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Research Methodology » FAN Club or Cluster Research

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The term "FAN club" was coined by Elizabeth Shown Mills. It refers to researching everyone in a cluster around your ancestors: friends/family, associates, and neighbors. This is also called cluster or collateral genealogy. Sometimes your direct ancestor is elusive. Research the group(s) surrounding your ancestor. Look at the siblings, cousins, neighbors, church members, or other community members. Many times following them and their migrations or patterns will lead you back to your own ancestor.

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