Essentially True But Slightly Inaccurate

We often use obituaries and biographies to create rough chronologies of our ancestors lives. This can help us search records. Keep in mind that obituaries and biographies may get details slightly out of order–enough to create confusion in the chronology. The father in a family may have died young before they moved out of state instead of after. The mother may have been the parent that died first instead of the father and the surviving spouse may have actually been the children’s step-mother instead of their mother.

Keep yourself open to the possibility that there may be just one or two key statements in a biography or obituary that are slightly off. That can be all it takes to create a really different story from what actually took place.