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Key Points

o Why should I use a message board

o What are the benefits of using a Message Board with my research

o How to write a message about your ancestor

o What are the guide lines I should using when using Message Boards

Why should I use a message board

Message boards are most effective when you need to engage the help of other researchers who share a common interest. While you are searching for your ancestors you may come to a point that you have reached a point in your research where you are not able to find any more information about a particular line of research in your family or about a specific person you your family tree.

Although you may feel that you are the only one working on a particular line of research or that you are the only one with an interest in your ancestor. You should still give information about your ancestor. When looking for this person in your family tree you do not want to leave any possible gold mine alone. Message boards are great tools which help experienced as well as novice researchers find more about their ancestors.

Researchers that use message boards realize the rewards that come through their use. Some messages may result in no correspondence even when effectively written where as other messages will retrieve some or many results. The greatest reward comes when you spend a great deal of time trying to find someone and then your research explodes with new information about a person or family where you have researched.

What are the benefits of using a Message Board with my research

If you have an article that is in another language you can even find someone through the message boards to help you to translate your genealogy document. Some people may charge you a small fee, where as other researchers will translate the document for free.

One of the major benefits that comes with this resource occurs when you communicate with other researchers. Some of these researchers may give you advice or ideas of where to search for more information or other records that may help you to uncover your ancestor or to expand your family tree.

How to write a message about your ancestor

You need to show the information you need to know about your ancestor. Messages which do not describe the issue such as “I need help” or simply listing a first or last name of an individual is not enough information to connection with other researchers.

If all you know is the first name or last name of an individual. There is still more that you can give about who you are researching. You should list the ancestors family members, wife, children or brothers. How does this person relate to your family tree.

You should list information such as birth year, marriage, death year, who the person married, children of this person or any other information which would help others to connect with your ancestor. You may even find another family member through the message boards that you were not aware existed.

What are the guide lines I should using when using Message Boards

When doing genealogy research and corresponding with others, it is important to remember to never insult other researchers. Even if you feel that the person has submitted incorrect information or is misleading with their message. It is always a best to remember to show respect towards other researchers. You can present your findings to an individual that will help them with their research or to broaden their understanding about a genealogy topic.

When you help others to understand a topic or issues about their ancestor you not only help that person. You also help many other readers who review your message to the person requesting for help. Useful, constructive replies help other researchers to build trust with you and encourages them to correspond with you.

Individuals that make others feel bad because of information requested that has not been presented correctly will only hurt those people in that other researchers may not want to correspondence with that person when they seek for help through the message boards.

Always remember be mindful of others and to build a positive experience with all those who correspond with you.

by John D Boone