[If this note comes in single spaced I apologize, I tried several times to format and it doesn't seem that blogspot is going to allow that today.]
No, not this sort of fishing.
This is my brother John with one of his great catches. Although I really enjoy the kind of fishing John used to do I'm talking about genealogical fishing.
Sometimes when I hit a brick wall in my research I bring up the internet and sometimes even Ancestry.com. I'll print a group sheet for the family I want to fish on and then start fishing.
Using a search engine I'll play with surname spellings, adding dates, places and other details just to see what might be lurking just beneath the surface of lake internet. My favorite search engine is "google". Sometimes I use (+) and sometimes I just use words. But, by playing around with symbols & spellings I often get many different results when I do my fishing. I find neat things this way. Not everyone has their information posted on Ancestry (GASP!). Many times I find lots of family websites full of information, many times with sources & photo's by using this method.
Other times I get my "tackle & pole" and go fishing over at the Ancestry pond. The discouraging thing about Ancestry is that very few people submitting their information there are original with their information. Everyone has everyone else's gedcom and so wrong information is just spread around like mud on a clean floor!
Finding information that has sources beyond "so & so's gedcom" or the census is a rare thing. Good thing is that if you do find someone that has information and it has names & dates, they at least have provided you with a good road map to follow. Hopefully you'll treat this cautiously and verify the information that is found here.
So, drag out your "fishin' gear" and toss the line a few times, you just never know what you'll find. After all, just because it wasn't there last week doesnt' mean it hasn't shown up yet this week. What have you got to loose???