Welcome to an exciting field of research! I started working on genealogy in the early-1950s when I was 13 years old. I had few of the advantages 13 year-olds have today. I grew up on a farm on the outskirts of a small town, population 175. The nearest library was some 16 miles away, and it didn't have much interest in genealogy. The idea that almost every household would have a personal computer with internet access was unheard of.
In those days, my grandfather's family was scattered across the U.S. and Alaska. But, once each year, they all converged on our small town for a two-day family reunion. I loved to listen to Grandpa and his brothers and one sister sit around and tell stories on each other and relive the days when they were growing up. My mother was always calling me down for "being too nosey and asking too many questions." I wrote down all I could of what they had to relate. They humored me, and seem to love the notion that I was interested in them and their lives.
The summer of my 13th birthday, some of them brought things to me ... a Brownie camera, several rolls of film, a pad of yellow Family Group Sheets, old photos, a family recipe, etc. That year, I passed out the Group Sheets and asked each of them to complete it. Almost all of them completed theirs that same day.
I didn't know that I was working on "genealogy." I'd never heard the word. I knew I liked the stories of their lives and, after all these years, I still do. And you know what? Even though Grandpa and his siblings have been gone for many years, their descendants still bring photos, documents, etc. to me at the annual reunion.
My advice to you is that you obtain some family group sheets and ask every family you know to complete them and return to you. You can print them at the Rootsweb.com site.
Register to use Familysearch.org. It is free, but you do have to register. You can find digital copies of all kinds of records there.
Utilize the Surname and State and Local message boards at Rootsweb.com and those at Genealogy.com. You might connect with someone researching your families who will be willing to share their documentation with you.
Read and comprehend as many of the Tutorials available at almost all websites as you can. This will enable you to know what you are looking for, where to look for it, and what it can mean to your research.
Always thank those who provide assistance regardless of whether or not it was helpful to your research. If someone sends a document or a photo to you, reciprocate if you can. Build a network of people with whom you are comfortable discussing your families.
There is a lot a 13 year-old can do. Record, record, record. I wish you much luck in researching your family/families.
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