Genealogy Do-Over: Update to my Research Log


This series of posts is based on the Genealogy Do-Over Workbook by Thomas MacEntee. I highly recommend it. 🙂 I just want to say there are parts of this workbook that I am not posting about, so if you would like the full set of tasks, then visit Thomas’ page or purchase the workbook.

The last time you saw a glimpse of my Genealogy Research Log was in the post I made titled: More Prep Work. I’ve made some changes since that post. Once I was working through my immediate family members, I got a better feel for what works best for me.

Research Log - Log Tab
Research Log – Log Tab

It is the same basic things I had before, but it’s a little more compact. I went with less fields because I found myself not using the previous version. That defeated the purpose all together, so I sat down and made something that I knew I would use regularly. All the vital things are in there and with my current digital filing system, I’m hoping I won’t miss those extra fields.

Using the filters feature, I can quickly find anything I need by person or type of record. I still analyze the documents in the log and have a citation for each record. The screenshot above shows what I see when I look on my second screen with the file open. There is only one field not visible and that is the “Proven” field.

Genealogy Research Log - Order Tab
Genealogy Research Log – Order Tab

Moving the list of records to find to my research log was a great idea. Its much more efficient in this file. It is right in line with my workflow. I am able to add something in right when I’m already elbow deep in my research. I very easily move from tab to tab from beginning to end. I think the only thing I would change is the order of the tabs. Moving Search Attempts to the beginning would make a lot of sense.

Genealogy Research Log - Plan Tab
Genealogy Research Log – Plan Tab

I’ve obscured the names in my Plan Tab for privacy sake but this little gem is the reason I’m able to know exactly where I’m at in my research. This really helps because I took a break after my brief hospital stay and I’m only just now looking at it again. This tab was born from my previous file that was my Research Plan/Goals. This is streamlined for me, so I can see at a glance what key facts I still need to look for. As a basic guideline, this really helps me and I can easily add to it if I chose to. This will fill in pretty quickly for my immediate family members but once I move on to earlier generations, it’s going to help so much!

Previous Posts in this Series:

7 thoughts on “Genealogy Do-Over: Update to my Research Log

  1. Debbie Ulczynski says:

    Thanks for sharing your spreadsheets. Gave me some ideas which is so much better than starting form scratch! I really need to focus on improving record keeping.

  2. Heather Stanley says:

    Hi Kathleen, do you have the Excel version somewhere of your spreadsheet and tabs? I really like what you showed in the screen prints!

    • Kathleen Moore says:

      I have a blank version on Google Drive. That should work as long as you have the latest Excel. If you need an earlier version, just let me know and I will upload one of those. I deleted my information on this version, but I left some thing on the Plan tab so you could make sense of my color coding and conditional formatting on that tab.

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