Move beyond vital records and census enumerations. Look for each and every document that could possibly mention your ancestors. Today at the National Archives I'll begin searching the Civil War pension files of the men who signed affidavits for one of my Union Civil War pensioners. Who knows what I'll discover about conditions during various military campaigns that my ancestors didn't mention in his application?
"Wills and probate records may also prove to be useful resources for gaining an
understanding of an individual. Horses, saddles, spinning wheels, cupboards and
linens are often prized possessions left to heirs. One of my ancestors left her silver hairbrush and mirror set to a favorite daughter. You don’t have to be a professional writer to glean data from documents or to interview relatives." *
*SOURCE: "Writing Your Family History" by Donna Murray. Family Chronicle. Mar/Apr 2009. Pages 48-49.
Happy family tree climbing!
Your friend in genealogy.