I've been an amateur genealogist since 1991 while I was still in high school. I've always been curious about where my family comes from, and I want to know more about my ancestors. The interesting thing about genealogy is that the more you learn, the more you want to find even more! In that way, genealogy research is never complete. It's an ever-growing jigsaw puzzle that's challenging us to fit the pieces together even when there's no image on the box lid to use as a guide.
Let me help you discover answers to the questions you have about your family. Typical genealogy projects include:
I'm a big proponent of using DNA for research!
DNA is a powerful tool in our genealogy toolbox that previous generations didn't have. A mystery that a parent or grandparent was unable to solve is now possible! I first started using DNA testing to help with my own genealogy in 2005 when I took a yDNA test to offer insight into the patrilineal line of my family tree. Eventually autosomal DNA testing became available for researching every branch of a family tree. I manage multiple DNA tests for friends and family, and together that has helped me make new discoveries about my ancestry. DNA allowed me to both discover and eventually solve a mystery in my tree that my family didn't even know about previously. It also allowed me to trace an immigrant ancestor back to England in the mid 1800s.
You honestly don't know what you might find from a DNA test, and you should be prepared for the unexpected before you take one. To anyone interested in genealogy, that element of surprise is the primary benefit of DNA testing. Otherwise, why take a test if you already know all the answers? But understanding the results of a DNA test and how it can help you learn more about your ancestry has a steep learning curve. I've helped several people solve their own family mysteries, and it's exciting when the combination of new science and old-fashioned research can accomplish that. I can help you make sense of your DNA results and offer suggestions on how to move forward to get answers to lifelong questions.
My thoughts on doing genealogy and history research:
The output of my research will depend on what question you want to have answered. Generally, it will be a typed report on the details of where I searched and what was found. It might also include a printed family tree. I'll always provide images of all source documents whenever possible so that you can see the original records for yourself.
I charge $30 per hour for research time. I can cover a lot of ground in just the first few hours to get an idea of how easy or difficult the project might be. When travel is required, we can discuss those details beforehand. I'm often able to do most research online and with the reference materials that I own. Let me know what you'd like to learn about your ancestry and how I can help.