Mastering Search on E-book

$9.99 offers genealogists a vast collection of their ancestors’ records, but how can researchers sort through them all? This e-book provides tips and techniques for searching for your ancestors on

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You’ll love this e-book if…

  • You want to make the most of what the Internet’s largest free genealogy website has to offer
  • You’re looking for new places to search for your ancestors
  • You’d like an efficient way to find and organize your ancestors’ records

Censuses, city directories, published family histories, tax and land records, immigration lists–the Family History Library has all these and more, and the massive is your gateway to accessing them. But how do you sift through these billions of records to find your ancestors? This e-book provides tools you can use to winnow down search results and find the records you need to trace your ancestors back in time.

What’s Inside

Mastering Search on features:

  • Guides to searching’s various records collections, including both traditional records (birth certificates, Social Security indexes, etc.) and lesser-known resources like published genealogies, family history books, and genealogical periodicals
  • Tips from a seasoned user on how to narrowly focus your search without excluding potential matches
  • A crash-course lesson in using the FamilySearch Catalog to identify record collections worth searching

Excerpt: Sample Tips

Here are some tips you’ll find in Mastering Search on

  • Start your searches broad, then narrow. Don’t enter all the information you have about an ancestor in the Historical Records search form right away, as this will exclude any records that don’t have all the information you’ve entered as search criteria.
  • Use wildcard characters like a question mark (?) and an asterisk (*) to account for spelling errors and other name variations in records collections, user-submitted genealogies and published books.

The Mastering Search on e-book comes in PDF format and can be printed out or viewed on your tablet, laptop, or desktop computer for easy reference while working with your family memories.

About The Author: Dana McCullough

Dana McCullough is a freelance writer and editor who frequently writes and edits content on genealogy and higher education topics. A former editor at Family Tree Magazine, Dana has written or edited content for twenty magazines and has contributed to the editing of eight books. Her writing has been published in Family Tree Magazine, The Artist’s Magazine, Family Circle, Brain Child, Better Homes and Gardens’ Simply Creative Weddings, My College Guide, The Iowan, Wisconsin Woman, and Scrapbooks, etc., among other national and regional consumer magazines.

Dana has a bachelor’s degree in journalism from Iowa State University. When not working, Dana enjoys traveling and exploring new places, trying (and tweaking) new recipes, playing the piano, and of course, researching her family history–especially on You can find Dana at her website or on Twitter at @DanasCreative.

Contents of Mastering Search on

Part 1: Searching and Browsing Historical Records

Part 2: Searching Genealogies, the Catalog, and Books

Part 3: Research Worksheets

Note: This e-book contains portions of the larger book the Unofficial Guide to, which also contains techniques for using the world’s largest free genealogy site. Learn more about the full book.

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