Thursday, March 03, 2016

Women's History Month 2016: Tip #2 Timeline Her Life

You need a timeline but maybe not quite like this

So now we have a plan. Next, start a timeline. Your timeline can be drawn on a simple piece of paper or something more elaborate using a software program or website. However you decide to do it, use something that you will stick with.

My timelines incorporate my Research Log. I use Microsoft Excel or a table in Microsoft Word and then I create 4-5 columns. Those columns have headings like Date, Event, Comments, Source Citation. Now this format is flexible. If I'm working on someone who moved a lot, I will include a column on the location they lived in at the time of the event. That way I can see their migration pattern more clearly. Same with someone who used various names or aliases. I want to know what name they were using during what time period.

Overall, you should adopt a timeline that you will use and keep using. One look at my timeline and I know what years I'm missing information and where I need to look next.

Use a timeline for each female ancestor you research. It helps to keep you on track and to see what your know at a glance.

Need some inspiration? Check out this article I wrote for the GenealogyBank Blog entitled Genealogy Timelines: Helpful Research Tools. There's even a link to a timeline template to get you started.

No comments: