What is “Discovering William”? (and why would you care?)

24 Dec

In a nutshell, this blog is about what William taught me about family history and genealogy…

Better said, some weeks ago (after a multi-year break) two things happened that rekindled my interest in genealogy. First, my younger brother brought up some genealogical information he had discovered. Though we haven’t thoroughly documented this information, if it is correct, it is info we’ve been searching for over the course of decades. That got me thinking…

Secondly, I was sitting there in bed one morning, and for some reason I was thinking about a related family (genealogically speaking) and, out of curiosity, decided to see what info I could dig up on them. The head of the family was William Ziesel, and you can find that story here.

As I’ve dug back into genealogy, I’ve learned some things about the research and effort required, and this blog is where I’m going to share it.

Disclaimer #1: I’m not an expert. I’m a sharer.

Disclaimer #2: This isn’t a blog dedicated to William Ziesel and his family research, though I’ll be using him (at least at the start) to illustrate some things.

Ok…here’s an update from the “About” page I just realized was there..

Don’t let the title of this blog fool you…this isn’t a blog about William Ziesel. Well, it is, but it isn’t. Here’s a better explanation:

My efforts to dig up a little info on my great-great-grandfather have proven to be good training. And, as I discover things, I’m passing them along. I’m certainly no professional genealogist, and I’m not even an expert in anything. But I’m learning and having some success. Maybe that will be the most helpful thing. If you are like me, maybe you just need an ordinary person like you to walk you through various steps of research.

I was talking to a friend about family history some weeks ago and he made a solid observation. It is easy to find information on why one should do genealogy. There’s plenty of motivational information around. What he wanted was someone to sit down with him, right at the computer, and walk him through how to do research.

Now, to be sure, I love the professional genealogists. Are you kidding me? I couldn’t do any of my research without their efforts. They’re great! I just don’t happen to be one.

So, that’s what this blog is. This is how I’m finding information, doing research, storing data, organizing data, etc. You can just watch me do it, step by step. If it is helpful, great. If not…

PS…I guess it kind of is a blog about William. I mean, if you’re in my family and are looking for info on William, there’s going to be a boatload here, along with other family lines. So…

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