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When to Hire a Professional Genealogist | AF-035

welcome to the ancestral findings calm

podcast episode number 35 have you ever

considered hiring a professional

genealogist if you've hit a brick wall

in your research you should consider it

in this ancestral findings calm episode

I'll give you what you need to know to

get started

are you at the point in your research

where you have looked at all the record

sources you can find and feel like

you're at a roadblock every genealogist

reaches that infamous brick wall every

now and then this is where you reach a

certain ancestor and just cannot go back

any further no matter how hard you try

it can be very frustrating especially if

the brick wall is in the still

relatively recent past you think there

should be records available but you just

can't find them and you haven't been

able to find anyone online who is

researching the same line as you and who

might have additional information to

share

what do you do when you've done all you

think you can do here are some

suggestions

do a DNA test and see if it matches you

up to any relatives you've never met

contact them to see if they have any

information on the brick wall line

you're researching Google your brick

wall ancestors name to see if any

obscure hits come up that will help you

in your research go over your research

again to look for any clues you may have

missed go in a genealogy road trip to

wear your ancestor lived and look for

clues in the courthouses archives

libraries and historical societies there

hire a professional genealogist

what is a professional genealogist a

professional genealogist is someone who

has gone through the certification

program of the board of certification

for genealogists this is a rigorous

program where a person who wishes to be

able to put professional genealogy

credentials by their name must prove

they know how to do thorough research in

a variety of areas and properly cite

their sources it can take up to a year

and sometimes more to get certification

and it isn't easy some people have to

try several times before their research

portfolio is good enough to receive the

coveted certification however once they

receive it you can hire one with the

utmost confidence that they know all of

the tricks to the trade and will leave

no stone or leaf uncovered in their

search for your elusive ancestors

what will a professional genealogist do

for you a professional genealogist can

help in a variety of ways depending on

your needs and your budget some of the

things professional genealogists do

include looking into record sources you

may not have access to or even know

exist going to local sources to do the

genealogy road trip for you if you

aren't able to make the trip on your own

go abroad to foreign countries to do

research on your overseas ancestors on

your behalf or you can hire a

genealogist who already lives there so

you don't have to pay travel expenses

translate documents written in foreign

languages use clues in your genealogical

research and in their own to make

connections you never would have come up

with on your own research alternate

sources for information on your brick

wall ancestor such as their neighbors

siblings distant relatives and other

people who lived in the places they

lived you never know when your ancestor

will be mentioned in someone else's

record

should you hire a professional

genealogist yes if you feel that you

have gone as far as you possibly can

with a particular family line if you

have reached that proverbial brick wall

and just can't seem to break through it

or go around it and you are determined

to find out what is on the other side

hire a professional genealogist

sometimes the records and clues just

don't exist for whatever reason and even

a professional genealogist won't be able

to get any farther or much farther than

you however in most cases you will find

that a professional genealogist will

bring a lot to the table you will almost

always be very pleased with the things a

professional genealogists can discover

for you

where can you find a reputable

professional genealogist the best place

to look for a professional genealogist

who is reputable tried and proven is the

website of the board of certification

for genealogists they keep a register of

professional genealogists who have

passed their certification course and

who are offering their services for hire

you won't find any better more

trustworthy genealogists around as these

genealogists must adhere to a code of

ethics in order to maintain their

hard-won certification you can also

sometimes find reputable professional

genealogists from the cards they leave

in local courthouses libraries archives

and Historical Society's if you

subscribe to any genealogy magazines the

reputable professionals will often have

ads in them it takes a real professional

to pay to place an ad in a magazine once

you've found your professional hand over

your research talk about your goals for

the genealogist regarding your research

and discuss rates some professionals

work on an hourly rate while some work

on a flat fee schedule with extras paid

for by you of course when the

genealogist is clear on what you're

hoping to get out of the experience of

hiring a professional you will both

enjoy the experience a lot more plus you

will almost always get amazing results

you've been looking for a long time

are you looking for your Scottish

ancestors and don't know where to start

in the next ancestral findings calm

podcast I'll give you six websites with

plenty of information on Scottish

genealogy for past episodes visit

ancestral findings calm / iTunes to

subscribe to the weekly podcast happy

searching