Please note this guide is a much abridged version of Jean Cooper's Virginia Genealogy: a Guide to Resources in the University of Virginia Library. It includes how to begin genealogical research. Also, refer to Jean Cooper's slide show Beginning Genealogy and ThoughtCo.com's How To Begin Tracing Your Family Tree.
The three recordings librarians Jean Cooper and Katrina Spencer have made to introduce users to the Ancestry Library Edition (ALE) database are available via Avalon. When you click on the images below, you will navigate to a new page to access the content and be required to use your credentials to log in. Anyone from the InCommon federation institutions will be able to access this content. The three videos cover the following topics from ALE:
Plan your research ahead of time. What are the questions you wish to answer in this research session? What resources have you identified in the University Library that are important to your research on this visit? Have a plan to make the most of your time in the library.
Create a "research log" whenever you are in a library doing research. In that log, write down what you are looking for, what sources you have used, and what you have found in them. Include a map of the U.S., and a picture of each state your ancestors lived in, with each county designated. Carry other necessary materials in your research notebook, such as what information was recorded in each census year, how to apply Soundex codes, ahnentafel charts, lists of alternate spellings of your ancestor's names, and copies of forms.