Family History

September 25th, 2017

Did you know that if you go back 10 generations in your family tree, you have 1,024 direct-line ancestors? If you were born in 1950 for example, ten generations will take you back to about 1700.

For some, researching their family tree helps them connect with the past and make sense of where they fit in the scheme of history. For others, genealogy is a deeply emotional experience as it helps them understand where they came from, who they are, and why they do the things they do.

Others find genealogy to be an invigorating game of detecting, piecing together clues from documents and family lore to figure out who, what, where, and when, sometimes even why!

Cecil County Public Library has plenty of resources if genealogy has piqued your interest. From books such as “How to do everything: Genealogy,” and “Family Photo Detective: Learn How to Find Genealogy Clues in Old Photos and Solve Family Photo Mysteries” to a free, six-week Gale Online course called Genealogy Basics. Taught by professor Bob Moyer, the class will increase understanding of the research process and the how to interpret the information. An especially valuable resource provided in this course is guidance through the search process for family names using several subscription-based Web sites, which you can access while you’re enrolled in the class.

Or maybe you have a box over-flowing with photos and want to digitize them? Through CCPL’s website you can access a course called “Organizing and Storing Digital Photos and Videos.” The genealogy database “Heritage Quest” is located under Digital Library tab of our website, click “Online Resources” and scroll to Genealogy.

Whether you’re just getting started or are a seasoned researcher, CCPL has the tools to travel your genealogical journey.

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Get Answers at CCPL

September 18th, 2017

It’s late, there’s a big paper due in the morning, and your student is stuck needing a final fact.  Or maybe you’re interested in a topic that’s not school-related but your internet searches are coming up empty. When you can’t find information, try “AskUsNow!”

AskUsNow! is a 24/7 live online interactive service that uses the expertise of trained librarians from across the country to provide answers to questions, guidance with research, and help with navigating the Internet resources.

When you log on, you can be anonymous or share your name.  If you provide an e-mail address (it’s not required), a transcript of everything you chatted about – including resources and links provided by the librarians – is sent to you after the session has ended. This can be very helpful in accessing the resources later. And, if the librarian cannot find the answer within the session or finds more links after you’ve logged off, they can be emailed to you later.

An important tip: when you type in your question, be sure to be specific.  For example, if its high school level physics, college level bio, middle school math or an elementary school science fair project, be sure to mention that in your initial question. This way, the person who picks up your question will be the best one to give you the fastest answer!

Librarians and staff at Cecil County Public Library are happy to assist you with your information requests. For more homework and research resources, don’t forget to use your CCPL Virtual Student Library Card at any of our branches or online at! Find the “using your library” tab at the top of the website or for a list of all the ways to use the student virtual card, visit:

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