Use the Social Media Sites like Facebook

>> Sunday, July 25, 2010

I am hearing more and more stories about people finding lost family members including adoptees and birth families on Facebook. I am actually very pleased if the person is younger and might have a MySpace account. Facebook has an application for advanced searching that you can install, but they have not required some of the information you might need to search. MySpace has great search capabilities.

Despite the lack of good search information and tools, there is a very good chance that someone you are searching for is there on Facebook so brew a pot of coffee or tea, and start looking.In addition to individual accounts there are group or community accounts. A woman who has been looking for a long time for a birth family that included deaf members just had her find on Facebook. She knew the approximate year of graduation of one of the deaf children and which school the children had attended. She contacted a person who would have been in that graduating class on that school's site and asked if the family was known from the characterististics given in the non-ID. After a couple of tries, she got a last name and it has proven to match the family members in the non-ID. SHe should be calling her birth mother today.

I have found many people for "clients" on Facebook and after I have found them, then gone on to check pictures and family members on their accounts. MySpace lets you search more thoroughly. For example, once you have found all the Bill Williams, you can then filter them by sex, age and location.

Don't forget When I have a maiden name for a birth mother I check there first to see if I can find a married name, or if I am looking for someone who may have changed their name. It is very helpful when you know a last name and general age and general area where they might have gone to school. The advanced search on Classmates is quite helpful.

If you are the one trying to be found, be sure and put yourself on these sites. Include pictures and a little story about your search. Someone may find you this way.

Good luck with your search


Search Aid - Kadima List

>> Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Imagination in Your Search
The Williams sister who were featured in the previous blog are at it again. They just sent me a link to an article on them in the Shreveport Times. They are very good at using media resources to advance their search. It is a good example of using imagination and going for it! Check this link - and look for the article on the Williams sisters.

We have not found their little sister yet. Since their birth mother kept going back to Ouachita Parish Louisiana. we are assuming that this child was adopted there too.

Other cases of using the media are letters to the editor to be published in a paper or contacting the consumer reporter. Also contacting human interest Newspaper and TV reporters.

The tedious search with a Kadima list
My advice at this point is to purchase a Kadima list from This list has all the births on the date you specify. It is not a birth list of who was born in a particular place, but rather a list of any person with that birthdate who has lived in the state and transacted business such as getting a driver's license, paying utility bills and other transactions that include contact information and name..
The list makes no attempt to  combine different names of the same person who has gotten married, divorced, etc.

Method of using the list
When you get the list, you sort through separating males from females so you can search for the correct gender.
Then sort the list by first name and try to combine entries that are the same person living at different addresses over time.
Sort the list again by zip code. Start with the most likely zip codes and work outward.
It is particularly valuable to work with a spreadsheet on this.
After the list is sorted by gender, entries combined and zip code priorities decided, then you are ready to begin.
Using,,, look for the names. The resources will include places lived, AKAs and possible relatives.
As you research look for possible parent names, be sure this is not parent in-laws. Most people who have adopted are older. This can help you prioritize the people you are looking for. A lot of siblings is a flag that it is probably not an adoption, usually no siblings or 1 about two years age different is the norm. Once again be sure these are not siblings by marriage.
Gather as much as you can from the internet.
When you have completed that process for a zip code zone, then try to find a phone number for the person. With the advent of cell phones that are often replacng land lines, this is becoming more difficult. Sometimes you have to write a note.
Other options are to look for neighbors. for example lets you search for neighbors. I usually look for a female neighbor aprovimately the age of the person I am looking for or an older female. You would be surprised how much you can learn from this.
You can also look for possible relatives. Since my estranged ex-daughter-in-laws are listed as relatives for me, you can see this does not always work, but it is worth a try.

The Call
When you call, have a script that you read. An example is:
"I am a genealogist doing family research for a friend and we think that it is possible that you might have information that can help us. We are looking for a female born in Xxxx (if you know it) on 1/27/79 (or whatever date it is) and we wondered if you would be such a person. If they say yes, then say that the person you are looking for is adopted, would that also fit them?"
Pay particular atention to tone of voice and for other clues of uncertainty.
Remember, not everyone knows they are adopted although they often suspect it.
When you end the call, ask them to please keep your phone number, in case they think of any information that may help you.

Geting the list
Go to Ameridex,com. Click on price list. The first entry is
"Nationwide ("Live") Index -   Search by first name, and/or last name and/or date of birth and/or city/state/zip. $1.95. Up to 50 names with addresses, and date of birth returned. Optionally retrieve additional records $0.45@50 records to a maximum of 2000. No charge if no hits. List of all males or females born on a specific date with recent or previous addresses $18.95. Results returned via email as a comma-separated file. You can purchase this search using Paypal by clicking the following button"
 Click on that button to purchase the list
The red text describes what you want.

As complicated as it may seem, it has worked. It is tedious and can take many months but if you have run out of options it is another thing to try.
I have seen two birth sisters, a birth son and at this time, I suspect a birth daughter, found by this method. I am waiting for a non-ID to confirm the daughter

Good luck with your searches.


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