RootsTech 2015

Some people eat, sleep and chew gum, I do genealogy and write...

Friday, February 21, 2014

How to Set up a Facebook Page for an Ancestor

Facebook is not just millions of individuals streaming their daily lives away online, it can also be a valuable genealogical tool. In addition to the standard personal pages adopted by many users, it is possible to create a "Facebook Page," that is a page dedicated to some type of entity. The categories available include the following:

  • Businesses
  • Places
  • Companies
  • Organizations
  • Institutions
  • Brands or products
  • Artists, bands or public figures
  • Entertainment
  • Causes 
  • Communities

You can probably guess that some of these categories can be used to create a community interest page on the topic of a family ancestor. The page could be called "The Descendants of..." or some variation of that title that would indicate a group of people who are related through a common ancestor. Here are a few titles used by actual family-oriented Pages on Facebook:

  • Descendants of the Mayflower
  • Descendants of Mayflower Passengers John Howland & Elizabeth Tilley
  • Descendants of the First Families of New Hampshire
  • East Tennessee Overhill Cherokee Descendants
  • Descendants of Jacob Hamblin

Of course, you do not have to use the word "descendant" in the title, but it might help to identify the reason and purpose of the page. Facebook explains the general nature of a Facebook Page as follows:
Pages are for businesses, organizations and brands to share their stories and connect with people. Like Timelines, you can customize Pages by posting stories, hosting events, adding apps and more. Engage and grow your audience by posting regularly. People who like your Page and their friends can get updates in News Feed. 
You can create and manage a Facebook Page from your personal account. 
Note: If you want to create a Page to represent an organization, business, celebrity or brand, you must be an official representative. 
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Pages can have open or closed membership. You may also achieve the same results by creating a Facebook Group. The main difference between Pages and Groups is that Pages are public and anyone can connect with and get updates. A selection of privacy settings are available for Groups. Facebook Groups work best with small numbers of people who are friends or actual relatives. You cannot convert a Group page into a Facebook Page.

To create a Facebook Page do the following:
  1. Go to
  2. Click a Page category
  3. Select a more specific category from the dropdown menu and fill out the required information
  4. Click to check the box next to I agree to Facebook Pages Terms
  5. Click Get Started
Note: If you want to create a Page to represent an organization, business, celebrity or brand, you must be an official representative.

If you need more instructions, please refer to Pages Basics

1 comment:

  1. James,

    Thanks for this post! I was recently invited to join a Facebook group for the descendants of my paternal great-grandparents who were born in Sweden. I'm grateful a 2nd cousin of mine found me and added me to the group. It's been awesome to share photos and connect with these family members.

    I want to let you know that your blog post is listed in today's Fab Finds post at

    Have a fantastic weekend!