14+ Family Tree Examples & Templates
Family trees help record history. Whether you are experienced or a novice in trying to document your ancestry, it’s easy to make an eye-catching family tree that tells your family’s story in a unique way. As parents and grandparents age, our family history tends to weigh more on our minds. Preserving that history in a family tree has become a popular pastime over recent years.To help you create your very own family tree, read on below for more information on the essential elements of a good family tree and other components.
Elements of a Good Family Tree
1. Thorough Planning: Plan your family tree. Determine what you want to do once you finish it. Will it be printed and framed for display? Will it be shared electronically? If the plan is to print it, you may choose to be conservative in regards to the amount of information to include, keeping the whole thing legible and printable. If the plan is to share it electronically, then the size of the diagram is not a factor.
2. Right Level of Complexity: Knowing the level of detail you wish to portray in the family tree will help determine the level of research you will need to do. It will also affect the size of the boxes as well as the overall design of the family tree.
3. Identifying Your Audience: Family trees depict family relationships and bloodlines. Yet they also document history that may not be known by everyone in the family. Before you unknowingly reveal family secrets, make sure that you know who will be viewing the family tree and plan accordingly.
4. Well-Defined Scope: As the author, you need to choose a focus for your family history book. It could focus on a single line of descent where you can begin with your earliest known ancestor for a particular surname and follow him through a single line of ancestry. It could also focus on all the descendants of a particular individual or couple and cover all their descendants. If you’re focusing your family history on an immigrant ancestor, this is the perfect scope for you.
5. A Realistic Deadline: Even though you’ll likely find yourself scrambling to meet them, deadlines force you to complete each stage of your project. The goal here is to get each piece done within a specified time frame. Revising and polishing can always be done later. The best way to meet these deadlines is to schedule writing time, just as you would a visit to the doctor.You may also see family reunion invitation designs
6. A Plot and a Theme: Thinking of your ancestors as characters in your family story, ask yourself what problems and obstacles they may have faced. A plot gives your family history interest and focus. Popular family history plots and themes include immigration or migration, rags to riches, farm life, or warm survival.
14+ Family Tree Templates
Large Family Tree Slider
Printable Family Tree for Kids
Reunion Family Tree Template Slider
Family Reunion Tree Template for Kids
3-Generation Kid Family Tree
Family Tree Template with Siblings
Sticky Notes Family Tree Template
Modern Family Tree Template
Family Relationships Tree Template
Dead Family Tree Template
Jesus’s Family Tree
Theodore Roosevelt Family Tree
Plantagenet Family Tree
Game of Thrones Family Tree
Simple Tips for an Excellent Family Tree
1. Work backward in time: It’s easier to work methodically from a fact such as the date of birth or a marriage of a relative than to try and trace down from a person you don’t know much about. Take what you already know and work your way up from there.
2. Ask the family: Ask other relatives about what they remember about their families, especially those who passed away before you could meet them. Make a note of any nicknames or name changes. Ask them to tell you any family stories, what their ancestors did for a living, or what they looked like. Ask if they have any photos, letters, or documents relating to your ancestors.
3. Take notes: Naturally, you can’t be expected to retain all the new information you find just by keeping mental notes of them. You have to actually write them down. This will also make it easier for you to create a family tree to organize your ancestral genealogy. You never know what information will come in use in your research, so get into the habit of taking notes on what you have looked for and what you’ve found. There are many useful computer software packages that will help you keep your records in an orderly manner, and help draw up pedigrees and family group sheets so you know what you are dealing with.
4. Check out the web: The internet is a useful tool for many things, even contacting relatives and finding data about them. The Society of Genealogist website has useful free information leaflets with guides to starting your family history and links to useful websites. Additionally, the GENUKI website has lots of free information and links to local experts and sources for the United Kingdom and Ireland.
5. Ask for help: It’s worth checking if anyone else is doing research into your family before you start. Social network sites like RoootsWeb, Familyrelatives, LostCousins, or GenesReunited where people can register their research interests and could be a way of finding information, which the Society of Genealogists collect. Its free library catalog can be found on the library pages of this website which also lists the surnames in its various collections.
6. Get some documentary evidence: Your family history will be drawn from a variety of records and sources throughout history in which your ancestors will be mentioned. Birth, marriage, and death records, wills, church records, occupational records, education and apprenticeship, military service records, tax records, criminal records, poor law, newspapers, trade directories, ecclesiastical licenses, church records, court records, and even tombstones might all throw up valuable information.
7. Stay focused: It’s easy to get overwhelmed by all of the information that slowly becomes available to you as you continue with your search. Remember to have a clear idea of what you are looking for and why you started the search in the first place. Family history is fun and thoroughly absorbing. If you like detective stories and have a mind for solving puzzles, then this one will easily turn into a fun hobby for you, given that you don’t lose sight of your intentions.
How to Create a Family Tree
Not sure where to begin with your genealogy search? Follow these ten surefire steps to begin.
1. Gather what you already know about your family: Scour your basement, attic, and closets and collect family records, old photos, letters, diaries, photocopies from family Bibles or newspaper clippings. Get all the information that you can because starting from scratch is not an option. Even you, your siblings, and your parents are already a good place to start.
2. Talk to your relatives: Ask your parents, grandparents, aunts, and uncles about their memories. Don’t just ask about facts and dates, get the stories of their childhood and of the ancestors they remember. This is where all the juice is. Plus, it’s a great way for you to get to know the people you never met. Try to phrase questions with why, how, and what. You can also email far-flung relatives to ask whether they have records that may be of help in your genealogy quest. You may also see memorial program examples
3. Put it on paper: The best option for documentation is writing down what you know on paper so that the information will be easier to organize. You can create blanks you can later fill if you’ve successfully researched about that part of the family tree.
4. Focus your search: What are the parts of your family tree you don’t understand yet? Don’t try to fill them in all at once. Focus on someone from the most recent generation where your chart is missing information, try to answer that mystery first, and then work backward in time.
5. Search the internet: The internet is a terrific place to find leads and share information, but don’t expect to find your whole family tree online unless you’re Queen Victoria’s close relative. FamilySearch.org has the largest collection of free genealogy records, while Ancestry.com subscribers can search that site’s millions of records from home. These websites can offer you a tiny, but helpful, glimpse into your family’s history.
6. Organize your new information. Assuming that you now have more data than what you started with, enter your findings on paper charts, or other options you prefer. File photocopies and notes by family, geography, or source so you can refer to them again.
7. Share your research. Now that you have planted your family tree, show it off to people. Preferably to your relatives first so that they can correct you or be sentimental with you. Looping others into your genealogy can help you add stories and family members to your research. Plus, it’s fun. Another thing to bond over.
Types of Family Trees
How do you know which family tree report or chart is right for the purpose you have in mind? What’s the difference between all those options in your genealogy software, if you’re using one? Well, to answer these questions, here’s a quick guide to some of the most popular chart and report formats and terms:
1. Ahnentafel Numbering: This is usually used in pedigree charts and ancestor-oriented genealogy reports. This numbering system gives unique numbers to the starting person and each ancestor. Double a person’s number to get the father’s number and add one to the father’s number to get the mother’s number. Ahnentafel means ancestor table in German.
2. All-in-One Tree: This chart can show everyone in your life, including ancestors, descendants, and cousins. It’s great if your goal is to visualize everyone at once. Even the biggest families can be captured by this chart without confusing you.
3. Ancestor Tree: This one can show a person’s ancestors, and even comes in three forms: the standard version, which is compact and shows the starting individual at the left and the ancestors branching off to the right; the fan chart, which shows the starting individual in the middle of a circle and the ancestors branching out in all directions; and the vertical ancestor tree, which shows an individual’s ancestors branching upward. You may also see homograph for kids examples
4. Descendant Report: This one will include dates and places of birth, death, and burial. It is useful as a compact format for displaying detailed information on a person’s descendants.
5. Genealogy Report: A narrative history showing the ancestors or descendants of the starting person. Ideal for publishing all of your information on an individual’s ancestors or descendants in book form.
6. Hourglass Tree: The starting individual appears in the middle with parents and grandchildren above and children and grandchildren below. The best chart for showing one person’s ancestors and descendants.
Family Tree Sizes
Large family tree diagrams measure over 16 ft × 5 ft (200 inches by 66 inches), which is the largest family tree diagrams available online. Easy on the eyes and able to be printed out on oversize paper, they’re often a hit at family reunions, weddings, and in the classroom. You can print them out at home on your personal printer, but they are best generated by a professional print company.
Family Tree FAQs
What is the best family tree website?
There are many family tree websites you can check out and choose from:
- Chronicling America
- Cyndi’s List
What are three generations in a family?
Three generation families are families represented by a grandparent, a parent, and then by a grandchild. Aunts, uncles, and cousins do not fall into this realm.
How do I find family members?
- Create a list of all the information you have on your missing relative.
- Employ major search engines and advanced search techniques.
- Use social media sites to expand your search and follow family links.
- Use genealogy records to find public and historical records of your relatives.
Creating your family tree can be a fun adventure where you can discover and learn more about your roots, their lifestyle, and basically the origins of the culture under which you were raised. Hopefully, these steps and tips prove to be helpful in your activity.