Out on a Limb December 2001

By David A. Fryxell Premium

I can’t resist a good bargain. OK, so sometimes my love for “good deals” means walking out of a department store with two bulging shopping bags and a $150 burden on my credit card. But, as I’ll repeatedly point out to my wife until she lets me keep all my “bargain” purchases, it might have cost $500 to fill those bags at full retail price.

Never before have genealogy shoppers been presented with so many choices to fill their shopping bags. The proliferation of electronic data and ease of desktop publishing, the boom in Web sites and genealogy gizmos all mean that the family historian with money to burn can have a very full stocking this holiday season. One recent market study found that almost 12 million US adults will spend more than $100 on their genealogy hobby this year.

But, if you’re like me, you want to know that you’re getting the most bang for your buck. Even if the total tab causes your credit card to sizzle and smoke, you want to be sure you got a good deal.

Contributing editor Rick Crume comes to the rescue of all of us bargain hunters with this issue’s cover story on the best buys in genealogy. From books and CD-ROMs to maps and databases, he’s surveyed the family history shopping scene and found 58 great deals. Whether you’re shopping for yourself or creating a Christmas list for Santa to select from, the bargains begin on page 14. If you preserve your memories in scrapbooks and heritage albums, you’ll find more best buys — everything from albums to adhesive — on page 21.

The computer revolution has sparked much of the boom in genealogy products, of course. If you haven’t plugged in and logged on yet, there’s never been a better — or cheaper — time to add a computer to your genealogy arsenal. And if you’re already into high-tech genealogy, falling PC and peripheral prices and rising technology mean it’s a prime time to upgrade or add on to your system. Either way, our complete guide to computer gear for genealogists has the advice you need. You might want to leave this issue open to page 22 for Santa.

If you’re not already a subscriber to Family Tree Magazine, I trust that your holiday wish list also includes six issues of America’s most popular genealogy magazine. At $19.96 — a 33 percent savings from the newsstand price — a subscription to Family Tree Magazine is certainly a genealogy “best buy.” You can order subscriptions for yourself or as a gift by filling in the cards in this issue, calling toll-free (888) 403-9002 or clicking on our Web site <>.

And here’s one more stocking stuffer for you: The Family Tree Yearbook 2002 will go on sale Nov. 27. This special issue will include a guide to genealogy resources across the country, with in-depth state-by-state listings, plus recommended Web sites for every day of 2002. Subscribers, please note: This extra edition is not included in the six issues of your subscription. The Yearbook is available only at newsstands and bookstores, on our Web site <> or by calling toll-free (888) 419-0421 (after Nov. 27).

Unlike some of those department-store deals I can’t resist, this is one bargain that it’s OK to tell your friends about — we promise, there will be plenty to go around.

From the December 2001 issue of Family Tree Magazine