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Two Men Become One: Identity

Two Men Become One: Identity

Proving that the sources we find are actually about the person we are researching, and not some same-named individual takes skill and time. Online databases will happily offer up records with these same-named people; the prudent researcher should never believe them without scrutiny. Additionally, the constant shift in records between use of first names, nicknames […]

Those Doggone Nicknames

Those Doggone Nicknames

My collateral ancestor Mintie was called by her middle name Lucinda in almost every record during her lifetime *except* the bible record above and one census: Nicknames, middle names and initials will get you every time in genealogical research. They still get me every now and then and it kinda drives me just a little […]

Do You Know How to Use Indirect Evidence...

Do You Know How to Use Indirect Evidence?

Much of the hype of genealogical research often surrounds the different kinds of sources. Yes, new sources are always exciting. However, I believe that it is developing and growing research skills that will take your research to higher heights. A Field With Standards That’s one reason I recommend that everyone researching their roots have the […]

About That Mulatto…

About That Mulatto…

We cannot assume that anyone marked “mulatto” in a census record had one white parent and one black parent. I have previously discussed that genealogists should know some of the instructions provided to enumerators, and that the changing definitions of race, since it is a social and not a biological construct, should tell us something. […]

The Community Reveals the Family

The Community Reveals the Family

The power of researching our ancestors in the communities where they lived cannot be overstated. Above is a portion of a census table I created showing dwelling and family number, name, age and a few other notations. John and Abigail Waters John and Abigail Waters lived with their immediate African-American neighbors in the community of […]

Fooled Again: The Green Barnes Family

Fooled Again: The Green Barnes Family

The family of my ancestor Green Barnes recently proved to me again that we all need to be diligent when trying to reconstruct our families. It also illustrates how original sources, assumptions and human nature sometimes conspire to confuse us. This recent odyssey started when I was reviewing the obituary for a collateral ancestor, Cora […]

 
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