Genealogy Wise

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I'm a novice and one reluctant to immerse too quickly without checking out total costs. I understand the local library could be a good source, especially if they have a Library Subscription to those online sites I might use at home, but at my costs. Well, I just learned my local public library closes at 5:00 p.m. on a regular basis, so it is hardly worth my closer examination of its inner workings. How about online subscriptions that I must pay for? Is Ancestry.com worth my purchase on a one-time, monthly- or annual basis? If so, why? If not, why not? Your greater experience in these matters will be worth its gold, so to speak.

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Comment by BJohnston on September 23, 2009 at 8:39pm
Got it; thanks again.
Comment by Dawn Evans Stringer on September 23, 2009 at 4:05pm
When I said a couple books of stamps I was meaning that while online is great, you are still going to need to write to genealogy societies, archives and courthouses to find the documents you will need. The Handy Book is divided by state and then by county for each state and gives you information on when the states and counties were formed, what years that documents are available for that area, and a little background history. It will also list the addresses of courthouses , gen societies, and archives. It is truly a very handy book to have and in my opinion if you will be writing to courthouses and such a necessity.
Comment by BJohnston on September 23, 2009 at 3:52pm
Ms. Stringer,
Thanks for your suggestions. I'm not certain about "couple books of stamps," because you might have been flippant rather than prescriptive. Do the stamps relate to the Everton book?
Comment by Dawn Evans Stringer on September 23, 2009 at 9:43am
I too live quite a ways from an FHC and do not have a library close that has Ancestry or Heritage Quest access. I have a subscription to Ancestry on a monthly basis. While it is true that only a small portion of records are online, Ancestry is a great place, especially when you are just starting out. Access to the census alone is worth the subscription price to me. Also an investment in a couple books of stamps and Everton's "The Handy Book for Genealogists" will set you on the right path. I think what you need to remember is you won't find it all on Ancestry, but you can begin to build a good solid foundation for your family tree.
Comment by Unknown Ancestor on September 22, 2009 at 9:05pm
As I've posted in groups such as What's Not on the Net, less than 10% of the National Archives and Family History Library are online. If you can't get to a FHC, you revert to writing to archives and visiting them for research.
I've never joined Ancestry, but used it now and then at an FHC; many, however, can no longer afford such subscriptions or do not have lease or license agreements.
Comment by BJohnston on September 22, 2009 at 10:28am
I live in River Landing, a gated golfing community, near Wallace, NC. The local library here only opens during the week during work hours. I'm unaware of any Family History Centers nearby. So, I believe I'm fairly limited to what's online. Agree?
Comment by Patricia Aceves Wyble on September 22, 2009 at 8:30am
For me, it was not worth it. I had an Ancestry World Deluxe membership for a year, and found a fair amount about my husband's family but nothing on my own- we're from Mexico a couple of generations ago. What has worked a lot better for me is the local genealogical society library. They open late and weekends (once a week of each), and have a library edition subscription. They also, along with the Family History Center near me, have free access to Footnote. If you let us know where you're located, I'm sure someone can direct you to the nearest/best library.

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