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  Building a Family from Circumstantial Evidence - webinar-on-CD

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Most genealogists learn very quickly that it's a rare family where direct evidence supplies all the proof needed to connect one generation to another and tie brothers and sisters to each other. In most cases, it's necessary to build the case for family relationships from bits and pieces and hints and clues gathered from a wide variety of sources. Find out more about how to build a family from circumstantial evidence.

This class was presented to a live webinar (online seminar) audience on August 29, 2012. 1 hour 28 minutes. Plus 8 pages of handouts.

Viewers' comments:
  • I am putting this on the top of my most helpful list. Fantastic job!
  • Absolutely brilliant webinar! Thank you so much Judy and Geoff. I have three similar cases I keep going back and forth on while waiting for documents to arrive. So many of us are out here just chipping away at our research and it was so refreshing to hear Judy and have her validate I'm on the right track and not alone. For that alone today I am thankful I took in the webinar and will review it again in a couple of days - TY both!
  • Absolutely fantastic. I'm happy to hear about someone's research that sounds like mine where you can't find the information unless you dig a little deeper and this gives me information as to new places and people to look for.
  • Another fabulous presentation and one that will help me in my quest to find those ancestors who did not leave the obvious records.
  • Brilliant! I would study under Judy's teaching anytime. She is, by far, the best presenter (well, except for the Watch Geoff Live webinars!) I have yet encountered. Great slides, well-paced, clear and easy to follow, all the best practices for presenting well. Congrats and thanks to Judy!
  • Excellent demonstration! This would be great material for those new to genealogy research and for the seasoned genealogist. Thank you so much for offering this resource.
  • Excellent presentation style! Nice that Judy always remembers she is speaking to an international audience and acknowledges us.
  • Excellent topic and speaker. Very well presented. I have never had the "GPS" so well-explained!
  • Fantastic webinar. One of the best, most thorough (yet followable) case study presentations I've seen/attended. THANK YOU for doing these. I'm buying the CD and telling my friends!
  • Fascinating! Judy's guidance certainly gave me new ideas for my brick walls. Thank you!
  • Great - so many ideas and skillfully put together in an organized way so one can follow to help them when researching that brick wall ancestory.
  • Great help with sources. Now I feel better about using "circumstantial evidence," vs. direct evidence to prove my ancestry. Thanks so much for an excellent webinar.
  • Great presentation. Reminds us that sometimes you still have to do genealogy the old way - off our computers and with your "thinking cap" working.
  • Great reminders about searching through ALL available sources, utilizing the FAN technique, and getting more information on those migrations that initially don't make much sense. All the different sources that lead to a better analysis of the who what when where and why of the ancestor. And thank goodness for the occasional 'odd" named child!
  • Great: now I can convince the co-genealogists in my family that the "indirect" approach I've been using IS ok, especially when "official" records are missing or vague. Listening to Judy was like taking a carefully guided personal tour of the process by an expert (which I guess it was) and NOT getting confused or lost along the way. Thanks, Judy. And thanks, Geoff, for making these webinars available.
  • I have attended many of the webinars. This has to be in the top three, if not the absolute best overall. Terrific!!!
  • I keep thinking that the webinars can't get any better, but boy, am I wrong! This was one of the best in laying a plan for what to do and then showing each step in building the evidence to a conclusion.
  • I've been researching since the late 1950s and I still learned new approaches today. Impressive.
  • Judy did an excellent job on this topic. Highly recommended for the beginner or intermediate genealogist. Additionally, her blog is full of substantive information daily.
  • Judy spoke slowly, clearly, and emphatically as she guided us step-by-step through the process of building this family. I have never been more impressed with a researcher! She was able to lead us through a complicated process, making each step easy to understand. Her research methods are what we all should strive to emulate.
  • Loved it, it was so nice to see how it is done and know that I am on the right track with what I am doing as a beginning researcher. Putting puzzle pieces together to make a fuller picture. I will be sure to watch any other webinars done by Judy, she is very easy to understand!
  • Oh, my goodness! Judy took a complex situation and made me feel like I can do it, too!
  • One of the best speaker I've ever heard. Clear, concise and enjoyable. I'm an experienced genealogist and got lots out of this webinar.
  • One of the best webinars I have attended yet! Judy Russell is a 5-star speaker who has a knack for explaining complex methodology in simple terms! Thank you for an outstanding webinar!
  • One of the most logically assembled evidence trails I've seen. It gives me confidence in the approach I've used on some difficult families. The analysis of the land taxes and transactions with the additions and subtractions was a level of detail that was really compelling and which I'd not seen to that degree before. Very, very excellent.
  • The quality of your webinars continues to skyrocket. This is like being at a NGS national conference.  Keep up the awesome selection of speakers. This one is in my top 3.
  • This webinar was not only informative, it was also inspirational. I have so many questions that I would like to ask, so I hope that one day I will be able to attend one of your presentations in person.  The webinar today has totally changed how I will move forward and over or around the brick walls I have been dealing with for many years.
About the author:
A Certified Genealogist with a law degree, Judy G. Russell is a lecturer, educator and writer who enjoys helping others understand a wide variety of genealogical issues, including the interplay between genealogy and the law. She has a bachelorís degree in political science and journalism from George Washington University in Washington, D.C. and a law degree from Rutgers School of Law-Newark. She has worked as a newspaper reporter, trade association writer, legal investigator, defense attorney, federal prosecutor, law editor and, for more than 20 years, Judy has been an adjunct member of the faculty at Rutgers Law School. Judy is a Colorado native with roots deep in the American south on her motherís side and entirely in Germany on her fatherís side.
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