Family History Research

Benefits of CaseFile Clues

I wrote a post a few weeks ago about CaseFile Clues and my thoughts on it.  I also subscribed to the series. This weekend Michael John Neill extended his offer for Brick Walls A-Z so I took advantage and emailed asking for a copy.

This issue of CaseFile Clues is fantastic for researchers of all levels. This issue briefly describes many approaches researchers use to break down brick walls.

Want to move your research forward? Then look at “B” for Biography. Michael discusses how writing an ancestor’s biography will help you find gaps in your research. Do you know your history? Look at “H” for History where the reason for knowing the region’s history where your ancestor lived can help you locate more information. Can’t find what you want? Maybe because you are dealing with “O” for Out-of-Date. Look at the finding aids you are using to evaluate how recently they were updated. Is the information on the finding aid still valid?

Michael provides many more ways to break down your brick walls in this issue. He also uses many of these ideas in his CaseFile Clues series. Michael will show you exactly what he means by “A” is for Assumptions and how they can benefit a research and take away from locating information.

Subscribe to the series for a year. You will really enjoy the honest records based approach to working out a research problem.  After you subscribe to CaseFile Clues, the typically 7-9 pages PDF files, come straight to your E-mail inbox as they are released. Just download and read.

Now, this is one thing I really love about CaseFile Clues!! Because they are PDF files I am able to put a copy on my Barnes and Noble NOOK so I can take them anywhere! For example, I love being able to take my grade-school aged children to the library and while they roam around doing puzzles, looking for books and talking to the other kids, I can sit and read CaseFile Clues on my NOOK! This also comes in handy if I can really relate to a specific research problem Michael outlines because I don’t have to print that issue to take on a research trip with me. I just take along my NOOK and can refer back to that issue to see how Michael worked through a problem to help me move forward on mine.

Subscribe to CaseFile Clues through Michael’s website for $17 a year. Not sure if you want to subscribe? Michael will email you a free issue to review before you make a decision! Check it out!  You can also follow Michael on Twitter @mjnrootdig where he posts subscription specials and tips.

Do you subscribe to CaseFile Clues? Has something Michael wrote helped you in your research?  Post your comments below.

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Tuesday’s Tip – Subscribe to CaseFile Clues

CaseFile Clues is something I heard about in the early fall of 2010. I sent an email through the website requesting the two free Sample Issues. I got them, briefly looked them over and filed them away to read later. Later never came and they are still sitting on my computer. When Michael asked if anyone would like to review CaseFile Clues I volunteered.

As I sat reading three of the four issues I received, I told myself I should have read those two issues in the fall and subscribed right away! CaseFile Clues offer genealogists of every level the opportunity to learn something new. Each Case provides actual family cases, records used, analysis performed, and a lot of common sense advice that we all “know” but sometimes “forget.”

In Volume 1-Number 18, Mugging the Biography for Clues, Michael discusses what is written in a biography and writes, “…it is noted that the author does not state that the father moved to “White County, Indiana” at an early date, just that he moved to “Indiana at an early date.” Avoid the temptation to read more into something than what is actually there.” I love the last line, avoid the temptation. How often do we read something yet see something else?

Along those lines, in Volume 2-Number 15, 1810-1840 Census Analysis: Thomas Chaney, Michael talks a lot about assumptions. He stresses the fact we should write our assumptions about a person or the research path in our notes. Doing so as we make the assumptions helps us remember that some assumptions are not realistic.

Michael offers the CaseFile Clues subscription for a mere $17 a year. That is less expensive than most genealogy magazines we all subscribe to each year. CaseFile Clues even has a blog so readers can learn more tips and see what’s coming up next!

Many of us are looking for valuable educational experiences without busting our budgets. CaseFile Clues is one of those valuable educational experiences that should not be passed up. I subscribed, will you?

Disclosure: I was not compensated for this review. Michael John Neill twittered asking if anyone would like to review CaseFile Clues on their blog or website. I contacted him through his website and said I would. I immediately received two Sample Issues of CaseFile Clues to read. Michael also sent me two additional ones to provide a variety of reading. I did subscribe this weekend and cannot wait to receive the next issue of CaseFile Clues.

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