Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Best brick wall genealogy advice I can offer...

I had a reader write in and ask for help with a brick wall situation. They seem to have been quite thorough in their research and have tried to cover all of the known sources. Despite all of their efforts nothing has paid off to date. I offered them the following advice and thought I would pass it along to all of you as I think it is pretty good...
"...The best advice I can give you is to let it alone for awhile. Walk away from that family for a year and do not look back. Give it twelve months and then start searching Google, Ancestry and other sites for new clues. In a year's time, lots of new records will come online. Others may have transcribed something of interest to you or new records could have been discovered. There is no sense in beating a dead horse that might wake back up if left alone. I have found some of my biggest finds, years after looking for them. Sometimes you get so involved with a brick wall that you lose sight of what is around you and you begin to miss things. Take a break for awhile and let things settle down...I am not telling you to give up hope or anything. I am simply suggesting that you hold off on hiring a researcher and wait and see what pops up naturally. Put posts out on the internet that you are looking for this person and see if anyone responds..."
I have had cases where I ran myself ragged trying to find a specific bit of information, to no avail. I give and and BOOM, five years later, I find it by accident. It's like genealogy karma! Good things will come to those who wait!

1 comment:

bobby said...

I just wrote a small piece on brickwalls and what i can recommend is to think out of the box a bit.

Dont rely solely in the internet to get what you want. Write letters, make phone calls, send flyers out in the town where you ancestor lived.
http://bobbyfamilytree.blogspot.com/