Tracing a family's lineage is a hobby for many people. Often, people trace family lines in order to discover family histories or to create a family tree. In order to create a larger family tree, a smaller family tree is the right place to start. A family tree showing three generations helps to show your lineage, so this is a good place to begin when developing a full-fledged family tree including your entire extended family.
- Skill level:
Open a program containing a chart-builder. For family tree creation, you will use a web graph in order to make your connections. Draw a family tree with a pen and paper if you prefer.
Draw a rectangle in the centre of the paper or screen, depending on which medium you are using. Inside the rectangle, add your first and last name. By beginning with you, you are making it easier to follow the tree and branch off in one of two directions for creating a three-generation family tree.
Create a vertical line stemming from the top centre of your rectangle. Make this line go up a short distance, connecting it to another line you will draw going horizontal. On both sides of these horizontal lines, add two rectangles. Inside these rectangles, add your father's full name and your mother's full name with her maiden name in parentheses. This is your second generation.
Add another horizontal halfway between your name and your parents' names on the tree. With this line, you will downward-facing vertical lines that will also have boxes connected to them. In these boxes, add the names of your siblings. Leave plenty of space between each box as will have additional information to add. If you do not have siblings, skip this step.
Draw a connecting line stemming from the right or left of your and your siblings' boxes with rectangles connected to these lines. Inside the boxes, write the full names of your and your siblings' spouses. The lines connecting the family member to a spouse indicates marriage. If there is a divorce but the couple shares children, use a dotted line to indicate there was a connection.
Create the third generation of the family tree using one of two methods: Adding your parents' parents or adding your and your siblings' children. To add your grandparents, create lines stemming from the top centre of their boxes, forking out to include their parents' names. Remember to include the mothers' maiden names. To add children, draw lines stemming from the vertical lines connecting you and your siblings to the spouses. With this centre line, add a box at the bottom with the child's name in it. If there is more than one child for each sibling, be sure to fork the vertical line out for each child you and each sibling and spouse have.
Tips and warnings
- Knowing all the members of your family is a plus, as this will help you create a more in-depth family tree graph.
- If you know the cause of death of a deceased family member, you can add this information in parentheses underneath the individual's name.
- Knowing someone's date of birth and date of death is also useful information to include in a family tree. You can write this in italics under a person's name.
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