Thursday, November 17, 2011
Basics of Genealogy Reference
by Jack Simpson
I'm still picking away at some of the items in our professional reference collection, which happens to reside in my office, and which happens to have some really great books in it.
I know just enough about genealogy to get patrons started. I'm aware of what's available through Ancestry.com and Heritage Quest, as well as the SSDI and the Family History Library. In other words, I have half a clue. Patrons who have done genealogy for years and are looking for help with a roadblock will probably be disappointed in my skills (although I firmly believe that just running your idea by someone else is worthwhile - they may just have a different angle of thinking about it than you do).
So, I picked up this book hoping for a refresher. That's exactly what I got. This is an excellent book for library staff who help patrons with genealogy questions on any level. It goes through details of using census records, vital records, city directories, church/cemetery/military records, immigration records, and even the National Archives. Best of all, it talks about the reference interview as it pertains specifically to genealogy patrons. Whether you know next to nothing about genealogy or just want a refresher, this is an excellent source.