John Cass

Finding Your Family Through Neighbor History

Genealogical research focuses on following historical evidence about relatives; research about your family is an obvious line of inquiry. But, when a family historian focuses on lineage and then does not put family members in context, with their communities, or their society, the family history is only diminished in its extent and value. By exploring a historical person’s motivations, the historical context, and the meaning of the data that is discovered. There will be a better understanding of both who that person was and the meaning of the evidence. In doing so, those very same historical mysteries that drove initial research may be solved. In genealogy, the practice of research should not be reduced to a list of names and dates. Instead, researchers will gain more from adding color and detail into the recorded lives of their ancestors.

[Recorded August 12, 2023]

John Cass has been a family historian since the 1980s, researching history in the UK, the west coast, and New England.

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