My research parameters
Work it out: each person has two parents, four grandparents, eight great grandparents - we're up to 14 so far. Add a fourth generation - 30; and a fifth - 62... Here is a spreadsheet calculation for "normal" 20 generations (approx. 500 years) compared with what happens when first cousins (sharing grandparents) marry - about 25% fewer aggregate ancestors at 20 generations. Even distant cousins will make a difference. Most family trees have several such marriages - fortunately!
Family trees can get out of control! If you follow every branch and twig it is an endless quest. Each person has potentially 67,108,862* parents/grandparents/etc for just 25 generations (about 625 years) and that is before you start adding aunts, uncles, cousins, additional spouses, etc. [Fortunately, many people have married their cousin however distant and that reduces this number considerably!]
I follow these basic parameters in my research:
- The starting point is my mother and father. The first goal is to establish their pedigrees (their ancestors) and their descendants.
- I am then interested in the siblings (aunts and uncles of varying degrees) at each generational level.
- This flows through to the siblings' descendants if they are part of the main pedigree. I am primarily interested in any descendants of John Royes (c1745-c1780?) and James Roy (bef 1830-?).
- Where information is available on the web I prefer to provide links to those web sites rather than replicate the information on my own.
- I follow the pedigrees/ancestors of my children's and my own spouses.
- I follow certain historical links - eg, early Hougham researcher Marion Hurley Pratt, the relationships between the Dukes of Normandy and English royalty, family migrations to Australia and New Zealand...
- I include our connection to Hougham researcher (and my 13th cousin!) Robin Young, since we owe much of the Royes-Hougham pedigree to his work and it is helpful to see where he fits in.
- I am happy to put information on line for branches I am not directly interested in but where a relative is prepared to maintain the data and keep me informed. Eg, Weatherburns, Crossleys, Hogans.
- I am interested in, but do not actively pursue, the presence of the Royes and Roy names in Australia.