Family Tree Templates

The family tree templates and programs you can choose from are truly numberless. Some are free; others are available for purchase. Some are software programs that you install on your computer with a CD; others are web-based. Others you can download and print. Some of the most commonly-used family tree templates are:

  • Family Tree Maker. The most popular family history software program available for purchase, Family Tree Maker has been around for more than ten years. Its main drawback is that it is only available on a PC, and the makers of the program have stated that they have no plans for a Mac-compatible version.
  • RootsMagic. RootsMagic is another family history software program that you can purchase and download on your computer; it is a favorite for many genealogists because it allows you to view a pedigree chart at the same time as a family group record (a listing of parents and their children).
  • Personal Ancestral File (PAF). This program can be downloaded for free at It is simpler than other programs, without color coding or extra details; it prints only basic family group records, pedigree charts, and descendancy charts. However, there is a PAF companion program you can buy for $6.75 to print color-coded charts. PAF is not Mac-compatible.
  • OneGreatFamily. This is a web-based family tree compilation program in which you type into the template what you already know about your family tree; then your family tree is compiled and new ancestors are added for you.
  • New FamilySearch. Like OneGreatFamily, this site also takes a wiki-genealogy approach, but in New FamilySearch the compilation is not done automatically. Instead, you must manually link your family tree with that of other users, which can be time-consuming.
  • Facebook. Facebook has numerous family tree templates, such as Relatively Me and We're Related.
  • There are also many free printable templates you can download. On sites like and, you can download and print traditional pedigrees, descendancies, and family group records, as well as more elaborate decorative charts. Microsoft even has family tree templates you can download and use in Excel. Download printable family tree templates at


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