Free Geneaology Research

Are you looking for a birth parent or another family member?  Maybe I can help.  My name is Mark Nelson.  I have years of research experience and have found hundreds of birth parents, grandparents, half siblings and secret children.  I simply enjoy genealogy and helping others.  I never ask for payment.  Before paying anyone, why not see what I can do for you.


I enjoy this type of research because of the incredible stories that are often revealed.  I've appeared on television and in newspapers for a missing person discovery I made a few years ago.  Several people have been united with family members for the first time because of my findings.

Missing Person Found

Other interesting searches I've been involved with include:  Two paternity related court cases, several crime related stories, a very difficult foundling case, and much more.  Some searches require weeks of research, while others are quite easy to solve.  Sometimes birth parents can be found in just minutes.   I can usually find what you're looking for, but I never know where the journey will lead or how difficult it will be.  Find out more about my discoveries and research in my Genealogy Blog.


How do I do it?  The answers are almost always in the DNA.  Data from genealogy sites, combined with internet research, is usually enough to solve a mystery.  Understanding DNA data is too complex or too time consuming for most people.  That's where I come in.  My background in computer programming has given me a great understanding of logic.  I use my own logical approach when analyzing the DNA data.  Click the DNA Guide link up top to find out more.

DNA Double Helix


Send an email to: and tell me your story (or lack of a story).  Something I hear quite often is, "I'm adopted and have no information."  If you have DNA results, then YES, you DO have information.  DNA is far better than any documents that exist.  If you have not submitted DNA to a genealogy site, I highly recommend it.  Ancestry is a good choice if you're thinking of purchasing a kit.  Click the Ancestry banner below to visit their website.


In addition to DNA analysis, a lot can be discovered using census records, newspaper articles, birth records, obituaries, etc.  I sometimes find unexpected stories in addition to what I was originally searching for.  Here are some examples...

Gertrude Louise Miller Lost Child

While researching for a friend, I discovered she is related to an entire family of adopted children from New Jersey.  I came upon an interesting story about a girl related to one of them.  Gertrude Louise Miller (A.K.A. Little Miss Mystery) was abandoned in New York City's Grand Central Station.  The story made headlines in 1942.

Ruby Smith Miss California

After finding birth parents for a woman named Kathy, I continued to find more and more entertaining stories about her family.  Her grandmother was a former Miss California who was rumored to have dated actor Buddy Ebsen.  We also discovered Kathy is related to recording artist Boz Scaggs.

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What's YOUR story? Genealogy sites can help find your family.

What will we find out about your family?  You might have a more interesting story than expected.  Maybe we'll find the relatives you're looking for.  Maybe we'll discover you're related to someone famous.  The possibilities are endless.  Contact me.  Let's get started today.


I never pressure anyone into donating, but if you'd like to send a little something my way, I'd appreciate it.  Access to research data isn't cheap, so every little bit helps.  Any donations will be used to fund future research.  Donations are completely optional.  Just click the donate button below.  You do NOT have to create and account or sign up for anything to make a donation.  Thank you for your support.


A beginner's guide

Ancestry DNA Kit

When you purchase a DNA kit from a popular genealogy company, you will be asked to submit a saliva sample and mail it to a lab.  After a few weeks you will receive your results which can be truly amazing.  From that tiny bit of genetic material, it's quite possible you will be able to discover everyone you've been related to for centuries.


Many people purchase DNA kits to find out about their ethnicity.  Keep in mind, you will receive an "estimate" of your ethnicity.  It could be completely correct, but there can sometimes be discrepancies.  You may even receive an update later on telling you they have changed your ethnicity percentages.  Depending where your ancestors were from, your report may only show vague locations, like "Eastern Europe."  Some people receive very detailed results, including specific regions within a country.  You will likely find your results to be quite accurate.

Ethnicity Chart


This is where the real fun begins.  You'll receive a list of people who are related to you and have also submitted DNA.  You will likely be surprised at the number of people who are on your list, but you can be sure, they ALL share a common ancestor with you somewhere down the line.  I typically see people with 20,000+ matches.

Most of your matches will be so distant, there's no point in finding out who they are, and it would likely be impossible to do so.  There will probably be many people whose relationship I can figure out.  Each match will have a number next to it.  This is the amount of DNA you share with that person, measured in centimorgans (cM).  I have years of experience understanding these numbers.  Some relationships are easy to decipher, others are very complex and the numbers can vary quite a bit.  Two people with the same relationship to you can have very different numbers.  I use various techniques to figure out the actual relationship.

DNA Matches from


Don't be fooled!  Some of the data you see on genealogy sites can be really vague and confusing. For example, in addition to the centimorgan number provided, you will see a written description for each match, like "1st or 2nd cousin."  Please keep in mind, this is a very rough estimate that is often incorrect.  Never trust the description alone.  The real answer is in the numbers and it takes more research and experience to accurately figure it out.  It requires an understanding of family relationships as well.  For example, you'll need to know the difference between first cousins, second cousins, half cousins, half aunts/uncles, what it means to be "once removed", etc.  It can become quite overwhelming.


If you're lucky, your DNA matches will have family trees made.  Understanding their families can help you figure out your own.  This can be very useful, but also very misleading.  While researching families, I often find DNA matches who don't know who their real family is either.  Trees can be filled with inaccurate information that can send you in the wrong direction.

Family Trees Can Help Solve Mysteries


The important thing to remember is, DNA doesn't lie.  There are plenty of falsified documents out there and fictitious stories passed down from one generation to the next.  I've seen falsified adoption records, errors in obituaries, and more.  If you want to know what's real, DNA is the answer.  If we find your family, maybe we'll discover old photos or documents you never knew existed.  Maybe you will even meet your new-found family members.  Are you ready to start your adventure?  Let's fill in the missing branches of your family tree.

Nelson Family - 1924 Old Photos Found Nelson Farm - Early 1900s Find old photos and documents on genealogy websites.


I have a genealogy blog where I discuss various topics involving family research.  Maybe you will find something useful there to help you.  You can also read some entertaining stories about my findings.  Click the button below to check it out.