Peter, don't you know who you are?
I am a graphic designer, with many years experience in design and computer production. I started doing genealogy back in 1972, after finding a family genealogy chart while cleaning out a closet after my father's passing. It was fascinating. Together with my mother we set out confirming and correcting the information we had found, adding information over the years and expanding the history of our family and connecting families to over 9000 names. We did that long before computers... we did our research at libraries, at the Church of Latter Day Saints, getting nauseous spinning through microfiche and rolls of film. Writing letters, requesting books to be transferred, the whole deal. I travelled several times to England and spent hours in the dusty archives of tiny, cold, medieval churches. When the internet expanded...the genealogy world boomed.
How I can help you record your family history
Whether you have some existing family history, or none at all, together we can piece together the past. Starting with what history you know, I can build on that using online resources. I can copy documents you may have, scan pictures and retouch damaged photos. I can download original files, contact other Ancestry members for information if they are willing to share. I can create a Memory Book in a PDF format that you can share online or print copies. Each one is an original design, reflecting your family's history. I will also provide you with all documents, digital photos and a GED file if you choose to continue the search on your own for an additional cost. (A GED file is a method of formatting your family tree data into a text file which can be easily read and converted by any genealogy program.)
Granted until you start your search there is no guarantee that you will find everything to complete a tree. There can be dead ends and missing generations. But your participation in recording your known history, will help future generations to remember their heritage.
I utilize Ancestry with whom I have been a member for many years and other online resources in my search.
What is available online
The list is staggering and growing all the time through web sites like Ancestry, My Heritage and Family Search. Some used to be free, but many are only available through subscription. Through these sites, one need no longer write to various government departments for information. It's all there. Census records, Immigration, Passenger Lists, Birth, Death, Marriage, Probate, Wills, Military records, Newspaper listings, Family Records and individual Family Trees. (Although these are less dependable due to lazy genealogy research.)
What is not available online
Right off the top, there is some information that is not available. Personal information about anyone is not open to the public unless it is 50 years or older, or they are dead. Some countries, do not participate in freeing information. Russia, China, India, Africa and Native American (to name a few) either have no records, or records are not available digitally at this time. In some cases, they simply no longer exist; due to being lost, destroyed in war or lost in a fire. There are sites you can pay additional fees to, for background checks and ordering recent birth and death certificates, etc., but most people know their parents and grandparents. Existing Family Trees can be helpful here (with careful checking)... you would be surprised how many people you are related too!
These are certainly an amazing option for the serious genealogist. While the initial test provides you with a summary of your genetic makeup, and where your ancient ancestors may have resided; if you choose to become a member of (example: Ancestry) they will alert you to anyone else also on Ancestry who is a DNA match. You can upload your tree and share it. With that, those missing pieces can sometimes fall into place. Not everyone participates, but it can definitely give some direction when all other links have expired. I am not promoting Ancestry in particular, it was just my choice for the DNA test.
What is the difference between genealogical research and a memory book?
Genealogical research is the process of searching available records to find information about your relatives and using those records to link individuals to earlier and later generations. It can also include the history of the place your ancestors lived and perhaps, upon discovery more detailed information on individuals who have some claim to fame in your family tree. A memory book can include some genealogy but tells the story of the life of one specific individual who has passed. It can include photos, letters, stories written by family members or the writings of the person who has passed. Both are wonderful gifts to pass to future generations.
See some sample covers and inside pages
- Starting price is $300.00.
- This includes 10hrs. research time and 6hrs. design and computer production to a maximum of 12 pages including cover. It also includes 20 scans of photographs or other material supplied by the client. This price includes any photos I may find FREE to use via the internet that are in regard to your history.
- Additional scans are $3.00 each
- Additional pages are $5.00 each.
- Additional research time is $20.00 per hour.
- I will supply a CD or thumb drive with all documents, photographs, pdf's and a GED file for $25.00 and shipping.
- This price does not include any printing or additional fees to collect information requested by client. I cannot guarantee that any or all information will be available through existing sources, but I guarantee I will try my best. Every book is different, depending on what is found. Each will need to be discussed as an independent project. I work with my clients to insure their satisfaction.
- After approval of initial design via email, changes and additions can be made at the prices stated above.
- All payments are in advance. I accept money orders ande-transfers in Canadian funds.
- There are no refunds once the work has begun. Thank you.