FGS – Connect. Explore. Refresh – Prompt One (Part Two)

The first prompt

“Tell us and your readers/followers what you think of when you here Connect. Explore. Refresh in relation to a genealogy conference”

Earlier we explored Connect. Now we are going to look at Explore.


The internet has opened up the genealogical research arena far more than anyone probably thought possible. Pretty much every institution has some kind of web presence. Be that the largest libraries in the land – The British Library, the Library of Congress or the obscure and fascinating. Each one of those brings to the on-line world the ability for others to increase their knowledge, Explore the bowels of their facilities and tap into the depth of material, both on and off line.

It doesn’t just stop there, Individuals can and do set up website, blogs and share historical and genealogical data. The internet enables that exploration from the confines of our studies, offices, sofa’s and alike. We can explore the website of archives in a controlled manner, knowing what we seek and where we can access the material from. We can also have not the vaguest clue of where or what we require, but can explore using a search of a single name, place or keyword.

We get to encounter material known to us, to encounter new material, to explore new and different archives, connect with new friends and family who we stumble across whilst exploring. If we are very lucky we are the ones that are found whilst others are exploring.

We should be brave, uninhibited and open to search suggestions as we explore the virtual halls of libraries, archives and museums. Serendipity will probably make an appearance too, and as many of us know that whilst searching for something, we sometimes locate other material relevant to our ancestry.

The internet allows us to be a virtual explorer, a Dr Livingstone if you will, exploring the vast amounts of data that is there if only we can see it. We can search from the comfort of our homes, schools, libraries and perhaps workplaces! The costs and dangers of physical exploration removed, but the wealth of discovery from our explorations is and can be priceless.

What a wonderful way to Explore. Stay tuned for the posts looking at Refresh and a bonus post. Twitter #FGS2015

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