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Mom Confessions Mom Confessions

I am a professional genealogist... ask ME anything! UPDATE 2

Posted by Anonymous   + Show Post
Never done one of these posts before.

But, exactly what the title says. I am a genealogist, and I've been certified as a professional since 2006. I started my own business in 2009, and have been taking genealogy clients full time from home since March 2011.

(For those of you that don't know, a genealogist is a family historian and researcher. Most people do their own research online using specific web sites. I just happen to do work for other people and make a good living that way.)

And, anon for good measure :)

Though, I'm sure it isn't difficult to figure out who I am if you've seen me in other groups.

**UPDATE**
I just noticed that someone has found this post, and more questions have been added. I just had a baby and am still recovering from the c-section, so I may be slow in getting to your questions, but I promise I will get to all of them as soon as I can!


**UPDATE 2- 3/6/2013**
There are so many replies now, that it's difficult for everyone to read through them all. I will answer some of the common questions here, to help out.

1. I am NOT a gynecologist! I do not examine lady parts from my home lol

2. My fee schedule is on page 3. It's pretty universal, but some of it is negotiable.

3. I try to avoid finding living relatives, because sometimes they don't want to be found, and things can get messy. I have had many more negative reactions with the living than positive ones, but sometimes have huge success. It's a risk I try to avoid when I can.

4. I specialize in the mid-Atlantic states, but have done research in many states and countries.

5. I do a lot of volunteer work because of my love for what I do. I very much enjoy your questions and requests, so keep them coming! I will continue to help everyone that I can.
Posted by Anonymous on Feb. 4, 2012 at 12:59 PM
Replies (41-50):
kngarber
by on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:06 PM

 What on earth.  Why would people want lies??  People go to incredible lengths to hide things or whatever their motive is.  I really just want to know where my families come from.  Like where my moms side of the family comes from and my dads - meaning where did the families come from before someone moved here to the US.  I don't know how far back that would go, but figured it would be super expensive.  My mom and dad both say their families are German.  (Grunden and Garber)  but I think it may just be a guess.  LOL. 

Quoting Anonymous:


Quoting kngarber:

 How much do you charge if someone wanted their family tree?  Or does it just depend?  What do you need to get started.  I would love to have mine

It all depends. I posted my table in a couple of different replies, but for a family tree, it honestly depends. How far do you want to go back? Just as far as possible? Do you want to see what countries your family lines come from, or specifically, do you want names?

The information that is most helpful to start with is your parents' and grandparents' names, dates of birth, and locations of birth. Since there is limited info available on living people, it is extremely helpful to ask the oldest members of your family everything they know about THEIR parents and grandparents. The farther back you can go in just asking= the farther back I can go, knowing I have the right people to start with.

One thing I can tell you for absolute certain, I don't ever create a tree for a client unless I can 100% verify every single person and relationship on it. I've had countless people ask me to create one and LIE on it, (to show they're related to someone historical or famous) to have on display in their home or for a family reunion or something like that. 

 

Mrs.Williams13
by on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:09 PM

I'd like to trace my family back as far as I can go... but I don't know where to start.  How much are your services?

TabM
by on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:17 PM

I understand that the charge is a case by case basis but can you give a rough estimate as to what one would be looking at to go back as far as you can? As in would I want to be thinking $1000, or $10000, or $100000 or somewhere in between.

Also, is Ancestry.com a safe site? I started to do a family tree on it then got nervous entering all of the personal info and cancelled. I noticed that I have gotten alot more spam mail than before that but don't know if it's connected.

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:41 PM
Quoting clara50:




No, of course not. But I don't think you included your fathers name in your post? Or maybe I missed it?
BekaBug
by on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:44 PM

too cool! for dhs 25th bday i tried to get info on his grandpa. but i failed miserably. lol

NDADanceMom
by on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:46 PM

 DO you do international searches too?  Im only 6th generation in america and we have a small family.  One or two kids doesnt make a huge family tree. We also still have the house that my family built when they got here.  My mom lives there now so we still have diaries and such in the house.  Not much mystery.

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:51 PM
1 mom liked this


Quoting TabM:

I understand that the charge is a case by case basis but can you give a rough estimate as to what one would be looking at to go back as far as you can? As in would I want to be thinking $1000, or $10000, or $100000 or somewhere in between.

Also, is Ancestry.com a safe site? I started to do a family tree on it then got nervous entering all of the personal info and cancelled. I noticed that I have gotten alot more spam mail than before that but don't know if it's connected.

In a case like that, I would take a $1000 down payment. If I couldn't get past a certain time frame (say, 1800) I would keep $500 and refund the rest. If I was able to get a really good line from it, I would spend a considerable amount of time researching it. So, it might still fall under the $1000 mark, or it might be more in the end, depending on how much time you'd want me to spend working on it. 

Ancestry.com is absolutely a safe site. IF you make your tree private. If it is public, any photos or stories or details you add can be viewed by others. Ancestry says that they don't allow info on living people to be viewed by other people, but sometimes they do slip through the cracks also. 

Be aware- if your tree is public, someone distantly related to you, or even not at all- can get access to the photos you upload. That's the thing that bothers me the most, and the reason why my tree on there is private. I pay for things, like pension files and death certificates and whatnot. I hate that people could just take them and get all the info out of them, without having to pay what I had to. Another reason why my tree is private.

MellyO
by on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:55 PM
That's really cool, :) my dad did our family and since he passed, my sister is working on it. It's awesome to find out where your family is from.
Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:55 PM


Quoting Mrs.Williams13:

I'd like to trace my family back as far as I can go... but I don't know where to start.  How much are your services?

If you haven't done any research at all, and have the time, I'd recommend starting out yourself, without hiring someone. Sometimes things are really easy to find, and hiring a professional can get very expensive. 

Go to ancestry.com and start with what you know- yourself. Enter your details, and your parents, and your grandparents. You never know what you might be able to find.

Anonymous
by Anonymous 1 - Original Poster on Feb. 4, 2012 at 4:56 PM


Quoting MellyO:

That's really cool, :) my dad did our family and since he passed, my sister is working on it. It's awesome to find out where your family is from.

It's great that the research continues through your sister. The search is never really over. I hope that my kids will continue my research after I'm gone. 

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