I’m Emma Jolly. I live in London and work as a professional genealogist.
What got you into genealogy?
I grew up listening to my grandparents’ stories. I lived with my maternal grandparents and saw the others several times a year. Besides history, I love solving mysteries. Being a genealogist seemed as much fun as being a detective - but safer! I was also inspired by the family trees I saw in the newspaper whenever there was a royal wedding (which was quite often when I was a child).
What interesting things have you learned about your ancestors?
One of my great grandfathers who was a stand-up comedian. He was the straight man and writer of the act. He wrote for others, too.
Is there any source in your research that you've used that usually might be overlooked?
I'm surprised Welsh Newspapers Online isn't more widely used. It is free to access, and includes stories and articles from other parts of the world, not just Wales.
What are you currently focusing on in your research?
I spend most of my time researching for other people, but I am continually checking into my various DNA results. There have been updates to 23andMe, Living DNA, and Ancestry recently, which has been useful.
What difficulties have you come across in your research?
People giving false information! This happens for a myriad of reasons, but teaches us to be wary of what our ancestors (and others) tell us.
What advice would you give to people starting out in genealogy?
Your tree is never finished. Don't believe everything you've bee told. Keep an open mind. Start from yourself and work backwards.
You can follow Emma on Twitter above and click on her picture to see her website! I hope you've enjoyed reading! And the way my interviews will work, is I'll release one every Tuesday & Friday so stay tuned for the next one!