GENEALOGY - Web Sites for Getting Started
- Cyndi's List - A growing website that contains hundreds of thousands of genealogy sites grouped in categories.
- FamilySearch - This Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (LDS) site has a search engine for over 35 million names in its "vast record collections," including its Ancestral File and International Genealogical Index, census and other vital statistics sources, and a directory of family history websites. Also provides genealogical search advice. Free registration allows additions of websites, family record retention in the LDS vault, email list access, and other services.
- Genealogy.com Genealogy Learning Center - One of the best resources for beginners to genealogy and family history to learn the basics of research. The site offers "how-to articles, genealogy classes and other resources." Includes information on getting started and organized; developing research skills; "Sharing Your Family's Story" (including a Biography Assistant to help write "biographies about your relatives or an autobiography about yourself"); research tips on using federal, state, and local records, and libraries and archives; and a glossary.
- RootsWeb - Billing itself as "The Oldest & Largest FREE Genealogy Site," RootsWeb includes search engines and databases, family trees (over 70 million names), surname and geographical mailing lists, and message boards. The site also hosts other volunteer projects such as the Immigrant Ships Transcribers Guild and Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness. Although it remains free to users, RootsWeb is now sponsored by Ancestry.com, whose databases (both free and pay) can also be searched from this site.
- US Gen Web Project - This comprehensive site provides links to all the state genealogy websites which, in turn, provide gateways to the counties. They also sponsor Special Archiving Projects that include putting all U.S. census data online; transcribing cemetery tombstone information; tracking single lineage; and genealogy for children. In addition, there is an excellent guide to doing genealogy research that also includes such information as caring for old documents; repairing old books; preserving old photographs; and publishing your results.