Back in January I set a genealogy goal for myself: see what I can find out about my ancestor Verner Hedin who served in World War I.
As I mentioned in a recent genealogy newsletter, “Procrastination” is my middle name. Exhibit A: Here we are at the end of July and I have done nothing to research my WWI ancestor.
But there’s always another day in genealogy, and there’s five more months in the year for me to complete my goal. Let me share my strategies with you in hopes that you, too, will be able to complete at least one of your genealogy goals for the year.
First, I set a reasonable goal. My goal is: to find out where and when Verner Hedin served in World War I.
Second, I give myself a deadline: Well, that’s already set. I will finish my research and write up a blog post by December 31, 2018.
Third, I break the goal down into steps. Here are my steps:
1. Compile everything I know about him so far. For me, this includes taking a second look at a book called With the Colors in Aurora, which lists him as participating in World War I.
2. Read books about researching World War I ancestors (we have two in the library)
3. Further steps will be determined by what I read in those books.
Here is what I know about Verner so far:
He was born 10 December 1880 in Aurora, Kane County, Illinois. He was the youngest of five children. His parents, Andrew and Fredericka, were immigrants from Sweden. By 1910 he was married to Elsie Blank and he worked at the U.S. Post Office in Aurora. He died 15 October 1956 in Aurora, Kane County, Illinois.
As I take a second look at With the Colors from Aurora, I find a picture of Verner in uniform (that’s him at the beginning of the post) and a chronology of his military service. It doesn’t all make sense to me, but that’s part of my goal, to figure it all out. Here’s what it says:
Intriguing! I’m off to read World War I Genealogy Research Guide by Debra Dudek and get my next steps in order. I’ll check back in a few months and report my findings. In the meantime, do yo have any suggestions for my next steps? What are you working on?