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Contents:
  1. Free ancestry resources | phrenfabrodung.tk
  2. Genealogy and Family History
  3. Popular services
  4. Search a selection of our free records
  5. Get to Know Your Family Tree.

You cannot manage without the basic building blocks of certificates and census returns, and money can be liberally spent in travelling to archives, paying online fees, hiring private researchers and whatever else you deem necessary as you continue your research. But there are good reasons why more and more genealogists are going online.

There is a wealth of material available on the web, and it is being added to every day. Databases and search engines make information accessible in a way in which it wasn't before: searches that used to take weeks or months now take only a few minutes. And sometimes it's cheaper and easier to do what you can online and in your own time than travelling to archives and bowing to time pressure there.

Free ancestry resources | phrenfabrodung.tk

You may find that you can use online resources for free or more cheaply at archives, but is it worth the time and expense of travelling there? And you will still have to pay for the photocopying! First of all, there are lots of excellent free resources used by genealogists - here is a small selection:.

But none of these is guaranteed to hold all the records that you want. So, to start from the very beginning, which sites do you absolutely need in order to build your family tree, and how can you tell where to put your money?

Genealogy and Family History

There are some basic things that you might look out for when choosing your first genealogical websites:. Can you find details of all the records held, how they were created and how researchers can use them? You're not going to be able to do your genealogy without them. Without this information, you might just end up groping in the dark.

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It is always better seeing the original document in digitised form that what someone else has copied or miscopied from it. Some sites just give indexes and you order copies of the original document from there, according to what you find - that's fine because you can see the information for yourself when your document arrives. If you like to look at everything on a site, it is better to have a subscription that lasts for a certain period of time, during which you may look at whatever you like as many times as you please.

If you simply want two or three records, and you have the option, you might be better off paying only for what you view. Hint: Often there is a free trial period for subscription sites so you can decide if it really is for you. Hint: Often when you look at a record on a subscription site, you can return to it for free for a period of time - but make sure you get a print out of the searches you have done, along with the results.

When you have done your basic genealogy and built a skeleton family tree, it is time to investigate more specialised websites, for example, those containing military or employment records, parish records or wills. But you will need some basic information to make best use of what they have on offer: there is no point in paying to look for details of your great grandfather's military career if you don't know his full name, date of birth and the force in which he served. Without this kind of background information, you will have trouble identifying your ancestor among the thousands of others.

In other words, you need to use genealogical sites in the right order to ensure that you get the most out of them.

Popular services

Here are some features shared by many of the excellent sites - and some questions that you might like to ask:. If your grandfather was a merchant seaman, for example, does this site contain seamen's records for the period during which he served? You shouldn't have to pay to find out whether or not you want to use a website, so it is a great help if there is an explanation of what records are available, what you need to know to identify your ancestor and what more you can hope to learn about them from the records you might find.

From the description accompanying the site, you need to be sure of what you've searched - or eliminated - by using the site. These can be very useful in understanding and interpreting whatever material you find relating to you ancestor.


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Of course, sometimes you won't find what you're looking for online; it's the same when you go to an archive. And not all resources are available on the web, so your path may inevitably lead to an archive in the end.

But the web is a good place to get started. Don't forget to search for sites that tap into your area of genealogical interest! People who could not read and write relied on those who could to enter their names and details on records such as birth certificates.


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Those people recording the data wrote down the name in the way they thought it should be spelt. In a country like Australia, with its large immigrant population, a variety of accents would be spoken and the way in which a particular name might be recorded would depend upon the hearing and interpretation of the clerk.

You therefore need to be imaginative in considering all of the different ways in which a surname could be spelt eg Jefferies, Jeffreys, Geoffreys etc This is especially important where the initial letter of the name can change. The search facilities on the website allow you to specify whether you wish the search to be limited to exact spellings or to include likely variants. The majority of records that have been digitised relate to historical material and it would be very surprising if you were able to find yourself within these databases.

None of the records were made specifically for the benefit of family historians but were compiled by the government who gave assurances of privacy for certain periods of time depending upon the record in question.

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It is these historical records which are now being made available and you will therefore need to know some details about the last two or three generations of your family in order to use the databases to the best advantage. You have the census records from the UK, where are the Australian ones? The first national census survey in Australia was taken in Unfortunately, the Australian government, once it had extracted all the statistical data required from the various censuses, destroyed the original returns and no census records survive for the period between and The records of the census will not be made available by the government until 7 August There are various population lists and surveys for parts of the country, usually arranged by state, that have survived from prior to Perhaps the best known of these is the Census of New South Wales which lists over 36, people resident in the colony at that time.

The information from these records is available on this website. Where can I get a birth, marriage or death certificate? Birth, marriage and death certificates are available from the appropriate registry of each state. Ages on certificates, especially death certificates can sometimes be unreliable.

Search a selection of our free records

It should be remembered that the person most likely to know the age of the deceased, was the deceased himself and he was, of course, in no position to provide the information. Having said that, no one knows when and where they were born; we are simply told the facts by our parents or other relatives at a later date. The information recorded on any certificate is therefore only as accurate as the knowledge of the informant, the person who provided the details to the registrar.

It is therefore not uncommon to find that ages on certificates can be incorrect by 1, 2 or even more years depending upon how well the informant knew the person in question. Jeremy Palmer has been a full time professional genealogist since He was the Registrar at The Institute of Heraldic and Genealogical Studies in Canterbury, England for many years before emigrating to Australia where he now runs his own research business which specialises in tracing the British origins of families in Australia and New Zealand.

He also lectures on a wide variety of family history topics for the Society of Australian Genealogists. Why is the surname spelt incorrectly? Monthly Newsletter Sign up for the Ancestry Monthly Newsletter and get free site and content updates, other news plus family history tips direct to your inbox.

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