An early decision needs to be made on where to concentrate your researches. Don't aim to research your total ancestry - the data could soon overwhelm you. It's better to start with yourself, moving to your parents and grandparents, then choose a branch to follow.
^ Surnames are usually derived from one of four basic roots: a place, occupation, from a patronymic relationship, or nickname. The less common the name, the easier searches (usually) are.
CLASSES & SOCIETIES
It's always worth joining a family history society - or more than one. You'll get a good grounding in the essentials of family history research and you may well meet people with a similar interest and drive. Check the full list of family history societies with the FFHS at www.ffhs.org.uk or visit the LDS church.
fj USE TECHNOLOGY
^^ Using technology is not a necessity, but it can be a great help, and you'll find that more and more resources and organisations are gearing up to take advantage of it. A computer is an efficient tool for storing, copying, sharing and presenting data, and - along with wordprocessors, email, Internet, scanning and printing - there are programs specifically designed to help you draw up and publish your family tree and history. The Internet is home to a great deal of useful information.
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