Who Would Know that and Where Would they Tell It?

Genealogy “tricks” are a dime a dozen on the internet and there’s really no “trick” at all. It’s just being diligent and searching for every piece of paper or record that you can find. If we could get every shred of paper, digital image, stone, book, etc. with our ancestor’s name on it, research would be much easier.

But that’s not the way it works.

One approach is to think about what piece of information you would like to know and make a list of individuals who may have known that information (or may know it today) or records on which that information may have been written down.

Given the time period and location, a marriage date could be in the family Bible, a civil record of the marriage, a church record of the marriage, an obituary, a pension application, etc. Individuals who may have known about the date and place of the marriage would have included the couple, their parents, friends and close family, a records clerk, the officiant, etc. Some of these individuals are more likely than others to have passed the information on to other individuals. The records clerk simply writes the information in the record. The officiant may have kept a separate journal of ceremonies performed–the difficulty would be in locating that record.

Brainstorm (sans internet) on where a certain fact could have been written and then think about how those items could possibly be obtained today–assuming they are still extant.