MGP HOMEWORK

The homework presented below is a result of participating in an online discussion panel 

"Mastering Genealogical Proof" by Thomas W. Jones, CG, CGL, FAGS (Arlington, Virginia: National Genealogical Society, 2013)

The book is available for purchase on the National Genealogical Society website located HERE


Homework completed:
 Chapter One - 18 June 2013
Chapter Two - 25 June 2013
Chapter Three - 18 July 2013
Chapter Four - 23 July 2013
Chapter Five - 3 August 2013
Chapter Six - 11 August 2013



Sheri Fenley
MGP Study Group Homework
Chapter One 



  1. I like the following definition from the Board for Certification of Genealogists website:
Genealogy is the study of families in genetic and historical context. Within that framework, it is the study of the people who compose a family and the relationships among them. At the individual level, it is biography, because we must reconstruct each individual life in order to separate each person’s identity from that of others bearing the same name. Beyond this, many researchers also find that genealogy is a study of communities because kinship networks have long been the threads that create the fabric of each community’s social life, politics, and economy. Genealogy is the study of families in genetic and historical context. It is the study of communities, in which kinship networks weave the fabric of economic, political and social life. It is the study of family structures and the changing role of men, women, and children in diverse cultures. It is biography, reconstructing each human life across place and time. Genealogy is the story of who we are and how we came to be, as individuals and societies.”

  1. Perform a reasonably exhaustive search – Spending 12 hours of online searching is not a reasonably exhaustive search. You need to locate sources both online and off. Look beyond records that are conveniently available on microfilm or indexed. Remember it is the thrill of the hunt, right?

Complete and accurate citations of sources – This needs to be done for the sources of each information item. In a perfect world, every genealogist can do this with one hand tied behind their back because they have memorized the genealogical citation bible by Elizabeth Shown Mills “Evidence Explained.” While it is something to strive for, it isn't a perfect world. You must, however, make every effort to include enough information in your citation so anyone reading it can easily locate the source.

Analyze and correlate collected information – There are many things to consider when performing this step. The record itself (source) – is it original or derivative? The content of the record (information) – is it primary, secondary or both? The evidence the record provides – is it direct, indirect or negative? Among other things you must consider : Why was the document created? Who provided the information contained in the record?

Resolve conflicting evidence – If you have completed the first part of the GPS – complete a reasonably exhaustive search – you will most like have conflicting evidence. If you have correctly performed the previous part of the GPS – analyze and correlate the collected information – you will be able to determine which sources are more reliable than others.

Write a soundly reasoned, coherent conclusion – I will be honest. This is the most difficult part of the process for me. After I have spent months (sometimes years) collecting and analyzing information I need to write a coherent report that follows a logical sequence. Over months and years, documents and information I have located are not found in a logical sequence. With a large amount of information, it is confusing at times to reconstruct all that information into a logical sequence when I didn't get it that way.

  1. I have several family trees online at different websites. These trees are very “bare boned” - meaning I purposely have left out my source citations, reference notes, etc. I did this so that anyone who finds a possible connection with in my family lines will have no choice but to contact me for that information. Greta Kohl coined this “cousin bait” and it does work. The whole purpose of publishing my family history online is to try and connect with others researching the same family lines as me. It has been my experience that if I put everything out there then people “grab and go” with the information.

Now once someone has contacted me and I agree to share my research, then they get my complete research with source citations and reference notes, etc.

In general, I do not share my S.W.A.G. (Scientific Wild-Ass Guesses). Again – in my experiences – when I did share my S.W.A.G., and asked that it not be shared because they were just hypotheses, they ended up all over the internet anyway. The whole point of the GPS is to prevent mistakes from perpetuating over and over again.


  1. There really is no middle ground. Either something has been proven or it hasn't. The five parts of the GPS are interdependent, and as such proof cannot be partial. Failure to demonstrate any of the elements in the GPS means that it is unproven.

  1. My local genealogical society conducts workshops for beginners once (sometimes twice) a month here in Stockton. This is the number one question that is asked by the newbies. The answer that the instructors give is - “The first step is start with what you know.”

So the answer given by the society members is correct, but not complete and I will make the suggestion to them to expand on their answer. Yes, start with what you know, but then ask questions about what you don't know. It is those questions that will guide your research.

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Sheri Fenley
MGP Study Group Homework
Chapter Two


1. Who were the parents of Philip Pritchett, who died in Montgomery County, Kentucky, between 1811 and 1812?

2.  (a) Who were the parents of Lewis Pritchett of Fairfax County?
     (b) How are Lewis Pritchett and Philip Pritchett related?

3.  Who were the parents of Charles D. McClain?

4.  (a) Who did Emma Cope marry - Charles D. McClain or David R. McClain?
     (b) Did Ida Tucker and Emma Cope marry the same man?

5.  (a) Who were the parents of Minda Ellen Wallace who was born 20 November 1861 in Yadkin County, North Carolina?
     (b) Who was the mother of Ann Sheern who was born about 1816 in Kentucky?
     (c) Were James Sharon and Pauline Sheern siblings?

6.  Were Pauline Sheern who married George B. Sanford in 1875  and Helen Hunt (widow of Geo. B.) the same woman?

7.  What was the real occupation of  Helen Hunt who lived in Boise, Ada County, Idaho from 1892-1917

8.  (a) DeWayne G. Baker, "Baker/McClain Odyssey: 1774-2000" (appendix B, note 70)
     (b) Willis M. Kemper, "Genealogy of the Kemper Family: Descendants of John Kemper of Virginia" (appendix A, note 7)
     (c) Anne Brunner Eales and Robert M. Kvasnicka, "Guide to Genealogical Research in the National Archives of the United States" (appendix A, note 8)
     (d) Thomas W. Jones, "Merging Identities Properly: Jonathan Tucker Demonstrates the Technique" (appendix B, note 1)

9.  (a) Tax Books, Clark County, Kentucky (note 5)
     (b) Will Book A, Montgomery County, Kentucky (note 2)
     (c) Deed Book S, Stafford County, Virginia (note 19)
     (d) Record of Surveys, Fairfax County, Virginia (note 16

10.  (a) Joan W. Peters, "The Tax Man Cometh: Land and Property in Colonial Fauquier County, Virginia; Tax Lists from the Fauquier County Clerk's Loose Papers, 1759-1782" (note 32, derived from the handwritten lists in the county clerk's loose papers)
     (b) Beth Mitchell, " Fairfax County Road Orders: 1749-1800" (note 18, derived from original hand written orders)
     (c) George Harrison Sanford King, comp., "The Register of Overwharton Parish; Stafford County, Virginia, 1723-1758" (note 26, derived from original parish records)
      (d) Netti Schreiner-Yantis and Florene Speakman Love, "The 1787 Census of Virginia" (note 9, derived from original tax records)

11.  Original records will, in most all cases, contain fewer errors than derivative records.

12.  Obtain a copy of the birth certificate.  It is always best to have a copy of the original which is more reliable than an index entry.

13. through 16.  -  My answers to those questions may violate the author's copyright.  Please refer to the book, pages 151 through 154.

17.  Because the question is not answered from just one source or record.

18.  Negative evidence, or absence of information is the answer to the question asked.  

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Sheri Fenley
MGP Study Group Homework
Chapter Three



1a) Independent evidence items in agreement:
1810 census (note 3)
Fauquier County, VA lawsuit 1783 (notes 6 and 8)
Fairfax County Personal Property Tax Lists (notes 10 and 14)


1b) All sources competent genealogists would use:
Birth or christening records
Census records
Court records



1c) Some primary information:
Tax records
Court records



1d) Some original records:
All of the sources used are original records.



1e) Derivative sources replaced by findable primary information:
1787 Tax list (note 9) replaced by viewing the original lists on microfilm (note 10)



1f) Findable sources suggested by relevant sources and indexes:
Court records and census records

2a) Independent evidence items in agreement:
1886 Marriage record (note 21)
1894 Michigan census record (table 1, note a)









2b) All sources competent genealogists would use:
Census records
Marriage records
Death records
Obituaries



2c) Some primary information:
Marriage record (notes 6 and 21)



2d) Some original records:
All of the sources, with the exception of the census records, are original records.



2e) Derivative sources replaced by findable primary information:
None



2f) Findable sources suggested by relevant sources and indexes:
Census records
Death records
Marriage records






Question 3 – 1860 Census for Hamilton County, Illinois there is a Mary L. Jones who appears in the Silas Jones and Sarah E. Jones household. The question is “Who were Mary's parents?”
List finding aids and sources you might use and single out original records likely to provide primary information about Mary's parents.



WHAT WE HAVE TO START WITH
1860 census for Hamilton County, Illinois shows the Silas Jones household comprised of: Silas Jones, age 31, born Indiana, a farmer, owns real estate worth $1700 and personal estate worth $500; Sarah E. Jones, age 25, born Indiana; Mary L. Jones, age 6, born Indiana; William A. Jones, age 3, born Indiana and Sarah J. Jones, age 1, born Illinois.
Source: 1860 U.S. census, Hamilton County, Illinois, population schedule, Township 6 Range 5 East, page 36 (penned), dwelling 227, family 227, Silas Jones household; digital image, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com: accessed 10 July 2013); citing NARA microfilm publication M653, roll 183.



MARRIAGE RECORDS
A marriage record for Mary L. Jones. It might give the names of her parents. This would be primary information. A search for the marriage of Silas and Sarah Jones would provide a maiden name for Sarah. The date of the marriage would indicate if Sarah is Mary's mother or not. This would be primary information.

There are no online digital images of original marriage records for Hamilton County, Illinois nor have the records been filmed by the Family History Library. The original records are only available at the Hamilton County courthouse. 

There are some derivative published works housed at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah that can be consulted:

Harrelson, Ralph S., Marriages, information taken from original marriage documents & old marriage record books relative to marriages celebrated in Hamilton County, Illinois, 1821-1870: also a record of marriages celebrated in White County, Illinois, 1816 through 1821 (Carterville, Illinois: Genealogy Society of Southern Illinois, c 1986).

Felty, Harold G., Marriage records and related notes, Hamilton County, Illinois 1821-1854 (Owensboro, Kentucky: Cook & McDowell Publications, 1981).

Felty, Harold G., Legacy of kin, Hamilton County, Illinois: relationships, vital statistics, marriages, abstracted from obituaries and notices in Hamilton County newspapers, 1858-1992 (Champaign, Illinois: AIBA Pub., c 1994). This book of compiled abstracts is also available on microfilm from the Family History Library (FHL Film 1,698,048) and as a digital download which can be accessed at https://dcms.lds.org/view/action/ieViewer.do?dps_pid=IE521065&dps_dvs=1374070801836~173&dps_pid=IE521065&change_lng=en

Deem, Grandma and Hamilton County Historical Society, Grandma Deem's marriage notices: Hamilton County, Illinois (Illinois: Hamilton County Historical Society, c2007-2008).

There is also a Illinois State-wide marriage database located on the Illinois State Archives website that can be searched. It is located at: 

http://www.cyberdriveillinois.com/departments/archives/databases/marriage.html



DEATH RECORDS
A death record for Mary Jones – either a digital image or on microfilm – that names Mary's parents would be an original record with secondary information.
To search for death records for Hamilton County, Illinois:
The Illinois State Archives has an online death certificate database 1916-1950 located at:
http://www.ilsos.gov/isavital/idphdeathsrch.jsp



WILLS, PROBATE AND ESTATE RECORDS
There are digital images of wills (1823-1933) and probate journals (1838-1883) online at www.FamilySearch.org for Hamilton County, Illinois. However they have not yet been indexed so one must manually browse through the records. They are also available (along with probate case files) on microfilm at the Family History Library. These are original records with primary information.

Index to Probate Files 1823-1970 - FHL Film 988,220 through FHL Film 988,228
Index to Probate Journals 1823-1922 - FHL Film 1,426,470
Will Records 1823-1933 - FHL Film 988,234



Derivative published works housed at the Family History Library in Salt Lake City, Utah:

Vaught, Harriet B., Hamilton County cemeteries & probate index [1821-1900]: Hamilton County, Illinois ([S.I. : s.n., 198-?]).

Neff, Hazel Lea, Abstracts of wills, Hamilton County, Illinois, 1821-1915 (Wayne City, Illinois: Family Ties, c1986).



NEWSPAPERS
An obituary for Silas Jones or his wife Sarah E. Jones might name their children. A few places to search historic newspapers:
GenealogyBank.com
NewspaperArchive.com
Chronicling America at the Library of Congress website



MILITARY RECORDS
If Silas Jones served in the Civil War there might be records that name his wife and children. If he was a casualty during the war, there may be a widows pension file. If he was injured there might be a pension file. Digital images or microfilm copies of the files are original records and contain primary information.
Fold3.com, Ancestry.com and FamilySearch.org all have indexes for military records.



PUBLISHED FINDING AIDS
Online State Resources for Genealogy” by Michael Hait, C.G. This book provides a directory (with hot links) to sites that offer record images and indexes including state libraries and archives, university libraries, county clerks, historical and genealogical societies and more. Available only as an Ebook or PDF file and can be found at http://haitfamilyresearch.com/onlineStates.htm



CENSUS RECORDS
I would search for a Silas Jones family in the 1870 and 1880 census. It might show Mary in her parents household. However only the 1880 census states the relationship of the people in the household to the head of household. Some of these might be original records, but the informant would be unknown.

ONLINE FINDING AIDS
Family History Library Catalog
Linkpendium.com
Cindy's List

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Sheri Fenley
MGP Study Group Homework
Chapter Four



Number 1
Source citations show the reader the number and type of sources used to support the author's findings. The citations should be well formed and contain enough information so that the reader can easily locate it himself.

2a) Willis M. Kemper * Genealogy of the Kemper Family: Descendants of John Kemper of Virginia * 1899 * Chicago: Geo. K. Hazlitt * page 79


2b) Anne Bruner Eales and Robert M. Kvasnicka * Guide to Genealogical Research in the National Archives of the United States * 2000 * Washington, D.C. : National Archives and Records Administration * page 23

2c) Donn Devine * “The Common Law of England,” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 95 * September 2007 * N/A * pages 165-78, quotation from page 168

2d) [not provided] * “Rites Held on Sunday for Mrs. Emma McClain, Long-time Local Resident,” Newaygo Republican * 18 March 1948 * Newaygo, Michigan * page 1, column 4

2e) DeWayne G. Baker, comp. * “Ancestry World Tree Project: Baker Odyssey,” Ancestry.com * 17 January 2008 * http://awt.ancestry.com

2f) Denise Crawford * “Descendants of Aaron McClain and Elizabeth\Ann (-),” Pedigree Resource File, CD-ROM 18 * 2000 * Salt Lake City, Utah: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints * [not provided]


3a) Kemper, Genealogy of the Kemper Family, 79.

3b) Eales and Kvasnicka, Guide to Genealogical Research, 23.

3c) Devine, “The Common Law,” 168.

3d) “Rites Held on Sunday.”

3e) Baker, comp., “Baker Odyssey.”

3f) Crawford, “Descendants of Aaron McClain.”



4a) Kemper, Willis M. Genealogy of the Kemper Family: Descendants of John Kemper of Virginia, Chicago: Geo. K. Hazlitt, 1879.

4b) Eales, Ann Bruner, and Robert M. Kvasnicka. Guide to Genealogical Research in the National Archives of the United States, Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration, 2000.

4c) Devine, Donn. “The Common Law of England.” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 95 (September 2007).

4d) Newaygo Republican. Newaygo, Michigan.

4e) Baker, DeWayne G., comp. “Ancestry World Tree Project: Baker Odyssey.” Ancestry.com. Http://awt.ancestry.com: 2008.

4f) Crawford, Denise. “Descendants of Aaron McClain and Elizabeth\Ann (-).” Pedigree Resource File, CD-ROM 18. Salt Lake City, Utah: Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 2000.


5a) Kentucky Tax Assessor * Tax Books Clark County * 1793-1797, 1799-1809 * 1795, 6:25; and 1796, 2:21 * Kentucky Historical Society

5b) Fauquier County, Virginia * Minute Book * 1781-84 * page 192 * Fauquier County Court, Warrenton, Virginia

5c) Fairfax County * Record of Surveys * 1790 (noted in the text) * page 154 * Circuit Court Archives, Fairfax, Virginia

5d) [not provided] * Legislative Petitions, Virginia General Assembly, Stafford County * 1775-1827 * petition of 15 October 1776 * record group 78, box 238, folder 1, accession 36121, Library of Virginia

5e) Muskegon County, Michigan * Record of Marriages 2 * 19 August 1871 * page 36, no. 531, McClain-Tucker * County Clerk, Muskegon County, Michigan

5f) Allegan County, Michigan * Circuit Court File 1355, Ida M. McClain v. Charles D. McClain, 1879 * 22 August 1879 * Mrs. Calista J. Tucker testimony * Circuit Court, Allegan, Michigan


6a) Kentucky Tax Assessor, Tax Books, Clark County, 1795, 6:25; and 1795, 2:21.

6b) Fauquier County, Virginia, Minute Book, 1781-84, p. 192.

6c) Fairfax County, Virginia, Record of Surveys, p. 154.

6d) Legislative Petitions, Stafford County, Virginia, petition dated 15 October 1776.

6e) Muskegon County, Michigan, Record of Marriages 2:36.

6f) Allegan County, Michigan, Circuit Court File 1355, testimony of Mrs. Calista J. Tucker.



7a) Kentucky Tax Assessor. Tax Books, Clark County, Kentucky Historical Society, Frankfort, Kentucky.

7b) Virginia. Fauquier County Minute Book, 1781-84. County Court, Warrenton.

7c) Virginia. Fairfax County Record of Surveys. Circuit Court Archives, Fairfax.

7d) Legislative Petitions, Virginia Assembly, Stafford County Record group 78. Library of Virginia, Richmond.

7e) Michigan. Muskegon County Record of Marriages. County Clerk, Muskegon.

7f) Allegan County Circuit Court files. Circuit Court, Allegan, Michigan.


Number 8
Thomas W. Jones, Mastering Genealogical Proof (Arlington, Virginia: National Genealogical Society, 2013), page 35.


Number 9
Teri D. Tillman, C.G., “Identifying Benjamin W. Cohen of New York and New Orleans,” National Genealogical Society Quarterly 95 (December 2007): pages 245-264.

Number 10
DRBUCK, contributor, “George Moore Davis Tucker,” memorial 40735875, Find A Grave (http://www.findagrave,com/index.html: viewed 18 July 2013).

Number 11
The Genealogical Proof Standard,” Board for Certification of Genealogists (http://www.bcgcertification.org/resources/standard.html: viewed 18 July 2013).


12a1) Board for Certification of Genealogists * The BCG Genealogical Standards Manual * 2000 * Orem, Utah: Ancestry * pages 1-2




12b1) VanBuren County, Michigan * Return of Births in the County of Van Buren for the Year Ending December 31st A.D. 1876 * 4 February 1876 * Department of Vital Records; Lansing, Michigan * p. 256, no. 890, Carl McClain


12b2) [not needed] * “Michigan Births, 1867-1902,” FamilySearch * 18 July 2013 * https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-267-12877-14573-47?cc=1459684


12c1) [N/A] * “List of all Passengers in Vessels from Foreign Ports Which Have Arrived at the Port of New Orleans During the Third Quarter of the Year 1832 – and the Number That Have Died on the Passage,” in Quarterly Abstracts of Passenger Lists of Vessels Arriving at New Orleans, 1820-1875, microfilm publication M272, 17 rolls * 1969 * Washington, D.C.: National Archives and Records Administration * roll 1, chronologically arranged, for “Brig Wm Osborne,” 3 July 1832, Merdet entries


12c2) [N/A] * “New Orleans, Passenger List Quarterly Abstracts, 1820-1875,” Ancestry.com * 18 July 2013 * http://www.ancestry.com * search for “G Merdet”


Number 13
Georgia Bureau of Vital Statistics, Standard Certificate of Death, no. 16678, for John Thomas Wright, 18 May 1923; Georgia Department of Archives and History, Morrow, Georgia; digital image, “Historical Records Collections,” FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-566-11216-4918-97?cc=1320969: viewed 18 July 2013), for: “Georgia, Deaths, 1914-1927,” digital folder 004178242, image 213.

Number 14
Aroostook County, Maine, Southern Registry, Deed Book 51:98, Jewell to Mansur, 22 January 1875; County Clerk, Holton, Maine; digital image, “Historical Record Collections,” FamilySearch (https://familysearch.org/pal:/MM9.3.1/TH-1951-21742-22837-88?cc=1447693&wc=12205332 : viewed 18 Jul;y 2013), for “Maine, Aroostook County Deed Books, 1865-1900,” Southern Registry, volume 51, image 101.

Number 15

Boyhood of Edison: Something About the Youth of the Great Inventor,” Quincy Daily Herald, Quincy, Illinois, 24 August 1893, page 6, columns 2-4; digital image, “Quincy Historic Newspaper Archive,” Quincy Public Library (http://archive.quincylibrary.org/Default/Skins/QPL/Client.asp?skin=QPL&AppName=2&AW=1205417717890 : viewed 18 July 2013), advanced search for “Edison” in The Quincy Daily Herald.

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Sheri Fenley
MGP Study Group Homework
Chapter Five

Question 1 answers refer to a page from a bible on page 66 of the book.

1a) This would be a derivative record because the handwriting on the page looks like it was all written at one time and therefore the information was taken from another source.

1b) The informant is not named specifically, but it is most likely Ida because she would have been at all the events.

1c) If Ida is the informant, then the information about Earl McClain's birth would be primary.

1d) Direct evidence.

1e) Indirect evidence.

1f) The source (the bible page) was created to record births and marriages of the family.

1g) Yes there was a time lapse. Earl was born in 1876 and Ida wrote all the information on the bible page after 188 as possibly as late as 1893.

1h) I think Ida was reasonably careful when she wrote the information in the bible.

1i) I doubt the source was challenged.

1j) I doubt the source was kept from being tampered with.

1k) Ida could have “adjusted” the dates of her marriage and/or her son's birth if she concieved him before she divorced from McClain.

1l) Given all of the above observations, the source is most likely reliable, however it should be used with caution.

Question 2 refers to images of census records from 1850 and 1860 shown on page 68 of the book.

1850 Census - Missouri
1860 Census - Illinois
Don Higele, 38, bricklayer, Germ
Antoine Higley, 50, stonemason, Hanover
Barb Higele, 24, Germ
Barbra Higley, 33, Hanover
Ad Higele, 5, Germ
Adolph Higley, 14, Hanover
Fritz Higele, 4, Germ
Fred'k Higley, 13, Hanover
John Higele, 2, Mo

Marie Higele, 6/12, Mo
Mary Higley, 10, Hanover

Sopha Higley, 9, Hanover

Jacob Higley, 6, Illinois

Louisa Higley, 3, Illinois
Corn Higele, 23, bricklayer, Germ


This appears to be the same family. The different spelling of the last name can be explained as a matter of the enumerator writing down what what he heard – Higele / Higley

For the head of household - Whoever gave the information in 1850 might have had a heavy accent to their speech. Perhaps they were saying “Tone” which might me short for Antoine and the enumerator thought the person said “Don.” When you say the two names out loud with your best German accent “Ton(e)” sounds like “Don.” The occupations are different but are similar in nature. There is a difference in his age but a 2 year difference is not that significant. The place of birth is again different but similar in nature – Hanover is in Germany.

The family came to the U.S. sometime between 1856-1858.


Question 3 asks us to identify 5 different types of correlation from the article in appendix A which begins on page 103 of the book.
NARRATIVE
Pages 31-33 of the article
Philip lived in Fairfax County, Virginia 1786-1795
LIST
Pages 35-36 of the article
Philip and Fairfax County Lewis were NOT father and son
TIMELINE
Pages 36-37
Senior Lewis, with 2 marriages is the father of Philip
TABLE
Page 34
Comparison of the 2 Lewis Pritchetts
MAP
Page 32
Stafford County Lewis was in the Fauquier County lawsuit not the Fairfax County Lewis





Question 4 asks us to do the same as question 3 using the article in appendix B which begins on page 113 of the book.

NARRATIVE
Pages 107-108

LIST
Page 117
Emma married Ida's ex-husband
TIMELINE
Pages 112-114
Son of James was husband to both Ida and Emma
TABLE
Page 105
Comparison of Ida's husband and Emma's husband
MAP
Page 103
Shows locations of records



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Sheri Fenley
MGP Study Group Homework
Chapter Six


No. 1    The definition of conflicting evidence is when information from different sources contradict each other.

No. 2    If conflicts can't be resolved, then there is no proof and therefore no conclusion can be reached.


No. 3

Philip's father is Lewis of Fairfax County
Philip's father is NOT Lewis of Fairfax County
Indirect vs. direct and negative
No corroboration; explanation of who children of Lewis were
Lewis of Fairfax County represented Philip in court
Lewis of Stafford County represented Philip in court
Indirect vs. Indirect
Explanation of customs and proximity
Phebe living with David McClain in 1870
Phebe living with Daniel McClain in 1870
Indirect vs. Direct
No corroboration for Daniel; Explanation of handwriting
Mary Mapes is the mother of Charles
Phebe Wright is the mother of Charles
Direct vs. Indirect
Indirect evidence supports Phebe, no corroboration for Mary




No. 4     DIRECT EVIDENCE vs. INDIRECT EVIDENCE

Eyewitness accounts in original records = Court case and mother's letter. Both agree that Charles was born 1843-1844. 1850, 1860 and 1870 census give year of birth 1843-1844 and corroborates the above 2 records.

The other sources which give a year of birth as 1839-1841 do not hold as much weight, are secondary information or unknown informants.

So this is resolved by determining the quality of the evidence.


No. 5    DIRECT EVIDENCE, NEGATIVE EVIDENCE, INDIRECT EVIDENCE AND NO CONFLICT

Direct evidence = Frances' name on order to sell slaves
Negative evidence = Lewis is not on the 1802 tax list
Indirect Evidence = Frances appears for the first time on the 1802 tax list

Both the negative evidence and the indirect evidence agree with the direct evidence. There isn't any conflicting evidence.


No. 6      RESOLVED CONFLICTING INDIRECT EVIDENCE AND AN ABSENCE OF DIRECT EVIDENCE

There is no source that directly names the parents of Philip or that Lewis and Mary had a son named Philip. Using the land and tax records plus evidence that Lewis Pritchett in Fairfax County did not have a son named Philip. So it is the Lewis Pritchett in Stafford County and his wife Mary that are Philip's parents.


No. 7     RESOLVED CONFLICTING INDIRECT EVIDENCE AND AN ABSENCE OF INDIRECT EVIDENCE

There is no direct evidence that names the parents of Charles nor any source that says James and Phebe had a son named Charles. Using indirect evidence from pension application, census, etc. case can be made that the son of James and Phebe is the same man as Ida's husband. Conflicts in the ages are resolved with explanations.




6 comments:

Cary Bright said...

Excellent insight Sheri. It is fun to see each panel members insight into MGP. Thanks for sharing

Cary Bright said...

Excellent insight Sheri. Thanks for sharing. It is fun to see the different concepts each panelist have introduced in their homework.

norah glover said...

I really enjoyed reading your responses to the questions, and I really appreciated your thoughts and practice on sharing your own research. Gave me some things to think about. Loved S.W.A.G.

Sheri Fenley said...

Thanks Cary and Norah! I have alot of S.W.A.G. in my notes sections!




Pat Richley-Erickson said...

Thanks for sharing your take on Chapter 4. This has been quite a journey together. Glad to have you on the team of panelists.

Geolover said...

Very belated thanks for sharing your observations and responses. In particular, I much appreciate your noting that "reasonably exhaustive search" can take years -- and that it can be a struggle to get a perspective on the whole. I personally have had to shake off some special affection for particular findings that took long to achieve :D