Thursday, February 08, 2007

Wonders of the Internet

The wonders of the Internet are amazing. I remember when my Father was trying to put together the family tree and how he had to rely on family bibles, public archives and chatting with other family members. He put a lot of effort into the tree and I have a copy of his work.He only traced or tried to trace the ancestry on his side of the family so nothing was done on my Mother's family.

I got interested in trying to put together a complete Family tree and started researching on the internet. I am amazed at the amount of information accessable if one has the patience to look for it.

So far I have found two GGGGGrandfathers who fought in the American Revolution and as I dug deeper I found that my Father was a member of the Sons of the Revolution. I had no inkling he was a member but lo and behold there it was in black and white along with the proof that he was a direct descendent of a Revolutionay War soldier. Needless to say I was pleased to find this information since it qualifies my Granddaughter for financial assistance from the Daughters of The Revolution when she goes to college.

On my Mothers side of the family, I found that my GGGGGrandfather was killed in a battle in Burke County, Ga. in the last year of the Revolution. He is buried within a 2 hour drive of where I now live and I didn't know it. I plan to go to his grave site soon and pay my respects.

As I continued poking around in my families past, I found my Great Grandfathers pension application for Confederate Soldiers. I had no idea that Confederate Soldiers could get a pension for their service in the Civil War. The application had been approved by the state of Florida thereby confirming that he had served. The Sons of the Confederacy also provides financial assistance to direct descendents of Confederate Veterans.

All is not roses in my ancestry searches though. I have found some outlaws, cattle rustlers, a pirate and some low lifes as well. I guess every family has some skeletons in the closet.

Tracing my ancestry has been enlightning and interesting. Now I have to find a way to put it all down on a chart. It is amazing how many branches a family tree as in just a couple of generations.

Chuck

7 Comments:

Blogger Larry said...

Real curious as to what sites you've used so far, Chuck. Best Regards!

9:50 PM  
Blogger Chuck said...

Hi Larry, its good to hear from you.

As I said in my post, my Father had done a lot of work on tracing his side of the family so I already had names, dates, states and counties as a starting point.

My Mother's side of the family was much more difficult since nothing had been done. I started with my Grandfather and Grandmother and worked back using information I got from guests and family members who signed the registers at their funerals. These registers also yielded actual birth dates, places of birth, etc.

Once I established that information, I used several free and subscription genaeology web sites to track and confirm information. The sites I found most hepful were:
1) RootsWeb.com -free
2) Ancestry.com - subscription
3) WorldConnect Project- free
4) USGenWeb Project- free
5)FamilySearch.org- some free, some subscription
There were several of these sites that had links to other state and local sites I also used.

I just happened to find my Fathers record of membership in the Sons of the Revolution tucked away in some of his old research.

Several states have listings of Revolutionary War soldiers that I found by just searching " North Carolina Soldiers of the American Revolution". That is why I called my post Wonders of the Internet, you can just search almost any bumbling question and it will lead you into what you are hunting.

I hope this will be useful to you. I hope to hear from you more often.
Chuck

7:38 AM  
Blogger Larry said...

Thanks, Chuck! Only one new to me is WorldConnect Project. Are you aware of www.cyndislist.com? Suspect "yes", but thought I'd mention. I haven't been as serious about this as you -- yet.

9:51 PM  
Blogger copy editor said...

Awesome information!

12:23 PM  
Anonymous Barbara said...

Sounds like you faired better than me when I tried some family tree climbing. But I didn't use any paid services. I have a niece that has pretty well covered Mama's family. And a 1st cousin who has researched Daddy's. So maybe I can just put those together.

2:27 PM  
Blogger Larry said...

From the 2/15/2007 Wall Street Journal:
One new entrant to genealogy research is Geni.com, launched last month. Instead of paying a fee to research family records buried in archives, it asks users to build their own family trees -- using the knowledge of living relatives -- that eventually will merge into one giant family tree for the world. It went live in mid-January and has registered more than 100,000 users. Rather than charging fees, Geni plans on selling advertising and also plans to generate revenue by creating "premium" accounts and selling products, such as posters or coffee-table books of the family trees. But Geni has already courted controversy -- and raised privacy concerns. Several blog posts have expressed frustration with the level of personal information that can be published about a person, even without their permission. For example, a Geni member can create entire profiles for relatives who don't visit the site, including their birth dates, education, phone number and photos. Some of the identifying pieces of information used by many financial institutions -- such as mother's maiden name and birth date -- are often listed on the site. To address those concerns, Geni is only allowing visitors to the site to see their own family trees. Geni says that family members are responsible for ensuring that the profile information is correct.

7:04 PM  
Blogger Publia said...

Suggest that once you find an ancestor's name that you also google it for a lot more leads. You can get all the charts you will ever want or need to keep track of your ancestors from Everton publishers. See this page:
http://www.everton.com/b/products.html

Cheaper and faster yet, you can get a free family group sheet and a free family chart here:
http://www.notablekin.org/ You can then print all all you need.

12:03 AM  

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