Developing Ancestor Stories with Diverse Evidence


There’s always something new to learn about your ancestors. It’s never over. And perhaps that is what makes genealogy so addictive. Genealogy is much more than collecting names, places, and dates; it’s about exploring many resources to obtain information that can be used to develop context. You want to learn about your ancestor’s lives in a precise location at a specific point in time, who they were with, what they were doing, the effects of people and events around them, and how they participated in their communities.

The documentary evidence we use may be filled with facts and clues to help us develop our ancestor’s stories if we only take the time to thoroughly read and analyze what’s in front of us. Re-examination of evidence that we collected some time ago may suddenly provide details that can help flesh out our ancestors’ lives. Those details may also provide clues that can be used to help demolish long-standing brick walls.

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