Growing Your Family Tree

[By Lois Harley]

The February workshop was a very basic introduction beginning research into your family, as the committee recognized that we have many new visitors, a lot of people who are not yet members but want to know how to get started. Nearly forty people of whom 14 were visitors.

Lois Harley introduced the session by saying that a number of factors influence the way in which research may be carried out and needed to be considered before embarking on what can be a long and expensive enterprise. Some of these were to examine why we want to search for our Forebears; our personal circumstances and our budget for research.

She advised that it is important to start your history with all the family documents that you can find. Write down all the stories you can remember. Transcribe any letters, journals, jottings you may have found. Talk to relatives and old friends of the family. Then look at what is known about the family. Consult reference books and atlases and read up on the area from which your people came.

The important events in people’s lives that you want to try and establish are birth, marriage and death. Certificates and church records, death notices, wills and family bibles, census data and newspapers can all help establish these vital records.