Family Tree Reports – The Value of Name Studies to Family Tree Reports

The value of a one-name study to anyone composing family tree reports is indisputable. These intensive investigations of all occurrences of a particular surname can reveal much about your ancestors. Many one-name studies restrict their research to a specific geographical location, but veteran one name researchers cast a worldwide net when gathering genealogical data. The geographical focus of a one name study can benefit researchers compiling family tree reports in a particular way. We’ll discuss how that can help you when creating family tree reports.

How a One-Name Study Contributes to Family Tree Reports

The aim of a one- name study is more than just a collection of data surrounding a particular surname. It is this depth of investigation which is particularly useful to family tree reports. While researching a surname, the one-name specialist seeks to discover the genealogy and family history of every person who has that name. Imagine how valuable that data can be to family history reports. Besides revealing precious genealogical data, a one name study also ascertains:

  • The origin of a surname
  • The meaning of a surname
  • The frequency with which it appears in both history and other family tree reports
  • It’s geographical distribution
  • Immigration and emigration patterns associated with the name
  • Spelling variations of the name

Anyone in the process of compiling family tree reports should embrace a one-name study of their surname as an indispensable genealogical tool.

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One-Name Study Data Sources that Benefit Family Tree Reports

Researchers who specialize in one-name studies use many of the same resources that other genealogists use, but in a different way that will benefit any family tree report. Normally the research of family tree reports is focused on finding specific ancestors and any connections to them within a particular region and family branch. A one-name study however diverges into every area or person that name is connected to on a worldwide scale. The enormous scope of that search is especially useful in finding ancestors who immigrated or emigrated, or a relative who may have disappeared off the genealogical map.

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Records Researched for a One-Name Study

One-name researchers, because of the latitude of their examination, may have already uncovered information on one of your ancestors you may have never thought to look in. This breadth of research will also expose them to many different sources outside the range of your own search, such as what is called meta-data. This is basically data that points towards other data, but involves searching in indexes and areas that traditional genealogists sometimes overlook when compiling family history reports. Some of this data will include:

  • Settlement Certificates
  • Criminal and Court Records
  • Taxation Records
  • University degree Lists
  • Post Mortem Inquests
  • Bastardy Examinations
  • Patent Records

These are just some of the obscure records that one-name researchers scour to find information that can be valuable to family tree reports. Because they rely heavily on each other, one-name researchers have access to experts and very experienced researchers who they share membership with in the Guild of One-Name Studies. Many of these researchers are specialists in particular fields of study such as; marriage and probate indexes, and know and understand these resources inside and out.

If you feel that your family tree reports can benefit from what may be contained in a one-name study, you can visit the Guild’s website. You can find out if any research has been done on your surname by typing it into the search box located right on their front page. If you do find that your surname has been researched, you can contact the person responsible by email, and let them know you are looking for genealogical data that may help with your family tree reports.

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