What you find in someone’s online genealogy compilation should be used as a clue. There’s one tree on Ancestry.com (with over 20,000 names) that shows my great-grandparents with a child they never had.

Some days I even wonder if it’s worth my time to contact someone whose database contains more than several thousand names.

I’ve gotten some clues from the online trees, but do not use what you see there as anything other than a hint of a suggestion.



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  1. Michael – I have the same experience. Some of those “mistakes” can sometimes be helpful though. Keeping a good research log and recording everything you find sometimes helps you put the pieces of a puzzle together later. I tend to include all but the clearly incorrect data in my research with cavaets and notes about the information. What you think is wrong one day may turn out to have some truth to it or end of being on version of a truth you will never really know.


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