Saturday, 13 May 2017

After the Tour - Processing the Documentation

We have spent time intensively hunting our Scottish ancestors. We have diligently gathered as much documentation as we could muster. But any Genealogy Tour to Scotland is really only the beginning. The real work starts when we return home. 

The largest part of the work is processing the documentation. Unfortunately, the ScotlandsPeople Centre no longer allows digital downloads, so the scanning of the documents still needs to get done. Given that tour participants can gather in excess of 100 documents during a genealogy tour, this can be a monumental task. Too many of us simply file the paperwork away and never get to actually processing the information. This is a sad outcome of not being able to simply load into appropriate folders and attach to the relevant ancestors in our family tree software. 

Scheduling time to process the paperwork immediately after the exhaustion subsides is critical to being able to use the information that we have gathered. 

But scanning is just the first step. We still need to read and re-read the documents to gather and understand all of the information that they contain. Look at not only the information about the births, marriages, deaths but also the relationships, the details about witnesses, addresses and other dates that might be included. Look at the KEYWORDS to see what other record sets we may want to consult. 

It is from this process that many tour participants begin to plan their next trip to Scotland. Some will sign up for another Genealogy Tour. Others will plan to research on their own. Yet others simply want to share their deepened love of their ancestral homeland with their family and will plan a family vacation. 

About 45% of all tour participants will return to Scotland. Either for research or for a vacation. They will spend more time on their second trip than they did on their first and they will travel further afield than simply the city where they did their initial research. 

After all, we are Scottish, not because we were born in Scotland, but because Scotland is borne in us. 

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