Monday, December 29, 2014


It's the end of the year, that time when we look back at the year past and plan
for the year ahead. I'll be doing the usual posts on how I did with my goals for 2014
and what goals I have for 2015, but I thought I'd just take a general look at how this year
went for me genealogically speaking.

It started out for me with unhappiness with the new search engine.
I was working on my tree nearly daily for a few hours each night and
when the new engine came along I was getting less and less done in that time frame.
So first I experimented going a week without using the Ancestry hints and search
engine, using only what I could find using FamilySearch, Google ebooks and other
online record sources. That was how I'd worked prior to subscribing to Ancestry.
Then I dropped my Ancestry subscription. It's a slower process than using the
Ancestry hints but it's less aggravating than the new search engine and I enjoy
digging for the stories behind the facts. I still maintain and add to my Ancestry
public tree and use what free hints are available but the main portion of my
research is done elsewhere. (Don't get me wrong. I'm not one of those who think
all genealogy information should be free. Ancestry and other "pay to use" sites
are businesses and have every right to charge for their services.)

I got out more on the highways during the Spring and Summer, taking a daytrip
up to Andover and  Methuen looking for ancestral burial sites. I had success at
Andover, not so much at Methuen. I plan to do some more trips once Spring comes

Getting used to driving on the highways again was helpful in getting me to
two genealogy gatherings this year:  2014 New England Family History Conference
in Franklin and the 2014 New England Geneabloggers Bash out in Stirling(which was
the furthest I've driven on major highways in several decades). It was fun meeting
my genealogy friends face to face again.

One of the areas I spent more time on this past year were probate files, and really
hit the mother lode with the Worcester county files on FamilySearch and the
Essex and Middlesex county files on I found information
in those files for ancestors I'd had very little for beforehand, and there's quite a
bit of blogging material in there for next year. 

So, aside from the goals I did or did not meet this past year, my 2014 genealogy year
was a very good one!

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