Scour your home and ask your relatives for birth, death and marriage certificates; old family photos; immigration documents, etc. Interview every living relative that you can find, being sure to ask open-ended questions. See 50 Questions for Family Interviews for ideas. As you collect information, be sure to organize the documents into notebooks or binders, and enter the names and dates into a pedigree chart or genealogy software program.
Most Hispanic countries, including Spain, have a unique naming system in which children are commonly given two surnames, one from each parent. The middle name 1st surname comes from the father's name apellido paterno , and the last name 2nd surname is the mother's maiden name apellido materno. Sometimes, these two surnames may be found separated by y meaning "and" , although this is no longer as common as it once was.
Recent changes to laws in Spain mean that you may also find the two surnames reversed - first the mother's surname, and then the father's surname. Women also retain their maiden name when they get married, making it much easier to track families through multiple generations. Knowing the local history of the places where your ancestors lived is a great way to speed up your research. Common immigration and migration patterns may provide clues to your ancestor's country of origin. Knowing your local history and geography will also help you determine where to look for the records of your ancestors, as well as provide some great background material for when you sit down to write your family history.
Whether your family now lives in Cuba, Mexico, the United States or another country, the goal in researching your Hispanic roots is to use the records of that country to trace your family back to the country of origin.
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You'll need to search through public records of the place where your ancestors lived, including the following major record sources:. Tracing your Hispanic roots may, eventually, lead you to Spain, where genealogical records are among the oldest and best in the world. Share Flipboard Email.
Updated April 25, Church Records The records of the Roman Catholic church represent one of the best sources for locating a Hispanic family's place of origin. Local parish records in Hispanic Catholic parishes include sacramental records such as baptisms, marriages, deaths, burials, and confirmations. Particularly valuable are marriage records, in which the town of origin is frequently documented for the bride and groom. Many of these records are kept in Spanish, so you may find this Spanish Genealogical Word List to be helpful in translation.
A vast majority of these Hispanic parish records have been microfilmed by the Family History Library in Salt Lake City and you can borrow the ones you need through your local Family History Center. Then you will understand why most genealogists wish that they had a Friend in their family tree. In this class, you will be given the basic knowledge needed to begin research in African American slave history. By using the case study, you will explore documents of both an African American family and those of a potential slave-owning family. In addition you will explore some unique documentation that can enhance your research.
Taught by Cruz Barrios Carrascosa. Taught by Carol B uswell.
How To Research Latino Ancestry and Genealogy
The National Archives is gradually changing it's public face to include free access of these documents on the internet. In addition, commercial and volunteer-based organizations have obtained copies of some of these records, created indexes and placed digital copies of them online. Some are free, others are free through public institutions, and some are available by subscription from home.
Tracing Elusive Female Ancestors . Finding women in traditional records can be difficult in part due to historic legal rights and status. This talk will cover research methodology and strategies to locate and identify elusive female ancestors. Land Records [Intermediate]. Taught by Kaylene Thaler. Back by popular demand, this class focuses on using this alternate source for genealogical information. Topics include understanding land record documents, using its information in place of a census, finding women, quirks and tricks that will make it possible to find the right records and key research helps.
This class is not just about finding land records, it's about using them. Taught by Larry Singleton. An overview of immigration and migration patterns into the Southern states, their settlement and movements west. Exploration of research facilities, sources, tools and repositories will be included. Strategies and methodologies to assist you in your research will be presented.
Included will be some of the unique challenges to southern research. Taught by Bonnie Jean MacDonald. It will cover tips for travel including airfare, lodging, food, transportation. What to expect when you get to Salt Lake City?
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Taught by Nyle Kinghorn. Bob Allen [ bio to be added]. Bonnie Jean MacDonald was born and raised in northern Seattle and currently lives in the Shoreline area. She has been doing genealogy for 10 years. Other clients have contacted her from Canada, Norway, France and Scotland. Bonnie likes to combine travel with genealogical research trips.
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She has planned and researched at the Family History Library several times. Carol Buswell , Education Specialist from the National Archives in Seattle has nearly 30 years experience as a writer, teacher and specialist in family history. She compiled four indexes to American Indian censuses and rolls, wrote a migration history of Cherokee Indians in the late 19 th century, gives workshops to school teachers about interesting and innovative ways to search the National Archives both in Seattle and online.
Cruz Barrios Carrascosa [ bio to be added]. Cynthia White-Wilson is a native of Washington, D. More than 15 years ago, it was suggested that she do a photo family history. For the past several years, Cynthia has concentrated her genealogy education on slave research and Civil War Pension Records. She has been very successful in her own slave research — finding and documenting 20 owners in both her direct line and collateral families. Dave Thaler has been a Family History Center staff member for several years and is one of the co-chairmen for these Family History Expos.
Dave is the historian for the Thaler family organization, and has published a book "The Thaler Family in Germany and North America, ", containing the ancestors and descendants of the family that immigrated to Canada in He holds a Ph.
Dave has traveled to Germany to visit the Thaler ancestral home, although most of his other lines go back to early New England settlers. Myrt is a retired software instructor, has written an free online genealogy column since , and regularly contributes to Everton's Genealogical Helper Magazine.
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Myrt also taught and spoke at MyAncestorsFound. George, Utah and Cheyenne, Wyoming.
Pat is a Daughter of Utah Pioneers on 7 lines, a Daughter of Union Veterans on 3 lines, and is currently documenting her lineage for her Daughters of the American Revolution application. Fortunately Pat's daughters live in Salt Lake City, which facilitates frequent visits to the Family History Library, where she has logged over hours of research during the past ten years. Delores wrote these books for her children and their children and then developed a class for this purpose which is still being taught today.
Her husband had his first heart attack when their son was 4, became disabled, and died when their son was 6. He has completed some 6, hours of genealogical activities in the last four years. His activities include original and internet research, name-clearing, submission, database clean-up and memorabilia scanning. He has a database of , ancestors and finds PAF very adequate to search and manipulate the data.
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Denney also has a huge collection of historical photographs. Denney and his wife, Barbara, are the parents of 7 children and 16 g-children. They have lived in Okinawa, Utah, Massachusetts, Oregon and Washington, and of course, the last is the best. He currently is a financial worker at Washington State Dept. Don has been an adjunct professor at City University for over 13 years, teaching mostly undergraduate business courses.
Evelyn Roehl [ bio to be added]. Gary's work in genealogy began with a 5th grade assignment and his exploration of family history has been continuous since that time. In the early 's he began teaching other people how to do genealogy. Today, most of his work is through the instructional programs of the Fiske Foundation and in supervising the responses to genealogical questions asked of the Pioneer Hall organizations.
Gary's family tree traveled from Germany to Pennsylvania to Ohio to Iowa, and then to the gold camps in the California Sierra. Along the way, they picked up some Welsh and Scottish genes. Gary's ancestors also hail from England and New Jersey with a slow move down the Eastern shore of Delaware and Maryland, and out to Minnesota with the French Canadians. All this before , when Gary's family landed at the south end of Lake Union in Seattle and haven't moved since. He has been tracing his genealogy and English family roots, off and on, since adolescence.
Ellis recently presented on English genealogy at the Washington State conference on Family History and has lectured on several cruise ships - he and his wife Merry have sailed in the Caribbean, up to Alaska, and to Hawaii giving presentations on this addiction we call family history. Not everyone is descended from royalty and famous figures, someone has to be descended from the commoners.
Ellis has been working on a series of fact-based fictional accounts of several of his family lines embedding his ancestors in their personal and their social history. With dialogue and description, He hopes his books hook the next generations onto family history. She received B.
He majored in genealogical research at Brigham Young University. After graduation, he worked as a professional genealogist in Salt Lake City, but eventually pursued a career in public relations and photography. In , Jim returned to college to study computer networks and database management. Jim does professional research for a small number of favored clients.
He has written published articles on the use of the Internet and Scottish church records. In addition he has spoken to a number of genealogical societies and groups in Illinois, Wisconsin, California, Utah and Washington. She has been involved in family history for many years and always has good ideas on how to find missing ancestors. Kaylene also has years of group teaching experience and is very thorough in covering a topic.
Kaylene's own family history required her to prove that there were two cousins with the same name living in different parts of the country, not just one person as was widely published in books and on the Internet. For the past two years, Kaylene has taught the first detailed how-to class for land record research and she is back by popular demand.