Not Everything is Online

I am working on a “How to” search presentation for my local Family History Interest Group.

Hurricane Sandy caused the presentation to be rescheduled / postponed until the library could get it’s power back and that folks could get to it safely. There are still road closures, trees down, folks without power, even a week after the storm.

This extra time provided me with some more time to research my two “case studies” for this presentation. Two folks from the group sent me “problems”, to be used as examples for the “Group” to help search for solutions.

In the Inferential Genealogy program that I have discussed here, having a specific goal or question to answer was very important. Both of the ‘case studies’ have specific questions.

Leading up to my presentation, several presenters at previous meetings have reminded us about “not every thing is Online”; being patient with results, and YOU are an expert for your own family.

The first case study, which will be in presentation form, meaning I will present a couple of searching techniques that I use and that will be used for the 2nd “group” or “community” search case study.

Both of these examples will illustrate that “not everything is online”. But in different ways. The first is Civil War records and a Civil War Pension files. The information that is needed to order these files are online, but the details are not. The “how to order” forms are online.

The second case study will reinforce that, but in a different way. This 2nd case study will bring in the “family expert” that would go with the data that can be seen online. In working with the person who gave me the 2nd case study, I have found that there were relationships that aren’t found “online” but the “family expert” knows what the real relationships are. Just looking online, does not reflect two “step” relationships.

The good news, in working with these two case studies, where to “go next”, or what repository to visit “next” becomes obvious. This second case study, the crowd or community search will provide this second person with one or two repositories that should be visited, but with a list of items to look for at that repository.

In addition, the Friends, Acquaintance, and Neighbors (FAN) concept will be introduced, just based on the specific example / problem that was presented to me, and the importance looking broadly and not being focused on an individual. For example, who are the people on the census page before and after “your people”. Hints to resolve this 2nd “problem” became obvious is the resolution of the specific question for this case study.

Note: I am writing this as a reminder to my self, of a couple of points to be made during the presentation. Comments are always welcome.


2 Responses to Not Everything is Online

  1. Peg Lynch says:

    Well done article!!! How true, how true. Trying to locate the Mahlon Worthington of the Buckingham PA Worthingtons. We are saving his home in Bucks County. So, so true about laying eyes on the actual census record page, and looking at who lived around him and his….P.S. Internet Archive, W.W.H. Davis’s tome – The History of Bucks County is a must read. esp. Chap XVI. both the 1875 and revised 1905 edition. It is awash in Worthington’s (the Byberry ones). I’m not even related but have been living the Worthington search for days and nights on end. His family’s home here, speaks volumes. Its story, still a secret, is just out of reach.Feel free to contact me, if you like. I maybe able to add to some of your info, hopefully. Best Regards – Peg in Furlong, PA

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