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Re: A author's thoughts on research

>>expand our focus beyond our family tree>>

I've tried/done this and does it ever open an interesting family history.

When we started putting our data into a genealogy software program the limit for the number of individuals was 1200 and included only the names, "vitals" and sources,... no notes, photos or any of the good stuff available today. So I limited my input to only direct ancestors and/or descendants.

With expanded software capabilites I started adding collateral families, then surnames for suspected individuals in my areas of research that I didn't have a connection for at that moment.

Fortunately my primary area of research was the Miami Valley of Ohio where I am located and a set of 3rd great-grandparents (AA) settled. They were married in 1816 and had 10 children who survived into adulthood, married, had families, and remained in this area.

Expanding my research during those early days has uncovered relationships (direct & collateral)that include Preachers, Teachers, Barbers, Underground RR operators, Civil War Veterans, Criminals, Authors, Musicians, former Slaves of whites and Native Americans (Shawnee), Laborers, Laundresses and many others.

Now my dilemma, other than writing abilites, is do I go with just direct family stuff, AA History for this area as it relates to family, both or a combination of the two? Do we write of just the early years (pre-1800 to 1900)? Or, from the present back to the pre-1800s?

I have more questions on how to proceed than answers, so I'm open to all suggestions.

Oh, that initial database has expanded from less than 1200 to 16,000 individuals with sources, notes, photos, a family website ( for my maternal lines (Adams-Lee/Reno-McKee) and a personal Home Page on Family Tree Maker, see URL below.

Didn't mean to be so long-winded, thanks for listening and take the advice from the previous post. Expand your research beyond family and you will be surprised by how much you uncover about your family.

Art Thomas

Messages In This Thread

A author's thoughts on research
Re: A author's thoughts on research
Re: A author's thoughts on research

18 Dec 2002 :: 14 Nov 2008
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