The primary mission of the Clan McAlister of America is to research our Openbook North American ancestry and culture, and then to share and preserve this information. So far we have established over 300 significant McAlister family lines in North America -- many of them going back to the original immigrants from Scotland or Ireland.

We now have over 93,000 McAlister descendants in our database, which we use to link family lines together. By sharing information everyone benefits . You benefit because we search the existing records and, if we find that you fit into one of the many lines in the CMA database, we will tell you just how your family fits in.

Whether you are a member or not, we would like to incorporate the names and dates of your McAlister ancestors and descendants into the CMA database. Remember, only with everyone's help will we be able to complete the picture of McAlister migration and family ties.

"The happiest lot on earth is to be born a Scotsman. You must pay for it in many ways - You have to learn the Paraphrases and the Shorter Catechism; you generally take to drink; your youth is a time of louder war against society, of more outcry and tears and turmoil than if you had been born, for instance, in England. But somehow life is warmer and closer; the hearth burns more redly; the lights of home shine softer on the rainy street..."

Robert Louis Stevenson
The Silverado Squatters, Chapter 4, "The Scot Abroad"

Family histories, Family Group Sheets, and other printed materials

Please send us copies of your family information so we can include them in our Genealogy Library. All material will be reviewed and entered into the database if it is information we do not already have.

Computer users

If you have your family history in a computer genealogy program, the following instructions will tell you how to share your data with us. It's easy!

If you have one of the following programs, you can simply make a copy of the file containing your McAlister genealogy and send it to us on a floppy disk. We can read it directly.

Personal Ancestral File (PAF) Brother's Keeper
Family Tree Maker Ancestral Quest
Generations The Master Genealogist
Reunion GEDCOM

If you use another program, you will need to create a GEDCOM file as described below.

GEDCOM File

Most genealogy software programs will create a "GEDCOM file" so the family data can be shared with other people who are using different programs. You can normally find this feature under your "File" menu, or sometimes it is under an "Export" menu. If you can't find it in your menus, check your user's manual index for "GEDCOM".

If your program has this capability, simply follow the instructions on your computer screen to create a GEDCOM file of your data. You may be presented with several options as you go through the menus to create the file. Most of the options are not critical, so just accept the default values.

Macintosh computer users!

We can also accept your GEDCOM files when saved onto Macintosh disks. If you are using PAF,

  1. Go to the File menu, and pick "Export",
  2. Then pick "GEDCOM",
  3. and then pick destination of "PAF 2.1 on a different computer"
  4. Send the data file to us!

We want our Database to have all the pieces of the McAlister puzzle! Send your questions, written documents or your computer genealogy files to the Genealogy Committee today.