Thursday, August 24, 2017

Think First Thursday

So, you are doing the happy dance". You went onto one of the genealogy sites, and someone has a family tree up. Complete! And guess what? It's YOUR family tree! Yeah! The Happy Dance {{}}{{}}{{}}{{}}{{}}{{}}

So, you download the tree, and merge it immediately into your own tree. You are done! Yeah!!! Now you can start to share it with family all over the country! They are going to think you are some kind of genius for finding all of this information in one fell swoop!

But before you start sending it out, you start to look over it. And you think it looks alright. So, you copy it, and start emailing it out to everyone in the family. Now you're feeling pretty impressed with yourself. Right? Right?

And then great-aunt Suzy calls you. And she is laughing so hard and your big goof.

"Look deary, you've got great-grandpa born after his own death! And his mother born after he died!" (You aren't sure if you're angry now because of your gaff, or because great-aunt Suzy is laughing and giggling at you like a ten year old! She absolutely thinks it's hilarious! You're sure she's either going to fall from her chair and break a hip, or sit where she's at and pee her pants!)

Life is over as you know it! You are devastated! You merged that tree with yours and what can you do now?

First of all, laugh with great-aunt Suzy. It's a hard lesson learned. But it's not irreparable.

Simply go into your genealogy programs settings, and have it to restart at a date earlier than the date you merged the "found tree". Not a big deal.

But what it does do for you, is show you that people who simply copy other trees are not getting the real deal. That only comes with hard work. And it will come with sources, bibliography's, references, and citations.  Remember that a family tree without sources is simply a fairy tale!

Double check your own entries when making them into your tree. It is so easy to get dates "bass-ackward". (I call it dyslexia. That's my story and I'm sticking to it!) It happens to the best of us by accident. But for a few, they enjoy throwing some chaos into the kettle! Yeah, there really are people like that out there!

So, take a few extra minutes to double check your facts when you enter them.

And always remember, never, never, never merge a tree with your own researched tree! More than likely. it will only cause you some major work ahead that you can avoid simply by not making that mistake in the first place!

As always, your comments are welcomed.

No comments: