Genealogy: How to use and Research Family Historian Books

English Family History Book

People have been researching their own family history lines for centuries. Therefore, there are all types of books printed to cater for this. Each one will reveal a wealth of different information. If you go to your local family history center, you will be amazed at the thousands of books on their shelves. These books could have records going back as far as the year 1400.


Books from different countries

The world is a very big place and people tend to move about with ease these days by plane or ship. Therefore checkout all the books from different countries.

Shipping and Immigrating Books

Families have emigrated or moved from country to country for years. There are books covering many details of these moves. Some will have shipping records of families emigrating from England to Australia, or America. Each country hold its own records of this movement, although books have been printed covering several country migrations.

Surname Books

Many families have done their own surname research. Some have gone back several generations tracing the movements of their ancestors. Having gone back as far as they can they collate all the records, and print booklets of their heritage records. In the case of surnames like Smith, Jones, or Brown you need to be very careful when following someone else's family records. Because it looks right does not mean it is.

Never include a family member into your group until you have confirmation, from a birth, death, christening, or marriage certificate. Failure to confirm the family records could lead you on a different family line. Once added, it is hard to distinguish where the error occurred. While researching these books, you may find relatives that other people are looking for. Share any information you find, with others, then they can do the same for you. It could save you hours of unnecessary research.

Spelling of names is another important thing to consider. Even today, we find spelling errors. Census records for instance, and handwriting when written in pen and ink was very hard to decipher. Photocopiers were not always clear, therefore, people are human, and errors occur. Then there is the similarity in names, like Read, Reed, or Reid. Handwritten letters like r and n were easily mistaken for an m, which could make the name look completely different.

First names or nicknames, misinterpreted as Edward, Ted, Teddy, or even Ed. A first name of Morris could be mistaken for the person's surname. These are the things you will need to look for when researching and reading information in these books.

Books on World War 1 and 2 Records

With the advent of world wars, so many family members were lost at sea or shot down in planes. Many details are still being uncovered, or from members that survived and told their stories. You have to thank the diligence of these people uncovering this information and writing the books for you to find this information.

Convict Records

Researching your family does not always uncover the pleasantries of life. We may find members of the family to be convicts sometimes exported from their motherland because they stole a loaf of bread. You could find medical records of mental illness or even murders. It is only by reading the information that you will uncover the mysteries of your ancestors' history.

Before doing any research, write down all the information you know about your particular family. Include Aunts, Uncles, Cousins, their names and place of birth. Any dates and information, this will help you to get started.

The Internet

The Internet has a wealth of information waiting for you to discover. Join the various forums, mailing lists and ask for help, when needed. Make sure you return the favor where possible. There are hundreds of Books, Cd's records, all full of information available on line to purchase.


Check out you local churches for birth, and christening records. It is amazing how many secrets might find there.

No matter how or where you find the information, add that next family member to your family. There are many rewards to researching your family history.

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Comments 15 comments

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA

I love genealogy research, so thank you for all the wonderful tips!

Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia Author

Hope it helps you. Your family centers have so much information in their books. Thanks for reading this

SweetiePie profile image

SweetiePie 8 years ago from Southern California, USA

I found a census document with my great-grandparents' signatures from back in 1920.  That was quite a find!  However, my grandpa said he could not confirm it, but I was able to confirm it by matching up birthdates, places of residence in the US, and countries of origin, etc.  I think the print was too small on the document for him :).  I would like to become better at genealogy research eventually.  Maybe you should write a book about it Eileen as you seem very knowledgable on the subject:).

Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia Author

I did write a small booklet. Which I self print and sell on ebay. But now most of it is up on hub pages now.

But non hubbers can still buy if they want to. It has taken my daughter and I ages to find some of our rellies in England And yes it is frustrating when you think you have found someone then it turns out to be a dead end. But keep going the rewards are truly worth it. Thanks for that.

Constant Walker profile image

Constant Walker 8 years ago from Springfield, Oregon

I'm really interested in this topic bacause, from what I've been told I have some colorful ancestry - none of which I've been able to confirm, however. Scottish; I've been told that my blood line goes directly back to Robert The Bruce (can't confirm it. German; my great-grandparents had money and fled from Hitler's Gremany to keep from loosing it all - only to have their children piddle it away(can't confirm it). Iraquois; I'm told that my great-grandmother was a princess, but from what little I've learned, there was no such title in the Iraquois language. And a sliver of English blood; nothing interesting there.

If even one of these is true, I'd be jazzed. If they all turn out to be true, I'm not sure I'd be able to live with myself... :)

Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia Author

Constant walker I know where u are coming from. My husbands father would not tell us anything about his family except that his mother was and indian princess and her name was Rose soloman. (another princess) He used his marriage certificate to join the army.

And 2 different birth dates. We cannot find him. But the best thing you can do is ask the living for any information at all and then slowly work back from there.

Maybe if you can find your birth certificate, or parents wedding certificate. Email churches, etc or BMD check out their records. And look at my other genealogy articles for more links to check out. Join mailing lists and ask for information on what u are looking for in there. Its amazing how much help you may get. Good luck

In The Doghouse profile image

In The Doghouse 8 years ago from California


Great information... I love this topic. I have used all of the above resources and will just add my testimonial to how much fun and excitement you can have finding out about your family history. It is one of the most rewarding experiences when you find where you have come from... it might even help you realize where you are going. Thanks have fun searching.

Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia Author

In the doghouse. Yes it is fascinating just what you can turn up. Even some of the not nice things. I bet they thought their pasts were dead and buried. And now we are digging all that juicy stuff right back up again. Fun for sure.

MrMarmalade profile image

MrMarmalade 8 years ago from Sydney

Val's great friend is into this area and she found some tremendous information on her father, who was killed in WW2.

We have manged to track down lots of information

Thanks for some great information

Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia Author

That is brilliant. It is amazing what you can find, good things annnnd also the bad things that people thought were buried..

bluewings profile image

bluewings 8 years ago from Milkyway

I haven't tried it myself but a friend traced back her ancestors and found that she descended from a royal lineage.Since then we call her the queen.Nice hub.

Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia Author

Bluewings you should have ago at looking its amazing what u might find

There is a free link on one of my other genealogy sites to down load the software in which to store all the information you find. and you can share this with other family members.

bluewings profile image

bluewings 8 years ago from Milkyway

Thanks , I will give it a whirl....this might give me some goose bumps.I am still hoping that they were at least mammals ,lol.Thanks!

Eileen Hughes profile image

Eileen Hughes 8 years ago from Northam Western Australia Author

bluewings, Is that so they can go swimming with the penguins. Give it a go for sure. Its amazing what u will find. Put messages on the notice boards and mailing lists. You will learn more that way.

LondonGirl profile image

LondonGirl 7 years ago from London

great hub - family history is fascinating, and your links and resources are a useful list.

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