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Genealogy Gifts: What will engage my family?

Great Genealogy Gift Ideas for the Family (engaging non-genealogists) If you're the family genealogist, any genealogy gift probably seems exciting. But your non-genealogist family might not feel that way. The best gift will engage them by, first, not being dry and boring. A very detailed family tree chart might not be the best option if your family usually tunes you out when you start talking family history. If your family loves seeing your results (even if they don't want to help gather them) a detailed chart can be a good option, especially if you're dealing with academics or engineers that revel in detail. But what about the average non-genealogist? Here are some tips to engage the average non-genealogist: Consider a family tree or book that includes photos (see the suggestions below) or better yet, create a video. Highlight events or people they already know about including interactions with famous people or events. Don't overlook "famous&quo

Why Does Genealogy Cost So Much?

There are two sides to how much genealogy costs. Why Hiring a Professional Genealogist Costs So Much One side is how much it costs to hire a professional genealogist. This is a pretty short answer you should  be able to understand with little explanation. A professional genealogist costs so much because genealogy takes so much time. You are paying them for their time. Would you be willing to spend several weeks (repeatedly) working on someone else's family tree for nothing? And when I say nothing, I mean you wouldn't have any money coming in to pay for food, housing, etc. There is actually a TON of free genealogy help out there because people do love doing genealogy. But there's far more demand for help than available free help (there's usually more demand for paid help than professional genealogists that can handle the work, even!). OK, hiring someone to help you or to do the research for you is one thing. Why else is genealogy not free? Paying someone

Genealogy Hints for the Wrong Person : What Should I Do?

While researching your family history, you will come across hints on that seem to be for the wrong person or are for the wrong person. There are several reasons this happens. Read on to learn more about what to do when you encounter this situation. Why You're Getting Ancestry Hints for the Wrong Person The main reason you are getting hints for the wrong ancestor (or other person) is that computers are doing the research for you. When computers do genealogy, they are comparing "data points." Humans look at this information, also (data points can be a date, a place, a first name, a last name---these are fields in the computer database being searched, or what the computer thinks are equivalent data points when using OCR to "read" a document that doesn't have a database). The big difference is a human sees obvious mistakes a computer misses and also considers subtle clues the computer can't be programmed to take into consideration (we

What's the best genealogy software?

When you're ready, genealogy software can really help you. But which program should you get? There are a few things to consider when selecting genealogy software. Do you really need software? If you're not technically inclined, it might be a hinderance. What is the primary device you use for doing genealogy? Where do you live/where did the people you research live? How much time do you spend on genealogy? What features do you need or want? What do you like/understand/use?

How do I save money when hiring a professional genealogist?

Have a genealogy brick wall? Horrified by the cost of professional genealogy but still need help? Here are three things anyone should do before paying a genealogist to help with a research project. How do I save money when hiring a professional genealogist? Prep and organize what you already know. Determine exactly what you want help with. The bigger the project, the more it will cost. Consider both the "big" genealogy research companies and individuals. Which is better depends on what you want and need. Saving Money on Genealogy Research: Organization No matter how you actually are charged for genealogy, it is hourly work. No genealogist can be certain they can get the results you want (unless they have already finished doing what you want). The only way to know when to stop is knowing how many hours of work to do. To make it easier for the client, many genealogists charge a flat fee instead of letting the client pick an exact number of hours. Regar

How Much Does a Professional Genealogist Cost?

So you've gotten hooked on researching your family history but now you've got a problem... You either got stuck and need help. OR You want results faster. Now you're wondering, "how much does it cost to hire a professional genealogist to research my family tree for me?" Well, that's a tricky question to answer on a webpage but I'll give you the best answer for the two situations above. (These answers are for the United States in mid-2022, but with inflation still changing, these costs could go up. Professional genealogists have to cover their bills just like any other business!) How Much Does a Professional Genealogist Cost? $250-$5000 (but that's not the whole story, keep reading...) To hire a professional genealogist to "find your family tree" will result in a research project that costs thousands of dollars. Even a small amount of genealogical research is around $1000 and up.  There are smaller research or specialty se

Start Your Family Tree for Free : Asking Questions

If you want to start your family history for free, the best source is talking to your family. This doesn't have to be your ancestors (your parents, grandparents, etc.). It doesn't even have to be a relative that is older than you (like aunts and uncles). Any relative, even those younger than you, can provide good information to build a strong family tree. Even non-relatives that have information about your family are good people to interview.