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

Family History All Done? What’s Your Number?

Posted by Crista Cowan on August 16, 2012 in Research Helps, Stories

I cringe every time someone says their genealogy is “all done.”  I’m a professional genealogist.  I’ve been doing this for decades, building on family history research passed down to me from a great-uncle and parents who knew what they were doing.  And I am not even close to finished.  There are still hundreds of people Read More

Seven Reasons To Share Your Family History

Posted by Crista Cowan on June 21, 2012 in MyCanvas, Social Media

In the Barefoot Genealogist broadcast this morning, I shared a few ideas for publishing your family history. The two most important things I shared had nothing at all to do with the actual process of creating the chart or book. Don’t wait until you are finished! If you wait until you are “finished” with your Read More

Who Will You Discover In New York?

Posted by Crista Cowan on June 6, 2012 in Content

On a spring day in 1940, census taker Joseph D Donohue walked into a Manhattan neighborhood to begin his official enumeration for the 1940 U.S. Federal Census. Did he know beforehand that he would be knocking on the doors of some of the most famous people of his time to ask them some very personal Read More

Have You Attended A Genealogy Conference Lately?

Posted by Crista Cowan on May 10, 2012 in Events

We are nearing the end of the second day of a four day genealogy conference.  That’s four days of classes from some of the best and the brightest educators in the genealogy community.  Four days in an exhibit hall with dozens of genealogy companies, organizations and societies all talking about their latest and greatest content, Read More

Setting Sail Into The Unknown

Posted by Crista Cowan on April 10, 2012 in Content

One hundred years ago today the Titanic set out on her maiden voyage amid much fanfare.  So much has been written and produced about that fateful voyage that anything I try to write sounds like so much cliché.  But I have been thinking about the trips my own ancestors took as they immigrated to America. Read More

Got Massachusetts Ancestors?

Posted by Crista Cowan on March 20, 2012 in Content

Have you seen what we did? The announcement went out this morning about a new collection of vital records now available online. The Massachusetts, Town Vital Collections contains over 8.2 million records covering over 360 years. Wow! After searching town records for their own relatives, Jay and DeLene Holbrook, realized that the majority of towns Read More

These Families We Inherit

Posted by Crista Cowan on March 16, 2012 in Social Media, Stories

With families, no matter what kind you inherit, at some point you want to announce you belong to it. I had the opportunity yesterday to spend a few minutes talking with Kaui Hart Hemmings, the author of The Descendants.  She was very candid about her family history.  That wasn’t at all surprising. I have read Read More