I first became interested in my roots in the summer of 1980 when I was just 14 years old. I've been at it ever since. In 1996 I first put my genealogy online in the free web space that came with my AOL account. In 1997 or 1998 I got my own domain name (martygrant.com) and the site has grown considerably since then. At last count (2010) there were over 2,600 pages on the site. Each of those pages print out on multiple sheets, so the site could easily equal about 10,000 printed pages. I can hardly believe that I've put so much online. However, I can easily believe it when it comes to maintaining it. It is very difficult! More recently I have switched to using generated web pages that are created directly from my family history records. This is much easier to maintain as I can simply update the entire database about once a month. Accordingly I am slowly removing the old static pages (all 2600 of them!), but not until I'm certain the same information is included in the new pages.
My purpose or "mission" with this site hasn't changed since 1996. I wanted several things for this site, and believe I have accomplished it reasonably well.
Provide accurate information.
I couldn't believe how much bad information was on the internet and floating around via books and snail-mail in 1996. It has only gotten worse since then (far worse!) but I wanted to provide accurate information on this website that was supported by actual documentation or at least by strong circumstantial evidence. Although it is impossible to be 100% accurate all the time, I think I've made a pretty good effort.
I have seen so many genealogies online and in print that had no documentation attached. Some have a little documentation, but most have none at all! How can someone trust such information? It might be accurate, it might not be. My goal with the website was to include the documentation, either in full, or in abstract, or with good references to the original source material. I can't tell you how embarrassing it is when someone questions something on my site and I discover that I don't have any source material to support it. I've tried hard to document everything, but I do fail on occasion, but this is something I can fix as I go along.
Solicit new information.
Another goal with the website was to get myself in contact with distant cousins and fellow researchers who had information to share with me. There are numerous things that I have never found, and might never find on my own. I have always appreciated it when someone shares documented information with me. It often takes me awhile to get new information on the website, but I'll get it eventually.
In closing, I want to say that martygrant.com is really here for just three purposes: one, to share my genealogy with the world; two, to get in contact with fellow researchers; and three, to share the Gospel of Jesus Christ with any who will hear it. Enjoy the web pages, and God bless!