments for Retirement Hobby: Document Family History

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Family tree
by: joyce portsmouth uk

Yes it takes a lot of time and headaches as i get migraines now searching for my ancesters. Could someone let me now how ancestry can find all this info and is it true ?

Wendy If you allow Ancestry to make your own family tree publish, then anyone can find you and your ancestors in a search. I think its a collaborative effort worldwide, right?

Family Tree
by: Joyce Portsmouth UK

I am tracing my parents history... mainly my fathers the mcdowells as they came from devon ireland and now I have found from scotland I updated my family tree to 2014 which gave me free six months to ancestry but I found confusing as it has so many dates etc and the writing is so small my eyes hurt after a while even writing. this is a problem.

WEndy (1) Try hitting CONTROL and the + buttons at the same time... every time it should make your screen bigger. Simple! Makes it readable every time, and just hit CONTROL and - to make it smaller again. --- (2) After you enter people, tiny green leaves appear on different people. That is the beauty of ancestry, you can search, but they also automatically show matches that MIGHT be your family. Some you will read more, others you will know aren't family.

it's fun!

Family Tree
by: Goldie

Recently I started adding leaves to the family tree. It was amazing how quickly the tree started to grow and grow. It's been a fun activity and I hope to connect with family near and far.

Family History
by: Irwin

Hi Wendy:

Loved your article on this subject. I was involved with documenting my family history but have gotten so busy with other things that I haven't been back to it in a long long time.

My Uncle actually got me started on it when he sent me a copy of the work he did on it years ago. His documentation actually went back to 1737 when two brothers came to America on a ship (I actually have a copy of the ship's log showing where one of the brothers could write and actually signed his name whereas the other brother could not write and placed an X where his name should have appeared and someone else placed his name there in his stead.

But as I said, it can be a very time consuming hobby and more time consuming trying to keep it up once started. I have so many nieces and nephews that have since married and have had children and in some instances their children are now married with children, I truly hesitate to begin again as it would require a large chunk of my time. But it is fun.

Were I to get re-involved however, I would look up my mother's history as I am comfortable having gone back as far as 1737 on my father's side. But, I know very little about my mother's side of the family and that would be an interesting project. We shall see. It is a commitment that I am hesitate to commit to at this stage as I have so many other things on my plate.

But, it is something we, as retirees now have the time to do.

Thanks for sharing.


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