“Mastering Genealogical Proof” by Thomas Jones

Mastering Genealogical Proof

from the National Genealogical Society website:

Pre-order your copy today of this essential guide to genealogical  research today. The National Genealogical Society presents this important work as part of its Special Topic series.
As a unique textbook on genealogical methods and reasoning in the twentyfirst century, Mastering Genealogical Proof guides readers in acquiring genealogical skills transcending chronological, ethnic, geopolitical, and religious boundaries.

About the Book and Author

Mastering Genealogical Proof aims to help researchers, students, and new family historians reconstruct relationships and lives of people they cannot see. It presents content in digestible chunks. Each chapter concludes with problems providing practice for  proficiently applying the chapter’s concepts. Those problems, like examples throughout the book, use real records, real research, and real issues. Answers are at the back of the book along with a glossary of technical terms and an extensive resource list.

Thomas W. Jones, who has pursued his family history since he was fifteen, is an award-winning genealogical researcher, writer, editor, and educator.


  • Preface
  • Chapter 1 – Genealogy’s Standard of Proof
  • Chapter 2 – Concepts Fundamental to the GPS
  • Chapter 3 – GPS Element 1: Thorough Research
  • Chapter 4 GPS Element 2: Source Citations
  • Chapter 5 GPS Element 3: Analysis and Correlation
    Chapter 6 GPS Element 4: Resolving Conflicts and Assembling Evidence
  • Chapter 7 GPS Element 5: The Written Conclusion
  • Chapter 8 – Using the GPS
  • Chapter 9 – Conclusion
  • Appendix A – Pritchett Article
  • Appendix B – McLain Article
  • Glossary
  • Reading and Source List
  • Answers to exercises
See the PDF for the full list of contents. See also a sample exercise.

Ordering Information

You can pre-order your copy of Mastering Genealogical Proof today. Order online (payment in full required at time of pre-order). Cost is $25 for NGS members and $30 for non-members.

Mastering Genealogical Proof will also be available for purchase at the NGS 2013 Family History Conference, 8-11 May, where Thomas W. Jones will hold two book signing events.

Estimated Ship Date: 20 May 2013

Durham County Library’s Extended Hours

From Lynn Richardson –

Dear Friends of the North Carolina Collection,

We’ve expanded our hours to include Saturdays 10:00-5:00. Lauren Havens, MLS, UNC-Chapel Hill, and former NC Collection volunteer, is the Saturday staff person. See the press release below for more details.

Collection hours are:

Mon.                     12:30-9
Tues.-Thurs.      10-5
Fri.                         2-5
Sat.                        10-5

Look forward to seeing you soon!

Lynn Richardson
North Carolina Collection
Durham County Library
(919) 560-0171


Date: July 13, 2012                                                                                                  

CONTACT: Gina Rozier, 919-560-0151 or grozier@durhamcountync.gov



Durham County Library North Carolina Collection to Begin Saturday Hours


Durham – Durham County Library’s North Carolina Collection will add Saturday hours beginning July 14, 2012.

With funding from a grant from Durham Library Foundation, which will provide for additional staff, the NC Collection will be open from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. on Saturdays.

The North Carolina Collection houses more than 16,000 books, plus thousands of other items related to North Carolina and Durham history and culture including local government documents such as city and county budgets, photographs of Durham from the late 1800s forward, maps of Durham and North Carolina, local magazines like Our State and North Carolina Historical Review, newspapers from the late 1800s forward, high school yearbooks from Durham schools, old Durham phone books and city directories, and papers of Durham individuals and organizations.

For more information about the Collection, or if you are interested in donating materials to enhance the study of Durham city and county’s history and culture, contact Lynn Richardson at 919-560-0171.

Durham County Library provides the entire community with books, services and other resources that inform, inspire learning, cultivate understanding and excite the imagination. For more information, visit your local library or visit us online at durhamcountylibrary.org.

More Durham County Links added

The website was just recently updated with some new links which can be accessed on the right side of the page under the heading Durham County Links:

Duke Special Collections Library
Durham County Library’s North Carolina Collection
Durham County Mailing List
Durham County Message Board (Ancestry.com)
Durham County Message Board (Genealogy.com)
Durham County Records Archives
Durham-Orange County Genealogical Society
UNC Southern Historical Collection

Ordering Birth and Death Certificates

All certified copies of birth and death records must be requested and obtained at the Durham County Register of Deeds Office, located on the ground floor of the County Administration Building, at 200 East Main Street. Records will no longer be disbursed at the Public Health Department. The office hours of the Register of Deeds Office are 8:30 to 5:00 pm, Monday through Friday. The fee schedule for ordering certified copies of birth and death certificates can be found here. Certified copies of birth and death certificates cost $10.00.

For more information call (919) 560-0495 or visit the Durham County Register of Deeds website here.

New Look up Volunteer Page Added!

A new Look up Volunteer page has been added to the Durham County NCGenWeb site. We are pleased to have some of our volunteers offer up their time too do lookups for research in the Durham County, North Carolina area. If you have copies of journals or Durham County History, Genealogy, or family books and would be willing to do lookups for Durham County researchers, please contact us.

Here is just a preview of some of the resources available from or look up volunteers:

Ancestry.com and Heritage Quest Durham County Lookups
William Bennett’s Books on Land Records in Olde Orange County which include Durham County
Hutchins Family
Cole and Dillehay Families
Quaker records of Chester County, PA