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OneGreatFamily Guest Newsletter

August 10, 2006

How Does Your Family Tree Grow At OneGreatFamily?

In This Issue:

The OneGreatFamily Cycle For Growing Your Family Tree

Here's How Your Family Tree Grows At OneGreatFamily

1. Enter Info: To start the cycle, enter any information you have about your family tree into OneGreatFamily through Genealogy Browser, our free software program which is downloaded to your computer.

2. OGF Searches and Sifts for you: Here is the first big difference between OneGreatFamily and other genealogy websites—OneGreatFamily does the searching and sifting for you.

At other websites, you conduct a search by entering a name or two. If you enter too much information, you may get back no leads—too little and you’ll get back tens of thousands. Even when you get the search right, you still have to sift through hundreds or thousands of potential leads. Most of the results will obviously not be your ancestor.

At OneGreatFamily, the system does all that work for you. Even better, it searches and sifts again and again…anytime anyone enters new data into OneGreatFamily.

3. Check and Resolve: OneGreatFamily shows you the results found during its searching and sifting. There are four types of results identified for you. Genealogy Browser makes checking for each easy. There are four buttons grouped together in the tool bar that control the display of each type of result: .  Display each by clicking on the icon so that it looks indented. This is what the display would look like if hint and merge were on, but information conflict and relationship conflict were off:

Merge: Indicates where OneGreatFamily found a match and proceeded to merge the records automatically. Don’t worry—merging done by the system never destroys data nor does it force data on you. When you have merges, you can review, then accept or reject them.

Hint: Indicates where OneGreatFamily found a potential match, however it is not obvious enough for OneGreatFamily to automatically merge the records. When you have hints, you review, then decide to accept or reject the potential match.

Information Conflict: Indicates when another user has entered information about a person that differs from yours. Perhaps they have a different birth date than you show, or they may have information you lack. In either case, you review, then accept or reject these conflicts.

Relationship Conflict: Indicates when another user has entered a family relationship for a person that differs from your information. Perhaps they show a child that you are missing or a different parent than you have identified. In either case, you review, then accept or reject these conflicts.

Focusing your time and effort on only truly possible matches makes you much more productive, and makes doing your genealogy much more fun and rewarding

4. Relax and Enjoy Life. This is the second place where OneGreatFamily differs from any other service available. Even when you aren’t working on your family tree, tens of thousands of other genealogy enthusiasts from all over the world are working on it—because with OneGreatFamily, we are all working on the same global family tree.

While you are reading the latest thriller, someone else may find the ancestor you’ve sought for years. While you are sleeping, another user may break through and tie you into the OneGreatFamily tree for the first time. While you are reading the kids a bedtime story, someone half-way around the world may discover that you are a relative and reach out through email to connect with you.

With OneGreatFamily, you have the flexibility to choose when to work on your genealogy and when to focus on other needs in your life, knowing that work on your family tree continues.

By following the cycle, we are confident that you will be see results, and grow your family tree as quickly as possible using OneGreatFamily.

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Success at OneGreatFamily

OneGreatFamily Brings Family Together

Some people have had some bittersweet experiences while looking for their ancestors, but the final result is typically positive. The following story demonstrates how using OneGreatFamily can bring families together and solve family mysteries:

I had been looking for my grandmother, Ella Mae McLeran, for four years since the sudden death of my father in 1998. I knew that she was in a nursing home somewhere in Georgia, but I could not find her. I finally found her last October when I saw her death notice in the Social Security Death Index.

Through some more tracking on the Internet, I located an attorney in Georgia who had her remains in a cardboard box on a shelf in his office! When I tried to claim her body, he told me that I did not have enough evidence to prove that I was her granddaughter - and I had birth certificates, death certificates, etc., all the way back to my grandfather, her husband. When I ordered her death certificate, I realized why he told me that. All of her pertinent family information was marked "unknown"!

My parents were divorced for years and as my dad was from Florida, I knew that there had to be some relations there who could help me. I received an email message advertising OneGreatFamily and took a 7-day trial subscription. On my first search, I located our family tree, and the administrator was a cousin! Through contact with her, I finally was able to claim my grandmother's ashes and bury her in the family plot in Florida.

Thanks to OneGreatFamily this story had a happy ending!

April Tanner

OneGreatFamily is looking for success stories! If you have a story of how OneGreatFamily has helped you in your genealogy quest, please send an email to
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Lisa Lights the Way

Making the Most of Your Visit to the Library

by Lisa South, Certified Genealogist

The following article was written in the March 4, 2005 OneGreatFamily newsletter. Since Lisa is no longer writing for us, we are featuring some of our favorite articles written by her.

Your genealogical research may take you to many libraries, but you'll be able to save a lot of valuable time if you are well prepared before going.

Before you make the trek, be sure that you need to travel to a library to get the information you want. I know of a gentleman who flew from the United States to England to locate some records only to be directed to the local LDS Family History Library, which he could have done in his own hometown! You should also check the library site online to see if you can access their records over the internet.

When you think a trip to a library is required, search the library's web site (if one is not available or you cannot access the Internet, call or write to the library) and get as much information as possible about their operations and policies.

Find out when the library will be open. How discouraging to travel a long distance only to find the library is closed on Fridays or will be closed for the next two weeks for renovations. Find out hours of operation, what materials are available, and ascertain their policy for copying material. If it is a large library, you might want to request a floor plan. Be aware that some libraries require you to have a reader's card. Obtaining one is usually just a matter of filling out a form.

Prepare a pedigree chart or print out family group sheets to bring with you. Having the pertinent information in your hand will make it easier for the experts to guide you through your search. Most librarians are happy to help direct you to the right records, but it is difficult for them to know what you need or want without seeing your pedigree chart.

Of course, before you do any of this, you'll want to check OneGreatFamily's data base first. The research may have already been done and the information entered by another subscriber will be instantly available to you!

A visit to the library is a great opportunity to resolve conflicts you may find with information other OneGreatFamily users have provided. If your family tree information differs from someone else's research, locating the primary sources of information is extremely valuable for clearing up any confusion. When you go to the library, make sure you take both versions of the information with you to compare to the original documentation. Once you have verified the genealogy, you can update your family tree on OneGreatFamily and, at the same time, help other researchers who may be working on the same family line. The less time you have to spend orienting yourself to a new library, the more time you will have to spend in the records and the more successful your visit will be.

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One Great Genealogy Site Award

Cinnamon Toast Genealogy

Research your surname or find records by region, record type, or religion at CinnamonToast Genealogy. This site is an excellent resource for genealogy records and information available online.

The site provides visitors with 9921 links to other sites and contains links or information on more than 153,000 surnames. Take some time to enjoy the site's genealogy explorer search functionality or to submit your own genealogy website to its growing index.

  • Visit
  • See Past Award Recipients.
  • Recommend A Site Award Recipient.

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    Get FREE Time On

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    Managing Editor: Heather Matthews
    Contributors: Heather Matthews, Lisa South and Rob Armstrong
    Editor: Lani Hyer

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