Welcome to the Duke Family page at Surname Finder. Our editors have compiled this checklist of genealogical resources, combining links to commercial databases along with user-contributed information and web sites for the Duke surname. As vital records, original documents, vintage photographs and surname-based DNA projects are discovered, this page is updated to offer the best list for researching Duke genealogy.
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I. The Duke Family Tree
It is important to remember that there is no single Duke family tree, as last names were assigned to people for various reasons. We are often asked, How do I begin my Duke family tree? and you might be surprised at the answer.
Best Tree Collections for Discovering Duke Ancestors
II. Duke Genealogy
Sometimes two people can look at the same handwritten record, and come up with different spellings of the name. Be creative when searching for your Duke ancestors -- we often search for misspellings intentionally to see if we missed any records. Genealogy is more than just searching through databases. Articles like "Digital Books and Microfilm" can help accelerate your Duke research.
Top Five Genealogy Databases to Search for Duke
Vital records are essential for family history research because they were typically created at or near the time of the event, making the record more reliable. There are currently matching Duke records at Ancestry.com! Start exploring this online Duke family history resource today.
III. Origins of the Duke Surname
It is quite possible for two people with the Duke last name to have been given that surname for entirely different reasons. Discovering the country from which your Duke ancestors originated can often yield additional clues for the meaning of the surname. Were you aware that Duke is considered a very common surname, which offers its own set of challenges? The article "Researching Common Names" may be helpful for your research. Keep in mind that it was not unusual for a last name to be altered as an ancestor entered a new country.
IV. Duke DNA Projects
Don't believe the hype! When DNA testing was first made available for genealogical purposes, some companies boasted how it could solve all your Duke family tree mysteries. DNA testing can be a useful tool, when applied properly to a given research issue. If you're not sure how DNA testing could aid your Duke research, read "Utilizing DNA in Family History Research".
V. Duke Family History
Every family has a different history, and every document you discover about your Duke ancestors will help paint a picture that can be shared with your relatives. Whether you are a beginner or expert genealogists, knowing How do I find my Duke family history on the Internet? is always useful.
VI. Networking with Duke Researchers
When it comes families and genealogy research, it's important to remember that different people may have different information: some may even have inherited one-of-a-kind family documents or photos, and the best way to connect with these family members is by posting a message board query -- often in the process of collaboration, you can build a more complete picture of your ancestor or ancestral family. The article "Looking for John Smith - Focusing a Query" provides some valuable tips for posting successful Duke queries.
You may also want to consider posting a query to the Community Message Boards at Genealogy Today to get assistance from other researchers on your most elusive Duke ancestors.
VII. Duke Achievements & CelebritiesDid you know that Duke was the 874th most popular surname in the 1990 census of the United States?
VIII. Web Sites & Blogs with Duke Research
If you are having difficulty locating records for the last name of Duke, contact the folks at ProGenealogists for a free research estimate. You may also find it helpful to read, "When, Why and How to Hire a Professional Genealogist."
To have your web site/blog listed on this page, please submit a link to the user-contributed directory at Genealogy Today. Your web page will appear once its content has been reviewed by one of our editors.
IX. Upcoming Duke Family Reunions
Pedigree charts and family group records are important genealogical tools, so bringing or creating on site a big family pedigree (or family tree) is sure to draw attention; at the same time, have plenty of blank family group sheets available for individual families to complete and submit to go into a "Duke family record book," which you can then digitize and share -- you can then bring the physical book back to the next reunion, adding new families each time. The article "Planning Details For A Family Reunion" may provide you with tips for hosting a successful Duke reunion.
Suggested use: Print a copy of this free research checklist, and keep track of the Duke genealogy resources that you visit. If your web browser does not print the date on the bottom, remember to record it manually. Today is 08/Dec/2013.
If you host the Duke blog or web page, please link to this surname-focused resource. Here's the HTML code for a basic link. Simply cut/paste this code on to your page.