Ten eager participants learned the basics of using the computer program Ancestry.com, and also where to find a large variety of free research materials online during a class Nov. 4 at the Cooper County Historical Society Research Center in Pilot Grove.

Instructors Leola Ripperger and Harold Kerr gave valuable hints and directions on how to research your family tree and supplied forms and directions on where to start your research. Ancestor research has become one of the top five hobbies in the U.S., and they stressed that it is important to start with your own family members while they are still with you.

So you want to research your family history, but don’t know how to start? After the holidays, beginning genealogy classes will be offered monthly at the Research Center to help people research family trees. If there is enough interest, experienced researchers Leola Ripperger and Harold Kerr are willing to offer free group training sessions using the Ancestry computer program, local resources, and those free resources available through state and federal online sources. Call the CCHS Research Center and leave your name and phone number and indicate that you are interested in the training or email them at cchs2016@iland.net.