Welcome to the most frustrating hobby and at the same time the most rewarding! If you are truely startng off on your search you need to talk to ALL of your family members, Aunts,Uncles,Grandparents,etc. Get all of the information from them that they can remember. Make copies of any information that they have, photos,bibles,letters,etc.
You will need a good geneology program to keep track of all of the data. Trying to keep it with pen and paper is almost impossible. Ultimate family Tree and Family Tree Maker are two very good ones, easy to use and understand and relatively inexpensive.
Collect all of the data and organize it in a file cabinet...You may think that you don't need one, but if you are truely interested in the family tree, you will be surprised how much data you will gather. It is easier to organize at the very beginning rather than later on. (You will never find the time to organize later...trust me!)
Once you have gathered all of the information from the family and have entered it into the program, you can then figure out which direction you need to search. Then you can get on the forum and ask specific questions about individuals.
Another major suggestion is if you do not have a scanner...get one. They are relatively cheap now and you will need it to scan documents that are on loan to you from family members as well as photos.
Well, I hope that this helps you get started. Feel free to ask for any help at all. Everyone here is eagar to help someone get started...Who knows...You may be the one to find that elusive missing piece to the puzzle!
Good luck and good huntin'!
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