Two genealogists taught Gainesville residents how to use family tree websites to understand their ancestry Saturday afternoon.
George Morgan and Drew Smith, enthusiasts of genealogy, which is the study of family trees and ancestry, shared tips on using online tools, such as Ancestry.com, 23andMe and GEDmatch, with 27 attendees at the Alachua County Library District Central Library, located at 401 E. University Ave. This was their third time speaking at the library, Smith said.
“I love puzzles; I love mysteries,” Smith said. “Genealogy is a giant puzzle, but it’s my puzzle. It’s a personal puzzle.”
Cindy Dorfeld Bruckman, a librarian at Alachua County Library Partnership Branch, attended the event because of her interest in the genealogy.
She said the presentation introduced her to GEDmatch, which she hadn’t heard of before. The site allows users to upload results from DNA tests and connect with people with similar DNA results.
“I’m going to try to upload my information on there and see if I can match with other people,” Bruckman said.
She said she’s hit a roadblock tracing back her mother’s side of her family and was hoping Smith and Morgan could help her. She stayed for half of an hour after the event to speak with them about her search.
“I think that the more you know about your own family history, the more you can learn about yourself,” she said.