Wednesday 01 July 2009

SOURCES, SOURCES, SOURCES

You've been researching your family for a while and have managed to correctly assemble many pieces of the puzzle. You've entered the names and dates found in census records, land records, military records, etc. But can you tell me exactly where you found great, great-grandma's birth date? Was it on her tombstone? In a book at the library? In the 1860 census on Ancestry.com?

When researching your family it is very important that you keep track of every piece of information. This is important both as a means of verifying or "proving" your data and also as a way for you or other researchers to go back to that source when future research leads to information which conflicts with your original assumption. In genealogy research, any statement of fact, whether it is a birth date or an ancestor's surname, must carry its own individual source.

Kimberly Powell of About.com discusses this topic. Find the rest of her report HERE.

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