Welcome to the James Family page at Surname Finder, a service of Genealogy Today. Our editors have compiled this checklist of genealogical resources, combining links to commercial databases along with user-contributed information and web sites for the James surname. As additional sources for vital records, original documents, vintage photographs and surname-based DNA projects are discovered, this page is updated to offer the best list for researching James ancestry. Share this page on Twitter!
Completed by on
The James Family Tree
Everyone has different reasons for building a family tree; your personal motiviation will influence whether the James family tree has more depth or breadth. Have you struck a James brick wall? Read "Searching and Organization" for some helpful advice.
Best Tree Collections for Discovering James Ancestors
Keep an open mind when searching through James records. Years ago many people were unable to read and write, thus a given ancestor's name could be spelled in a variety of ways depending on who recorded it. If you want to know How can city directories be used to help my James research?, then read this frequently asked question.
Top Five Genealogy Databases to Search for James
Census records are among the most useful records available for family tree building. There are currently matching James records at Ancestry.com! Start exploring this online James family history resource today.
Origins of the James Surname
It is quite possible for two people with the James last name to have been given that surname for entirely different reasons. Discovering the country from which your James ancestors originated can often yield additional clues for the meaning of the surname. Were you aware that James 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.
James 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 James 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 James research, read "Utilizing DNA in Family History Research".
James Family History
Every family has a different history, and every document you discover about your James ancestors will help paint a picture that can be shared with your relatives. Our team of seasoned experts are here to help you learn about different aspects of genealogy. Reading "Faddish First Names" may help you think of some different tactics to compiling your James family history.
Networking with James Researchers
When you've come up against a brick wall in your genealogy research, posting a message board query can help; one of the biggest benefits is that message board queries are accessed through search engines, which means even someone not specifically engaged in genealogy but interested in your subject may find your query and bring valuable new information to the table -- it happens! The article "Looking for John Smith - Focusing a Query" provides some valuable tips for posting successful James 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 James ancestors.
James Achievements & CelebritiesDid you know that James was the 71st most popular surname in the 1990 census of the United States?
Web Sites & Blogs with James Research
If you are having difficulty locating records for the last name of James, 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 recommend your web site/blog for inclusion on this page, please submit a link to the user-contributed directory at Genealogy Today. Your web page may appear once its content has been reviewed by our editors.
Recently Discovered JAMES Clippings and Mentions
Upcoming James Family Reunions
Notifying everyone in advance to bring old photos and documents can bring big rewards, making a special place at the reunion (maybe even a special James booth) where people can come at their leisure to sit, look and chat; in addition to information and clues that might be written on the back of a photo, every photograph has a story and serves as an excellent stimulus to recall -- people might comment not only on the people in the photo, but also on what's in the background, or they might have information around where the photo was taken or the event -- just be sure to have someone there to capture new information. The article "Planning Details For A Family Reunion" may provide you with tips for hosting a successful James reunion.