Make Your Wildcard List

Before searching at any site that allows wildcards, make a list of all the search variations you will be using. It’s easy to overlook one if the list is “in your head.”
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5 thoughts on “Make Your Wildcard List

  1. Paula Perry

    “Late in Life Computer User” here. I had to go read about Wildcard Searches. I thought I understood, but then I come back and look at the list and I still can’t figure out where Buc and Bru come in (might have sounded like Bieger to someone?).

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    1. Meredith

      I think perhaps they come from how a transcriptionist might interpret the handwriting. If you have a transcriptionist who sees a “Bie” as “Bu” you need to account for them typing this variation into the database you’re searching.

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  2. michaeljohnneill Post author

    It comes from my list of spelling variants for this name. Sometimes it gets heard as Pickert, Picker, Pigar, Bucker, Bugger, etc.

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  3. Suzanne

    And even reporting from relatives can be inaccurate. Only yesterday, I discovered that my husband’s grandfather reported information of his recently deceased wife, for the death cert. , and gave her Italian maiden name as Panza, but it was actually Pauza. I can only imagine his grief from losing his 25 yr old wife who had emigrated with him and was the mother of his 2 small children. It’s a wonder he remembered anything.

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