Weekly Recap – Sept 22 – 28 2019

How Did I Do This Week?


I managed to clear a whopping 93 hints this week, not too bad for one week.  It’s still overwhelming to have more than 10,000 to go though.

I cleared 63 records, and 31 family trees.  I remove the member trees completely because they tend to have inaccurate information and duplicate people that muddies up my tree.  I don’t want that.  I want to make sure I’ve verified everything I have personally, so I refuse to rely on other people’s trees.

I gained 7 stories which I’m excited to get to at some point.  The stories are my favorite part of this because they tell more about the ancestor as a person than the record hints do.

September 22 – 28

This week, I started working on new ancestors in my tree.  Well, some of them I had looked at before and had new hints, but some of the folks were new to my tree.

I researched the following new people in order this week:

Not too bad for one week.  Most of these folks didn’t have a lot of information on them just yet but I found a little bit on each of them just to get them started.

Plan Going Forward

In my previous Progress post, I changed my plan for continuing my research.  I need an organized plan in order to get all of this done in a systematic way.

Instead of starting at one generation and researching all of the people within that generation, I decided to focus solely on my direct ancestors first.

By doing it this way, it’ll be easier for me to keep track of the details for each person to ensure that they I don’t mix up records and attach incorrect facts.

So for now, I will proceed with what I did this last week, I’ll research a direct ancestor and their spouse until I get as far back as I can.  While I’m researching them, I will make note of their children so that I can come back and research those indirect ancestors later on.

Once I’ve gotten as far back as I can on one line of direct ancestors, I’ll move on to the next line and do the same for that one.  I will repeat this process for each line of direct ancestors until I’ve gotten as far back as I can on all of them.  Then I will shift my focus to filling out their families with the indirect ancestors.

Extra Credit

I did work on a couple of my extra credit activities this last week.  While these tasks certainly aren’t necessary for every family historian, they are tasks that I find beneficial and therefore I would recommend to anybody pursuing their own ancestry.

  • Grave Hunting
  • Grave Tagging

Ancestry Academy Courses

I did not take any of the ancestry academy courses during this time as I was focused more on research and graves.

But I did watch a training video about TreeShare, a feature of the RootsMagic tool that I use to sync up with Ancestry.com.

RootsMagic’s TreeShare for Ancestry

This video basically walked through how to use TreeShare to sync up your family tree in RootsMagic to your family tree on Ancestry.com and how to process the changes between the two.  It also reviewed how to process hints in RootsMagic as well as a few other capabilities of the tool.

Start Your Free Family Tree

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Grave Hunting

I know there are mixed feelings about people photographing headstones of people that aren’t their own family.  I try my hardest to be respectful when I go out and document graves.

Since I rely on this in order to find my own family members, I feel it is important for me to give back in the same manner.

I can say from my own personal experience, when I go out to a cemetery for this purpose, I pay the utmost respect to each grave I visit.  When there is trash around the area, I pick it up.   When there is overgrowth growing on the headstone, I pull it and clean it up.  When the flowers and memorabilia have fallen over, I pick them up and set them right.  This is just my way of paying respect to our ancestors before us…whether they are my direct ancestor or not.

I did go grave hunting once this week, unfortunately, the cemetery I was looking for was not found.  The address I had for it took me to a location that did not have a cemetery where I could easily find it.  So it was a failed mission.

Grave Tagging

Billion Graves sends volunteers out to local cemeteries to take photos of the headstones in each cemetery.  As you take the photos, Billion Graves attaches a GPS tag to that headstone.  This allows people to find the graves of their family members online and know exactly where they are on the map.

Since I live in a new area now, I researched the area cemeteries and spent a lot of time this past two years documenting graves.  I tagged 951 graves this week at the Florida National Cemetery.

951 Graves Tagged

Transcribing the headstones makes the people searchable within the database.  I have not uploaded them and transcribed them yet.  But doing so allows family historians like myself to find the resting places of their family members as well as obtain the dates of their birth and death.

This year, I’ve helped 8,803 people find their ancestors by tagging graves and transcribing headstones this year.  This is my way of giving back, I’m super proud to be able to help.

I made steady progress this week and I’m feeling like I’m getting back on track with things.  I think by this time next week, I will have pretty much every aspect of this working like a well oiled machine again.

With that…it’s time to start the week!

Take care and hug your loved ones,


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