There are many factors to consider when tracing your family members who have passed away. There are many levels of relatedness, and thorough research can lead to a wealth of information. Your family tree will be the foundation of your research, but there are other factors to consider. These include researching vital records like AJC obituaries and interviewing living relatives.
Creating A Family Tree
Tracing your family history can be an enormous undertaking. You will have to spend time gathering information, compiling it, and organizing it. You can focus on a single family or ancestral couple or work backward from the known to the unknown.
When tracing your family history, it is essential to include photographs and illustrations. Photos and pictures can show significant events in the life of your ancestors. Moreover, you can interview friends, neighbors, and work associates of your relatives. You can also try to find out about world events that occurred during the times when your relatives lived.
It is also essential to document the source of information. Whether the information was obtained from the internet or a family member, the source of each fact is necessary. When compiling your family history, try to keep a consistent schedule for your research. It would help if you also remembered that you could not include every piece of information about your family members.
Interviewing Living Relatives
When conducting interviews of living relatives when tracing family members who have passed away, it’s essential to make the interview a pleasant experience for both of you. Don’t overwhelm the interviewee by asking too many questions. Remember that oral history is an essential part of the family history and can contain details you may not have found elsewhere.
When interviewing living relatives, ask them about the family’s history. This can help you uncover a variety of details about the deceased relative. For instance, you can ask for copies of old family photos, which can trigger memories and ease the conversation into a more natural setting. Also, ask if they remember any specific relatives. If possible, bring a photo of the person you are trying to trace.
Before interviewing a living relative, prepare a list of questions. Some people find it helpful to talk about the death of a loved one, while others prefer to wait a few months afterward. This is understandable; the grieving process can cause a person to be reluctant to share details about their family member. However, this shouldn’t prevent you from asking. Preparing questions beforehand will ensure you get the most out of your interviews.
Fortunately, social media can help you locate your deceased relatives and their living relatives. You can search for information on a genealogy website. Then, you can contact relatives and ask for information. Be sure to keep a detailed record of everything you learn. Write down any facts you uncover, including rumors, phone numbers, and addresses. Once you have enough information, you can piece together your family tree.