How to study any genealogy record category and the documents produced:
- First, begin with a printed version of the records. Read the introduction to printed extracts and transcripts carefully. Any thorough collection of record extracts will be introduced by the author with observations and conclusions drawn from the records themselves. Each specific category will be described with examples–sometimes a full transcription of each type of document. You can use these as a guide to reading the original records.
- Next, make your own checklist of records for each category or each specific document type. Then as you research, you can tick off those documents you find that apply to your ancestor. If don’t find the proof you seek–you can search for those same documents in other jurisdictions.
- Then, locate the library nearest your residence where the needed records are on file. Or, locate a library which has the documents you need and will loan them to you to study and use. Or, locate the documents you need online.
- Use your checklists as guides to ensure you check all of the record categories that apply to your family tree.
Once you understand the sources and record categories thoroughly, you can trace your hard-to-find ancestors. What often attracts genealogists to the chase is just as much the chase as it is the desire to know the ancestors. And, some stay on the hunt just to share your frustrations at not finding what you seek with other genealogists who are as avid about it all as you, yourself are. Your favorite genealogist, Arlene Eakle
PS The ribs are healing–and after 3 weeks I can sit at my computer again. Many thanks for your concern and well wishes and prayers.