As part of your initial family tree research efforts, conducting interviews with known family members is one of the best ways to begin. This can help get you organized with your research efforts or simply start you off in a systematic fashion.

Family Tree Research Interviews aim to gather as much information about relatives as possible. When I began this journey, I thought the key question for any interview would be “Hey mom, tell me about your family”. But in truth this question will never get the job done.

Asking specific, thought-provoking, and thoughtful questions increases the odds that you will uncover truly insightful, new information from relatives. A conversation-style interview may evoke old memories, stories, and insights that have never been shared before with you.

How to Conduct a Family History Interview
The first step of conducting a Family History Interview should be planning the questions that you intend on asking and how the interview should flow. I like starting off with straightforward biographical questions before moving onto more introspective, personal queries.
Second, make sure you take lots of notes. Thirdly, remember to be respectful of your relative’s time – not everyone enjoys family research as much as us so please be considerate. Ideally you could conduct the interview over multiple conversations.