My name is Tim Doyle and I have been working on tracing my family history since I was 11 (that was 34 years ago). One of my great grandmothers showed me a small family history book, and I just had to chart it out to visualize it. I then realized that none of my other lines went back as far, and I started asking for more information. My mother pointed me to my baby book, which had all lines back to my great grandparents, but I wasn't satisfied. Mom suggested I talk to my great grandparents (I had four alive, one on each side, until I was in my teens) and see what they might know. I spent numerous occasions talking with them about what they knew, their childhoods, their parents and grandparents. I feel as though I personally know my family back about 5 generations on each side because of this.
In the early days of the internet, about 1995, I experimented with placing my genealogical database online. Back then, there was no Rootsweb WorldConnect, no WorldFamily Tree - nothing like that. Genealogy programs didn't even support saving as html, so if you wanted to place information online, you were pretty much on your own. Being that I was a software engineer by occupation, I decided to put something together, and came up with a set of scripts which I called the Indexed GEDCOM Method (IGM). These scripts basically allowed anyone to place their GEDCOM file online and the scripts would create pages as viewers requested them. This software was later found by Randy Winch who was working for RootsWeb and he made many improvements to it, where it is now known as RootsWeb's WorldConnect, currently supporting over 385 million names. More information about the history of WorldConnect, including my IGM contribution, can be found on the WorldConnect History page.
My online database included what I believed to be my correct Whitney lineage. This database was seen by A. Whitney Brown back in 1997 and she posted a note to the mailing list about it. Robert L. Ward reviewed my database and noticed that the lineage that I had was wrong, and notified both the list as well as me personally. Because of the spirit of this group, I immediately joined the WRG mailing list and decided to jump right in and help out others who might be in the same situation that I had been in.
My WRG History:
- 1997, joined the Whitney Research Group
- 1997, visited the Society of Genealogists in London, England and transcribed a number of records.
- 1998, transcribed a large number of census indexes.
- 1999, project coordinator for the WRG Pierce Project which transcribed the entire 664 pages of the book The Descendants of John Whitney.
- 1999, worked with Robert L. Ward to create the www.whitneygen.org website, hosted on a server in my home since that time.
- 2006, worked with Robert L. Ward to create this new wiki version of the website (project ongoing).
- 2006, coordinated the Whitney Manor Records Transcription Project.
- Fall 2006, worked with Robert Ward to analyze all evidence to piece together various Medieval Whitney Families.
- I am analyzing early U.K. Census Records to get a better understanding of the various Whitneys of England and Wales.
- Co-coordinator of the Whitney Family DNA Project.
- From October, 2005 through May, 2006, I worked with Robert L. Ward on an article concerning the English ancestry of John1 Whitney. It has now been submitted to The American Genealogist and is scheduled to appear in May 2007, in the October 2006 issue. It was compiled with assistance from Adrian Benjamin Burke, Esq.
- In February 2007, I submitted to The American Genealogist an article on the English ancestry of John1 Whitney of Watertown, MA. The joint author is Robert L. Ward, and we were assisted by Adrian Benjamin Burke, Esq. It appeared in July 2007, in the October 2006 issue.
- Fall/Winter 2007, participating heavily in the Whitney Census Identification Project.
- 2010 Upgraded WRG Website