Jennifer Alford began developing her genealogy knowledge after losing all of her remaining grandparents in the span of six months. When she realized how little she knew of her grandparents’ lives she began to pester her parents for stories of the past. Over the years, Jen has found wonderful friendship in the diverse group of genealogists she has come to know. Her own family research has focused on Jewish heritage and her ancestors’ home states of Indiana, Maine, Michigan, and Arkansas.
Though her primary job is as a Traffic Engineer for a private consulting firm she has found that her work experience translates well to her genealogy business. Her strong organizational skills and use of logic and methodology as an engineer is highly beneficial to genealogy research. Other artistic pursuits include calligraphy, oil painting, embroidery, sewing, scrap booking, and photography. All of these interests are combined in the development of beautiful personalized artwork for her clients.
Jennifer Alford is Publisher of Going In-Depth, IDG’s monthly digital magazine. She is also the author of IDG’s monthly column, Jewish Genealogy.
Go In-Depth with Jen:
What is one tip you would give a newbie genealogist?
Interview your oldest relatives right away and share with your family any brick walls that you may discover along the way. More details often come to light after each retelling of a story or a new family member is included in your research.
What is your favorite Repository?
I love libraries and no matter where I go I manage to find something wonderful about them. The Allen County Public Library is certainly at the top of my list due to the sheer variety and depth of their holdings.
What is your favorite blog post from your personal website?
Krueger Family Discovery is one of my favorites as it highlights one of my biggest genealogical finds to date. Learning of my great-grandfather’s birthplace in Russia really was an exciting moment for me.
What are your feelings about adding non-blood related lines into your research? (ie…adoptive, step families, etc…)
As a child of divorce I am a firm believer in including those people in your research that you consider family. My stepfather’s family is just as close to me as my blood lines are and so I find it fulfilling to find out more about his family too.
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Jennifer Alford’s Reprint Policy:
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© 2012 Jennifer Alford
Jennifer Alford is a freelance writer, artist, and professional genealogist specializing in research in Jewish genealogy and the Midwest. You can learn more about her services at Jenealogy (www.jenealogy.biz). As the owner of Jenealogy she creates engaging family history treasures to enhance the bond between generations. Her love for photography, calligraphy, embroidery, storytelling, and history have all combined in her blog and unique products.
This article originally appeared on The In-Depth Genealogist and can be found here. [insert original link]