Descendancy Research

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When doing genealogy research, descendancy research is the process of identifying all of the descendants of a specific ancestral couple.

Who are Descendants?[edit | edit source]

All of a couple's children, grandchildren, great grandchildren, great great grandchildren, etc. are considered their descendants.

What is Descendancy Research?[edit | edit source]

Descendancy research is the process of choosing one of your ancestral couples and identifying all of their descendants. Start with a couple of about four to five generations back on your pedigree who lived in the early to mid-nineteenth century in an area with available records. You then locate that couple and their children in available records, identify children, children's spouses, and grandchildren. Repeat for each of the children and grandchildren.

Why do Descendancy Research?[edit | edit source]

Descendancy Research will help you to identify and connect with distant cousins, locate family documents and photos, share stories, and collaborate on research projects. It is especially useful for those with full family trees, as it allows for a more detailed view of all of the members of a family tree from a specific point in the past, as opposed to conventional research, which works backwards from a specific person and doesn't provide as full of a perspective for all the members of a family. This makes it a tremendously valuable tool for finding missing relatives, finding relatives with sparse records that need more information, as well as discovering distant relations. Even trees that have been completely filled in back several generations can be expanded further with descendancy research.

How do I do Descendancy Research?[edit | edit source]

The following video and handout will help you use the resources of FamilySearch to find the descendants of one your ancestral couples.

Video Handout

Additional Resources[edit | edit source]