Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Using Facebook to expand your research

A few years ago, I viewed a Webinar that talked about using social media in your genealogy efforts. One thing the presenter talked about was using Facebook to create page for an ancestor. I thought this idea was very interesting so I decided to try with my patriot ancestor, the one I wanted to use to join the Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR). I didn't have a lot of information on this ancestor but according to the Webinar that was not important.

On August 29, 2012, I created a page for my ancestor, Johannes Spanknable as a public figure. I found a picture of a maker that noted his military service and another on the region where he came from. I added a short bio about what I knew about him and then added his DAR# and his SAR#. Finally his personal information is basically a short family group sheet with him, his spouse and his children according to his various DAR applications. I have a link going to his Find A Grave page, the place I found the picture of his marker or gravestone.

The first post is his family group information again because everyone doesn't always go into the “about” section.  Later I added another post about how twelve DAR members used him as their Patriot Ancestor and a link back to the Ancestor search page found on the DAR site.

It took a while but as the movie says “If you build it, they will come” and slowly a few did come and like my page. These people are descendants of Johannes and thus they are my distant relatives. I added an obituary of one of my ancestors who was Johannes granddaughter and now I hit pay dirt as one of the visitors has been sharing pictures of other obituaries. My family line is expanding all because I took a few moments to create a public Facebook page about my Ancestor.

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