Most people collect something. This normally makes Christmas shopping for that person very easy. Normally! What do you get the person who collects ancestors? Following is a few suggestions that, as a genealogist myself, I would have loved to have received at some point.
Ancestry.com is a useful tool for both the beginner and the experienced genealogist. It offers numerous databases and census details to aid in your research. A subscription to Ancestry.com runs $155.40 per year for the US subscription. A World Deluxe subscription opens up international records and runs $299.40 a year. Payments can be made monthly or at once. You can place your order online or call 1-800-ANCESTRY.
Ancestry -- $24.95 / year
Avotaynu: The International Jewish Genealogy Journal -- $38 / year
Everton’s Genealogical Helper -- $27 / year
Family Chronicle -- $27 / year
Family Tree – $24 / year
Internet Genealogy -- $28 / year
Census CDs, local directories and other reference materials are invaluable to genealogists. Many historical societies offer various local reference books. If you are unsure what your genealogist already has or really needs, ask the society if you can give a gift certificate. Often deals can be found on Ebay as well.
Many genealogists take numerous photos for future reference as well as to add to our family collections. Photos of graves and old homesteads as well as current family photos are coveted items among genealogists, so why not invest in a digital camera for your genealogist? Along that same line of thought is a scanner. This is perfect for scanning in old family photos that need to be returned to someone else. Another tech gift idea is a laptop. This is one of the more expensive gifts but if the genealogist is your child or spouse, it may be an option. Many historical societies and reference libraries will allow laptops to be brought into their facility.
Boring as it may sound, a ream of paper may be just what your genealogist wants to find under the tree this year. Think of an essential as anything used in the day to day process of genealogy. Some examples are: batteries, pencils, paper, and folders. If you are unsure what they need or are sending this long distance, a gift certificate to Staples or Office Depot may suffice.
Unique Fun Gifts
Many places offer personalized mugs, shirts and bumper stickers for any occasion. If your genealogist always uses a catch phrase pertaining to genealogy, use it on a mug or a shirt. For example, in the introduction I mentioned “collecting ancestors”. Go with it. Use it on a mug – especially if she also enjoys coffee or tea – or a shirt. A tote bag is another useful gift. You can get unique gifts like these many places, including: Zazzle (http://www.zazzle.com/jmkgifts).
Genealogy can be an expensive hobby. If none of the above gifts are within your monetary value this year, especially with the economy as it is, try something more personal. Take your old family photos and scan them on to a CD or even a thumb drive. Include a couple reprints with it and wrap it up. Family members who offer information is always a gift in and of itself.