Genealogy Do-Over, part 2: How To Set Some Research Goals

You can follow the first part of this Genealogy Do-Over here.

A term I have struggled with throughout my life: analysis paralysis. I have spent too many months struggling with perfection. How do I organize the records and data I have collected? How do I store that content. I need to jumpstart some movement. So, I am working towards two goals around my great-grandparents.

As we know, each person has eight great-grandparents. I have been fortunate to have information on all eight of mine since early in my genealogy career. Three of my grandparents were able to tell me basic information about their parents. I did have to rely on my paternal mother’s knowledge since that grandfather had died the year before I was born.

Goal #1

So goal number one is to properly document and collect all the records I can going from me back to my great-grandparents. That means working on my two parents, four grandparents, and eight great-grandparents. I need to sort the data I have and fill in with official documents. While I am very confident of the information I have, I must admit to not having collected all the vital records from the government for each. Having all the official proof will help to better document beyond “personal knowledge.” This should also help me get over the hurdle of organization paralysis I am in.

Goal #2

Goal number two is a little more challenging. I want to locate every descendant of those four couples. Fortunately, the descendant chart for my maternal lines are fairly narrow. That grandfather was an only child and that grandmother had one brother. On my paternal side, my grandmother had six siblings who lived to maturity. They generally stayed local and we have had a relationship with most of them over the years.

My paternal grandfather is going to be a little more fun. He had four sisters who lived to maturity and had children. But my father never really interacted with his paternal cousins as they were not local. I will be reaching out to some and introducing this branch of the family to them.

The most interesting part for me the last few weeks has been to spend some time with some of those closer DNA relationships on that I did not particularly recognize the names. Turns out they are part of that Locke-Anthony pairing and I am beginning to put some more color on my tree. One joy is being able to help those cousins go so much further back than many had hoped to go. But the greatest joy is finding these additional members of my FAMILY and just saying Hi!

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