Saturday, September 3, 2011

Name Indexes and Category Lists

Name Indexes use your ancestor's names to find information about them. The largest name index is Internet Family Finder, located at www.genealogy.com/ifftop.html. This site indexes more than 100,000 published family histories and other information located on thousands of web sites around the world. Other major name indexes include: http://www.ancestry.com/, http://www.genealogylibrary.com/, http://www.genserv.com/, and http://searches.rootsweb.com/. Category Lists help users identify research sites. The best known of these family history web sites is Cyndi's List at http://www.cyndislist.com/, which lists over 308,000 web sites in over 186 categories. Another major comprehensive site is Genealogy SiteFinder at www.genealogy.com/links which lists over 50,000 web sites. Both have searchable indexes of their lists. To use these indexes, think about what you know about a specific ancestor or surname and then look in the appropriate categories. If you were trying to find informtion on a Quaker couple married in Virginia in 1766, you could look in categories for marriages, Virginia, Quakers, or Colonial records. These web sites also help locate information about an ancestor's culture, traditions, homeland, and history. This information gives you a greater appreciation of your heritage, the sacrifices your ancestors made for you, and a better understanding of what their life was like.

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