Genealogical general contractors
If you already have a fair amount of experience doing your own research, what types of “building projects” might a professional genealogist help you with?
- Research plans: A consultant can help you with a site inspectionorganizing your files and determining your next research goals, based on your overall priorities.
- Social history: Do “survey work” to gain historical perspective on your ancestor’s era, perhaps to explain odd migration patterns, living arrangements or changes in employment.
- Lineage society applications: These can be as extensive and detail-oriented as building permits.
- Brick wall demolition: The experts have lots of sources you might not even know about. Bonus: You can pick up new techniques from the experts along with your research results.
Life story surveyors
Preserving unique family relics may call for professional service, too. A conservator can help by examining, documenting and either stabilizing or restoring your heirlooms. Conservators often have master’s level training in historic preservation and might even specialize in rare books, photographs, furniture or documents.
Jack of all trades
- Ancestry.com Expert Connect: Get professional help with a variety of tasks.
- Genealogy Freelancers: Post your project details and get bids from professionals around the world.
- Genlighten: Here, you also can collect bids for research tasks. The focus is on lookups, record retrieval and similar services.
- Random Acts of Genealogical Kindness: Volunteers do simple research favors for free (except expenses such as photocopying).
In addition, some repositories keep lists of nearby professional researchers. For example, if you want to hire someone to copy a Civil War pension file, see the National Archives’ referrals.
- New England Historic Genealogical Society, 617-226-1233
- OnLine and OnTime Virtual Transcription Services, 800-668-4630
- ScanDigital, (888) 333-2808
From the December 2009 Family Tree Magazine