Leafseeker Notebook

End of Year Recap

Perhaps we have had a challenging genealogical research year, plagued with obstacles of time-period and circumstance. Winter is arriving here in the Midwest and provides a great time to reflect on negative results and brick walls that have hampered our progress.

Winter Sunrise
Winter sunrise over LaVis farm
  1. Set aside one hour each week to focus on a specific challenge. I prefer a Sunday afternoon after the farm chores are completed. Try to avoid rabbit hole researching that takes you astray.
  2. Do not view the negative as a failure. Negative results are still findings. If I cannot locate a record in the repository or alternative sources, I know to expand my research and reconsider possibilities for the event.
  3. Take a break. I often move away from the problem at hand and give my mind a chance to refresh. Returning to the project with a clear mind helps avoid brick walls that can often be self-caused. Draft many questions, do not make assumptions, and find resources to assist the effort.

While the gloomy days of winter move in, take advantage of these coming days to tackle that challenging ancestral trail to beat cabin fever!

Happy Leaf Seek’n!

Revisiting Completed Research

Ah, those early days of starting the family tree. Each discovery offered a rush so exciting the need to continue along the path felt never-ending.

Consider revisiting those early finds and evaluate them with a fresh pair of eyes. Revisitation is not to provide doubts about prior research, but to give a further glance at items that may have considerable meaning for present questions.

Overall, mining every morsel of data from new and old documents can lead to opening or closing those troublesome ancestral doors.

Happy Leaf Seek’n!

LaDonna Garner, M.A.
LaDonna Garner, M.A.