This week is insane at work because all the stuff that “wasn’t all that important” suddenly became “urgent” as soon as it was realized that I would be on vacation for a week.  Fortunately, I had a head start on both of this week’s tasks.

Objective: Build a Research Toolbox

Fortunately, this is something I started working on a couple of years ago.  I did not ditch it for the do-over … no way!  Originally, my toolbox was on my website, but I realized I wasn’t using it over there.  I needed to have it in my face or it would be useless.  I have been going through and checking to make sure the links I’ve saved are still valid though.  So far, so good.  The other thing I’m doing is creating locality notebooks in OneNote so I can move some of those links out of my bookmarks and into a more organized space.  Here is an example of one of them:

Locality Notebooks


You may notice some of the Dropbox links … those are PDFs I have downloaded, mostly books.  Others are links to websites.  I am also adding the info for the hard-copy books that I have on the shelves behind me (because I always forget they are there).  I am working the “consult the locality notebook” task into my research process.

I’ve broken each state into the counties where I research and further broken them out into specific topics for the counties and the state as a whole.  It’s a slow process, but when it’s done? Priceless.

Objective: Cite Sources

-Citation_needed-Like Thomas said, true confession time: I didn’t begin citing my sources until about 5 years ago when I became an “educated genealogist” (read: I learned I was doing it all wrong!).  For me, source citations are like a map so the next person to research my people can figure out where my information came from, and can perform their own analysis of it.  They also serve to remind me how I know things, and help me make sure that all my information isn’t derived from the same original source.

News Flash: My source citations will never be perfect.  And I’m okay with that.  As long as I get enough information so the source can be located and evaluated, I’ve done my job.  That’s not to say that I won’t read the first two chapters of Evidence Explained a dozen or so more times.

Next week’s objectives are (1) evaluating evidence, and (2) reviewing online education options.  I will be evaluating evidence all week long because I’ll be at the genealogy mecca that is Salt Lake City and will be spending four full days in the Family History Library.  Plus, I get to see all my super special genealogy friends (and make a bunch of new ones too)!  Who’s jealous?


Do we share ancestors? Email me: lostancestors AT gmail DOT com

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