Browsing Surnames Here at Tonia’s Roots

The software that I use to run the genealogy portion of this website (the excellent TNG), is fairly intuitive, but sometimes it helps to have instructions.  All the genealogy data can be found by on the “Family Tree” tab and these instructions apply only to that section of the website.

The most common question people have is “how do I find the person I’m looking for?  There are several ways to find people in the genealogy database.

Browsing surnames is one of the easiest ways to see individuals who are included in the database.  The main “Family Tree” page offers several ways to browse through surnames.  The bottom right portion of the screen (see the highlighted portion of the image below) displays the 30 most-common surnames in the database. (Tip:  Click on the  images to see larger versions.)

genealogy, TNG, Hemphill, Ellis, Roberts

Click on any surname to see a list of all people with that surname.


If you would like see all surnames starting with a specific letter, you can click two places.  Then, click on any surname in the resulting list to see all people with that surname.

Surnames-first-lettersIf you would like to see more than 30 of the most common surnames, you can choose how many surnames to display here, then click go.  The default is 100, but you can change that to any number.  You can also click on “Show all surnames” to get an alphabetical list of all surnames in the database.


Surnames-sidebarYou can get back to the Surname page from anywhere within the “Family Tree” tab by clicking on Surnames from the Genealogy Menu in the sidebar, by clicking “Home”, or simply by clicking on the “Family Tree” tab at the top of the page.

This post is part of an ongoing series about navigating and using the Tonia’s Roots website.  To see all posts in the series, click here.

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  1. Montie Nelson says

    Hi Tonia…

    I came across your website doing my own search. As you may guess from my name, I am decended from Monteville Roberts, buried at Spring Place. He is also my ggg-grandfather. Anyway I found your site interesting, and just wanted to say hi! Feel free to email me and maybe we can compare some notes and/or help each other out!


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