Thursday, August 6, 2009

Genealogy From A to Z

This is a popular Facebook meme that has been going around where you answer a question based around a letter of the alphabet. A friend (non-blogger) and I put a genealogy spin on it and came up with these and I thought I'd give it a try:

~A: Pick a random number from here and look that person up in your ahnentafel. Alternate: use today's date instead of a random number

~B: Are your ancestors mentioned in any books? If so, what books?

~C: How did/do the people in your family celebrate? Any holiday traditions?

~D: Look at your tree and find any events that occurred on this date, like births, deaths or marriages.

~E: Pick an ancestor and describe what kind of an education they had, such as where they went school or what they majored in in college.

~F: Food plays a big role in family traditions. Talk about a recipe, cooking technique that has been passed down or memory having to do with food.

~G: List a gravesite of an ancestor that you've visited or would like to.

~H: List a historical event that your ancestor either witnessed or was a part of.

~I: Talk about an ancestor's immigration experience.

~J: Find "junior" in your tree and write a little something about them.

~K: List what is known about your most frustrating brick wall ancestor(s).

~L: Research some genealogy terms in another language, example: cognome=surname in Italian.

~M: List an ancestor who served in the military and any conflicts they were involved in.

~N: List an occurrence where a neighbor was actually a relative or in some way connected with an ancestor.

~O: Find a new obituary or talk about a favorite or what, in your opinion, makes a good obituary.

~P: Pick a place where you're ancestors lived that you find interesting or would like to visit.

~Q: Have a genealogy query? Post it here for the whole internet to see.

~R: Any members of royalty in your tree?

~S: Share a tip about sourcing.

~T: Try and translate or transcribe a document of genealogical significance to you.

~U: Research some unknown relatives (those you haven't researched much or don't have much on).

~V: Any special vacations or trips either you or your ancestor went on? Alternate: talk about a type of vital record or area on a vital record that you think is underutilized in genealogy research.

~W: A lot of times, a witness to an event (like a marriage) is also a relative. Research some of the witnesses listed in your records and find out if they have any ties to your family.

~X: Do you have any records where instead of a signature is the mark X? Talk about that record, the practice in general or what effect improved literacy and educational opportunities have had on genealogy research.

~Y: Pick an especially significant year for your ancestors or talk about a year in history in which you'd like to visit.

~Z: Find someone in your family tree whose name (first, middle, maiden or last) starts with the letter Z or a relative who lived in a place that started with that letter. My cousin came up with this as an alternate: talk about a child in your family tree that didn't get a chance to see their first birthday (meaning they passed at zero years of age).

I've got some relatives and friends doing this through e-mail (I was hoping this would get them blogging, but oh well). I'm going to do a post on one letter (starting with A, ending with Z)whenever the mood strikes me, there is no timetable or deadline. These are just the questions we came up with, if anyone out there wants to play along, feel free to come up with your own questions/letters or use the ones above. These can be answered in one sentence or a series of posts, it is up to you how much you want to write.

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