genealogy

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genealogy techniques and tools

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Links

Historical Records

Free Access

  • FamilySearch - User submitted lines of varying accuracy; as well as the 1880/1881 Census for US, UK, Can; an older SSDI; and various extracted records.
  • USGenWeb Project An army of volunteers putting all sorts of great genealogy content on the web in their spare time. (Also a branch of rootsweb -> Ancestry.com -> MyFamily.com)
  • Ellis Island Foundation Ellis Island ship manifests with an index.
  • Various archives and government agencies best located at Cyndi's List
  • Heritage Quest Hard to decide where this goes. It's free.... if you have a library card from a participating library... which is many/most. This company provides "web libraries" to K-12, university, and local libraries, and happens to have a family history branch.

Membership $$$ Required

The first three of these are usually available to use for free at a local Family History Center

Services

  • Cyndi's List The web's largest index of all things genealogy
  • RootsWeb Portal site for Ancestry.com's free half, Rootsweb.
  • Genealogy Buff Kind of like rootsweb, it searches other sites and gives you links... mostly you get links, but there is some content.
  • Genealogy wiki at WikiCities

Software

  • PhpGedView: not evaluated yet (2006-10-28)
  • Family Tree Maker (FTM): not recommended
    • User Review: The company puts out some decent content and their customers wanted a program that worked with their content cds, so they threw together the worst program I have ever used and bundled it with their other stuff. The hassle is not worth any convinence that being able to interface with their content may provide. Unfortunately (true to the ms phenomenon) people seem to use what comes with their other software. (eep! Even this now belongs to MyFamily.com)
  • GeneWeb (alt): open source web-based family tree software
  • Personal Ancestral File (PAF): free
  • Ancestral Quest (AQ): Rumor on the street is that PAF is an old version (current when it was acquired but old now) of this. It does seem terribly familiar in look and feel. However, AQ has kept evolving, and now has fixes for many of my biggest complaints with PAF. I haven't used it enough to know if it has new issues.
  • Kinship Archivist: Shareware. I have never tried it because their web site gives me no confidence in their computer skills.
  • Brother's Keeper (BK): Shareware.
  • Legacy
  • Family Origins
  • Detective This web site also scared me away.
  • Family Software 2005 I have only heard of this one.
  • Reunion 8 This is the best (and only?) family tree software for the Mac.
  • RootsMagic All the hard core genealogist I know are raving about this one. It is supposed to be the bestest ever. I haven't tried it.

Tools and Toys