Are you looking for a lost family member but don’t have a lot of information about them? If this is the case, obtaining more information should be your top priority. Specifically, you can start your search by talking to your immediate family. Their stories might include their name, as well as important dates or events that can help you move forward in your search. Once you have that, you can start doing your own research, and eventually, you may be able to get access to important documents. In this article, we will discuss some of the most effective ways to find your lost family member.
Use a People Finder
Using a people finder online can help you find your lost loved one, as long as you know what to search for. In addition, your exact relationship with them is also important.
Your closest relatives will likely provide the most reliable and current information about them. As such, you should ask them about details such as your lost family member’s birthdate, as well as any nicknames they had and whether they were married (and if so, where and to whom). In addition, you can also ask about their job, where they worked, when their children, siblings, or parents were born, and for any photos of them. This way, you might get information to help you expand your online search.
Furthermore, you can also talk to your extended family. An extended family member might have been closer to your lost relative than you knew and might provide some important information about them.
Write It Down
To avoid forgetting important details, you should get everything down in writing. This includes their records of immigration, letters, diaries, photo albums, birth certificates, scrapbooks, or other sources of data. All of this information can prove useful in finding them.
Even in the digital age, libraries remain a rich resource of information, not to mention that many of them offer access to digital records. Some libraries even offer free access to websites with genealogy information. You can also check out “Access Genealogy,” a site about researching family trees.
Here are some more details about genealogy searches. To find a lost relative, you can try sites such as Family Search and Ancestry, too. To get more information, you can also type in anything you know about your family member in Google or another search engine. You might find this list of people search engines helpful. However, you might not find anything immediately. Although it can be easy to succumb to frustration, you shouldn’t quit your search too early. If you feel exhausted, you should take a break, and then start again.
USGenWeb is a government-funded project with helpful links to state and county databases. Using it, you can get access to online genealogy books of records, county and state records, map source listings, and many other resources.
In the National Archives, you will find census records, naturalization records, military records, and public land transfer records. In all of these, you might find something that’s connected to the person you’re looking for. What’s more, you can access all of the records online.
In addition, you can use any other information from outside resources, such as census records, electoral records, and newspaper archives together with first- and second-hand sources. Furthermore, you should not overlook newspaper archives as a source of information. Local newspapers, in particular, may have information about important events related to your lost relative’s life. Newspaper archives can include information about your ancestors may be available as well – such as their sports achievements or mention of their job in the local government, for example.
Birth records and marriage records are publicly available. You can use Google, Facebook, and other social networks to find the relevant information using your loved one’s date or place of birth, full name, and any other information you might have.
Organize and Evaluate the Results
It is important to organize and assess your findings to help locate the person you are looking for. Tracking down a lost family member takes persistence. If the genealogy or ancestry research didn’t get you anywhere, you can look for new routes to explore. Often, one piece of information leads to another. If you suspect they died, you can also check local death records and obituaries.