In the Internet age, genealogical research has moved from musty courthouses and old cemeteries to online search engines.  Carol Cooke Darrow showed the Club how to find date, plus potentially a few surprises.
Carol Cooke Darrow, Denver based Genealogist came to talk about her very specialized field of study. Carol introduced her subject by talking about the overwhelming interest in genealogical data - there are over 40,000 data bases that deal with genealogical data. People all over the world interact with these data bases by posting small bits of information, articles or death and birth certificates, all the way to DNA data. She helps people navigate the vast sea of information by refining their own searches, and helping them direct the search at home and on the web. 

Carol shared that the Denver Library, Central Branch, has one of the greatest genealogical libraries in the nation. Carol is found in the Denver Library most days, chasing interesting threads of information about all aspects of genealogy. Boulder has its own excellent resource, the Carnegie Library of genealogical information.  

Carol teaches classes on finding your own genealogy at College Hill Library throughout the year. If you are interested, you can find out more about her at www.unravelingyourpast.com.

Where do you start if you are hoping to find out about your own ancestry? Carol recommends finding the most specific thing you can about your immediate ancestors and work your way back. Do you have a birth or death certificate? Do you know where and when the person you are researching was born? Any detail can help you to winnow the search to get to your information faster. More and more of the information is going online and knowing specific facts will allow you to sift the information into more usable bites. 

One of Carol’s favorite databases is www.findagrave.com. It is fascinating and a rainy day distraction. Carol challenged you to just look up one! This data base is composed of millions of grave sites posted by all sorts of people around the world. 

DNA testing is becoming more and more common. One aspect of the testing relates to genealogy. Going to a genealogy specialist may be the only way to figure out the meaning of the raw data that is returned to you with the results.