4-H Genealogy Project

Exhibit Guidelines

Forms for this project are found on the Indiana 4-H Web site www.extension.purdue.edu/4-H click on "projects" and then on Genealogy to reach downloadable forms. This project is organized into divisions and not grades for a youth cannot start in Division 3 without first completing Division 1 and Division 2. This is a project that builds on the previous division information in order to be successful in building your family tree.

If you are using a genealogical commercial software program, you may need to type in or hand write in information required by the Indiana 4-H genealogy project. 

The exhibit will consist of no more than four (4) notebooks for Division 1-4 and first year Advanced
Division. (If a notebook requires additional space, label it as notebook x, continued.) Those notebooks are:

  • Book 1
    • Appropriate size notebook or binder, contains introduction sheet, pedigree charts and family group sheets
  • Book 2
    • Appropriate size notebook or binder, contains additional information worksheets and diary of work
  • Book 3
    • Appropriate size notebook or binder, contains supporting documents, pictures, etc.
  • Book 4
    • Appropriate size notebook or binder, contains Advanced Division options only
      • Begin using this notebook in first year of the advanced division or the fifth year of project enrollment

An additional notebook should be maintained and kept in a secure place at home to keep original personal and legal documents as well as previously exhibited work.

Note – Youth may consolidate information in order to have fewer notebooks. In this case indicate on
the cover the notebook numbers included and use dividers to separate information by notebook number as well as contents as indicated below.

Notebooks should be tabbed and in the following order:

  • Book 1
    • Introductory Page; Pedigree Charts; Family Group Sheets
  • Book 2
    • Additional Information Worksheets; Diary of Your Work
  • Book 3
    • Any Other Documents (label with ancestor numbers on tab)
  • Book 4
    • Advanced Division Options (label each tab separately with the specific option); Diary of Your Work (this will be a second diary describing work done for each advanced division option)

Pedigree Charts, Family Group Sheets, Additional Information Worksheets, and Diary Sheets are to be
placed in the notebook back-to-back in sheet protectors to save space, reduce the information being damaged, and reduce the number of sheet protectors required.

So the notebook exhibit can be displayed to the public and to minimize the potential of identity theft,
original legal documents are NOT to be included in the exhibit notebook. Instead, a photocopy of any legal document is to be included in the notebook and all identifiable information (like social security numbers) except for names is to be completely marked out. Original legal documents are to be kept in a secure location by the 4-H member and his/her family.

All posters, notebooks, and display boards must include a reference list indicating where information was obtained, giving credit to the original author, to complete the 4-H members exhibit. This reference list should/might include web site links, people and professionals interviewed, books, magazines, etc. Reference notations are to be made in the “source” column of the Family Group Sheet and on each document. If information on a family member is unknown, an additional information worksheet for each required ancestor is still required. Write “unknown” or “NIA” (no information available) in PENCIL for each sheet of unknown ancestors or list several ancestors on a page and insert page in proper numerical order.

After exhibiting the 1st year of the ADVANCED Division, only the Advanced Division notebook (Book #4)
with ALL OPTIONS (no pedigree charts, no family group sheets, no additional information sheets, no documents from Divisions 1-5) needs to be exhibited each year the genealogy project continues.

Suggested Genealogy Supply List:

  • Four 3" D-ring notebooks
  • One 2" D-ring notebook
  • Computer or legable printing/handwriting (be consistent with method)
  • #2 lead pencil with soft eraser
  • Black ink pen
  • Yellow highlighter
  • Notebook tabs and acid free dividers (be consistent with style used, not going past edge of notebook)
  • Fine point permanent black marker
  • Acid free/non-glare sheet protectors
  • Acid free paper
  • Acid free glue stick
  • Acid free satin Scotch take
  • Scissors
  • Correction tape
  • Lots of creativity (while following guidelines)

Judges evaluating exhibits should recognize individual differences and creativity, therefore using
information in this document as a guide rather than a requirement.

Exhibit class guidelines

Division 1 (1st year in project):

Exhibit notebook that includes the following:

  • Book 1
    • An Introduction page with a recent photograph of yourself
    • Completed three-generation pedigree chart. This includes you, your parents, and your grandparents, ancestors #1 through #7. Put all surnames in capital letters and all dates in military form (12 July 1974). Give each person a number, as described in the "Recording the Information" section of the Indiana 4-H Genealogy Resource Guide 4-H 748. You must use the pedigree charts listed at the www.extension.purdue.edu/4-H, 4-H 748Pc-W or 4-H 748Pbw-W or the commercial software forms, but not the old "packet" pedigree charts
    • A Family Group Sheet for your parents and each pair of grandparents. Sources of information
      MUST be filled in on family group sheets (see section "Recording the Information")
  • Book 2  (Ancestors 1-7 information)
    • Four (4) Additional Information Worksheets
      • One for you, the 4-H member
      • One for your parents
      • One for each set of grandparents
      • Diary of your work
  • Book 3  (Ancestors 1-7 information)
    • Any documents or pictures pertaining to these three generations. Documents must be labeled
      with ancestor name and ancestor number. Pictures need to be labeled with ancestor name, plus names of all known people, place and date picture was taken, as well as ancestor numbers
Completed record sheet

Division 2 (2nd year in project)

Exhibit notebook that includes the following:

  • Book 1
    • Four-generation pedigree chart. This would include you, your parents, grandparents, and great-grandparents, ancestors #1 through #15. You must use the pedigree charts listed at
      www.extension.purdue.edu/4-H, 4-H 748Pc-W or 4-H 748Pbw-W or the commercial software forms, but not the old "packet" pedigree charts
    • A Family Group Sheet for each pair of great-grandparents. Sources of information filled in on family group sheets (see section "Recording the Information" in the Indiana 4-H Genealogy Resource Guide 4-H 748)
  • Book 2 (Ancestors 8-15 information)
    • An additional information worksheet for each set of great grandparents
    • Diary of your work
  • Book 3 (Ancestors 8-15 information)
    • Any photographs taken of tombstones of your ancestors and their children. Please document location of tombstone(s) and label with ancestor name, ancestor number, and date photo was
      taken. Rubbings are acceptable in lieu of photographs.
    • Any other documents or pictures pertaining to these generations, correctly labeled

Exhibit Book #1, Book #2, and Book #3. Books 2 and 3 should only include Division 2 ancestors 8-15
and related information.

Completed record sheet

Division 3 (3rd year in project)

Exhibit notebook that includes the following:

  • Book 1
    • Five-generation pedigree chart, ancestors #1 through #31. Computer programs do not generally print chart numbers, so if you are using a computer program, make sure you have the correct number of ancestors. If an ancestor is UNKNOWN, please indicate as UNKNOWN. You must use the pedigree charts listed at www.extension.purdue.edu/4h, 4-H 748Pc-W or 4-H 748Pbw-W, or the comercial software forms, but not the old "packet" pedigree charts
    • Additional Family Group Sheets for generation five (5). Sources of information must be filled in on family group sheets (see section "Recording the Information" in Indiana 4-H Genealogy Resource Guide 4-H 748.)
  • Book 2 (Ancestors 16-31 information)
    • Additional information worksheets
    • Diary of your work
  • Book 3  (Ancestors 16-31 information)
    • Write an autobiography, the story of your life. Include pictures, relevant dates, and important events OR write an essay about what your hopes and dreams are for the future, or about life goals you hope to attain
    • Any documents or pictures pertaining to these generations, correctly labeled

Completed record sheet

Division 4 (4th year in project):

Exhibit a notebook(s) that includes the following:

  • Book 1
    • Six-generation pedigree charts, ancestors 1-63. Computer programs do not generally print chart numbers, so if you are using a computer program, make sure you have the correct number of ancestors. You must use the pedigree charts listed at www.extension.purdue.edu/4H, 4-H 748Pc-W or 4-H 748Pbw-W, or the commercial software forms, but not the old "packet" pedigree charts
    • Additional Family Group Sheets for generation six (6). Sources of information must be filled in
      on family group sheets (see section "Recording the Information")
  • Book 2 (Ancestors 32-63 information)
    • Additional information worksheets
    • Diary of your work
  • Book 3  (Ancestors 32-63 information)
    • A copy of a photograph or a story of a sixth-generation ancestor. Include information about the date when the photograph was taken, how or where you found it and what's happening in it or why it was taken. If this is unavailable, write a story about the historical period during which your sixth generation ancestor was living
    • Any documents or pictures pertaining to these generations, correctly labeled

Completed record sheet

Advanced (5th year and above in project):

Exhibit a notebook(s) that includes the following:

  • Book 1
    • Seventh and eighth-generation pedigree charts, ancestors #64 through #255. If ancestry is unknown, please indicate as Unknown. Computer programs do not generally print chart num
      bers, so if you are using a computer program, make sure you have the correct number of ancestors
    • Your family group sheet for generations seven and eight. Sources of information filled in on family group sheets (see section "Recording the Information" in the Indiana 4-H Genealogy Resource Guide, 4-H 748
  • Book 2  (Ancestors 64-255 information)
    • Additional Information worksheets
    • Diary of your work
  • Book 3  (Ancestors 64-255 information)
    • Any documents or pictures pertaining to these generations; correctly labeled
  • Book 4 
    • One new advanced level option (see below). Advanced division exhibitors must include ALL
      options submitted in prior years, with each option labeled with the year completed

Pedigree charts are available on the Indiana 4-H Web site for your additional genealogy research. EACH
YEAR FOLLOWING, continue to add ancestors to your pedigree charts. In addition, choose one of the following options that has not been completed previously. Please identify, by letter, the option that you are completing (for example: Advanced Division, Year 1, Option A; Advanced Division, Year 2, Option C; etc.)

Advanced Division Year 2 and beyond – Exhibit Book #4 that contains advanced division options and a second diary of work. If additional ancestry information was found in the seventh and eighth generation, exhibit Book 1 noting ancestors completed this year along with Books 2 and 3 demonstrating this year’s work.

EXPLAIN the information received as to how it relates to you and your ancestors. Copies of documents obtained in previous divisions are acceptable and should be utilized in the option chosen if needed.

  1. Amigration map of your eight-generation ancestors. You should have at least one mapper family line with charts or explanations of the migrations
  2. A timeline historical report of a family line. Show how this family fits into history. Document your
    report as well as possible with dates, records, places or maps, pictures, etc. Be sure to include proper labels and sources
  3. A census history of a family line. Census abstract forms can be found on several websites. Download forms to abstract the census. Your notebook should contain copies of the census and the completed abstract form for each census.
  4. A history of your family's religious background for any family line or lines. Include a brief history of
    the denomination. Include baptism, confirmation or profession of faith and membership records. Also include information or history of the congregations involved. Be sure to include proper labels and sources
  5. A history of your family's military service for a family line. Include supporting documents when possible. These documents could include military records, (muster rolls, discharge papers, etc.),
    pension records, and bounty land records, as well as maps and pictures. Be sure to include proper
    labels and sources.
  6. A research paper on a famous ancestor. Prove your relationship to this person with documentation.
    Try to include pictures and anecdotes to enhance your paper.
  7. Complete a family line or lines back as many generations as possible beyond eight generations
    (ancestors 256 and beyond). Include pictures, maps and documents. Be sure to include proper labels and sources.
  8. A timeline historical report of another family line not previously completed. Document as well as
    possible as in Option B. You need to state at the beginning that this is a second family historical
    report on such ancestor.
  9. A history of your family's military service for a family line not previously completed. Include support
    ing documents as in Option E. You need to state at the beginning that this is a second family  military history report on such ancestor.
  10. Family DNA history. (This can be a very expensive option) Please include charts and explanations.
    i.e. use pie charts, ethnicity estimates, approximate percentage regionally, number of countries
    searched, genetic percentage, family tree, graphs, etc.
  11. Any other genealogy related activity of choice.
  12. Completed record sheet