From Library Journal
What is a collective naturalization? Why is there no 1890 federal census? These questions are symptomatic of the biggest problem in genealogical research: too often, genealogy newbies overlook valuable data or fail to optimize their research time because they have not yet learned the proper terms or numerous informational tidbits that can expedite research. In the form of answers and suggestions to 260 frequently asked questions, Melnyk (The Weekend Genealogist) covers not just the basic whats and wheres of genealogical records but, more importantly, the whysDwhy certain records were created and why they are important to researchers. Beginning with a chapter on general genealogy topics, Melnyk looks at how to begin research. She follows with discussions on various sources, including oral histories, vital and church records, naturalization and land records, computer databases, and cemetery records. Sources often overlooked, such as coroners' records and military hospital records, are covered in detail. Melnyk also documents sources and the reliability of records and provides a chapter of terms encountered during research. Throughout, readers will find record examples, charts of data, and bibliographies for further reading. Although many beginning genealogy guides are available (e.g., Christine Crawford-Oppenheimer's Long-Distance Genealogy, LJ 8/00), this book has a novel format, and the basic know-how it affords will help readers save time while thoroughly gathering data. Even researchers (and librarians) with considerable experience may encounter facts here that refresh or enlighten. Highly recommended for public and genealogy library collections. (Index not seen.)DElaine M. Kuhn, Allen Cty. P.L., Ft. Wayne, IN
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.
This handy guide provides the answers to more than 250 commonly posed questions pertaining to the methodology and execution of genealogical research and inquiry. The author, citing the often daunting and overwhelming availability of both primary and secondary resources in the twenty-first century, supplies a manageable framework for novice researchers. Categorized according to document type, the questions asked most frequently concern acquiring, interpreting, and assessing the reliability of church, census, hospital, military, tax, and funeral home records. The significance of accessing reliable information via computer databases and the Internet is also addressed. The recent boom in genealogical research is creating a demand for straightforward, easy-to-follow instructional manuals such as this one. Margaret Flanagan
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