Presentation of a Professional Genealogy Researcher

There are a lot of professional genealogy researchers that offer their services to help others learn about their family history and conduct genealogy research. These people all specialize in a different area of genealogy and historical research.

Rita Barredo, a member of the Association of Professional Genealogists, is one of these people.

Rita lives in Torrington, Connecticut and has an educational background in history and public history. She has been doing professional genealogy research for over 15 years.

She started after her mother passed away and realized that she knew a lot of stories of her family’s history and wanted to document them and learn more before it was too late.

Her aunt, her mother’s sister, was still alive at the time so Rita was able to reach out to her to get information.

She has traced one part of her family history back to the 1700’s to the Italian side of her family. With many Italian families being large, she just keeps picking away at finding information and filling in holes.

Another part of her family has been traced back 21 generations back to around 1420 in England. They came to the American colonies in 1628.

Helping Others

Since she’s started as a professional genealogist, she has helped about a half dozen people with their research. Research projects, depending on the size and scope, typically take about a month and involve finding obituaries, church and town hall records in her area.

SAR Application Supplemental Documentation Search

One person that she has done research for is a man who has applied for the Sons of the American Revolution (SAR). While he has his lineage confirmed, he needed supporting documentation that Rita was able to help him locate.

The Curious Coworker

Another person she works closely with for genealogy research is a coworker that she shares some common ancestors with. Because they share common ancestors, the coworker knows a lot about one side of his family but reached out to Rita to learn more about his father’s side.

Using Technology

Rita does use the internet as a resource for her research projects. She typically starts with census records to confirm where a person lived at any given time. However, she finds it more ideal to go to town halls and libraries to locate records, especially with researching records from England.

Rita is also beginning to use genealogy DNA testing as part of her research efforts.

Association of Professional Genealogists (APG)

Shortly after she started doing research for others, she joined the Association of Professional Genealogists.

Her specialties include colonial, emigration & immigration and naturalization records.

As a member of the APG, Rita belongs to a virtual chapter of about 70 people. They have virtual meetings, discussions, and webinars.

Other Organization Memberships

National Genealogical Society – 2005

Utah Genealogical Association – 2006 (Registrar for the Salt Lake City Institute of Genealogy)

Connecticut Society of Genealogists

Connecticut Professional Genealogists Council

Connecticut Historical Society – 2007

Torrington Historical Society – 2003 (Trustee)

Litchfield Historical Society – 2009

New England Historic Genealogical Society

Advice for Future Generations

Rita’s advice to younger and future generations is that genealogy is fun! Rita’s younger cousins see her work and they get interested in what she is doing. She tells people that it’s important to know about your past because once the parents and grandparents are gone, their stories are gone and they can’t help you learn about your ancestors.