My research workbook has tabbed sections for each surname I'm working on. On your computer you can create folders for each surname, the folders being the "tabbed sections" in your workbook. You can also create sub-folders under the surnames for each couple or family group. Whatever make sense to you, because it all depends on where you are going in your research and how you organize yourself and your files.
Your research notes can be free-flowing text that you write or type as you work. Or your notes can be confined to pre-defined formats on charts or forms, or in software programs. Many people use the Notes field in their genealogy database program to type their notes on individuals. Some genealogy programs allow for large text entry and some have limited notes fields, so you will have to decide if this works for you or not. In the end you might find that a combination of free-flowing text, forms, or notes in genealogy software programs works best.
BE SURE TO INCLUDE
Whether your research notes are in pre-defined forms or free-flowing text, be sure to include these important bits as you find your ancestors in records:
- Date you are doing the research
- Copyright date of the material and/or "updated" date of any web site data (when the data was published)
- Full title of source material
- Call numbers, URLs, page numbers, etc.
- Your comments, notes to yourself for the future, goals
- For database or search engine searches list all the keywords and various combinations of keywords you used in the searches
- Ancestors Research Log
- Ancestry.com Research Calendar
- Bailey's Research Record Sheet
- FamilySearch.org Research Log
- Family Tree Magazine's Research Calendar
- Family Tree Magazine's Note Taking Form - Surname
- Family Tree Magazine's Note Taking Form - Family Group
- Family Tree Magazine's Research Journal
- Family Tree Magazine's Research Worksheet
- . . . and many more linked from Cyndi's List
WHAT DO YOU DO?