Once a genealogist has registered the surname with the Guild they agree to do essentially several things:
- Aim to make the study global
- Respond to all enquiries.
In fact the five broad principles can be seen here.
There is guidance for a study, the Guild has mentors and volunteers that will help guide you, answer questions and so forth. There is the book, Seven Pillars of Wisdom which was published by the Guild in 2012. There is the Introduction to One-Name Studies course which is run by Pharos, and I teach that. There is an Advance course which is taught by Helen Osborn and that builds on the material learnt in the introduction course and is probably best taken when you have some time under your belt with a study.
The introduction course gives a foundation for undertaking a study – learning about the numbers that reflect the people in your study, the history of surnames, and then drawing conclusions as to the history of your surname of interest.
The details of your study are left up to you to decide – the core data, the storage of the data, when you go global etc. There is no prescriptive way and where you start may well depend on the origins of the surname.
I have stated several times that I research in three places at one
- Where I am (England)
- Where my family originated (the surname is clearly Italian, and my own family are from Sicily)
- Where they went (Italian migrated globally, but the key places are Argentina, United States and Australia. My own family line went to New York, Alabama and Louisiana, so those three states are my US focus).
The One-Name Study that YOU register is YOURS, you decide how it is kept and maintained and consider the aims of your study. You work at your pace and enjoy the experience and research.