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Why the Apple Doesn’t Fall Far

If you've ever used the expression "the apple doesn't fall far from the tree," you know that it's a way of saying that a child's tendencies have a lot to do with their parents. However, this simple phrase also may conjure thoughts of family trees. How far, exactly, has the apple fallen? A family tree is nothing more than a easy to read chart showing births and marriages in a family, but making one can help clear up your research, especially when you have family members with similar names. Create a family tree to make your genealogy quest go more smoothly.

It is probably easiest to start from the bottom and work your way back into history when you are drawing out a family tree or building one online. Begin with yourself and your children and grandchildren if you have them. Lines to show marriage connect couples, and the children resulting from this marriage are usually shown by drawing a line down from the center of the marriage line. Remember to leave enough space for everyone-draw your lines longer than you think they need to be if you are doing it by hand.

Continue to work your way back through the generations. A family tree can be as detailed or simple as you need it to be, so you can include not only names, but marriage dates, birth and death dates, places of burial, and other information if you wish. Some people even include pictures on their family tree when available. This can make a nice display, especially at a family reunion or anniversary.

If you seriously need to sort through your information, however, it might be more beneficial to invest in a computer program or web service that will make a family tree based on the information you input. This will be more neatly organized than one drawn by hand. Many companies manufacture computer software to help you with this task, but this can be pricey, so read product reviews before making a purchase to ensure you get the tools you need.

When your family tree is filled with the information you have gathered, you will be able to easily see the gaps in your research that need to be filled. You may also see new connections between family members that you did not realize before. A family tree is a great tool when you begin in depth research to help you stay focused and organized.

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