Step 2a. Gather Your Family History Stuff

Gather all your family history stuff together into one place.

  • Place it all on a table or in a few boxes.

This will include all of the following that you can find:

  • Pedigree charts and family group sheets.
  • Birth records, Marriage records, Death records.
  • Obituaries, wills, newspaper articles, etc.
  • Old photos and Books about your family.
  • Research notes.
  • Letters about your ancestors (or that are family history related).
  • Printed Emails (that are family history related).

Now you’ve got a big pile of family history stuff — your next step is to set up a simple file folder system.  Then you’ll take this big pile of stuff and quickly sort it into the proper file folders.  Once that’s done you’ll know exactly what information you have on each ancestor, and what you still need to find.  So, start smiling!—because when you’re done you’re really going to be pleased with yourself (but, of course, beware of pride).

Very Important! — Talk to your living relatives. The information they can provide (even though some of it may be faulty) will give you important clues and direction in your family research.  Remember to take notes or use a recorder to keep track of what they share with you.

. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .

Next…  Step 2b.  Set Up Your Filing System