about me
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Meet the Author
I'm Jennifer, and I'm an Occasional Genealogist... sort of. For over ten years I've been a professional genealogist. I started researching my own family nearly 30 years ago. Like many of you, I started as an Occasional Genealogist. I had to squeeze research in while in school and while working full-time. Then I got my first genealogy job and for awhile, it was genealogy all the time. Now I have two kids. I do other people's genealogy constantly but my own? Coming up with ways to do great genealogy, despite all the interruptions, is now mandatory.

Read These Posts First

Posts contain affiliate links. See my disclosures page for details.


Quick Reads: Recovering Lost Links, Welcoming Newbies

I often find posts I'd like to share with readers but they don't warrant me writing a whole post about them. So, I'm going to try the "round-up" style post with bits of information from around the Internet. Right now, I don't expect to publish this regularly but we'll see.

This is also a way for you to learn about other sources for information, genealogical or not.

From Up Front with NGS (the official blog for the National Genealogical Society)

NEW Chrome Extension Takes You to Wayback Machine for 404 Page Codes!!!
I've already installed this extension I was so excited about it. I'll go months without needing the Wayback Machine but lately, I seem to use it a lot.

As an example of how you might use this (if you never have)...
Not too long ago I was reviewing a post from my business blog and found one of the links no longer worked. The company blog it linked to no longer existed (they were purchased by another company). The purchasing company didn't keep the blog. I was only able to get the article through the WaybackMachine. Needless to say, I saved an offline copy.

If you've ever saved a link/URL for research and then later found it didn't work, the Wayback Machine can save you (and then you'll learn not to just save a link, time-consuming but necessary).

Three Posts to Check Out

There are three similar posts I've read recently I wanted to point you to. All three have different takes on "newbies." Not in what they feel about them (I'm listing them because all three are all for supporting new members to the genealogy community) but in the purpose of the post. They're all similar, though, in making sure seasoned genealogists aren't "that guy" that is turning newcomers away (some do it on purpose but many do it unintentionally).

If you're new (or just feel you're new), you will hopefully get the feeling you're welcome. Should you come up against someone full of negativity, you can hopefully take Jenna's advice which is why I've included it.

I had previously read Kerry's post (before Amy linked to it) and it made me stop and look more closely at my DNA matches and think about what she said.

When you're in your genealogy bubble (those moments when you're just thinking about doing genealogy, not about playing nice with others in the sandbox) it's easy to forget what you say and do can have more impact than you mean. You often feel like you're just one of the genealogists but someone else sees you as someone with experience (if you're reading this, you are probably more experienced than many of the people who have taken an AncestryDNA test, even if you're just getting started).

I appreciate the sentiments from these ladies. We've all been new at genealogy at some point. Being courteous and welcoming to those coming behind you (even if you're barely in the door) is important. It's one of the reasons I've stuck with genealogy so long. I love getting together with my fellow genealogists. It was the first group I actually felt I belonged (despite, at the time, a 20+ year age difference between me and the average genealogist).

Let’s Stop Hand Wringing About DNA and Genealogy (Amy Johnson Crow)
Genealogy Changed Dramatically in 2016. I Can Prove It. (Kerry Scott from "Clue Wagon")
Genealogy Elitism, Shake It Off This Is Your Journey (Jenna Mills from "Desperately Seeking Surnames")

Have you found an article on the Internet you'd like to share with other Occasional Genealogists? It doesn't have to be something new, just something you loved or found helpful. Share a link in the comments and briefly tell us what you liked about the article.