Have you thought about keeping a genealogy blog as you discover and research your family history? Are you working on compiling a family history book but are not sure where to start?
I was thinking about this idea as I wondered how I can share my findings with other family members as I discover intriguing stories and facts about where we came from. A book would be a fantastic thing to put together later on as it would last far longer than a post on the internet, can’t be hacked, and is a better preserver of photographs. But what about right now? There are older generations dying off who may be interested in what I’m finding out but may no longer be living when a book is ready. I also have a ton of cousins descended from my great-grandparents I met at a family reunion who would love to hear about where we come from not to mention my dad, sister, and aunts. Instead of calling them all up or contacting them on Facebook and telling them how our great-great grandmother died (crushed under a horse when her and her husband’s buggy fell into a ditch), I could write a post about it and those interested could read the story for themselves. All these family members could also contribute the stories they’ve heard and I could post them.
As genealogists, we’re excited whenever we find something new and my writer’s heart is just itching to put these stories into words of my own and share them. No one in recent generations know anything about what I’ve discovered and I am longing to share it with them. If you’re interested in trying this out along with me, there are some great resources I’ve found to help us out.
Jana’s Genealogy and Family History Blog – Family members she didn’t even know she had found her through her blog!
The Family History Blog to Book Project – This site has a lot of great articles to help you with both creating a blog and compiling a family history book. When you’re ready to have your book designed and printed, we will be happy to work with you on creating a book your family will treasure.
Blogging Your Family History - This article will help you with specific blogging issues. Though a little out of date in regards to what blogging platforms work best, it is extremely helpful.
GeneaBloggers – GeneaBlogger is a “…community of like-minded bloggers who are always ready to lend a hand to new GeneaBloggers members” The site provides technical help and daily blogging prompts to help you get your genealogy blog established. Stories To Tell is a member of GeneaBloggers.
For myself, I’m going to go with Wordpress as a platform. I already have my author and self-publishing websites through them and love the versatility and ease in combining a blog with a website – a handy feature when you might want to have web pages for photo galleries and records as well as blog posts. I have also liked blogspot.com. That’s what my main blog is on, mostly because I didn’t want to move it and lose the address consistency. Check out both websites and choose for yourself. Both of them will be around for a long time.
Even from just posting my initial family find on Facebook, I’ve already found out that one of my “friends” is, in fact, a cousin. All this time, my family history was right under my nose. I’m excited to start the blog and see what else and who else I can find. (Not to mention comparing notes with my new-found cousin!)
Do you keep a family genealogy blog? Do you have any tips for me and others who may want to start one? Are there features you’ve built in to your blog that have helped you create a better designed book later? I would love to hear what you’ve discovered through your blog or what you hope to do by starting one!