genealogy search – OneGreatFamily, 2017

If you dig far enough, you’ll find that every family from Hong Kong to Houston is family in some way. That’s exactly what family history search OneGreatFamily sets out to do. This genealogy website’s main goal is to reconstruct the family tree of the whole planet. This genealogy search differs in structure to many other ancestry websites like it because it works as a cooperative research project rather than a genealogy search engine.


Like an informational co-op, users benefit from the research of others and get to contribute their findings for the rest of the online community. The combined effort on this website weaves together family trees from different corners of the world in an effort to create one large, interconnected tree or one great family.

Each time someone enters new information, OneGreatFamily runs through a laundry list of qualifications. The site checks whether the new information already exists on the database, its usefulness to users and whether there is any conflicting information. All of this crosschecking makes OneGreatFamily a reliable source for research. You can enter the research you’ve already collected about your family to have the site validate your information and be happy to know that the sources you find on the site are reliable.

This means OneGreatFamily isn’t the best site to find piles of records about your ancestry, but it can help you find verified information about your family and connections to others. To make up for OneGreatFamily’s lack of on-page resources, you can connect to widely used resources like the Canadian Genealogy Center, AfriGeneas and Find A Grave.

If the automatic update database leaves you feeling worthless, take comfort in knowing you can perform a manual search for ancestry through your parents, spouse, children, birthdays, deaths and religious events. As you add and browse the system, OneGreatFamily sends alerts when new information affects the family tree.

OneGreatFamily’s tools section provides users with resources outside the site database for genealogy search. This section includes the surname index. It lists alphabetically categorized last names where you can start your family search. Once you find the surname you’re looking for, you can see the number of matches within the site’s database. You can find data about how frequent your surname is through history and how often it appears in the U.S. census. This makes OneGreatFamily a good source for finding leads on last names.

The data on OneGreatFamily has to pass validation and cross checking before you can use it, making it a reliable database for genealogy sources. The information pool is small and based only on what users submit and build on the website. So while you’ll find reliable sources, there won’t be many extraordinary finds on this family finder.