The Less-Common Name

by David Haas, Geneosity.com

Chances are that you have dealt with this genealogy research challenge before, or eventually will. You’re looking up a John, Mary, Michael, or Ann with some relatively common surname, and to your surprise there are over 400 or even over a thousand people with the name you’re looking up. Before you spend hours combing through hundreds of listings that match the name and another piece of data you should try something different first.

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Build Your Family Tree Without Spending a Fortune

A frequent complaint in genealogy research is “I would love to learn about my family tree but I can’t afford professional help or the fees all these websites charge”.     The amount of money you can spend is inversely proportional to the combined volume of time you’re able to spend doing it AND how resourceful you are.   Money and time must be spent and that is just a fact.   Play it smart, however, and there are some great things that can be accomplished with relatively little money.

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Irish Genealogy Research

Genealogy research in Ireland can be uniquely challenging. Since public records only began being collected in 1864 it can be very difficult to locate the origins of individuals that lived even into the mid-1900s. Public records of Irish births, deaths and marriages prior to 1864 do not exist. There are, however, existing church records, wills, property and land records for periods prior to 1864. There are a number of ways to locate this information if you know the approximate dates and location of residence at the time.

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Online Genealogy Resources

Geneosity.com is an online resource for the genealogy or family history enthusiast.  Here you’ll find a guide of the most useful websites and methods of locating the information that you seek.   Each resource will assist in facilitating your family tree projects effectively.

There are literally hundreds if not thousands of potential sources from which you can investigate the genealogy of your family.   For every online resource cited herein, there are dozens of offline or “in print”  books, photos, newspapers, directories and other items also available though many libraries and local government records.   Each have their benefit.  In libraries and other historical repositories of family information the benefit is in gaining access to items not indexed elsewhere. Each trip to the library or to family history centers offer to uncover something never seen before except in print.  In many cases you can see the first-hand documentation from the actual sources, but you need to be physically located in these places to see these records.   No person can conduct their research completely from the internet, in libraries or even at a family history center provided by the Church of Latter Day Saints.   A concerted effort using all of these resources are usually necessary.

Researching ancestry data items online is a different methodology.   Most online resources cite thousands and millions of records at some point scanned, copied or otherwise transcribed for your reading pleasure in whatever location you choose as long as you have an internet connection.   Being capable of browsing information from a broad variety of sources literally across the globe has advantages and disadvantages.  The vast amounts of information can make it difficult to find exactly what you’re looking for but you can indeed get much closer to the actual source online.

Below is our list of the most useful online genealogy resources. Some are very well-known and some are less-known or niche sites.

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