Welcome to the MacAray 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 MacAray 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 MacAray ancestry. Share this page on Twitter!
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The MacAray Family Tree
It is important to remember that there is no single MacAray family tree, as last names were assigned to people for various reasons. We are often asked, How can I distinguish my MacAray ancestor from others of the same name? and you might be surprised at the answer.
Best Tree Collections for Discovering MacAray Ancestors
Patronymics is the practice of naming children using the given name of the father, grandfather, or other male ancestor preceeded by a prefix. In the case of MacAray, it is possible that one of your Gaelic/Scottish ancestors was given the patronym for being the "son of Aray." Please read "Patronymics and Other Naming Patterns" and "Patronymics: Help Not Hindrance," for further details.
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 MacAray ancestors -- we often search for misspellings intentionally to see if we missed any records. If you want to know Why can't I find MacAray my ancestor in the SSDI?, then read this frequently asked question.
Top Five Genealogy Databases to Search for MacAray
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 MacAray records at Ancestry.com! Start exploring this online MacAray family history resource today.
Origins of the MacAray Surname
There are no clear, concise answers to why or how one of your MacAray ancestors took on the surname. It may have been based on their occupation or a distinguising physical trait. Keep in mind that it was not unusual for a last name to be altered as an ancestor entered a new country.
MacAray 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 MacAray family tree mysteries. DNA testing can be a useful tool, when applied properly to a given research issue. If you are seeking an answer to the question, How do I know which DNA test is right for MacAray research?, then this FAQ may help.
MacAray Family History
Every family has a different history, and every document you discover about your MacAray 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 MacAray family history on the Internet? is always useful.
Networking with MacAray Researchers
One of the best ways to solve a genealogy problem is by enlisting the help of others through a message board query that is open to the public, allowing you to cast a wide net that can be accessed by anyone, around the world and around the clock --- at the same time, because it is a public forum, you will want to exercise caution in posting personal information or information about living persons. The article "The Art of Posting Queries" provides some valuable tips for posting successful MacAray 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 MacAray ancestors.
MacAray Achievements & Celebrities
Web Sites & Blogs with MacAray Research
If you are having difficulty locating records for the last name of MacAray, 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.
Upcoming MacAray Family Reunions
Family reunions are an ideal time interview older relatives and other MacAray family members; you may want to consider a roundtable where you can gather different groups together at different times such as siblings to discuss their parents and childhood memories, cousins, aunts and uncles to discuss the grandparent generation, etc. - the collective memory and stimulus of shared experience can yield considerable information. The article "A Great Way to Unite a Newly-Found Family" may provide you with tips for hosting a successful MacAray reunion.