Every genealogist’s work today should include a combination of original documents, printed materials, Internet resources, materials from online databases, and the exchange of information with other genealogists. Only by working all these sources in tandem can we begin to hope to work effectively.
Unfortunately, there are many people who believe that “the best stuff is on the Internet.” Yes, there has been an explosion of information placed online in the last ten years, especially with the digitization of images at many libraries’, archives’, and online subscription databases’ websites. However, that does not mean that you should only conduct research on the Internet.
Your public library continues to be an essential place for your research. I was reminded of that this weekend when helping to instruct some of our society’s members about the collection in our local library. Libraries offer a wealth of printed materials that are not found online. In case you haven’t visited your library for quite a while, things may well have changed. The fact is that you may not have any real idea of the just what is in your library’s collection and all it offers to you. Let’s discuss some important questions and see just how much you know about your own public library’s collection.
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