Combine First and Last Names
It always boggles my mind when I can’t locate a family in one of the census years, but find them easily in some of the others. It usually comes down to the spelling of the name. Well, if you have run out of options, maybe this might work. Try combining both the first name and last name as the last name. I was searching for the name Michael Leone and could not find him or his family members in the 1910 census. I decided to leave out the name and just search by the county and state. It worked! I found the family under the last name Micaklone (aka Michael Leone). I believe the census taker misinterpreted the name as one.
I used to annoy myself by getting home from a round of cemetery or courthouse visits with a chip full of digital photos, only to realize I wasn’t sure which photos were from where.Â Now I take “title” photos that identify the source.Â Before photographing a headstone, I shoot the cemetery entrance gate.Â At each courthouse, I take a photo of the exterior (most have some visible identification).Â The cover of a deed book, the box label of a microfilm, even the door of the registry of deeds office–all these help show where a document or headstone photo came from.Â I can then attach this information as comments to the photos when I get around to transferring and editing them.
Keeping Track of New Contacts
When connecting with new contacts through e-mail, it’s often easy to forget exactly how they relate in your research. If the contact has information, immediately add that person into your e-mail address book. If your address book card has a tab for details or something similar, make a quick note as to how the contact relates or make a quick relationship chart to show this. Example: John Brown to Martha Jones, Ann Brown to Mark Smith, Ray Smith to (contact). Save this, and you always have a quick reference close by.
If you have a suggestion you would like to share with other researchers, send it to: mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org . Thanks to all of this week’s contributors!
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