Have you ever thought about starting up your own family association or newsletter? It is a great way to hook up with other researchers that are working on the same lines as you are.
There are many established surname associations/newsletters, and you can find a list of these at http://www.cyndislist.com/surnames.htm.
But perhaps your family name isn't listed or maybe you would like to have a newsletter that focuses on a specific branch of the family. For example, Watson is a popular McDuffie County surname. I checked Cyndi's List and found that there are two Watson associations/newsletters. The first, The Watson Connection, deals specifically with the descendants of Isham and Mary Watson of Marion County, SC. The other one, Watson of Kidderminster, covers a family of Protestant dissenters and carpet manufacturers in Kidderminster, Worcestershire, which sounds very interesting, but has nothing whatsoever to do with the Watsons of McDuffie County.
The easiest way to go about this endeavor is to start a web page. You can post contact information for all of the family researchers, queries, pedigrees, announcements of reunions, family stories, etc. Most Internet Service Providers (ISPs) give subscribers free web space. It is very easy to write a web page these days. You no longer have to know HTML code. Your ISP will have a link to the information you need to get started. You can also take a look at other surname web pages to get ideas for your page.
Another way to go is a snail mail newsletter. This may seem a bit antiquated in this electronic age, but there are many people out there that still prefer to do their research the old fashioned way.
Setting up a newsletter is a lot work though. As the editor, everyone will be submitting their materials to you for inclusion in the newsletter, which has to be formatted, typed and printed. You will need to charge a small fee to cover the costs of printing and mailing. There are many resources available to assist you in writing a newsletter that your family will want to read. The library is a great place to start.
I received an e-mail this week from Janice Newton Thurmond who is researching the Phillips family from the south end of the county. She is especially interested in Ichabod Phillips and his wife, Sophia Lord. She would like to hear from other Phillips researchers. You can contact Janice at 1780 Latour Drive NE, Marietta, GA 30066, (770) 672-0362, email@example.com. Maybe I can talk Janice into starting a Phillips association/newsletter once she catches up to some of the other Phillips researchers out there.