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HomeTechnology Guides8 Quick Ancestor Search Tips and Hints

8 Quick Ancestor Search Tips and Hints


 If you’re looking to start an ancestor search, or you’ve been researching your family tree for a while, these tips will help you get the most out of your search. From using online resources to enlisting the help of a professional genealogist, these 8 tips will help you find the information you’re looking for.

You are researching your family tree and find that you can’t access the information you need.

GenealogyBank has been acquired by Ancestry.com, and their obituaries are no longer available online. You can Visit the Danville Register and Bee obituaries to find what you need!

1. Wildcards can be used to search Historical Records or Family Trees. A question mark is for one letter, and an asterisk is for all letters. Historical Records matches automatically include names similar to yours.

2. Use the filters (located to the left of your screen) in order to narrow down your Historical Records search results based on categories such as Census & Lists or place.

3. To search for your exact location of residence, birth, death, or another life event, you can also click on the Exact boxes Search with a Relationship Section To search for a spouse, parent, or another person that might be listed in the record associated with your target ancestor. 

This will help you find the best records, especially if you are searching for someone with a common surname.

4. To view the index information for each match, use the arrow in the Preview Column. Instead of returning to the search page, you can use the Refine Your Search Box at the top of your search results page.

5. The library catalog now includes links to digital materials if a book or record collection is online.

FamilySearch catalogs record based on the location they were kept. 

6. A place search is often your best option for finding relevant microfilmed records. (Select “place names” from the drop-down menu). To see the available records, type in your ancestor’s county, state, or parish along with the country.

7. A search for author results will return records made by a particular government agency and books written by a specific individual. To view the FHL’s collection of microfilm from the US passenger list, enter immigration naturalization services in the Last or Corporate Name fields.

8. The keyword search is a catch-all option that you can use when there are no other options. This search searches for a term in any field of the catalog listing. It does not only look for author, title, or other specific fields.


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