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The Organized Family Historian: How to File, Manage, and Protect Your Genealogical Research and Heirlooms (National Genealogical Society Guides) Paperback – Bargain Price, March 3, 2004
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I've been a researcher for many years, and bought this thinking it might provide a few new tips. The initial things are so clear and simple that my first thought was that I had bought a book only useful to beginners. But the further I went into the book, the more it became apparent how much I could improve my own research and file system. This is a surprisingly useful book.
Here I find logical systems that I had only partly accomplished. I keep seeing ways to improve my own files and ways to improve my research techniques.
These are all very well thought out and well presented. They start so simply that beginners can understand useful ways to do their files and manage their interviews & research. And it will have seasoned researchers saying 'Why didn't I learn this earlier in my life?"
I highly recommend this book, it is well worth more than the cost. You will be surprised at how very useful it is. If you are a veteran researcher, it will help logically untangle the sea of paper, notes, and accumulated genealogy bits & pieces that pile up over the years. And that will improve your research. Excellent book, extraordinarily well done.
This book helps prepare you for this assignment, and gives you many printed forms and spreadsheets you can print (from the enclosed CD) to organize these many tasks.
The book is easy to read, and reference. Specific steps are outlined clearly and concisely. The book opens the door to many other resources available, also.
Note: The 2004 version is the first edition, and has been exhausted from the book store's shelves. The cost of this book is steadily climbing. If a 2nd printing is not offered soon, the present supply of good used books will become even more precious!
If I wanted a book about "how to DO genealogical research," this book would be okay. However, this book is SUPPOSED to be about "how to ORGANIZE, FILE, MANAGE & PROTECT YOUR GENEALOGICAL RESEARCH AND HEIRLOOMS" which is what the cover of this book CLAIMS it does. IT DOES NOT!
For example, in the chapter about census records, there is NOT ONE iota of information about how to "file & manage" (as promised on the cover) the information gleaned from census records. The book only discusses what info is supposed to have been included in each of the census years and wholly fails to give one pointer about how to organize your census extractions -- it does not even discuss the pros and cons of organizing census extractions by year or by ancestor or by location much less how to transfer them to the computer.
The author includes only one small chapter about protecting research and heirlooms and there is precious little information that is of any actual use. However, the author goes to great lengths to discuss why the diaries of our ancestors are so valuable and must be preserved --- but any genealogist worth her salt will know that already!
This is a book for BEGINNERS ONLY!
If you are looking for more than a beginners' book, DON'T BUY THIS BOOK!
My money was wasted because I was MISLEAD as to the contents and because I relied on the alleged reputation of the author! If the book's cover accurately reflected what the author actually discusses, I would not have purchased it. The author and the National Genealogical Society have betrayed my trust.
P.S. The National Genealogical Society and the author hold the copyright for this book. It's a shame the NGS is a party to this kind of false advertising! I wrote the NGS about this book. The NGS did not even acknowledge receipt of my letter much less respond!