Contacting Distant Relatives

I’m just looking for some input about contacting distant, living relatives.

I don’t mean your Great Aunt Bessie that you see every few years at the family reunion.  I also don’t mean fellow researchers who are also seeking you out in hopes of sharing information.

I mean people who don’t have any interest in genealogy.  That might be leery about you contacting them.

Have you ever done it before?

I have been in contact with numerous distant relatives who were fellow researchers, but I have never contacted someone who wasn’t also doing research.

Since I’ve been doing genealogy for almost 13 years now, it is abundantly clear to me that many family treasures and stories are probably lost each year.  There are people who are not active in research who might have an attic full of family pictures.  Who could solve some of the family mysteries.

Through the power of the internet and especially Facebook, it’s easier and easier every day to find distant relatives.  I’m interested to hear if any of you have had good experiences in contacting distant relatives for information.  I’m hoping that maybe the people I contact would also be interested in what I have to share with them…


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