Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

How far back can you go?

  • The ability to research a family tree depends on a number of factors: the survival of records, the condition of historical documents, the popularity of a surname, migration patterns, the social standing of an ancestor to name but a few. In the majority of cases it is possible to progress research back to at least the early 1800s / late 1700s. In general terms, the further back you go the more difficult it gets to progress further.

What is the difference between family history and genealogy?

  • Today the two terms are often used interchangeably. Historically, genealogy was the research and compilation of evidence to construct a family tree whilst family history was the wider study of our ancestors, their lives, where they lived, whether they were educated, whether they were poor and so on.

How long will the research take?

  • There are a number of factors that will affect the length of time it takes for you to receive a completed research report. Family history research is dependent on the availability of source documents. If entries are easy to find research will progress more quickly than if a number of alternative routes or strategies are required.
  • Family Tree Packages are constrained by the time taken for delivery of certificates from the General Register Office and whether it is necessary to buy a small number, await the certificates, and use the information contained to progress further.
  • Time to completion of a research project is also dependent on the number of ongoing projects at Professional Family History. I will provide an estimate at the time an order is placed but please contact me for more information if required.

I can find a researcher that charges less than you, why should I choose you?

  • There is a wide variety in the amounts so-called professional genealogists charge but there is also a wide variety in the quality of service they provide. Whilst there are some very good professionals who only charge low fees as the work provides only a supplementary income, the old adage is generally true: "you get what you pay for".
  • When you employ Professional Family History you are assured of a quality service from a genealogist with both professional qualifications and professional accreditation.

I commissioned Karen Cummings to undertake a detailed Family History research project. The research was undertaken within agreed parameters, time-frame and cost. Her detailed Research Report displayed a professional and informative format. It is evident that she applies high professional standards to all aspects of her research and I would endorse her pedigree in the field of Genealogy and Family History. Accordingly, I have unhesitatingly commissioned her to undertake further research on my behalf.

Robert, Hertfordshire

Read more testimonials