Category «How To’s, Hints & Tips»

Try and Do It Right

We don’t try and “do” genealogy accurately because it is a game to see who is the most accurate and to see who can “judge” another’s work. We try our best to be as accurate as we can be in order to reach the most accurate picture of our ancestors as possible.  Often as we learn new information our picture of our ancestor changes–at least slightly. When we do shoddy work and research by grabbing whatever we can without analyzing it, we can indicate great-great-grandpa had wives he did not have, lived in places he did not live, and lived a lifestyle he never would have lived.

Sure, it takes longer to be as accurate as we can be. And all of us will make mistakes–beginners and experienced researchers alike.  But do you want your descendant to merge your life with that of your cousin of the same name whom you cannot stand? Do you want your descendant to create a picture of you that is completely and totally inaccurate?

Our ancestors deserve that option as well.

© Michael John Neill, “Genealogy Tip of the Day,” http://genealogytipoftheday.blogspot.com, 30 Oct 2012.

State Institution?

Was your ancestor institutionalized for a short time or for the last few years of their life? If so, they might have died a distance from where they actually lived. Records of the actual institution may be closed, but there might be local court records of the institutionalization. People who were sent to institutions weren’t always “crazy,” but might have simply needed more care than the family could give.

And they might have been buried on the grounds of the institution–leaving no tombstone behind either.

© Michael John Neill, “Genealogy Tip of the Day,” http://genealogytipoftheday.blogspot.com, 29 Aug 2012.

They Might Not Be Buried Where They Died

Do not always assume that someone died near where they are buried. It is very possible that they died while travelling or living a distance away with a relative and were returned “home” for burial.

That death certificate or death record may be several states away. I recently located a man who lived the last few years of his life in California, but had spent the previous thirty years in Nebraska. Nebraska is where he was buried, but California is where he died and where his death certificate was filed.

© Michael John Neill, “Genealogy Tip of the Day,” http://genealogytipoftheday.blogspot.com, 24 Aug 2012.