Genealogy Research

Oct06

Census - Skipped, Enumerated or Double Dipped

Categories // Genealogy Research

James J. Henritze Double Counted

There is a long standing joke among researchers, the census you don’t find, is the one during which the mother-in-law, great aunt or some other ancestor with a great connection-yielding clue, lived with the family. It is true every census can not be located for every family, however many of those "missing" census are not missing, they are incorrectly enumerated, poorly transcribed, wrongly indexed or they have moved to another town or state. Over and over again, painstakingly searching a location page by page or imaginatively searching the indexes, I have found more than my fair share of families. It is more likely single men were missed than an entire family. There are some families that were truly missed by poorly defined or poorly understood enumeration district boundaries....

Sep17

Social Security Death Benefits Index

Categories // Genealogy Research

In the mid 1980s, a research buddy and friend, Sue Hawkes Cook told me about a Cambridge, Ohio firm that had tapped into a database, the Social Security Administration's Death Master File, now known as the social security death benefits index; the social security death index; or ssdi. For about six dollars you could send away for a specific name. I no longer remember the exact price or the firm’s name. In the late 1980s, probably 1988 or 1989, the LDS church added it to their in-house searchable databases with the newest International Genealogical Index a.k.a. IGI and Ancestral File searches. This database has grown monumentally from about 25 years of records, to nearly 50 years of data, roughly 1962 to 2011. It is the nearest thing to countrywide death index as can exist for the United States, since deaths are reported to county health departments for each state. Genealogists use it constantly, so much we forget it isn't a source, just an index....

Sep17

Brick Walls

Categories // Genealogy Research

How to Vault Brick Walls Using Linked Genealogies

Brick walls can stop you dead in your tracks, seriously put you and your research permanently on hold in a certain line. They can be breached. Break them down, climb over them, walk around them, tunnel under them, auger through them or dismantle them brick by brick, all research paths. Climbing over them is using someone else's research, easy but you don’t know if you came over the right section of the wall until you check the steps and logic for yourself; walking around them is using lateral research into siblings; tunneling would be going forward one or two generations to answer a question back in time or backwards one or two generations to answer a question forward in time; carving a hole through the center or augering through a section to prove and or disprove a various theories is exploring an hypotheses or two; breaking them down is taking every brick individually inspecting it for clues until you have the whole wall down.

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Ida Sherwood Bettis is my paternal grand mother. Aunt Clara is my great aunt. I can remember every nooks and crany of that house and yard...

Eric Bettis Eric Bettis 25. July, 2017 |

I would be happy to forward your name, connection, and email if you wish.

Barbara K. Henritze Barbara K. Henritze 06. November, 2016 |

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