There are lots of blogs out there to help you learn how to do family history research. This blog lets you watch our progress as we roll the Canadian Genealogy Survey out across the country. We'll also track developments in research on family history. It's a bit of a twist, but we hope you'll find something of interest. We welcome your comments.

If you haven't taken the survey yet, you can find it at: http://www.cusurveycentre.ca/gensurvey


Tuesday, 25 September 2012

plus ça change, plus c'est la même chose

Thanks to everyone at BIFHSGO for the great reception last Saturday. I promised we'd start posting some of the results on the blog, so here's the first installment.

One of the things we were interested in was whether family historians had changed much over the years. In other words, with all the advertising that Ancestry is doing, has a new gang of young people all of a sudden 'got the genealogy bug'? We compared our results with those of sociologist Ronald Lambert, who surveyed members of the Ontario Genealogical Society (OGS) in the early 1990s. Here's what we found:

In 1994, Lambert's survey of 1348 OGS members revealed that:

  • 63% of family historians were female
  • 54% were 60 years of age or more
  • 50% had a university degree (bachelors degree or more)
  • 47% were retired
  • 72% were married
  • the median number of years survey participants had been involved in doing family history was 14.

Our 2011 survey of 2000 family historians from across Canada revealed that:
  • 64% of family historians were female
  • 59% were 60 years of age or more
  • 53% had a university degree (bachelors degree or more)
  • 57% were retired
  • 73% were married
  • the median number of years survey participants had been involved in doing family history was 15.
So it seems that while a few more of us are retired, pretty much the same people who were interested in family history then are interested now, at least if we're looking at demographics.

If you'd like more information on Lambert's survey, some of his articles are available through Global Genealogy. Here's the link to the first: http://globalgenealogy.com/globalgazette/gazrr/gazrr19.htm

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