The National Archives has a Genealogy Tool Kit

tool kit It can be difficult to get started working on your genealogy research. New genealogists may not have a clue where to begin. It can be overwhelming to think about how many hours of research are ahead of you. Fortunately, the National Archives have created a Genealogy Tool Kit that can help you get started.

The National Archives is the shortened version of the full name of the organization. The whole name is The National Archives and Records Administration (NARA). This is the official archive of historical documents for the United States. Genealogists can access these records to learn more about their family history, about an ancestor’s military service, and more.

You may have heard of the National Archives in relation to the 1940 United States Census. This was the website that offered free access to the 1940 census shortly after it was released. So many people were interested in digging through the information on the census that it caused a virtual traffic jam.

Right now, it appears that genealogists can access the 1940 census from the National Archives website. They have set up a great tutorial that gives new genealogists some tips about getting started with doing research from the 1940 census.

The National Archives also released something else that is extremely useful to new genealogists. I think it can also serve as a good way for experienced genealogists to brush up on some basic research tips. It is called the Genealogy Tool Kit.

This tool kit doesn’t come in a box, and it doesn’t contain hammers and screwdrivers. Instead, it is a pdf file that you can download directly to your computer for free. The Genealogy Tool Kit is easy to read, and can be printed out and used as often as you like.

It is basically a worksheet that contains a checklist of steps that every genealogists can use to get the most from their research. It walks you through the items you need to collect up before you begin your genealogy research, suggests books that you can read to learn more about genealogy, and gives information about what kinds of details are important to collect about yourself, your relatives, and your ancestors. It even has some links to online resources for genealogy.

Eventually, the information and helpful hints that are in the Genealogy Tool Kit will become very familiar to you. New genealogists could start out by relying heavily on the information in the Tool Kit. When you feel that you have it memorized, it is time to put this tool aside, for later. It makes a good resource for experienced genealogists to review from time to time.

Image by Katherine Tompkins on Flickr