RootsWeb Mailing Lists

If you are not familiar with mailing lists, you should be. They are a great way to get your questions in front of some very knowledgeable people.

What is a mailing list? It is software that allows you to ‘subscribe’ to a particular topic and begin to receive email messages sent by anybody who posts something on that topic. Postings are also archived so you can instead just search past postings to see if somebody has already had something to say on your particular topic (this is also a polite thing to do before you post a question… one sure way to attract some negative attention is to post a question that has already been asked – and answered – numerous times).

There are presently 31,862 genealogy-related lists, so chances are you can find one that matches your interest. They fall in to four broad categories: ‘Surnames’, ‘USA’, ‘International’ and ‘Other’: there are numerous sub-categories under each. For example, Texas has a list for most (probably all) counties in addition to lists for such topics as TX_ASYLUM, TX_JEWISH, TX_EARLY-LEADERS and many others. Some are very active: others, not so much…

You can see for yourself: Go to http://lists.rootsweb.ancestry.com/index/ and look at all the categories.

If you would like to read about one of my own experiences with a mailing list see http://www.rayson.us/New/Stories/Box_Of_Family.php

Tony Hanson

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