What is the Benefit of Facebook for Family History and Genealogy?

These past couple of months I have had lots of questions about what social media has to do with family history and genealogy.  Most people can name several social media platforms but don’t recognize that there are hundreds and hundreds of Social Media platforms.  In the broadest sense of the definition, social media is any platform that offers interaction with other users through comments, replies and even revision.  A couple you may not have thought of as social media are YouTube and Wikipedia. Most of us think of Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, Instagram, and blogs.

In this realm of social media, Facebook is the #1  platform in the world right now.  According to their stats, over 2 billion users sign on to Facebook monthly and over 1 billion check in daily.  Facebook is so much more than simply a place to chat with people.   With that kind of visibility we need to think about how we can use Facebook as more than a news feed for updates on friends.  We can ask ourselves how can I use this to go beyond the usual and ordinary. One way is to use Facebook as a search engine.

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Cousin Connections Can Bring Astonishing Results

Have you gone to the Memories section of Family Search yet?  The Family History Guide can teach you how to use this valuable section that is accessible on the Home page Project 2.  The Memories Section of FamilySearch is a compilation of photos and stories and documents that you or others can add to your ancestors’ pages.  The advantage to that is that once added, they can be preserved and shared in a safe place for all to enjoy.  It is so worthwhile to learn how to use this feature of FamilySearch Family Tree.  Your precious photos and documents will be so much safer there than is a box somewhere.

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Learning From The Best!

My husband, Jim, and I have spent an incredible week in Utah.  This is my first time back to Utah since I joined the Family History Guide staff as the Social Media Coordinator.  Last Saturday I went to the Springville Family History Center’s Springville Family History Fair.  It was a full day of wonderful speakers.

First I listened to Robert Kehrer, Senior Project Manager for FamilySearch.  He is so knowledgeable about all things concerning FamilySearch.  He spoke about what is already there and what is coming in the future and it was fascinating. Hearing his talks the first two hours was a real bonus.

My primary purpose in attending that conference was to hear from James Tanner, the Chairman of the Board for The Family History Guide.  He and his wife Ann, also a Family History Guide Board Member, were there and he gave a wonderful introduction to many who were learning about The Family History Guide for the first time.  I absolutely love to see people’s first reactions to this ‘good news’ website.  The first reaction is astonishment and excitement as the presentation unfolds. The last comment is usually, “Why didn’t I know about this before?”  If you love the Family History Guide as we do, please share it with others.

One thing James said is that if he had had The Family History Guide years ago it would have taken 15 years off the time it took him to learn the information he needed to be effective as a genealogist and family historian.  That was impressive for sure!

The second thing we came to Utah for was to attend our weekly management meeting that I usually attend via conference calling. It was a sheer delight to be here with this wonderful and talented group of people.  This one hour alone was worth the 12 hour drive to get here.

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Starting Your Research With What you Already Know

Most of us want to know about our immigrant ancestor, the one who came across a border or crossed an ocean to come to America.  Unless you are a first generation immigrant, you have to work with United States (or the country of your birth) records first.  Continue reading “Starting Your Research With What you Already Know”