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sloppy research

Journal by Rockborne38

Many years ago, before the Internet was even a dream for family history researchers, and we all had to rely on library collections and membership of genealogical societies, my daughter and I used to join our local society wherever we lived, and spend hours there every week looking at the microfilm records they held, and our eyes would be sore at the end of a long day from trying to find information we wanted on those microfilm and microfische records held

we were often amused when we would hear a comment, and it was usually from a professional researcher who was being paid to research a family history for somebody, they would be looking for a name, and would say, this is the same name, so that will do, and when people took a break for a cuppa in the tea room at one particular genealogical society to which we belongs, we once asked one of the researchers on a day when she had made a comment similar to that above, and she told us she was looking for the marriage of a person and the birth of the children for that marriage, and could not find the marriage in the county in England in which she had expected to find it, but found a marriage for a person with the same name, but in a different registration district to that which she expected, so added that to the file she was building for a person who was paying her to do the research. I asked how she would explain the differences, and she told me that the person employing her would not know it was not the correct member of her family, and would accept what she gave them. I was flabbergasted, to say the least, and wondered how could she be so dishonest in putting together such a family tree with info she knew was not correct, but she said if she could not make that link by using the record (the wrong record) that she found, then she would not be able to complete the job and could not be paid till she did so.

We found a similar thing recently in a family connected by marriage to one of our families. A researcher to whom we have given info about parts of our family to add to theirs (because a member of their family married a member of one of our families) and we were given a draft of the file by that person, and on it is shown the death of one of the family members some years ago, and that person (who was supposed to have died years ago) recently visited our home and spent the day with us, and the citation given in the draft file we have shows as the evidence for that death just a death notice and a funeral in a newspaper We have checked, and although the person has the same name, the spouse and family members of the person who died have no similarity to the family of the family member who visited us, but when we sent the info to the researcher and mentioned that the person is not dead, visited us recently, and sent a photo of the person with myself, we have heard nothing since. Maybe I was not very diplomatic in pointing out that the "dead person" in the tree they sent to us is very much alive, and that info is not wanted, as it does put a suspicion that other of their research may also be based on false information, but is so disappointing that although we know family history research can be frustrating, short cuts to find info, and facts without proof, should not be taken. - in other words, if it cant be proven with a proper document, then dont add it, or if you do, leave a note with it that it needs more checking.

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by Rockborne38 Profile | Research | Contact | Subscribe | Block this user
on 2014-02-04 00:55:05

My husband and I are interested in tracing the roots of our family and have been doing so since 1956, so we now have about 15+Gb of info on our computer about the families of both of us, and we are interested in making contact with any member of any of the families we are researching to share information, looking also for photos and certificates for any family member to add to our huge files on those families. After all these years they are still a "work in progress" and we would like more please

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