As a mentor
Many people begin researching their genealogy because they have an interest in their own family history or want to answer a family question. Where to start or where to look for information can be daunting to a beginner. Hiring a genealogist as a mentor may be the best money you spend on your genealogy.
Online services such as Ancestry make millions of records available to anyone who is willing to pay for a subscription. The drawback is these services may not have the records or information your need. These online services also are only useful if you know how to find a specific record related to your research in their database. As a mentor, a genealogist can help you navigate these services, which can help you save time and money while ensuring you quickly find the information you need.
As mentioned before online services don’t always have the information you need. The information you need may be at a repository such as a court house, archive or library. It’s not always that simple too. You may think that a divorce records your looking for is at the county court house. Sometimes over time these records are transferred to other repositories such as an archive. A genealogist who specializes in a geographic area will know what records are available and where and how to obtain these records.
Genealogists who specialize in religion or an ethnicity can help too. Understanding the cultural aspects and how they relate to the family can help identify significant events in people’s lives. This understanding and perspective can help identify sources where family information can be found. At the very least it can help people understand why people did things.
It’s important to remember that even the most experienced genealogist may need to consult with another genealogist who is an expert (ethnicity, geographic area, religion, etc…) Whatever your motivation or experience level with genealogy hiring a genealogist for their knowledge and expertise in your own learning experience is an opportunity you should seriously consider.