Thursday, December 13, 2007

Hitting Paydirt

On Tuesday night at the FHC, I noticed, when I used Google, that other genealogists before me had searched for names of their ancestors using quotation marks, like this:

"Ruby Valentine Fox."

I remembered reading that when you enclose your search terms in quotation marks, Google looks for exactly that phrase or name, instead of finding websites where the names appear but are not linked together. I never used it because I thought it was no big deal, until last night.

Just for fun, I entered Ruby's name in Google surrounded by quotation marks, and found a major source for her Arndt ancestors: The Story of the Arndts. And oh, what a treasure trove of Arndt family members it has turned out to be. I'm obsessed now. So far I've added almost 100 new family members and haven't even made it to Ruby's page yet.

This book also verifies ancestors' information I inherited from Gran, describes the service of the Revolutionary War patriots in the family (along with other military endeavors), and is chock-full of great sources itself, such as church and tax records. The book may provide a way to add the Arndt men's names (only a few are listed) to the DAR Patriot Index, which is something I remember DAR liked doing - finding new patriots.

I also found a copy of Gran's obituary by doing the same thing with his name.

From this experience, I've learned to never pooh-pooh a good genealogical search tip, no matter how small or goofy it may seem.

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