How Would I Start Tracing My Family History?


As there are several techniques I can use to trace my family history, I want to know where to start so that I get good results.


Since you are searching for ancestral information, I would recommend using FamilySearch or Ancestry as two websites to start. By using these companies services, you can get information such as places of residence, occupations, death dates, marriage, and birth dates of your ancestors. Along with your family’s ethnic background and residing location, you can dig up a lot of information about your ancestors.

You should know that these websites are extremely useful for residents from Western European and North American countries, as most of their user base comes from these regions. However, if you moved to these regions recently, or your ancestors weren’t Europeans, then you will find it challenging to get the right data from these websites.

Moving on, why you should use these websites is that you get the opportunity to connect with some of your distant relatives. For instance, if your relatives already made family trees, there is a chance that some of those members are your ancestors. Another advantage is that the big sites have access to digitized documents, such as census and war enlistment records, which makes it easier to track down your relatives.

Another great website to start your journey of tracking your family history is to use the services of 23andMe. When you participate in their DNA test, you get a lot of information about your genetics. By analyzing your sample, they get to know a lot of information, such as your vulnerability to various diseases, along with your ancestral lineage. 23andMe is quite helpful, as they give you a geographic map of your ancestors. The company is able to do so by using your Y chromosome and mitochondrial DNA as the markers for their analysis. Even though the company won’t give you specific data as the name of your ancestor, they will tell you the area of residence. As more than five hundred thousand customers, it is quite likely to find cousins who are related to your family members.

There is another technique you can use to improve the effectiveness of your search. Get in touch with your family members and get to know about the history of your ancestry. When you come across information such as places of residence, dates, and names, note them down immediately.

If you have older relatives, you should contact them and talk about your family history. Pay close attention to their stories, as they will be helpful in the future. Always ask questions so that you get as much information as possible. It will be great if you can record your conversations, as you can go through them during the later stages of your search.

Once you have all this information, you can use any of the websites to conduct a DNA test. After you get a match, contact your cousins and share your information. As a result of this, it becomes easier to obtain information about your family history.