February 26, 2011 04:00 PM by Shayla Perry
In last night’s episode of NBC’s Who Do You Think You Are? featuring Kim Cattrall, Kim set out in search of answers to the whereabouts of her grandfather, George Baugh, who abandoned his family over 70 years ago. Like Cattrall, there are many others looking for members of their family that have practically disappeared. So where do you begin your search? Ancestry.com has offered some tips!
Tip #1: Talk to Your Relatives: Just as Kim Cattrall spoke to her mother and aunts to begin her search for George Baugh, always start by talking to your relatives. See if any of them still have things like wedding announcements, obituaries, military medals, photos, or other types of memorabilia that features names and dates.
These items can help you refine your search on Ancestry.com and other genealogy websites.
Ancestry.com also recommends listening to family stories. Those tales that bored you growing up may contain minor details that can help you figure out specific places and times in history that may be helpful in your search.
Tip #2: See What Others Have Discovered: Another good resource? The other members of Ancestry.com. On the website, you can search family trees to find other members that may have learned something about members of your family.
If and when you find a family tree you’d like to know more about, click on “Tree Owner” to send a private message to the person who created it.
You can also check the Member Connect box for links to other Ancestry.com members who may be researching members of your family.
Tip #3: Look For Immediate Family: If you’re looking for a missing relative, like Kim Cattrall, who was searching for her grandfather, George Baugh on Who Do You Think You Are?, try researching their siblings and/or in-laws.
Just like Cattrall, you may find the answers you’re looking for from these “collateral relatives,” who may have mentioned your missing family member in obituaries, wills, etc., or captured a picture of him or her.
Perhaps your missing relative lived with a sister or cousin at one point. This information could be revealed in a census record or city directory.
Other helpful resources include naturalization papers or various legal documents where your family member could be listed as a witness.
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Photo credit: NBC