Monday, December 14, 2009

Using the Future to Find the Past



Nothing like a mysteriously ambiguous blog title to capture some viewers, eh?

Actually, though, this really is about using future tools to peer back in time at your family history. You're probably already familiar with the venerable FamilySearch site -- one of the premier genealogy sites on the web.

But did you know FamilySearch also has a Labs page? This is where they post their up-and-coming tools that are in development, and are made available for a test run. That's right...you can be the first one on your block to try out the latest genealogical power tools. 

Marie Curie in The Lab


The current listings at FamilySearch Labs include some intriguing possibilities for new ways to explore your family history:



  • FamilySearch Beta -- a major renovation to the familysearch.org web site
  • Record Search -- a quick and easy way to search millions of historical records for clues about your ancestors.
  • Research Wiki -- a community of research experts and interested genealogists that share up to date information on how to research sources for information about your ancestors.
  • Community Trees -- Ever wish you could reconstruct the families that lived in your ancestral village in the 1750s? Now you can.

I highlighted one of the Lab success stories -- the Pilot Search for Ancestors -- in an earlier post.

There's much more than this available, so be sure to check out the FamilySearch Labs page (and while you're there, check out their motto as well!).


Visit the main page of Free Genealogy Tools for more, umm, free genealogical tools.

And don't forget to also check for your family history at Ancestry.com and NewspaperArchive.com. These are subscription databases, but they are among the most powerful research tools available for looking into family roots.

NewspaperArchive.com

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