Genealogy Wise

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Research and Where to Look

Research and where to look and no, I do not mean on line. At a recent event, in fact, two recent events we had attendees whom are still not on computers, or at least do not own one.

Yes, many of them are older and never were exposed to a Computer via school or work. Others were young, and could not yet afford the luxury of a computer. It is not a life need for many. They were learning to use Library computers.

Last fall at our Seminar, speaking to Bill Dollarhide and where the world of genealogy stood with computer usage, he was surprised that I keep track of those who do have and do not.  (Something I need to know when presenting classes.)

I feel the Genealogical Community is almost become split with those that do and those that do not. I even suspect the ratio to be near 1/4 to 1/3 of the older Genealogists Researchers do not have computers. Even more, we learn that not all areas of the USA have computer access on a steady basis.  Think about that for a minute.

For older researchers I suggest the CLOUD Method for storage then they have access no matter where they are and do not have to worry about a computer (Library used computer base).

Then we get into the  massive Citing Sources situations, that leaves older people of integrity shaking their heads.

A very large contingent of Older Researchers either use Library computers or still do research by hand.

This spring at the Workshop for Beginning Genealogist put on by the Chula Vista Senior Center.  We had from computer savvy to completely not exposed computer researchers. One individual had 2 sets of Five Generation Charts, she had compiled over the years since the 1950's.  Yes, all ten generations were filled but one. I am still amiss on my 5 Generation chart for one female. 15 People took this class 7 had computers and 2 more had computer access.  The others were either new or had done it like I had for years pencil and paper and then pen for completed file. Glad to see they did use Acid Free Sleeves. Two were going to take the Computer class next and purchase one to utilize,(either laptop, I-Pad, or regular system was discussed).

Having started research by helping my mother and writing to relatives as a youth, I started early learning about research and family. I did not have computer access to utilize until 1989. What I have knowledge of is basically self taught.

Is it hard, not overly so, as some computers are easier than others to use. Yes, I think so. But before I regress farther from topic, lets go back to where to look.

Granted a computer if you have a portable one  today and can carry with you makes adding information into your data base easier and quicker but you can still do great research without one.  

Just look at your local Library for information.  Most libraries have at least 7 areas of research for you to look in with out being a Genealogical based section set aside.  The local Historical Society will have information if your looking in the region you live in. Community College Libraries, State Colleges and Universities have much information if you just go look.  Have you ever looked at a Law Library?  The various court cases of the past may just mention your ancestor.

What about Medical Libraries are for Doctor's but not just them. They also have lists of the people who became Doctors and when and from where..  Do you know the names of the Medical Libraries in the USA?

Now can you name the areas of a local library's area for learning more about your ancestor?

1. Children's Section

2. Maps area

3. Reference area

4. History area

6. Social studies area

7. CD's and video's on tape 

Would love to  hear feedback of what you actually found at your local  library.

I can actually name more places but the biggest one is if they carry a genealogical section to wander through, use it.

Copyrighted by Susi Pentico

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