Getting genealogy organized is just one of the topics we cover here at Genealogy Gems, and Premium Members have exclusive access to podcast and video content to help you accomplish that goal.
We’ve put together a step-by-step plan for getting the most out of Premium Membership, and going from unorganized to organized in nothing flat!
A new Gem’s reader recently sent us the following email:
I have recently joined Genealogy Gems as a Premium member and wanted to ask if there is a good place to get started.
I have a ton of family information collected, but as yet have not figured out a plan of attack.
I was wondering if you could guide me in which podcasts, premium podcasts, and videos would be good ones to start with. I need to put this information into some semblance of order so that I can move constructively on it, as well as to be able to share the family history with others and have it make sense. Thanks, Gerri.
Getting Genealogy Organized with Premium Content
We are so glad to have you as a Genealogy Gems Premium Member. Welcome!
The best place to start is by digging into these blog posts that I highly recommend:
When you are ready to move onto the Premium Podcast episodes, I suggest you focus first on:
- Hard Drive Organization Part 1 and Part 2
- Use Evernote to Create a Research Plan
- Podcast episode 114: Paper Organization
- Family History: Genealogy Made Easy Podcast episodes 31 & 32: Organizing Your Genealogy Files.
Getting genealogy organized is one of the most overwhelming tasks new and seasoned genealogists deal with. Whether you’re new to Premium Membership or a long time member, make sure you have a solid basic structure for your genealogy organization, as it is the backbone of everything that follows. That basic structure for getting genealogy organized might look like this:
A Quick Plan for Getting Genealogy Organized
- Assess what you have.
- Pick a genealogy database software program. We recommend RootsMagic.
- Set-up a few 3-ring binders with acid free sheet protectors so you have a place to put documents and other important things.
- Set-up a basic folder and file structure for your hard drive based on the Premium videos Hard Drive Organization.
- Have a back-up plan for your precious family history files. We recommend BackBlaze as a way to automatically back-up your computer files.
- Sign-up for our free newsletter (if you haven’t already) to stay up-to-date on all the latest records and techniques.
- Don’t wait to be fully organized before you begin. Stay motivated by scheduling “fun” research time, as well as organization time.
- Make appointments with yourself to stay on track, and listen to the Genealogy Gems Premium Podcast while you organize.
- Regularly tap into all of the Genealogy Gems resources like what’s new in books and guides.
Like us on our Facebook page to see more genealogy ideas
Become a Genealogy Gems Premium Member
If you are not a Genealogy Gems Premium Member, take a look at what you are missing! Premium Members are able to listen to our Premium podcasts packed with even more tips and techniques for all things genealogy. You also have access to my most popular training videos.
For a limited time, new members will receive
this exclusive digital PDF e-book,
a collection of my most popular
articles from Family Tree Magazine!
(the e-book will be emailed to you
within 24 hours of purchase)
Ready to start DNA testing for family history? Or maybe you’ve tested but need help getting the most out of your results. Here’s a new video for you: Getting Started in Genetic Genealogy.
If you’re new to DNA testing for family history–or floundering along the way–the new Genealogy Gems Premium video tutorial may be just what you’re looking for. Millions of people have already tested, and savvy genealogists use those test results to better understand their ethnicity and family connections.
Your DNA Guide Diahan Southard, author of a fantastic series of laminated DNA guides, walks you through the answers to three important DNA questions in Getting Started in Genetic Genealogy:
1. Which test should I take?
2. What will I get from the testing?
3. Will it help?
In this video, Diahan reminds us that “genetic genealogy is not about miracles.” In fact, DNA testing for family history works best when paired with good old traditional research. You know, creating a pedigree chart, finding records, and searching dusty courthouse basements. (You didn’t think you were going to get out of that, did you?)
Diahan breaks down the elements of atDNA, mtDNA, and YDNA testing. You will want to hear why she gives a five star rating to YDNA, but only a three star rating to mtDNA! Click the video below to get a quick preview of this exciting class:
DNA testing supplements traditional genealogy research in many ways. For the majority of us, even the basic autosomal DNA test can provide us with a long list of cousin matches. The more family members you have tested, the more matches you will find. Cousin matches are fun, but they are also the tools we need to break down those brick walls. Maybe your DNA results will lead to finding Cousin Susie who just happened to get the family Bible. Wouldn’t you like to have the opportunity to get to know her?
In my own family, our true ethnicity was carefully hidden. Traditional research hinted to our racial identity, but it wasn’t until a DNA test was taken that we were sure. Adoptees and foster children are also finding DNA tests helpful in locating their next of kin.
Genealogy Gems Premium website members have exclusive access to Getting Started in Genetic Genealogy and 30 additional full-length video tutorials on topics ranging from research strategies to technology tools. They also have access to the full audio archive of the Genealogy Gems Premium podcast. Click here to learn more about Premium website membership.
More Gems on DNA Testing for Family History
3 Reasons to Test Your DNA for Genealogy
Confused by Your Ancestry DNA Matches? Read This Post
YDNA for Genealogy: 3 Scenarios When YDNA is Useful
There’s a new video tutorial on genealogy apps for Genealogy Gems Premium website members: “How to Find Essential Genealogy Apps for Genealogists.”
What are the best apps for genealogy? The ones that accomplish whatever you want to GET DONE. Like:
- working on your family tree
- translating an old church register
- digitally restoring an old photo.
- Having your mobile device read you an e-book or blog post (yes, you can do this for free).
But to make the most of the many mobile tools out there for the genealogist, you need to strategically look for them rather than hope you stumble across them. Because most of them aren’t conveniently marked “for the genealogist.”
A new 36-minute video tutorial by leading tech genealogy educator Lisa Louise Cooke shows you how to get the most out of your mobile device for genealogy. In “How to Find Essential Genealogy Apps for Genealogists (and 3 to Start Using Right Away)” she covers:
- How to identify mobile-friendly tasks you want to accomplish;
- Apps that every genealogist can enjoy right away;
- Knowing where to look for apps;
- Automating the process of finding apps; and
- How to keep from purchasing apps you don’t need.
Get the Book!
These tips are taken from hundreds of hours of research and testing Lisa put into her new book Mobile Genealogy: How to Use Your Tablet and Smartphone for Family History Research.
Save 10% off Mobile Genealogy
with Coupon code web10
The How to Find Essential Genealogy Apps for Genealogists video is one of nearly 30 full-length video tutorials (and an Evernote mini-series tutorial) that you will have access to as a Genealogy Gems Premium Member. To learn more about membership, click here.)
More on Genealogy Apps and Mobile Genealogy
How to Use Your Mobile Device for Genealogy: Free Video
3 Tips for Getting the Most Out of Your Mobile Device
Tools to Highlight Your Great Genealogy Finds: Snagit and Skitch
Looking for a pre-1700 map of the Americas as the Europeans found it? Yearning to survey the plot of land your ancestors tilled in Cobb County, Georgia? Historic maps can point you in the direction of your ancestors. But navigating your way to an original map can be a costly and time-consuming trek. Before you venture down that road, navigate your way to the treasury of digitized maps available online!
A new video class can help Genealogy Gems Premium members do just that: Best Websites for Finding Historical Maps. Literally hundreds of thousands of historical maps are available for free online in high-resolution digital format that you can download right to your computer without ever leaving home. The websites I show you offer some of the largest map collections available on the Internet today. I demonstrate strategies for searching the best websites for historical maps that will help YOUR research. You’ll see what’s out there, how to find the right maps and how to download and use them.
Genealogy Gems Premium members also have access to my popular online video class, 5 Ways to Enhance Your Genealogy Research with Old Maps. Not a Premium member? Get a taste of these classes for free on the Genealogy Gems YouTube channel! Check out this free excerpt: “Using Sanborn Fire Maps for Family History and Genealogy.”