Friday, 4 May 2012

The Social Side Of Genealogy

There is a popular misconception that genealogy is a lonely, individualistic hobby to have. To be sure, you have to possess a personal desire to trace your family history, and the fact that it is your ancestry means that it is individual to you. However, as you go further back into your family history it will be more than likely that somebody else is researching a shared ancestor. This presents the opportunity for you to get in contact with, or even meet up with, distant relations. 

This is what happened to me. I had joined the genealogy website Genes Reunited, and had uploaded a GEDCOM file of my family tree. A few months later I was contacted by another member who was related to my great-grandmother. She very kindly emailed me some photographs she had of my ancestor, such as the one below, along with some information.

In return I was able to provide her with some details that were unknown to her. Helping fellow genealogists out in this way is not only sociable, it also can save a lot of time and money in terms of research.

There are countless genealogy websites and family history forums on the Internet. They offer an excellent way for genealogists to come together to share resources and advice. In addition, it can be really interesting to read about some of the stories people have unearthed in their research. Many of these sites are free to join, and they can be a great way to widen the scope of your hobby.

Genealogical research also involves getting out and about. I have travelled to many different places around Scotland where my ancestors lived and worked, and I've met some great people along the way. I've also met fellow genealogists at various libraries where we've been conducting research. I am not, as yet, a member of any family history societies or groups, although these are another obvious example of the sociable nature of genealogy.

Everybody has a specific family tree that is unique to them, but that doesn't mean that it wouldn't be of interest to anybody else. We all have a family history, some of us even share ancestors, and for that reason I believe that genealogy is a very sociable hobby to have.

No comments:

Post a Comment

Please leave me a message on anything genealogy related.