Find Ancestors for Free – Mistakes People Make Finding Ancestors for Free
If you want to find ancestors for free, the hints, tips and advice in this article will help you to achieve much more in your genealogical quest. We’ll show you how to make the most of your time in archives and other research institutions, and introduce you to some of the resources that can help you to find ancestors for free. We’ll also touch on some of the snares of online research and mistakes not to make in order to find ancestors for free.
Avoid Making Mistakes Early to Find Ancestors for Free
To find ancestors for free, it is critical to not make mistakes in the early stages of your research. To spend hours searching through archives and indexes, or spending a small fortune on certificates only to find you’ve been following the wrong people can be quite discouraging. This can happen easily if you don’t verify any information you come across when trying to find ancestors for free. Each name, date, place, marital status and occupation must be validated with as much certification as possible.
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Avoid Assumptions When Trying to Find Ancestors for Free
Cross referencing is essential when trying to find ancestors for free. Never assume that links to other generations are accurate, even if it seems likely. Just because the date and name appear to be right doesn’t mean you have located the ancestor you’re looking for. If you run into any obstacles, leave that branch for awhile and try to find ancestors for free in neighbouring branches. Try as much as you can to locate more than one source to qualify any data that you may have found. If you fail to find any corroborating material, take note of the circumstantial evidenced that you do have, and continue looking for those details that will eventually confirm your find.
Question the Evidence you Uncover When Trying to Find Ancestors for Free
Every document you unearth when attempting to find ancestors for free should be closely scrutinized. You’ll want to make sure of its reliability, as much primary data can contain errors. Misspellings or wrong entries are frequent on aged documents, and consequently the more sources you use to find ancestors for free the better. Census reports are famous for giving wrong ages and misspelt names for example, and death certificates have a similar reputation. Our ancestors were especially vague when giving their ages, either because they didn’t really know, or wanted to stretch the truth a bit. Any information you find is important, but exercise caution when dealing with these kinds of document.
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Online Problems you May Encounter in your Quest to Find Ancestors for Free
You may not even locate the documents you need to find ancestors for free on the internet, those that you do encounter have their own unique pitfalls. To begin with, don’t expect to find online records of your ancestors simply by typing their name into Google’s search box. This will only yield results if you are exceptionally lucky, or if your ancestor was a famous historical figure.
A specialised search engine will help you to find ancestors for free by allowing you to search specific indexes for genealogical data. Though the beauty of an Internet search is that you can sometimes find information immediately, some databases create problems of their own. Usually this is in the form of transcription errors, as most of the online databases are transcribed by volunteers. If the original handwriting on the document being transcribed was difficult to decipher, it is possible that the person transcribing it could get it wrong.
As with other sources, if you hope to find ancestors for free on the Internet, it is critical that you check online sources for validity. Much of the information found online is posted by other researchers, who being human, sometimes make mistakes themselves. If you wish to find ancestors for free, remember; never assume, always confirm the authenticity of the records you find by cross referencing them, and question the evidence!