July 2012 Webinars

26July 2012
3:00 PM CST
1820-1870 Census Case study—the Newmans
See how a family was traced in the 1820 through the 1870 census in the Midwest (KY, IN, IL). This case study will discuss search techniques, methodology, making certain you have the “right family,” correlating information, and more.
26 July 2012
1:00 PM CST
Crossing the Pond—Part II
This webinar will discuss reading, interpreting, and using passenger lists between 1820 and 1920. This session will not discuss search techniques of online databases, but will cover where to go once the manifest has been located, making certain you have the correct family and getting the most from what the manifest says.
Attendees may wish to purchase our US Passenger Lists at Ancestry.com ($8.50) webinar which discusses searching these lists or our Crossing the Pond ($8.50) webinar which focuses the methodology of tracing immigrant origins in the 18th and 19th centuries.
26 July 2012
8:30 PM CST
The American Revolution at Fold3.com
This webinar will discuss American Revolutionary War service records, benefit records, and other Revolutionary War materials on Fold3.com. Search approaches for these materials will also be discussed.
24 July 2012
1:00 PM CST
Working With Your Ancestry.com Tree: Part 2, Corrections
Have you merged records into your genealogical database and have “repeat” ancestors, ancestors married twice to the same person and other errors? We’ll see how to make corrections to these problems and others. We’ll also look at how to minimize making these mistakes again.

Don’t Ignore What Doesn’t Agree

If original material disagrees with other records or with your conclusions, do not simply ignore those original records because of the difference. Acknowledge that the other material exists and attempt to determine what might have caused the difference in statements of fact. If the cause cannot be determined and you still have reason to believe the other record to be incorrect, write up the records and reasons used.

What Do You Have?

Before copying everything in a document or record, make certain you know exactly what type of record you are using. Is it a will, a census record, an affidavit contained in a pension file, a transcription of a court, record, etc.?

If you do not know what you are looking at, analyzing and interpretation are problematic.

Short Marriage at the End?

Are you losing great-grandma at the very end of her life? Is it possible she married very late in life and her last name changed?

Took me a long time to find an ancestor of my wife who married her second husband in her late 60s. I assumed (incorrectly) that when her first husband died when she was in her early 60s that she never remarried. She didn’t disappear, but instead died and was buried under her second husband’s last name.

Compiled Trees Should Not Be Your Only Source

Compiled trees (regardless of the compiler or the book, site, etc.) should not be your only source for a fact, relationship, date of an event, etc. These trees can lead you to other sources and give you research ideas, but do not simply “copy it down because you saw it online.”

At the best, compiled trees provide references to original source materials.

At the worst, they are completely incorrect.

The truth is that most are somewhere in between. Use them as clues.

Thirty Days

In estates being settled in the United States, typically an heir, the potential executor, or a creditor petitions the appropriate court to begin probate proceedings within thirty days of an individual’s death. There can always be exceptions, but this is generally the tendency. State statute dictates the time frame for such petitions.

Abbreviations Are Often Contemporary

An 1819 document used the abbreviation “M.T.” as part of the location in a document. It took me a moment to realize that the reference was to “Missouri Territory.” In 1850, such an abbreviation would not be used

Abbreviations were always used in the context of the time and place. Keep this in mind when interpreting them.

And remember that using abbreviations in your own work should be avoided precisely to avoid confusion.

Baptismal Dates are Baptismal Dates

Always indicate that dates of baptism are dates of baptism.

In churches that practiced infant baptism, dates of baptism are usually “close” to the date of birth, but do not assume that every baptism can be used to approximate the date of birth. Some children may be baptized as toddlers or even young adults, depending upon the availability of a minister, the  strength of the parents’ convictions, etc.

If parents are having one child baptized every two years over a fifteen year time span, then probably each one is being baptized as a small child.