About Crista Cowan

Crista has been doing genealogy since she was a child. She has been employed at Ancestry.com since 2004. Around here she's known as The Barefoot Genealogist.Google Twitter

Past Articles

Immigration in the 1600s

Posted on October 7, 2014 in Family History Month, Research

We probably all remember the little school room ditty about how, in 1492, Columbus sailed the ocean blue. Columbus was not the first and he would not be the last. Exploration of the New World had been happening for a while by then. It would continue for several more decades before the first permanent European… Read more

Upcoming Ancestry Events: October 2014

Posted on October 1, 2014 in Events, Family History Month, Webinars

Here in the U.S., it is officially National Family History Month.  Fall is in full swing.  Crisp air.  Crunchy leaves.  The perfect weather for taphophiles (also known as cemetery enthusiasts).  We hope you’ll join us this month for our FindAGrave Community Day on October 18th. We’ve also got some great webinars, tweetchats, and family history… Read more

Upcoming Ancestry.com Events: August 2014

Posted on August 1, 2014 in Events

Summer is heating up!  Think it’s too hot to spend time outside?  Me, too.  So, join us for a month full of webinars and events that you can enjoy from the air conditioned comfort of your home.  And, don’t forget to tune in to Who Do You Think You Are? on TLC every Wednesday night.… Read more

The Beehive State: Utah State Research Guide

Posted on July 25, 2014 in Research

This week marks 167 years since the Mormon Pioneers entered the Great Salt Lake Valley. Here are five things you might not know about Utah: 1. The original inhabitants of Utah were Gosiute, Southern Paiute, Ute, Shoshone, and Navajo tribes. 2. Members of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints (more commonly called “Mormons”)… Read more

Upcoming Ancestry.com Events: July 2014

Posted on July 2, 2014 in Events

Summer is in full swing. Family reunions and vacations. Discovering old cemeteries. Getting photos taken for those family Christmas cards. There is a lot going on around here at Ancestry.com, too. We hope you’ll make some time in your schedule to join us for some of our upcoming webinars and events. Webinars: What’s New at… Read more

Upcoming Ancestry.com Events: June 2014

Posted on May 31, 2014 in Events

High school and college graduations. Weddings. Family vacations and reunions. June is a busy month for everyone. There is a lot going on around here at Ancestry.com, too. We hope you’ll make some time in your schedule to join us for some of our upcoming webinars and events. Webinars: What’s New at Ancestry.com:  June 2014… Read more

6 Steps for Success in Working with Your AncestryDNA Matches

Posted on May 28, 2014 in AncestryDNA

I’ve been working with my AncestryDNA results for a couple of years now with great success.  Here are six steps you can use to find success with your AncestryDNA matches as well. 1.  Make sure your test is attached to a tree. AncestryDNA reveals cousin matches whether you have a family tree attached or not. … Read more

Genealogy Education: There is Excellent Help Out There

Posted on January 25, 2014 in Research

When people first become interested in family history it is easy, especially in this day and age, to do a few online searches, start building a family tree and develop the confidence that they are an expert. When they hit their first brick wall, they often go looking for assistance in the way of tutorials… Read more

Favorite Features in Family Tree Maker

Posted on January 9, 2014 in Family Tree Maker

I use Family Tree Maker every single day.  There are many reasons why I love it.  I can move around my tree without having to wait for web pages to load with each new click.  I can customize my screen to show me exactly what information I want to see about each person.  I can… Read more

Thanksgivukkah and Family History

Posted on November 28, 2013 in Ancestry.com Site, Collections, Research

Hanukkah began last night.  For the first time since 1888, the Jewish holiday coincides with Thanksgiving here in the United States. Not only that, but Thanksgivukkah will not happen for another 79,000 years.  So, families are finding unique ways to celebrate the two holidays together.  I’ve seen turkey menorahs and fall colored dreidels.  I even… Read more