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15
votes
2answers
521 views

Why do historical and genealogical scholars differ in their approach to classifying sources?

Historical scholars classify sources as "primary" or "secondary." Princeton University, "What is a primary source" Library and Archives Canada, "Toolkit: Defining Primary and Secondary Sources" ...
13
votes
7answers
3k views

How far back can German Genealogy normally be traced?

I've been researching my family history, and I hit a roadblock. The oldest records I can find are from German church records in the early eighteenth century. I can find nothing older. Is this a ...
11
votes
4answers
2k views

Publishing family tree online?

I would like to have my family tree online to share with relatives. I do not see a current need to have any extra such as matches with other people's trees and resources (online sources). Would I be ...
21
votes
10answers
7k views

Organising digital documents for genealogy and family history? [closed]

I have been trying for over 15 years now to come up with a system of folders for my family documents. As I'm sure most of you know it can be difficult. Without making duplicates of each document ...
16
votes
8answers
4k views

What is the difference between evidence and information?

What is evidence? I have piles and piles of historical records, old letters, e-mails, all of which provide details about my family. Is all of the information contained in these documents evidence?...
13
votes
1answer
275 views

What records might be created in England when people are re-interred?

There are two people in my database that seem to have two records about their burials -- one in Massachusetts, and one in Devon. I haven't found any other information that would indicate these are ...
11
votes
1answer
434 views

Immigration from Norway: seeking information about 1871 passage from Quebec to the US

This question is similar to Rob Hoare's "Sources for Border Crossings between Toronto and Chicago in early 1890's?" but the circumstances are different. My question concerns immigration 20 years ...
10
votes
5answers
6k views

What is a “double date”?

What is a "double date"? Why do I sometimes see dates written as January 13, 1718/1719? See also: How do I write the year with a double date?
7
votes
1answer
270 views

Finding people who have moved within the same geographical area?

In an answer to the question How would you handle a census record that is almost certainly the target family but which has too many discrepancies? I wrote about a family in my research area for which ...
3
votes
1answer
559 views

How can I determine the likely relationship based upon autosomal DNA shared cM?

Given two tests that share some cM of autosomal DNA, how can I easily find the predicted relationships that such shared cM would suggest? E.g., a 2,200 cM match suggests it could be either: ...
17
votes
4answers
3k views

What are Marriage Banns and how can I use them in my research?

There are three dates listed on my third great grandfather's 1825 Church of England Parish Register of marriages: Oct 23, Oct 30, and Nov 6 All Saints, Tower Hamlets, London, England Source ...
15
votes
3answers
227 views

Finding Utah ancestor's parents after exhausting BMD records, census and newspapers?

Though his known life history is quite lurid, I have spent 40 years searching for the parents of my great-grandfather. He was born in 1859, first married in Salt Lake City in 1884, divorced while in ...
15
votes
7answers
2k views

How do I write the year with a double date?

If I have a date on a birth certificate that says: "January 13, 1719", do I write the year as 1719, 1718/19, or 1719/20 (the latter two being double dates). What if the date is April 28, 1719? ...
12
votes
1answer
2k views

How do I record names involving adoptions in a family tree?

My grandfather's second wife had three children from her previous marriage. After they married, my grandfather legally adopted her children, which changed their last names. When I record the ...
12
votes
3answers
2k views

Seeking 1912 Passenger Lists into United States for ships near RMS Titanic?

I've long heard a story that my Great Grandfather was going to travel on the Titanic, but ended up choosing another ship. Supposedly his ship was close enough that they heard the SOS call for the ...
9
votes
2answers
202 views

Finding evidence for divorce of Hugh Sillars and Agnes Macculloch in mid-19th Century Scotland?

This question involves some of the same family as an earlier question of mine (Finding New York City/State records relating to Sellars family (British subjects) births/deaths mid 19th century?) but is ...
6
votes
2answers
724 views

Finding Devon parish marriage records?

My husband's family came to the US from England; some of the family stayed in the US, and some returned to the UK. I have many records from my husband's grandfather's generation that indicate his ...
6
votes
3answers
537 views

Fractal display of a family tree on a computer screen

Is there a computer program that allows you to see a whole family tree, on screen, and expand, compact and shift, vertically and horizontally, just as you can in Google Earth?
5
votes
1answer
1k views

How to research German WWII prisoners of war in British captivity?

At the end of World War II, many German military units tried to avoid Soviet captivity by turning west and surrendering to western allied forces. While a simple request to the German Red Cross (...
16
votes
9answers
669 views

Locating an elusive UK birth record (Mary Ann Harper born circa 1865 possibly Dudley, England)?

I have a female great grand-mother in England for whom I have her marriage certificate and her death certificate, plus census records from marriage until death. From these I know her unmarried name, ...
14
votes
6answers
373 views

How to find wife's maiden name in New England in the 1700s?

All too often it seems I have a family in New England in the 1700s where I know the father and several children but only have a given name for the mother in the family. (The children's birth records ...
9
votes
1answer
469 views

Returning World War I era German dog tags?

I have 2 World War I "dog tags", one each from two different soldiers, which provides name, DOB and some regimental info. One of them I think may include some address information. Is there any way I ...
8
votes
1answer
127 views

Finding World War 2 Army or Navy service record for resident of Sussex, England?

Peter Evelyn Graham was born in 1923 in London and died in 1972 in Sussex. He was in the services but not sure which one: Army records, his name hasn't come up. Navy records have a leading seaman ...
8
votes
1answer
298 views

19th Century Debtors Prison Records, London

I have found (I think) two records for Demetrius Rogers in Ancestry's Marshalsea (London) debtors prison records. The first has "Dematris Rogers" brought into custody on 11 Sep 1812: (This record ...
5
votes
4answers
276 views

Where to find Will of Giles Chichester from 1820s, probably in Somerset or Guyana?

My 4th great grandparents Robert Chichester (1767-1830) and Martha Noake (1762-1836) married on 13 Apr 1797 at Branscombe, Devon and had five children: Priscilla (my 3rd great grandmother) was born ...
5
votes
1answer
263 views

What might word “wise” mean on 1764 Marriage Record of John Smyth and Sarah Osment from Stoke Damerel, Devon, England?

My 5th great grandparents John Smyth and Sarah Osment married on 13 Jul 1764 at Stoke Damerel, Devon, England, and a cropped image from the record of that marriage appears below. On the top line, ...
4
votes
2answers
114 views

Finding church records for Koselitz, Saxony, Germany?

I am looking for the records of Lutheran Johan Mueller, born 22 June, 1826 in Koselitz, Saxony. He came to the US in 1845. Where are church records now located for someone born in 1826 in Koselitz, ...
3
votes
1answer
93 views

Returning German air force record book to family of Walter Schamberger of Sonneberg?

I would like to find relatives of Walter Schamberger born 15/01/1910 in Oberlind, now part of the city of Sonneberg. He was a flight leader in the German air force. I am in possession of his ...
3
votes
1answer
391 views

Identifying photograph which may be Margaret Morgan (1808-1902) taken at Bridgend, Glamorgan, Wales?

Below is a photograph (I apologize for the quality; it is not in my possession to re-scan) of a woman who I think could be my 3rd great grandmother Margaret Morgan who was: christened on 28 Aug 1808 ...
3
votes
1answer
194 views

Interpreting relationships to head of household in 1855 New York State Census?

As I delve deeper into the records of my Sillars/Sellars/Sellers ancestors in Albany, New York, USA, I am developing a much better picture of their lives there but numerous questions remain. Here I ...
3
votes
2answers
141 views

Case for seeking quotation to digitize Greenwich Hospital School admission record of John Smyth in about 1755?

My 4th great grandfather John Smyth was a Captain's Clerk on the HMS Firm when he married Sarah Osment on 13 Jul 1764 at Stoke Damerel, Devon, England. When he was buried at Bunhill Fields Burial ...
2
votes
1answer
78 views

Deciphering Lunacy Asylum case notes about nurses entry?

This is a continuation of Deciphering Lunacy Asylum case notes extract? where I made a request for deciphering phrases on my Great Great Grandmothers case notes. Slept 11 hours last night. Takes ...
2
votes
2answers
128 views

Finding descendants of British great grand uncle who emigrated to Australia?

From Finding UK record(s) of British great-grandfather with children born in Japan during 1890s? I have received the information of the person with the possibility of great-grandfather. However, I ...
2
votes
1answer
19 views

Deciphering Lunacy Asylum case notes about patient “quotations”

My ancestor was reported to say the following statements: "Don't ??? kill me" "Oh do ??? spare my life!" At first I wondered if the word I can't decipher stood for you all but ...
2
votes
0answers
344 views

Autosomal DNA Chromsome Browser - Is there such a thing as a 'family trait' of shared segments?

I realize the passing of genes is approximately 50/50 (reference Generational Loss of Data with DNA testing) with each generation and which genes are passed are commonly referred to as 'random' based ...
16
votes
9answers
6k views

Parsing a GEDCOM

I have a need to parse GEDCOM files to extract: For all Individuals: their (primary) surname, given names, plus a unique ID, and life dates (birth/baptism/christening - death/burial) For all ...
19
votes
3answers
324 views

What are the key points for a beginning genealogist to consider?

I'm an absolute starter to genealogy and I've always found it very interesting so last week I decided to build my family tree. What are the key things I should consider when getting started?
20
votes
3answers
4k views

Intra Family marriage / rejoining family trees?

Deep in my families history (1600's or there abouts) our family split in two. About three or four generations later two distant cousins got married creating a split / rejoin. G.G.G....
20
votes
4answers
1k views

Do any programs use Gedcom X (as opposed to Gedcom)?

Gedcom X appears to be an attempt at a next generation gedcom format. "The intent of GEDCOM X is to define a standard for modeling and exchanging the components of the research process that ...
14
votes
2answers
630 views

Correctly identifying individual who goes by multiple names?

This question is general to all inquiries where a person has differing last names in multiple records. In my particular case, I am researching my 3rd great grandfather Simon Zoller (1840-1902) and I ...
7
votes
11answers
1k views

Creating and improving family tree online with help from relatives?

I know of Publishing family tree online? but my requirements are different. I would like to have my family tree online to create and improve it with relatives. I'm looking for a tool to share my work ...
21
votes
8answers
3k views

Of a death certificate and a gravestone, which record should be trusted more in determining birth date?

I have an ancestor for whom I have very little information for. I am trying to identify the exact birth date for this person. I have a death certificate which lists the birth date as "May 1st", ...
20
votes
5answers
782 views

Statistical Genealogy, or Knowing what is an extraordinary claim

It is often said in genealogy (or any field of research, really) that “extraordinary claims require extraordinary evidence”. Fair enough. But how does one know what is an extraordinary claim? We can ...
19
votes
4answers
2k views

How many sources/citations is too many?

I've been using GRAMPS, and am a little overwhelmed by the citation abilities. So I guess the question for seasoned veterans of genealogy is where do you put the citations, given the ability to cite ...
16
votes
6answers
1k views

Determining what old document with Illegible handwriting says?

When looking through handwritten records, I found a document. Some fields are legible and matched information I already knew. However, the name is written illegibly. I cannot read it for the life of ...
14
votes
3answers
4k views

Which tools are available for GEDCOM comparison?

At the moment I work with two programs: Gramps has my master database, and I use RootsMagic to connect to the FamilySearch tree, because it helps me find clues that would otherwise be hard to find. I ...
12
votes
3answers
225 views

What details are needed about ancestor to uncover ship they immigrated to America on?

What basic information do I need to have about my ancestor before I start looking for the ship that he/she came to America on? So that I don't waste a lot of time fruitlessly searching for a ship - ...
16
votes
2answers
309 views

Persistent URLs (web addresses) for online records of genealogical events

Are there any standards, or common usage, for the creation of persistent (long-lived) URLs (web addresses) for genealogy events? (more accurately these would be called IRIs, but URLs are the more ...
15
votes
5answers
372 views

When documenting location, should my or their native language be used for place names?

When I'm documenting the place where an event occurred, should I write the name in my own language or in the native language of the place? For example: Spain or España I am assuming that I can only ...
14
votes
2answers
1k views

Citation guides for UK sources for family history and genealogy

Evidence Explained by Elizabeth Shown Mills (Mills, Elizabeth Shown. Evidence Explained: Citing History Sources from Artifacts to Cyberspace. Revised edition. Baltimore: Genealogical Publishing Co., ...

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