I have been tracing ancestors and the history of various branches of my husband, Vern’s, and my own family lines for over forty years. I now have many boxes and filing cabinets full of notes and documents. My New Year resolutions for my family history were:
1) to sort, file and document my research into a simple system so, I can find the document and information immediately.
2) to put the information and documents into a family history programme on my computer.
3) to ‘blog’ my family research to keep me motivated and to make contact with other relatives interested in the same families.
It is now three months into the year and you may be wondering how my family history resolutions are going. The sorting and filing is progressing well. I have successfully designed a simple system to sort and file my documents and already have over forty labeled folders sitting in book cases and the overflowing boxes and overstuffed filing cabinets are slowly disappearing. The most important thing is that it works for me and I will continue to use it!
I have also entered all the information into a family history program on my computer. Again it is a simple program that I understand and can use, so as I progress with the research new material can be immediately entered and referenced..
Today I begin my journey of ‘blogging’ my research to share with our distant relatives, and can now claim I have kept to my New Year Family History Resolutions.
One might ask what is the point of these resolutions?
Out of Vern’s sixteen great-great grandparents, fourteen come from the southern counties of Ireland. The other two come from Staffordshire in England. On my family lines, ten are from the northern counties of Ireland and the other six are from London, Kent and Sussex in England.
Although very challenging, I have been quite successful in tracing all these lines over the years. Now I have carried out my Family History Resolutions I can assess all the information and documents I have on our ancestors, and know what information I am missing. I can now make a research plan to find the missing documents I need to fill in the next piece of the story. In other words, I can see where my ‘brickwalls’ are and can make plans to try and solve the mysteries.
The journey has begun. May we all travel well together as we search our ancestral trails.
As I ‘plan the work and work the plan’ in researching our families I will share with you the highs and low of solving these family mysteries. In no particular order, these are the families I will be researching in Ireland and England.
GROWCOCK and ANDERSON in Co Meath, Ireland
MCMAHON in Co Fermanagh, Ireland
MCCREA in Co Donegal, Ireland
GOODWIN in Co Monaghan
KANE and MCDONNELL in Co Armagh
KENNEDY in Co Tyrone, Ireland
MACKEY and STAPLETON in Co Tipperary
FINLAY in Co Dublin
SHERWOOD in Co Kildare
SHINKWIN in Co Cork
BAXTER and MATHER in London, England
BELL and VIDLER in Co Kent, England
PACKHAM, SARGENT and JARRETT in Co Sussex, England
HODGETTS in Staffordshire, England