• Making a Family Tree – The Challenges of Beginning Genealogists

    We did a survey a little while back where I asked the original visitors to this website what their biggest challenge was when making a family tree. The idea was to make sure the website was a resource that would help people overcome these initial barriers.




    This is what people said was their hassle.

    • Trying to figure out how to complete a formal family tree chart (like the one you downloaded)
    • There was confusion on whether or not cousins should be on your tree
    • Some folks had a terrible time understanding how to obtain birth, marriage, and death certificates (and when or why they were important).
    • Surnames (especially when immigrating relatives changed the spelling) were a problem.

    We actually received 182 different responses, but these were some of the more popular ones. We built this site around the results of that survey, and developed the tools you’ll find on this site around solving these problems. How are things going with you? Are you finding that any of these relate to what you’re experiencing? Use the comments area below to post your biggest genealogy challenge.

    I’ll answer what I can. Please feel free to comment as well if you know an answer or resource that might help.


    7 Responses to “Making a Family Tree – The Challenges of Beginning Genealogists”
    1. Anna says:

      I do not know where/when/ my mother died. I have only up to my Great Grand-parents on both sides of my parents.

    2. Chris says:

      Anna –

      Thanks for leaving a message. I’m interested in hearing how others have broken through the barrier of your Great Grand-parents. If you’re reading this and have some advice please post.

      What type of research have you completed?

    3. Danielle C. says:

      That’s really interesting! I’ve been having the same problems, but I’ve worked it out after looking up some more info. Thanks so much for the survey; I found it really fascinating.

    4. Anna says:

      Hi Anna – I use ancestry.com.au and have been successful with most ingormation online. I have gone back many generations (about 20 or more)and am waiting for a certificate from Englad to get more info on a great/great g’father so I can go further back. Try ancestry.com whatever your country you are in = once you get some names and dates others fall into place but check to make sure dates coincide


    5. Paige Harper says:

      I am having no luck finding relatives in pre a during the civil war in arkansas. rumor has it that they moved to Mo during the war. any suggestions would be greatly appreciated

    Share Your Thoughts...
    Tell us what you're thinking...
    and oh, if you want a pic to show with your comment, go get a gravatar for free here!
    Comments are moderated and may not appear immediately...