Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Abundant Genealogy - Week 2 - Paid Online Genealogy Tools


Which paid genealogy tool do you appreciate the most? What special features put it at the top of the list? How can it help others with their genealogy research?


As I still work full time in a busy job I don't feel that I have the time to effectively utilise more than one paid site, although I would like to. I joined Ancestry several years ago with the offer of a free two weeks or one month and then forgot to take out my credit card details - a great marketing ploy! However, I have not been disappointed at all in that time.

The great advantage of course in having your own subscription is that you can use it whenever you like. Last night my aunt rang me up about something, so I used Ancestry to check what she was asking me and together we discussed the results.

I consistently (or perhaps persistently) use the Australian electoral rolls. The recent introduction of the 1980 rolls has allowed us to make contact with distant family members and this has proved to be exciting.

Recently I have also been using Warwickshire Births, Marriages and Deaths on Ancestry and have uncovered more information on my Allsop family.

The online family trees on Ancestry can assist others with their research. However it can also be a hindrance. Many of them contain significant errors and I have often contacted the owner asking how they make a specific connection. Some have taken down the erroneous information and others have ignored my messages to contact me. However, I feel the pluses outweigh the minuses. I also have to realise that my research is not without errors (I just wish I knew what were the errors!)

The only other paid site I use occasionally is a subscription taken a week at a time during my holidays to the Sydney Morning Herald Archives. I wrote a post about this earlier this month which can be accessed here.

I'm looking forward to seeing what others believe are their best value for money tools.

3 comments:

  1. Sharon,
    I ought to just cut and paste this for my Week 2 response but I'll try and think of something original to say!

    Great minds think alike?

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  2. I'm sure you'll be able to do that!

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  3. I was interested to read your comments. People who are on a tight budget might want to check whether their local library has the Queensland Family History Society's indexes (databases on CD-ROM) to Commonwealth electoral rolls for Queensland for 1903, 1913, 1922, 1934, 1949 and 1959... then use the more informative (and often annotated) *State* rolls at Queensland State Archives to find out about people's movements, change of name, death etc.

    My 'week 2' post about paid online tools is in my Genealogy Leftovers blog.

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