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A Genealogist’s Halloween

Sunday, October 20th, 2013

Ding Dong! (latch clicks, door opens) “Trick or Treat!” “Oh, aren’t you cute! A broken microfilm reader! And what are the rest of you?” “I’m really inaccurate search results!” “Oh, yes I see! And look, you’re a gedcom file that includes King Arthur and Hercules. Wow, now that is scary!” “Who else do we have […]

Who Aren’t You?

Sunday, October 13th, 2013

Sometimes we like to think that genealogy tells us “who we are.” I think it might change who we are. I think it can connect us to history. I think it can help us understand the members of our families by revealing something of their formative experiences but I don’t think it tells us who […]

Heathcliff meets Sherlock Holmes

Sunday, October 6th, 2013

What we present to others, especially non genealogists, are usually the  condensed results of research. They would probably not want all the gory details so instead we give them the dry bones, which aren’t necessarily any more palatable. What is it that we should convey? What is it that holds interest? The Medium is the […]

Supporting Statements

Sunday, September 29th, 2013

I was tempted to title this post something like “Feeling Geeky” but that didn’t seem to be specific enough. There are so many things in genealogy that one could write about when feeling geeky. This is just one of them but it is one of the most important. Statements and Support Every statement made in […]

GeneADHDlogy

Monday, September 23rd, 2013

“Hmm…I wonder if this the right family. It could be. Better check these new names and see if they clarify things…I’ll start with Reginald, that’s an unusual name.” “Oh, what’s this? Ronald…Could that be Reginald? Better check that!” “Wait, which window did I have that first document in? Ok, found it.” “Here is a Donald […]

Identity

Sunday, September 15th, 2013

Genealogists deal with people’s identities all the time. We don’t normally deal with the physical reality of those people. We don’t deal with the he-is-right-there-in-front-of-me type of identity. We deal with little bits of information here and there. If we have it right, some data overlaps between sources and other data that isn’t found anywhere […]

Thinking about the Thingamabobs

Sunday, September 8th, 2013

The story of one part of the life of an ancestor of mine comes from his son’s obituary. It is the brief but interesting story of a long pioneering journey. It is also clearly wrong. Not so wrong as to be worthless, there are plenty of good clues but there is, for example, an obvious […]

Sketching Sketchy Sources

Sunday, September 1st, 2013

Ever wish you could just glance at a record and get an overview of what it means? Or for that matter, what about looking at several documents and see how they might fit together? Or clash? Or see that there is a real puzzle to solve? The more data one accumulates the harder it can […]

FGS

Sunday, August 25th, 2013

I spent last week in Fort Wayne at the FGS conference. It was great to be there and tremendously exciting to be there as a speaker. It was an intense week. There was a lot of inspiration to be had but not much time to think through a blog post. I figured I would be […]

28.5% Errata

Sunday, August 18th, 2013

Last week I was approached by a friend that noticed that I would soon be giving a presentation that involved the word “myth.” She had thought that I was going to talk about myth in the sense of those ever-present figments of the genealogical imagination like “the name was changed at Ellis Island.” My talk […]

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