Building your own family tree is a fun activity to learn more about your family history. But if you do not have enough data on close or distant relatives, you need to know how to get it.
Ask your older family members what they remember from family history. Find out not only the names, surnames and dates of birth of your ancestors. In the family tree, you can also indicate information about their place of residence, study, work, any interesting episodes from the biography, for example, the awarding of medals and orders. This information will transform your tree from a simple list of generations into a mini-encyclopedia of your family's history.
Find out the history of your last name. To do this, take a dictionary of surnames from the library or purchase a dictionary of surnames. If your name is common enough, you can find in such a directory brief information about the source of its origin, the approximate time and place of its appearance. The approximate estate of the surname can also be indicated.
Information about the social status of the owner of the surname can be obtained independently. For example, a surname ending in "-skiy" / "- tskiy" and based on a Greek or Latin word, the name of a church holiday or sacrament, the name of a scientist or theologian, most likely means that one of your ancestors studied at a theological seminary, where he was given a new surname. Examples of such names are Levitsky (from the biblical book Leviticus), Preobrazhensky (from the holiday of the Transfiguration). At the same time, a truncated surname, consonant with the generic name of a famous noble family, may indicate that its first bearer was the illegitimate son of an aristocrat. For example, Elizaveta Temkina, the illegitimate daughter of Grigory Potemkin, and, possibly, Empress Catherine II, bore a similar name.
Make a request to the archives of the region where your family is believed to have lived. You can get additional information about already known relatives, as well as find out the names of their parents, which will help you in your further searches.
If you do not have time for independent searches, but you want to get a beautifully designed family tree, contact the historians who carry out such orders. Their services are actively advertised on the Internet. The cost of the work is calculated individually, depending on the complexity of the task.