Cover Image: Genealogy for Beginners

Genealogy for Beginners

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

Genealogy for Beginners by Katherine Pennavaria is a great book for those who want to learn more about Genealogy. Everything is explained in easy to understand language. Finding the step by step instructions is really beneficial. I highly recommend this book for beginners, what do you have to lose.
I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

Was this review helpful?

If you want to get started doing research on your family history, this is the book that you should start with. It gives you details on how to find records in an easy to understand way. A great book to give you leads on how you can get started and begin your love for genealogy long into the future.

Was this review helpful?

I received a complimentary ARC copy of Genealogy for Beginners by Katherine Pennavaria from Netgalley Rowman & Littlefield in order to read and give an honest review.

"… a fantastic book for those who are just starting out to those, like myself who began the process but abandoned the search…"

Genealogy for Beginners is just that an amazing guide for newbies like myself. It is an easy to understand, comprehensive and well-written guide to getting anyone started on their search or just back on track if they have gotten stuck.

Author, Katherine Pennavaria walks us step by step on the search for our long lost family. We learn effective strategies on how to be a researcher from where to begin, how to manage and record our findings to interviewing existing family members. Pennavaria gives us sage advice on how to manage and organise family photos and documents and directs us to endless resources and how to find information in real life and online.

A fantastic book for those who are just starting out to those, like myself who began the process but abandoned the search out of frustration. This will be a book that I will return to time and again on my genealogy journey.

Was this review helpful?

Katherine Pennavaria is a well-known expert on genealogy. In addition to being a professor a Western Kentucky University, she is a frequent presenter at both national and state conferences and the author of books on genealogy as well as a column published regularly in a library-specific journal.

Her Genealogy for Beginners is a book that I definitely wish had been available when I enrolled in a college-level online genealogical class in the early 2000s. At that time, I found the textbook we were using (written by the instructor) to be a bit confusing, and the online sites were way over my head. The nice people at the local genealogy libraries meant well, but they all had been doing their own research for years, and while they were welcoming to all, they clearly were primarily focused on providing assistance to members of the local LDS churches.

This book provides an outstanding chapter “Best First Steps for Beginners,” and goes on the discuss basic searching then moving to advanced techniques. The hot topic of DNA in genealogical research is covered, along with an extremely helpful look at non-U.S. records as well as using maps and property records.

This would be a great textbook for a first-semester family history class, as well as being a terrific gift for someone who is interested in genealogy. With thanks to Rowman & Littlefield and NetGalley, this one is a definite five stars.

Was this review helpful?

This is a great book for beginners or anyone who is new to the hobby of genealogy. Easy to read & follow the examples. Definitely a book worth adding to your personal library.

Was this review helpful?

Outstanding overview of what you need to know as you are starting out in genealogy. In fact, this book is very helpful for those of us who have been researching our trees for a few years already. It's also remarkably readable -- many books for beginning genealogists are quite dry. This one covers the basics of getting started, setting goals, how to organize, where to look, and some history of genealogy. Then Pennavaria gets to specifics such as which websites to use, how to find libraries and archives that may yield information you are looking for, what is free and what is worth paying for. She discusses the different types of records and where to find them. She also talks about helpful books to use as well as podcasts, magazines, and blogs. The book is well organized so that it will be useful as a resource for reference as you need it. I've looked at many books and websites for beginning genealogists and this is right at the top of my list. This is a keeper for any beginning to intermediate genealogist. (Thanks to NetGalley and Rowman & Littlefield for a digital review copy.)

Was this review helpful?

This book is really good for someone who is just starting out in genealogy. It explains everything in detail, everything from where to start to where to find the records your looking for. I found new places to find records that I didn't even know existed. It is a little wordy but if you have never looked into your genealogy this is good because it really helps you to understand what you need to know.

Was this review helpful?

Genealogy for Beginners provides a history of the meaning of genealogy and gives good examples of where you can start your search. It details immigrants that passed through Ellis Island listing well known individuals including Gary Grant. Also, it includes a chapter on basics of online research which is informative.

This ARC was provided in exchange for my honest opinion. It is obvious the author has done extensive research on this book and bringing together resources for easy accessibility. Overall, the book is very informative and definitely recommend for someone not familiar starting a genealogy search.

Was this review helpful?