Tuesday’s Tip — Ask Ancestry Anne’s Top 20 Search Tips

I posted a series of Search Tips specific to Ancestry.com and thought that they might be worth rehashing here.  Here are my top 20 search tips:

  1. Shaky Leaves — Ancestry.com will do searches for you
  2. Place Pages — 30,000+ data collections organized by country, state and county.  Great way to find data collections you may never have seen
  3. Card Catalog — How to find where your ancestors may be hiding in 30,000+ data collections
  4. Finding Local Histories — Local histories give you context and hide many hidden gems
  5. Finding Surname Histories — You never know who may have documented part of your family tree
  6. City Directories — New technology have made these goldmines easier to search
  7. Ancestry.com Wiki  – Red Book and The Source for free
  8. Message Boards — See what other people are looking for and ask a question yourself
  9. One World Tree — There are hidden treasures in here; find out how to uncover them
  10. It’s a Big Web Out There — Suggestions to Ancestry.com members on where else they might look
  11. Name Filters — How to narrow down your searches and get known name variations
  12. Location Filters – My favorite filter; adjacent counties rock!
  13. Wildcards — Tried and trued, but it still works
  14. Limit Your Scope — Start with a small search and then expand out
  15. Category Searches – Search one record type at a time
  16. Use Facets — Don’t ignore the left side of your search results page
  17. Search From Your Trees — User your online tree to populate your searches
  18. Read the Search Form — Effectively searching a data collection requires you to understand what is in there and what is indexed
  19. First or Last Name Searches — If you can’t find out who you are looking for, try one of these techniques
  20. Look for Family Members — If your direct ancestor is hiding, look for his or her family

3 thoughts on “Tuesday’s Tip — Ask Ancestry Anne’s Top 20 Search Tips

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