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Five Resources to Use When Finding Your Family History

By Charles Hopkins Published 01/17/2007 | Genealogy

In recent years, genealogy has grown from a hobby for many people into a way of life. Perhaps it is our recent obsession with mystery novels like The DaVinci Code or maybe it is because we all just want to know where our roots began, but whatever the reason, genealogy is here to stay. For centuries, there have been certain religious groups who have kept amazing records of their history with records dating back hundreds, even thousands of years. While you may not be so lucky to have access to these amazing databases on your search for your family history, think of yourself as on a quest a quest to find out who you are and where you came from.

One of the most useful, but least used resources to find your family history should be the church that you grew up with. Astoundingly to many people, a variety of churches have kept names and records of their patrons in an attempt to set up a family history. If you have access to a local synagogue or a Mormon temple, consider stopping by either of these places of worship, as the Jews and the Mormons have kept notoriously thorough records of their family histories, and your family may actually be amongst their data.

A second resource to use is your family itself. Often, many family members do not communicate as much as they probably should, but if you want to get as much genealogical information as you can about your family you will have to talk to all of your living relatives at some time or another.  Especially make contact with older family members, as they likely know far more about your family history than you do.

Third, you should start taking your quest for family history online. There are a variety of social networking forums that have helped people look for their long lost relatives so long as they know a general location of where they may have been living for the past few years. These forums are an invaluable tool in helping people get reunited with extended family members that have been out of the loop for quite some time, so be sure to spend plenty of time on these types of websites.

Next, you need to stop by a website called Cyndis List for some of the best and most up to date information on genealogical searches. Cyndis website is dedicated to helping people find out as much information as possible on where your family came from, where they moved to, how to find long lost family members and how to trace your roots back for generations. Certainly an invaluable tool if you have no idea how to go about constructing your family tree.

Finally, if you are totally out of luck and have no idea where to turn for further information on your familys history, consider consulting a professional genealogist. Genealogists specialize in helping people assemble a complete family history, and if you are willing to pay a hefty sum, you will be amazed by the high quality family tree that you will get by hiring a professional genealogist, as they have tools and resources that may not be available to you.