Family History & Genealogy Research


Dr. Carol P. McCoy, President of Find-Your-Roots, can help you meet your family research goals in many ways—as coach, presenter and workshop leader. 0054photo

Presenter. An enjoyable, informative, and engaging speaker, Dr. McCoy loves to speak about genealogy and family history. She can provide workshops or presentations for your historical or genealogy society, conference, or other organization that wants to encourage an interest in family history and help people build skills in genealogy research.

Coaching and Guide on Genealogy Research. As a lifelong teacher and coach, she also enjoys helping other people who want to trace their own roots learn to become better genealogists. Dr. McCoy can help you learn to be a better family historian, and to conduct research on your own.

Coach on Presentation Skills. With four decades experience as a teacher, educator, presenter and designer of learning experiences, Dr. McCoy can help you become a more effective presenter for your organization.

Researcher. She is an expert researcher and relentless “family detective”, who utilizes traditional sources, such as court house records, archival records, libraries near and far as well as the internet, historical society contacts, and other personal contacts to reach your family history goals. Dr. McCoy is not accepting clients at this time.

Services Include

Rawley, my father, as a child in front of his Greenwich Village home around 1918.Rawley, my father, as a child in front of his Greenwich Village home around 1918.

  • Coaching to help you improve your approach to doing family history and genealogy research. Learn techniques, strategies and resources to increase your chances of discovering your roots
  • Conducting workshops and presentations on genealogy and family history for organizations and groups of all sizes
  • Assistance in Improving Your Presentation Skills. Talks, lectures, workshops and coaching to improve your presentation skills.

Genealogy and Family Research Presentations--A Sampling of Topics

By Carol P. McCoy, Ph.D.

Carol P. McCoy, Ph.D.Dr. McCoy will be pleased to give talks or workshops for your group. She can give presentations of one hour to one and one-half hour as well as longer workshops given individually or in a series.

She has an informative, engaging and motivating style and uses many examples to enliven her talks. While some of her topics are listed below, she can also speak on other topics as well.

Finding Treasures in Deeds—Why Use Deeds in Your Research? . Deeds are a valuable research tool especially when early probate records have been destroyed.  This lecture will clarify ways to use deeds effectively, where to find them and how  to use them to discover family relationships, locations, and other key information.

Making the Most of Census Research. Learn tips and tactics to make the most of your census research. Learn how to avoid common pitfalls and use a variety of censuses to learn about your ancestors and track down those elusive relatives. Get beyond the census indexes and broaden your focus beyond a specific relative to get the whole story.

Using Town Records in Genealogy--Highway Surveyors, Tithingmen, Hog Reeves and More. Local town records, especially in New England, contain a wealth of information about the goings on about towns. Learn how your ancestors lived and possibly discover roles your family played in town development. Town records include vital records, town officers, meeting minutes, local disputes, and so much more.

Tax Records in Genealogy--How Taxes Can Be a Good Thing! While we dread the tax man, various types of tax records contain much useful information for genealogists. They can serve as a substitute for census records, help you learn about your family's wealth, land, possessions, where they came from, and perhaps when they died. Learn a sensible approach to using tax records in your genealogy research.

Finding Your Family Roots in New England—Sound Strategies for Genealogical Research. Learn tips and tactics for locating your ancestors with New England roots. Find ways to maximize traditional resources, historical societies, family mementos, and the internet to learn about your family heritage. Create a solid research plan and avoid common pitfalls in genealogical research.

Enriching Genealogy with Memorabilia and Pictures. There is only so much excitement that can be generated from ancestor charts and family group sheets. Pictures are indeed worth a thousand words. Find out types of memorabilia that can enrich your family history and become inspired to locate them! Share ideas of what others have done to enliven their stories to give people a feel for what their ancestors’ lives were like.

Tracing Your Ancestors—Getting Started. This talk presents the fundamentals of genealogy and family research to help people get started on a solid foundation. Learn how to unravel family mysteries and avoid common pitfalls in genealogical research.

Creative Ways to Solve Genealogical Problems. Have you hit the proverbial brick wall or road block in your genealogical research? Is an ancestor or two eluding you and hiding from the census taker or the town clerk? Learn some solid strategies and ways to take a fresh look at what you’ve tried and what else you can do to find those pesky hidden ancestors.

Finding Your Roots—Unpuzzling Your Past. A six-session workshop series. Are you curious about your ancestors—who they were, where they lived, what they did, who you take after? This fun and inspiring workshop will help you to learn sound techniques for tracing your family genealogy and history. Using Emily Croom’s best-selling book, Unpuzzling Your Past as a spring-board, this class will teach you ways to track down your ancestors, learn more about their lives, and create a meaningful family history.

  • Session One—Getting Started
  • Session Two—Keys to Success in Genealogy
  • Session Three—Understanding the Census
  • Session Four—Vital Records
  • Session Five—Building on Others’ Work
  • Session Six—Organizing and Digging Deeper

The Maine-Canada-Ireland Connection —Seeking Rogers’ Roots. An intriguing and entertaining case study shows how we discovered the Canadian and Irish roots of the Rogers’ family who lived in Brewer Maine in 1850. Learn how US and Canadian census, land, probate, historical, cemetery, and newspaper records as well as archival material, online sites and databases and internet contacts can bring a complex family history to life.

Keys to Successful Presentations. Learn tips and tactics for giving successful presentations. Enjoy a humorous approach to overcoming an activity many people approach with dread--public speaking. This discussion will help you give presentations with more confidence and impact by planning for success, structuring your content, creating useful visual aids, and learning ways to increase your confidence in delivering talks and workshops. Dr. McCoy has over 30 years experience giving talks, lectures and workshops to audiences large and small and to a wide range of audiences on a variety of subjects, including genealogy. She can also help you as an individual speaking coach.

Ancestral Home of Colonel John Evans in Monongalia County West VirginiaAncestral Home of Colonel John Evans in Monongalia County West Virginia

Geographic Areas of Focus

  • New England as a whole
  • Concentration in Maine, especially Cumberland, Lincoln, Kennebec, York, and Androscoggin Counties
  • New York, especially New York City, and the following counties—Westchester, Washington, Greene, Saratoga, Rensselaer, and Suffolk (Long Island)
  • Connecticut, especially the New London area
  • Vermont, especially Bennington
  • West Virginia, especially the following counties—Tyler, Marion, Monongalia, and Ohio counties.

How Family Research Can Benefit You

  • Preserve your family history so it can be shared and passed on to others.
  • Create a treasured family heirloom that will bring your family closer together.
  • Learn more about your genealogical makeup! Discover why you are the way you are.
  • Discover and meet new relatives.
  • Enhance your appreciation of history and the struggles that your ancestors faced.
  • Have a deeper understanding of yourself and your family.
  • Learn the skills, talents, business background and mysteries of your family.
  • Discover family photos and articles and other family treasures!

Contact Us

Carol P. McCoy, Ph.D
71 Willow Grove Road
Brunswick, Maine 04011


Our Mission

Every family is unique.
Dr. McCoy's mission is to help people discover:

  • Where did I come from?
  • Who are my kin?
  • What makes my family special?

In so doing they will gain a deeper understanding of their family stories, connect with kin, and create a family treasure to share.