Have you gone back and reviewed documents that you located early in your research? Family historians should not only review copies of records in their files, but also original materials from which notes and comments were made. Re-reading the complete records from which notations were made may cause overlooked clues to be discovered.
I was fortunate that I grew up within a few miles of the courthouse that contained many court and probate records of my ancestors. My initial viewing of these materials was done early in my research when I was still partially in what I call my â€œname-collectingâ€ phase. If it didn’t mention a known or obvious relative, I did not always write it down. I only copied documents that mentioned relatives and addresses or residences. For this reason, I am in the process of seeking out and reviewing documents located early in my research for unnoticed clues.
As soon as I reviewed the 1870 era probate file I remembered having seen the phrase â€œKentucky mortgageâ€ before. However, I did not deem it worthy of writing down the first time I read the file. Now, the phrase meant something to me. My â€œfollow-upâ€ research on that phrase located Kentucky land records and led me to discover that one branch of the family had lived for more than a decade in KentuckyÂ¬–something which I had never known before.
Reviewing what is in your files is a good idea. But going back and looking at the original materials from which notes were taken early in your research might be a good idea as well. You may find some overlooked clues as well.
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