Who are you again?

Its been too long since I posted, but a lot has been happening.  One thing I have been doing is getting organised!  I now have a lovely office, and a reading / craft room that used to be my sons bedroom.  its nearly 12 months since he moved out and it has taken that long to clean up!  Oh well, its done now thank heaven.

On the geneology side, my cousin has found our  GGGG grandparents on the CLARK side in Kent, England, and sent me their death certificates.  This brings me to the topic of today, finding long lost cousins and relatives.

Ive found most of mine via posting on Ancestry.com (posting my tree here) or via Rootschat.com.  Rootschat is a big site of noticeboards and its very easy to ask a question.  One of the best boards is Old Photographs, Recognition, Handwriting Deciphering  Here people put up a photograph and everyone tries to identify it for you, or if it is rather decrepid they will advise on how to fix it, or even fix it for you.   Poeple are so wonderful, they love to help other people.   There are also boards for lots of countries, English counties, and military information.  other boards are "lookup" boards, where people will look something up in a particular series of documents (eg a census) for you.  Give it a try.

Rootsweb is also a resource for links to information, particularly in the UK.  if your family lived in Kent, as mine did, you can go to the board for Kent and find links to all sorts of stuff.  From old maps to where to find information on bricklayers!  Its a great resourse, so its no wonder so many people use it.

Anyway, posting here was how I found some of my cousins, just because I had included the name of the person I was trying to find information on.  They contacted me via rootsweb, and then I sent them my personal email address.   I have had mixed success however, one cousin emailed me saying he wanted money for a headstone for some of our relatives - this was his first email mind you.  That did not go anywhere when I did not respond to the request but asked him for some family info.  But others did end up with an email friendship across the world.  So now I have contacted my cousins in England and the USA.  So nice, and my mother would have loved it, its such a pity she is not here to see it.  We help each other out with information and friendship.

The first thing you need to establish though is - are we related?  I have had several people contact me who are not, but that is helpful for them too as our family trees are eliminated from each others.  And its nice to chat with them.  I have not found any 'etticate' for these types of things but I think if you follow the route of first establishing family relationship and then chatting for one or two emails BEFORE giving out your personal email, it seems to work.

We all need to keep our privacy, so I do have a yahoo email for these types of things, rather than my normal email address.  That way if anything goes wrong its easy to simply delete the email address.  I do think it is a bit like facebook - so here are some rules I use that you might find useful :
  1. Never give out identifying information such as your address, phone number, town, etc. in chat rooms, forums, forms or questionnaires.
  2. Never agree to meet anyone in person that you have met online.
  3. Never reply to any email, chat messages, or forum items that make you feel uncomfortable.
  4. Never send personal information or pictures to anyone over the Internet that you do not know.
  5. Never give your password to anyone.
  6. Be aware that people may not be who they say they are. Someone who says she is a 10-year old girl may really be an older man.
  7. Never click on links in emails from people you don't know.
  8. Don't order anything or give anyone credit card information.

Before I go, here is a great site that you may find usefull to put all your geneology links into one place.  Its pearltrees.com - have fun with it, and Happy New Year.


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