We can use all the help we can get tracking down everyone, so please help us get your old friends registered here. To help, here's a great article written by another group in California:
RESOURCES and IDEAS to HELP YOU find CLASSMATES
(Items below in blue are hyperlinks you can click on to go to a website)
- White Pages - Start your search here.
- Any Who - or Start here (similar to White Pages).
- ZabaSearch - Is my new (best) favorite search method. Excellent detailed contact information but it really helps to have a first or middle initial of the person you are looking for. Wow! There are a LOT of people with the same name.
- Google -this search will pull up websites they are listed on but it will also pull up variations of their name that are not related.
- Wikipedia - Try this search, sometimes if someone has done something of notoriety you will find them. I did, and was shocked by what I found.
- Next...call old phone numbers if they are on the list given to you. If a number is bad listen for a forwarding number.
- Now call or email the alumni association. The classmate may be on their list. They do mailings yearly. Their link is on our Home Page. (See if you can find it now). Identify yourself as being on the Reunion Committee. They may or may not provide you information. Its possible they will only work with one person from the committee or just the committee chairman. Its worth checking what their policy is.
- You may already have an account at one of the following 4 websites. There may be others too. If not open one for FREE. Of course they do have paid memberships also. You just have to skip or bypass all of their SIGN UP NOW FOR PREMIUM MEMBERSHIP if you don't want to pay a fee. You may find someone at one site and not on another. It takes time but usually you can do preliminary searches to see who is there. You can usually send them a message. If so, invite them to visit our website. Sometimes you will be able to see an email address, but it may not be current. They may list all classmates who are registered at our high school from all years. Make sure you click on our graduating class year to sort by only our year. This saves time going through the list.
- While on these class, social networking and reunion sites DON'T FORGET to contact possible siblings. They are in classes before and after ours with the same name. Ask "Are you related to.....". Of course there are many that have the same name and are NOT related. If related, see if they have information on our classmate or ask them to forward a request to visit our website. Ask if you can follow-up with them in a week or so if the classmate has not signed up. Or ask if they will let you know when they have sent a request to their sibling. (Otherwise you may not know if you had a successful contact).
One problem you may run into: many classmates that originally signed up on one of these sites several years ago probably have changed their emails or have moved and did not update them.
- ONE IMPORTANT NOTE WHEN CONTACTING SIBLINGS OR OTHER FAMILY MEMBERS: They may be hesitant to just give you (a possible stranger) information or an email address. It helps if you give them our web site address: www.Permian79.com and give them the administrators email address: firstname.lastname@example.org. If they don't know you they should feel more comfortable with this.
- When all of the above has failed the next option is to try one of the next three web sites. They can be free but they really want to sell you a membership or get you to pay for a service. This is up to you. It may be worth it. People Finders has a 24 hour membership (once) that you can try but you have to select one of their advertisers offers. It may be a free or minimal fee but it allows you to use the service for one whole day. You might want to try it on a weekend when you want to devote a block of time to hunt for a large list of people. Make sure you document all of the information you find. Be careful, there are a lot of people with the same name (and yes even with the same middle name) when searching across the U.S. for someone who may have moved. It is definitely helpful to have their full name or initials. Most classmates in our class of 1979 were born in 1960 or 1961.
- PEOPLE FINDERS
- PEOPLE SEARCHING
- OLD FRIEND SEARCH
- Okay, now we are getting to the LAST RESORT METHODS. I consider mail a last resort because the alumni association has most likely already tried the address we have on file at least once a year. But if a classmate has moved in the last five months there is a chance to get a forwarding address. Of course sometimes emails change, phone numbers may have been changed, people are using cell phones and canceling home phones, and some people just don't respond. Maybe because of too much junk mail, spam email, and unwanted solicitation phone calls. So....try mailing a letter or postcard to the last known address on the list you were (or will be) given. They may still be there. Put "ADDRESS CORRECTION REQUESTED" on the envelope on the bottom right side of the envelope or postcard.
- Advertise in the local paper (you know...where the high school is located). You may be able to put in a FREE ad that states we are trying to locate "Missing Classmates" to attend the 30th Class Reunion. There names are: (list them). Relatives, friends and neighbors who still live in town may know where they are and could email our class email address.
- RELATIVES, FRIENDS and NEIGHBORS who still live in town are possibly listed in the phonebook. You can check for names that match the classmate you are looking for but that could take some time calling each one and asking if they know or are related. But it does work. Let them know why you are calling first. "I'm trying to find so and so who was a classmate of mine that we are trying to locate for the upcoming reunion". If you know the address where the classmate lived you can also use CRISS-CROSS directories to find phone numbers of neighbors who may know where they moved to or other helpful information. You can find these directories at the library for free or Google them on line but this will probably cost a fee to use them.
- How To Investigate-Public Records Sites - this may be useful but you will have to read through it and decide if anything would be helpful to you.
- Department of Justice-Missing Person Search: If you can’t find them, do a search to see if they are on this list. Hopefully not, but so far we have found one.
- Social Security Death Index Records Search: FREE search through year 2007. I love this and use this all of the time for family history research and have found several classmates information here. Of course the sad thing is that they are not with us anymore.
- CRIME TIME - I SAVED THE BEST FOR LAST (Well, what I think is interesting and exciting to use): Way down at the bottom of the page, under RESOURCES click on Black Book Online. WOW! THIS IS A REALLY GOOD RESOURCE FOR LOCATING INFORMATION OF ALL SORTS. IT IS ADDICTING! It is not necessarily just for researching those who have become criminals although you will find lots of that. There are resources that help in many areas and if you have time scan through all the different amazing resources!
- If you ever come across a classmates email address the BEST thing to do is ENTER THE EMAIL ADDRESS on the HOME PAGE of our website, at the bottom right side in the "MISSING CLASSMATES" box. (You can also go to their name on "Classmate Profiles" and it will ask if you have their email address. You can enter it there too). They will get an email invitation directly from the website administrator. It is nice and official looking! You can email the classmate yourself if you want, but please do this after first entering it into our website as outlined above. Go ahead....put your email address in to see what the email looks like that they will get.
- If you have any other resources or methods that you feel should be added to this list, please contribute!
Thanks and Good Hunting!
Credit: Bruce Eskander of South Pasadena High School Class of 1972; updated 10/18/08