Welcome to the Vandegraaff 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 Vandegraaff 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 Vandegraaff ancestry. Share this page on Twitter!
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The Vandegraaff Family Tree
It is important to remember that there is no single Vandegraaff family tree, as last names were assigned to people for various reasons. We are often asked, How do I begin my Vandegraaff family tree? and you might be surprised at the answer.
Best Tree Collections for Discovering Vandegraaff Ancestors
Keep an open mind when searching through Vandegraaff 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 I locate old newspapers for Vandegraaff research?, then read this frequently asked question.
Top Five Genealogy Databases to Search for Vandegraaff
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 Vandegraaff records at Ancestry.com! Start exploring this online Vandegraaff family history resource today.
Origins of the Vandegraaff Surname
There are no clear, concise answers to why or how one of your Vandegraaff 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.
Vandegraaff DNA Projects
DNA testing for genealogy continues to improve. If you had some of your Vandegraaff relatives tested several years ago, it may be worthwhile to have them retested. Likewise, as DNA testing companies have gathered more results and samples, you may be able to find more matches if you search again with your test results. If you're not sure how DNA testing could aid your Vandegraaff research, read "When do you use DNA?".
Vandegraaff Family History
There is more to exploring your Vandegraaff ancestry than just gathering a bunch of names and dates. Understanding where your ancestors lived, how they were employed, and what they did for fun, may give you a better appreciation of your heritage. Whether you are a beginner or expert genealogists, knowing How can I decipher the handwriting in old Vandegraaff documents? is always useful.
Networking with Vandegraaff 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 "The Art of Posting Queries" provides some valuable tips for posting successful Vandegraaff 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 Vandegraaff ancestors.
Vandegraaff Achievements & CelebritiesDid you know that Vandegraaff was the 59456th most popular surname in the 1990 census of the United States?
Web Sites & Blogs with Vandegraaff Research
If you are having difficulty locating records for the last name of Vandegraaff, 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."
Upcoming Vandegraaff 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 "Vandegraaff 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 "A Great Way to Unite a Newly-Found Family" may provide you with tips for hosting a successful Vandegraaff reunion.