Briksdalsbreen Glacier in Norway is a great example of why glaciers are often referred to as “rivers of ice.”

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The first blog in this series dealt with identifying “Who Will Be Your Starting Point?” If you haven’t read this entry, I’d recommend you do so now.

Objectives will direct, guide and evaluate your efforts and, once you have decided who will be the focus of your genealogical research, you must set them. Objectives help keep you on track and this blog will give you a sample framework.

A Few Things To Consider First

I’d recommend that you review the list of questions before jotting down your responses. Take your time. Do not rush this part of the process. Think about the big picture. How you begin will set the tone for what you accomplish. Review your answers. Reflect on what you’ve written. Revise your notes. Think about what you want to learn and why this is important to you.

I’d also advise you to decide on the system you will use to record, maintain and organize the information you will gather in your genealogical research at this point. Whether it is computer based, index cards in a shoebox, scribbled notes on bits of paper stuffed in an envelope or a series of folders arranged alphabetically in a filing cabinet doesn’t matter. You can always change your system in the future but it is wise to have something in place before you start.

Let’s Begin

  1. What do you already know about this person?
  2. What are the family mysteries associated with him/her?
  3. What exactly would you like to learn about him/her?
  4. Why is obtaining this information important to you? What do you want to accomplish?
  5. What are you prepared to do in order to find what you want to know?
  6. What resources are you willing to dedicate to your efforts?
  7. Will you inform your family about your intentions to conduct genealogical research on this particular person?
  8. Will you include/consult other family members in your efforts and consider them as active partners?
  9. Will you conduct this research primarily by yourself?
  10. What will you do with the information you obtain?
  11. What if the information you discover changes family dynamics?  Will you share it with your family?
  12. What if the information you discover solves family mysteries? Will you share it with your family?

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What are your genealogical research objectives? I’d welcome your comments. The next blog in this series will outline your first steps in genealogical research.

Why are glaciers like family mysteries?

Glaciers are large bodies of ice that slowly move and crush the rock underneath them. As they advance, they cover the land and, as such, seem like an appropriate symbol for the layers of mystery that keep the truth about our families hidden from us.

I hope you enjoy these photographs.

Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve, Alaska

Glacier Bay National Park and Preserve is 65 miles long and filled with fjords and inlets. Most Alaskan cruises that travel the Inland Passage go here.

Garibaldi Sound along Chilean coast

Can you find the dinghy? This is , one of the many glacier filled fjords along the Chilean coast.

Garibaldi Sound along Chilean coast

The chunks of floating ice from the glacier in Garibaldi Sound are like the bits of truth you will discover about your family history through genealogical research.