Just checking in to let you know what we have found in our genealogy research adventures…Sometimes, it amazes even us as to how far we have come. So, maybe we can give you some new pointers and information that could be useful in your own searches.
We’ve always had our fits and starts when it comes to working on our family trees. Sometimes we hit pay dirt, and other time we hit a brick wall. When we hit a brick wall, we tend to stop and then try to pick up where we left off. Well, picking up where you left off isn’t always the best idea, sometimes it just means you are going to hit the brick wall a lot faster. We suggest starting over again; go back to databases like a search engine. Search engines and databases are updated frequently as new or additional information becomes available. Don’t forget, other people are looking for the same people you are.
A great example of this is with Leslie and her family. She had run out of options, hit the brick wall several times, and was frustrated. So she started back at the beginning researching the whole branch over again. Database after database, she finally found new information on one of the databases and went with a hunch headed straight to Google with the information. She finally demolished the brick wall!
She found that particular branch all the way back up to the year 1634 when the family first came over from England. It was a huge breakthrough! Not only did she find the people, but she also found out all sorts of interesting information such as they were landowners, one brother was particularly notorious, were all military men, and there was a book written about the whole family! Persistence and perseverance pays off when it comes to finding your ancestors.
Candy recently went on a trip to Ireland to find more information on her dead relatives. She took in the beautiful scenery and people and went hunting. She was able to locate the cemeteries and ruins of where her ancestors were buried. This was an experience as the cemeteries were very old and different from the ones you see around here. There were a lot more concrete slab markers, and they were closer together. She also found it very difficult to pinpoint any one person as the markers had been so aged, and inscriptions worn away. She also went to library there and was able to confirm all the information that she had collected before she flew to Ireland. While at the library, she was able to look at old maps that showed her exactly the locations, which built a better picture in her mind of just where her ancestors were.
A lot of the information Candy found before she went doesn’t get much older due to the fact that the churches there didn’t start keeping records until the 1800s. However, the library in Clare County has a free database that she was able to use to find where her ancestors lived and were buried. And you can too!
Let’s go to the library!
There is also a book that shows if your ancestors were land holders or not. The title is Burke’s Land Gentry, and is very informational. It tells of the properties, locations of the properties, and some occupations. You can also search it online here! Both of these sources are extremely helpful for confirming information.
Also, Candy and Leslie, owe a lot of the information they found by knowing where their ancestors are buried. Going to the cemetery is a great way to look into family plots, and if one is nearby then there may be more close. You could find lots of ancestors that you may not have tracked any other way. Headstones can also be very informational; most older headstones had spouses, ages and occupations. These are always a good way of connecting people together and may also give you clues as to what they did in life.
Finally, always keep in mind that we are here to help!
Candy & Leslie