It is said a picture can tell a thousand words and this is never more true than when you are talking about maps.
You can use maps to plot where your ancestors were born, their migration routes to another country or even within a country over time. Did your family stay in one location for generations or did they disperse around the country or even around the world?
Maybe your ancestor served in the military. You could plot the movements of his or her unit throughout the war.
Google Maps makes it easy to put your person in place on a map.
To get the best out of Google Maps you should be signed into your Google account. If you have a Gmail email you have Google account and if not it is free and very easy to get yourself an account.
(Go to www.gmail.com. Click Create an account, then follow the prompts).
I’m going to show how easy it is to make a map. This one will be a simple map showing where eight of my ancestors were born in England.
First I set up a file in Excel ( or you can use the free spreadsheet program Sheets in Google) then save it as a CSV file (you will need the file so remember where you saved the file)
Then I went to Google Maps (https://www.google.com/maps/d/) where I have the option of creating a map or opening a previously saved map.
You have the option of entering an address and you have annotation tools available. Or you can click on Import and import the CSV file from my computer.
You are then asked to choose the column to position your place marks.
In my file it is the column “place”.
Then I pick the column to title my place markers which is for my file “Name” then click finish and Google Maps will create your map. It will place pins in at each place point.
Then title the map. You have the options of colouring your pins and also adding extra information and even a photo at each pin.
The Map will be saved in your Google drive ready for later editing or use.
You save the map and then you can click Share to get the URL of the map and the option to share it to Facebook, G+, Twitter or with your family.
You can download it, print it, use it on your website, in your family history book or on your blog.
What sort of map will you create?