Wednesday, 17 July 2013

How well do you know your cousin?

Better than one of mine does possibly?
I recently uploaded a branch of the RICHARDSONs to WikiTree, three generations down from John & Elizabeth (SHIEL) RICHARDSON, and let the small group of interested parties know it was there in case they wanted to use WikiTree's excellent privacy and trust controls to connect themselves up to their ancestors.
One of them emailed me with some updates, which were duly incorporated into my own database. 
I thanked her, commenting that her dates differed in a couple of instances. 
“No my cousin’s birthday is definitely 20th October.” 
The next day, another email arrived. “I’ve just checked with my mother and found I’ve been sending my cousin her birthday card a day late my entire adult life. She’s going to be rather surprised when I finally get it right for her 50th birthday.”
Gave us both a good chuckle for the day.

Wednesday, 10 July 2013

If at first you don't succeed ...

Don't give up.
Take a break.
Attack from a different angle next time.

This post is being prompted by finally finding a family in the 1901 Canadian census.

Sampson DAWE died in Toronto in 1908. My prior sighting of him was in the 1891 census, so he had to be somewhere in 1901.

I'd obviously not tried hard enough, as he should have been findable on a first name, birth date, spouse name search, but no, given what is now apparent.

A helpful researcher in Toronto had fed me some additional snippets for the family and it was time to input them, and try again to fill in the gaps.

I'd missed an additional son for the family, which isn't surprising given how his birth was indexed.

John Darde Stakes
Father's Name: Sampson Hurst Dame
Mother's Name: Maria Stakes

She had also found Maria and son John S DAWE in Edmonton in 1916.

Back to the 1901 census.
This time I tried searching for Maria instead of Sampson.
She would probably still be on my missing in action list if they hadn't just happened to be living with Maria's mother!
Sampson is indexed as Thompson, the DAWE family is indexed as JAIVE, but Maria is shown as daughter of Marrie STOKES, and thus indexed both as JAIVE and as STOKES. Bingo.
Corrections have been lodged.

Tuesday, 2 July 2013

WikiTree & DNA

Ever since this post back in 2011 I've continued to sporadically use WikiTree.
Mainly as I "finish" a particular line and want to see what pops out, but also for research I've done for others, where they can then continue the tree on their own.

Over the last week that has been a concerted effort as my interest went up several notches.

Yes, it has always been a great collaborative site for a One World Tree,  ie everyone connected, and only appearing once (all going well!);
Yes it has always been Free;
Yes it has great privacy controls;
Yes it has a great range of navigation options - with dinky little icons for pedigrees, descendant lists etc;

Now however it has completely grabbed my attention as some tools have been added that help those of us trying to find our DNA matches.

If you've ventured into genetic genealogy and don't know where to find your matches, convince them to upload at least their pedigree to WikiTree AND enter which DNA test they've taken in the place provided (you can enter your name as Anonymous and restrict who can see what, but without a visible tree the main benefit of this may be a little compromised).

All the people impacted by the test will get a link posted against their profile (= page = person) saying It may be possible to confirm family relationships with (person x) by comparing against (link to test taker's name) (link to the test taken) test.

Read this article about which of the affected relations get the note added to them.

With the randomness of autosomal dna inheritance being explored using tests such as FamilyFinder (Family Tree DNA) or 23andme, anything that helps find where a match might be is most welcome.
None of this shows actual DNA results, only family tree connections with links to test taker and those impacted. It is up to you how much more you wish to share, eg in the free text biography section.

Even if you aren't interested in the DNA results, the note draws attention to possible newfound relations on a branch one or other of you may not have.

PS if thinking about venturing into genetic genealogy, now's a great time, Family Tree DNA are having a summer sale - details on my DNASurnames Blog.