Reading Sources

T.V. FitzHugh. How To Write A Family History: The lives and times of our ancestors, Sherbourne, Dorset, Alphabooks Ltd., 1988, 200 p. ISBN 0-7136-3078-7

"Basically a family history consists of overlapping biographies of members of a family in its progress through the centuries. The overlapping is horizontal between siblings and vertical between parents and issue. Family history tells of their activities and outside events and influences that impinged on their lives; it places them in their various contexts, domestic, occupational, local, social and national-historical; it seeks to explain the reasons for any changes in family circumstances and to describe their consequences. . . .". An excellent and very readable book, by a professional genealogist.
T.V.H. Fitzhugh. The Dictionary of Genealogy, London, A & C Black (1994) 304 p.
(Fourth edition, revised by Susan Lumas on behalf of the Society of Genealogists.) An excellent, well-illustrated, reference work which though it concentrates largely on England (with informative sections on each separate county), also has some coverage of the rest of the British Isles.
D. Hey. The Oxford Guide to Family History, Oxford, O.U.P. (1993) 256 p.
"The Oxford Guide to Family History is not just another guide to the mechanics of constructing a family tree. David Hey shows how to go beyond this and discover the reality of the lives of your ancestors. Who were they? Where did they live? How did they earn their living? Practical guidance is given on the basics of research - how to get started, where to find records - and there are many illustrations."
M.D. Herber. Ancestral Trails: The Complete Guide to British Genealogy and Family History. Sutton Publishing Ltd. in assoc. with The Society of Genealogists (1997) 674p. ISBN 0-7509-148-1
"No other publication gives such comprehensive and up-to-date guidance on tracing British ancestry and researching family history. Illustrated throughout with more than ninety examples of the major types of records, and with detailed lists of further reading."
C.D. Rogers. The Family Tree Detective, Manchester Univ. Press (1989) 164 p. ISBN 0 7190 1846 3
An excellent detailed guide to basic UK genealogy. From the publisher's blurb: "A problem-solving manual rather than a simple "how-to" guide. The Family Tree Detective explains what to do when the usual methods fail and provides invaluable assistance for those without access to London's vast resources of genealogical information."
N.C. Stevenson. Genealogical Evidence; a guide to the standard of proof relating to pedigrees, ancestry, heirship and family history, Laguna Hills CA, Aegean Park Press (1979) 233 p.
An excellent and very readable account by a lawyer and genealogist of the standards of proof that should be sought in establishing an individual's ancestry, whether for producing a documented genealogy, or for legal purposes. Though aimed at an American readership, and dealing mainly with American records and laws, it is well worthy of study by genealogists in other countries, particularly the UK and Ireland given the links (both of emigration, and of legal heritage) between the British Isles and the USA.
A. Todd. Basic Sources for Family History. 1: back to the early 1800s (2nd ed.), Bury, Lancs., Allen & Todd (1989) ISBN 0 948781 05 X.
A very good, and exceptionally cheap, introductory guide covering the use of civil registration records, and census records in very useful detail.

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