Category Archives: Research Toolboxes

Bloggers’ Research Toolboxes – 2019

It’s time to take a 2019 look at those great genealogy toolboxes that bloggers often share on their websites. I’ve updated the lists from past years and have only included those websites with new content published within the last few months. Some previous sites are still found online, but have gone dormant.

There are also a few first timers on the list.

Please take the time to visit each of these blogs and take a look at their toolboxes. Resources such as blank forms, reference books, free websites, local resources and DNA are just a few of the link categories. Be sure to leave the blogger a comment, too – we love reading comments.

Abundant Genealogy and Destination: Austin Family – Thomas MacEntee’s websites with links to all kinds of genealogy resources.

Anxiously Engaged! – Peggy Lauritzen has a number of buttons leading to multiple categories of resources.

Cow Hampshire – Janice Brown includes a BLOGS AND LINKS tab with many resources.

DNAeXplained – Genetic Genealogy – Roberta Estes’ HELP button has links all about DNA and its use in genealogical research.

Empty Branches on the Family Tree – While you are browsing bloggers’ research toolboxes, I hope you will take a look at mine, too. Category links are located right under the header image on the home page. 🙂

Evidence Explained – Elizabeth Shown Mills’ website is the place to go for source citation tips.

Find Lost Russian & Ukrainian Family – Vera Miller has a LINKS button to lots of Russian/Eastern European resources

Fortify Your Family Tree – DiAnn Iamarino shares her resources in tabs under her header image.

From Maine to Kentucky – Elizabeth Handler has a link to DNA resources.

Genea-Musings – Visit Randy Seaver’s  “Randy’s Genealogy Links” right next to his HOME button.

Genealogy à la Carte – Gail Dever has a robust list of tools for those with Canadian roots and created an ever-growing list of Canadian genealogy groups on Facebook.

Genealogy by Paula – Paula Stuart-Warren has a RESOURCES button with a long list of her favorite research links.

Granite Genealogy – Sue Maxwell has a list of “Training Materials – Links, Videos and Tools

Irish Family Roots – Donna Moughty’s focus is Ireland with links.

Jana’s Genealogy and Family History Blog – Check out Jana Last’s Research Toolbox link in the top button bar

Kitty Cooper’s Blog – Kitty has multiple buttons with links to DNA and genealogy information

Leaves and Branches – Colleen Brown Pasquale has multiple tabs under her header image.

Olive Tree Genealogy – Lorine McGinnis Schulze has a blog along with her website, which is a huge research toolbox for ships’ passenger lists, along with links to many other Canadian and American records.

Pima County Genealogy Society – There is an Arizona Research Toolbox.

The In-Depth Genealogist – Jennifer Alford and Terri O’Connell  maintain this site, which has a RESOURCES tab.

Writing My Past – Teresa has a lengthy set of links to all things genealogy.

A New Look at Bloggers’ Toolboxes

Last year, I suggested that we, as readers, need to actually visit the sites of blogs we read most often because many of those sites have links to genealogy resources. Some of those links are to lesser known and under utilized resources.

Here are a few suggestions:

  1. If the blogger has written stories about your family, whether close or distant cousins, check the links for more family info.
  2. If the blogger has written about unique topics, check the links for more info.
  3. If the blogger specializes in a certain topic, check the links for more info.

Are you getting the picture? Thomas MacEntee, who hosts High-Definition Genealogy and Hack Genealogy, promotes the use of Genealogy Research Toolboxes. Since each genealogist has a unique set of interests and family connections, one person’s toolbox is very different than someone else’s.

However, it is likely that every family history researcher will find something of interest in each of those toolboxes. It is well worth taking the time to check them out.

4. If you don’t have your own genealogy toolbox, now is the time to start building it. It’s much easier to open the toolbox and click on links to your own favorite tools, tricks and websites than it is to search for it every time you want to use it.

Of the 200+ blogs that I follow, many (but not all) have tabs that have many names, but they are essentially portals to research toolboxes.

A Wise Heart’s Journey –  Genealogy Links
DNAeXplained – Help
GeneaBloggers – Blogging Resources (not just for bloggers!)
Genealogy à la Carte – Genealogy Research Toolbox
Genea-Musings – Randy’s Genealogy Links & Sample Source Citations
Jana’s Genealogy and Family History Blog – Research Toolbox
Julie’s Genealogy and History Hub – Genealogy Resources
Lara’s Jewnealogy – Finding Eastern European Records
Lisa Lisson –  Genealogy Resources
Many Roads – Links
My Ancestors and Me – Genealogy Research Aids, Pennsylvania Resources, Ohio Resources, Coal Mining Resources
One Rhode Island Family – Free Rhode Island Resources
Practical Archivist – Supplies and Tools I Recommend
Roots Revealed – How to get Started, Slave Ancestral Research
The Advancing Genealogist – Resources
The Cousin Detective – Resources

Last, but not least – I’ve been updating and adding to my own research toolbox categories on Empty Branches:

EmptyBranchesCropEmpty Branches Tabs

Some tabs have multiple pages in a drop down menu, while others are single pages to click and read.

Research toolboxes are always a work in progress so you should visit them often and, remember,  you don’t have to be a blogger to build your own. If you don’t have one, start today!





Bloggers’ Research Toolboxes & Resources

When was the last time you actually looked at a blogger’s website? I don’t mean that you clicked on a post in Feedly and read it. I mean when was the last time you visited the actual website to see what else might be there?

I’ve learned a lot in the last few years since I started following blogs. Some bloggers focus on just telling the stories or sharing information and they do a great job. However, there are quite a few bloggers out there who have created mini-genealogy websites, packed full of resources (many of which are lesser known AND free).

Besides being storytellers, bloggers keep an eye out for new, interesting information related to genealogical research. Then they not only share that info with their readers, they often add links to separate blog pages of resources.

I follow about 175 blogs a day with Feedly. I have to admit that for some of these blogs, I have only actually looked at the website when I made the initial decision whether or not to follow it. There are others that I do visit off and on to see what is new.

Let’s take a look at a few websites that are not run by professional companies or by people/organizations that I would consider business-oriented first and who happen to also host genealogy blogs.

1. Do you have New England ancestors? Are you looking for new cousins? Heather Wilkinson Rojo who writes Nutfield Genealogy has a link to nine generations of surnames in her family history.  Glancing at her list, I realize that we are cousins through at least a dozen family names.

2. Looking for Eastern European roots? A blogger who only goes by “lostrussianfamily” on Find Lost Russian & Ukrainian Family includes tabs to Best Forums, Free Databases and Links that I can pretty much promise you are not easily found. She (photo is posted with no name) has put a lot of work into compiling these resources.

3. Randy Seaver’s Genea-Musings is packed chock full of interesting links. Check out “Randy’s Genealogy Links” to find everything from Tutorials to Surname/Locality Books and Online Family Trees plus a lot more.

4. Jana’s Genealogy and Family History Blog by Jana Last has a Research Toolbox with tons of links, too, including Calculators and Tools, Genealogy Education and Military, with links to sites that are lesser known.

5. Rhode Island roots? Diane Boumenot has a section on One Rhode Island Family dedicated to free Rhode Island resources.

6. Celebrating Family Stories by Mary Perkinson Nelson offers a Research Toolbox with a long list of links for Georgia Resources, Tools and much more.

7. Sue Maxwell has put together a very long list of “Training Materials – Links, Videos and Tools” on Granite Genealogy.

8. “Genealogy Resources” by Julie Cahill Tarr on Julie’s Genealogy and History Hub uses tags to link to resources. For those interested in writing a family history, her “Writing Your Way to the Past” offers many suggestions.

My last example violates my rule above about not including professional companies. That is because of the subject matter.

9. Roberta Estes’ DNAeXplained – Genetic Genealogy has a “Help” link. How many times have you not bothered to read the “Help” section on a website? Well, this one, aside from links to purchases, has links for those interested in learning more about DNA and its use in genealogical research.

10. Last, but not least, this blog site has a link to “Research Toolbox” at the top right side of the home page. I’ve been regularly adding links to categories as I’ve covered topics in my blog posts. for the most part, my resources are to free sites. Just hover over it for the drop down menu.

Have I convinced you to take a closer look at your favorite blog sites? I hope so!