Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Questions About Conflicting Data, Name Variations and Ghost Towns

Question from Debbie:
"My grandmother was born in 1896 according to her birth certificate, marriage certificate, 1900-1930 censuses, my mom, etc. The one thing that is erroneous is the 1940 census. It has her age as 33 rather than 43. My question is should I just ignore this finding or put it in my report with a note in the footnotes or what would you do?"

Most genealogy programs have a way to record "conflicting birth" information. If not, then make a note if it in your notes. Even though it is obvious this is an error, you still need to make a note about it so that people can see what you have researched, the results you got, and how you analyzed/interpreted it.


Question from Constance:
"In every record I can find I have my relative as Charlie/Charley. I am sure that his name is really Charles because that is what his father's name was. Can I put Charles even though I don't have a source for it?"

I wouldn't. How do you know that his parents didn't name him Charlie? Just because his father's name was Charles doesn't mean his is.


Question John:
I use Legacy so I thought I would ask you this since you use Legacy too. What do you do if you have a location that isn't in the Geo Location Database?

This isn't really just a Legacy question. The question and the answer apply to locations in general. There are a lot of little communities that no longer exist. There are also communities in existence today that aren't on any map or in the Geo Location Database. Here is an example. Pea Ridge in McDuffie County, Georgia isn't in the Geo Location Database or on any map. However, there is a volunteer fire department there with the name Pea Ridge proudly displayed and if you ask anyone in that area they will tell you that they live in Pea Ridge (I moved from Pea Ridge about 5 years ago). Years ago there was a community in Columbia County, Georgia called Sardis. I have many obituaries stating that the person lived in Sardis. Sardis no longer exists. It was absorbed by Grovetown and Evans. It isn't on any current map and it isn't in the Geo Location Database. It is, however, a valid location.


Copyright © 2012 Michele Simmons Lewis

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