SpringBoard, an official blogger for the 2015 NGS Family History Conference, is pleased to offer a review of this skillbuilding lecture, presented Friday, 15 May, 2015:

F341: C. Ann Staley, CG, CGL, “The Everyday Life of Our Ancestors,” by Nancy A. Peters, CG.

In a room filled to capacity with enthusiastic family historians, C. Ann Staley, CG, CGL, enlightened us on how to add personal details to our family stories. A show of hands found that most in the audience were first-time conference attendees who were eager to take their genealogical research beyond the basics of birth, marriage, and death information. Ann talked about ways to put “flesh on the bones” of our ancestors.

C. Ann Staley, CG, CGL

Ann explained how timelines can not only place our ancestors in their cultural, geographical, and historical context, but also help differentiate individuals of the same name. She showed examples of various timeline styles and suggested websites that would be useful when creating them. She reviewed several aspects of everyday life and where to find information on food, clothing, weather, occupations, medicine, and more. Her advice was to “read, read, and read some more” to understand our ancestors’ lives. Ann offered several suggestions for books and articles for researching local history and geography.

Any family history researcher will find this lecture packed with ideas and sources for learning about the past and bringing ancestors’ stories to life.

If you missed Ann’s lecture, a recording is available from Jamb Tapes, Inc.

CG, Certified Genealogist, CGL, and Certified Genealogical Lecturer are service marks of the Board for Certification of Genealogists, used under license by Board-certified genealogists after periodic competency evaluation, and the board name is registered in the US Patent & Trademark Office.