WANDERINGS FROM YOUR PRESIDENT
BY GAYLE STUART
Documentation: The hardest part of genealogy!
Remember, undocumented genealogy is mythology!
These are more thoughts on finding the right information on our families.
In the last newsletter I wrote that I was going to meet some of my family I had not known before, only heard about. That did not happen. We were called home from our vacation; a “tornado” went through our backyard, so we needed to come home. The cousin we were going with to meet the unknown relatives did get to meet one family and picked up on some family stories to share.
We just came home from taking a few days off again. We were in Madison, WI at the Norwegian research center and, again, we found records from Norway that did not quite agree with things written down by some of my ancestors. Nothing earthshaking, but it was interesting to compare someone’s memory with written records in the church.
I think every family has a marriage or a birth that does not match up with what we have been told. (Growing up, we cousins always said we had no family scandals, because no one talked about any.) My feeling about this is that what happened in the past is in the past, and we should accept it for what it is.
Church records, one of the 1st places to check, should be right. In Scotland, records of births were natural (unmarried) or lawful. Scandinavian records say if a child is legitimate or not. Most old records will list the father first. If the mother was listed first, it could be that she was not married. Keep looking.