Ultimogeniture is an inheritance practice where the right of inheritance belongs to the youngest child (usually limited to the youngest son). It was practiced in some areas of Europe. It is in contrast to primogeniture. That is where the oldest child has the right of inheritance–again usually the oldest son.
Records of private businesses are private records. They do not have to be shared with genealogists. It does not matter how long your ancestor worked for the company, how much money your ancestor spent at the store, or how “bad” you need whatever information they have. Private records are just that: private. Some companies do maintain an archives and are willing to share information with researchers. The records of some defunct companies have been preserved in a public archives. Those are exceptions. You can try and request information from a company for which your ancestor worked. But they are under no obligation to provide you with any information. 
When analyzing information on a tombstone, one thing to consider is when it was likely inscribed compared to when the person died. The longer it had been between the death date and the probable inscription date, the higher the potential for error. Just because it was thirty or forty years from the date of death to the probable inscription date does not mean the date is wrong, just that the potential for error is greater.
Abbreviations for place names can change over time. What is used for a location today may not be what was used one hundred years ago. Sometimes old forms fall out of use or governmental or postal regulations change the “standard” abbreviation. Some census takers or other record officials make their own abbreviations when they tire of writing the same location over and over. Self-made abbreviations may be unique to the creator and are best analyzed with local geographic names in mind. Sometimes two location can have the same abbreviation. In some US census records Canada and California are both abbreviated “Ca.” Others chose to abbreviate it as “Can.” And sometimes Indiana was abbreviated as “Ia.” Today that’s the state of Iowa. But if you see it in an […]
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Throughout the entire court case he is referred to as Christopher Troutfetter. His name was actually Christian. There are numerous other records on this man where he is referred to as Christian–except this court case. When transcribing these records for my files, I transcribe his name as Christopher because that is what the documents say. I make an annotation that his name is incorrect through the document. That annotation is done separately from my transcription of the document and in a way that does not suggest I am correcting the document one hundred years later. We don’t correct errors in records when transcribing them. When something is clearly incorrect and all “whacked out,” a notation is made so that others know the error was not ours. But we […]
It can be easier to get locations confused when you’ve never been there and the places are hundreds of miles away. The place of birth for the mother on this death certificate says “Maine.” It should be “Maryland.” The family never lived in Maine and had no connection to that state. It is also possible that someone, in taking notes to complete the certificate, wrote “Md” in such a sloppy fashion that someone else later read it as “Me.” Get Genealogy Tip of the Day the book–either from us directly or from Amazon.
“Cousin” is one of those words that people sometimes use in a variety of ways. It may mean first cousin (where two individuals have parents that were siblings), it may mean a more distant cousin relationship, it may be a cousin-by-marriage, someone who is related in an unknown way, or someone who may not even be related at all. Genealogists are sometimes precise in their use of cousin relationships. Other people often are not and sometimes genealogists find it easier to use the word “cousin” instead of the precise term for the relationship. Don’t assume the precise nature of the relationship when someone is referred to as a “cousin.” Research it to try and determine what it is. And remember that there’s always the chance that the person’s […]
Census records are the most popular United States federal records used by researchers. But there are others, including: military records–service records and pension records land records–military bounty lands, homestead claims, land sales court records passports Some of these have been microfilmed and digitized. Others have not. Start with the National Archives website (https://www.archives.gov/) to learn more about these records.
Do you need to just start from scratch on a problem? Scrap what you already “think” you know. Go back to the beginning and cite each record as you find it, analyze carefully each piece of information you discover, and write down each step in your logic and reasoning. Maybe even argue with yourself slightly as you work on the problem. Question yourself. Sometimes what we need is just a fresh start.
For the first few years of my research, I worked on my very rural families who were generally of low-German or US Southern origin. I became fairly adept at researching them. Then I started work on my urban families, my New England families, and my families from the south of Germany. Rules that I thought were “always true,” weren’t. Naming patterns that I were familiar with didn’t apply any more. There were new records that I was able to utilize. There were problems that I did not encounter before. Whenever your research crosses a border, be it geographic cultural policital chronological religious social keep in mind that some of how you research may change. What works in Chicago in 1880 might not work in frontier Ohio in 1817 […]
Read all notations on case files, reverse sides of documents, etc. Sometimes what is penciled on the bottom or reverse side of a document can be significant and may explain aspects of the record that are confusing. And sometimes scribblings can simply be filing notes or doodles. This notation on this case file packet likely indicated that on 1 June 1900 the case was dismissed. That may explain why no judgement was located in the record.
Any type of record can contain errors. This 1890-era court case refers to the plaintiff as Christopher Troutfetter. Details in the file confirm that the man referenced was actually a Christian Troutfetter of Colby County, Kansas. There are  few other minor errors in the file as well. Always confirm. Always check with other records. Because Any Wrecord Can be Rong
Probate records may mention funeral and burial expenses paid out of money from the estate. Sometimes these expenses may include the name of the cemetery. Sometimes they may not. Even a small annotation on a receipt for funeral expenses may be a clue as to the location of the burial. Check out GenealogyBank‘s offer for our fans, followers, and subscribers.
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