3 Practical Strategies for Finding Female Ancestors

3 Practical Strategies for Finding Female Ancestors

There’s an issue with discovering feminine ancestors. With title adjustments and a scarcity of information, it may be difficult to hint the feminine half of the household tree. Listed below are 3 sensible methods for locating extra about our feminine ancestors.

Generations Cafe Podcast, Episode 61

You’ll be able to hearken to this episode by clicking the play button beneath. (You too can hear on Apple Podcasts, Google Podcasts, Stitcher, and most different podcast apps.) Size: 12 minutes.

1. Discover All You Can About Her (AKA Don’t Skip Data)

Since girls had fewer authorized rights than males, there weren’t as many information created about girls as there have been for males. Which means we are able to’t afford to skip any information that ought to exist for her.

It’s so tempting in our analysis to only skip information as a result of we predict we all know what’s going to be in that file. “Oh, I can skip that census as a result of it’s not going to inform me something I don’t already know,” or, “Obituaries are onerous to seek out so I’m not going to hassle in search of it.” (By the way in which, I’ve some tips for finding women’s obituaries.)

If we’re skipping information that ought to exist for her, we might be lacking out on some golden alternatives to seek out extra data. For instance, in a single census file I discovered the brother of my second nice grandmother dwelling with them. I didn’t know something about this brother earlier than I discovered the census file. That census opened up complete new avenues of analysis; I might analysis her brother, which led to details about their mother and father. If I had skipped that census file as a result of, “Oh, it isn’t going to inform me something new,” I might have missed that means of discovering all of that details about their mother and father.

2. Seek for Her Husband (All of Them)

We want to consider all of her husbands, not simply the one who we descend from. It’s really easy to fall into the lure of, “Okay, she was married 3 times however I descend from her first husband, in order that’s the one I’m going to give attention to.”

My third-great-grandmother Matilda Debolt Skinner Crossen Brown McFillin was married at the least 4 occasions. I descend from her first husband, William Skinner, however I have to be researching all 4 of her husbands. Every of her husbands created information that include details about her: land information, probate information, court docket information, marriage information, and so forth. I can’t focus solely on William Skinner. Certainly, I needed to hold all of her husbands in thoughts with a purpose to break down the brick wall that had stymied me for greater than 20 years! (You can read more about that research here.)

3. Analysis All of Her Kids

The third factor that we have to do is analysis all of her kids, not simply the kid that we descend from. Give it some thought, if we’re researching that one little one pondering she or he goes to have the reply, what if she had eight kids? Couldn’t any of these eight have data pertaining to her?

Contemplate delivery information. If you discovered the delivery file of the kid that you simply descend from, perhaps it didn’t checklist the mom’s maiden title. Nevertheless, perhaps the delivery file of one of many different kids did. Additionally, take into consideration their obituaries and marriage information (each civil and church). Don’t get so centered simply on the kid that you simply descend from, take into consideration all of them. What solutions can you discover from these different kids?

Additionally, don’t skip over any of her kids who died younger. Their delivery information, dying information, obituaries, and cemetery information might have simply as a lot details about her as any of the opposite kids.


As we’re looking for details about the females in our household tree, we are able to’t afford to be hyper-focused on simply her or the husband and little one we descend from. We will’t skip information simply because we predict we all know what’s going to be in there. We have to additionally analysis all of her husbands and all of her kids.

Which of those methods have you ever used to seek out extra about your feminine ancestors?

Finding female ancestors can be difficult. Here are 3 practical, proven strategies for finding more about them for our genealogy.

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