GENEALOGY - Researching My Ancestors
Genealogy is fast becoming one of the most popular hobbies in America. Researching one's ancestors can be fun, enlightening and very rewarding. The Johnson County Public Library recognizes the importance of such research and the Historical Room, located at our Franklin Branch, has many print and microfilm resources to assist you. The following links will give you more information about what we have in our Historical Room collection, as well as, the many online resources available to help you with your family history research.
To get you started, here are a few basic pointers:
- Gather and recall known information - speaking to your family and using ancestor charts, record as many details as you can. Make copies of important documents and keep them organized.
- Choose one person about whom you need more information - to make your research more manageable, focus on an individual or two, rather than your entire family tree. Choose one person at a time and identify what information about them that you need, i.e., marriage date, a place of birth, etc.
- Identify sources that will give you the information you need - many records are generated in a lifetime and the task is to identify what records contain the information you need. This may involve contacting or traveling to specific libraries, archives or courthouses to search for actual documents.
- Document your findings - make sure to record where you get each bit of information so that you can retrace your steps if necessary, or prove your findings.
- Search the Internet - the Internet can help you in many ways in your genealogy research. Some records have been digitized and made available on the Internet, though don't expect to find everything you need freely available. The Internet can also help you plan trips to other research facilities or help you connect with relatives or other genealogists.
- Learn more - there are tons of books and websites that can help you learn more about how to do specific kinds of genealogy research, i.e, researching immigration records or military records. The Library is your portal to such knowledge - ask your librarian how to learn more!
- Visit other places for genealogy research - there are many repositories of information which can help you. Besides the Library and the Courthouse, you might want to visit an LDS Family History Center, The Johnson County Museum of History or the Indiana State Library.
- Johnson County Public Library Historical Room
- JCPL Electronic Resources - Ancestry Plus and Heritage Quest
- Websites for getting started
- Other Genealogy Web Resources
- Johnson County Genealogy Web Resources
- Indiana Genealogy Web Resources
- Genealogy Forms on the Web
- Topical Guides