Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Genealogical Mayhem

Solving Inconsistencies

All facts from previous researchers should be checked for inconsistencies and errors. Some will eventually be found, conflicting statements, events out of place or time. For example marriages when one of the couple is 7 years old or a women having children at the age of 57. People from Chicago, New Jersey, USA (maybe there is a Chicago in New Jersey?) or born in New England in the fifteen hundreds. Fixing and repairing these errors are crucial to your own credibility as a genealogical researcher. When solving these errors with facts and sources, new information and knowledge can be revealed sometimes leading to a previous unknown ancestor or occasionally developing a feeling of friendship toward your ancestor.
Some genealogical programs will find many of these errors in their lists or custom list reports. Another way is to list people by location instead of by name. Seeing all the places together can sometimes show differences in spelling or wrong counties, etc.. Go through the sources (if any?) listed by the previous researcher, don’t spend too much time because in 10 generations you have over 2000 ancestors. Work mainly on the ones that have obvious errors.

Unconvincing the Convinced

Don’t argue with your relatives, gather your facts and evidences put it on a CD and send it in the mail. Let them read it on their own. If they still don’t accept it, well, “You can lead a horse to water, but you can’t make it drink”. You might consider publishing your results on the internet, listing all your sources.

Word of the week:

Quie, Quay, Quye: A young heifer.