fredag 12 september 2014

Mastering genealogy Proof
First week, first chapter, first discussion questions. . .

Actually, the first thought question relates to the preface--please answer, for yourself only, the questions in the first paragraph of the preface.  Hold onto these answers so you can compare your responses when we reach the end of the study.

Question: We strive to reconstruct relationships and lives of people we cannot see, but if we cannot see them, how do we know we have potrayed them accurately

Answer Magnus: We cannot but we can do as good as we having a methodology and also make our analysis transparent which means that someone else can follow how we thought and also go back to the sources we have used to see if the agree.

Question: Is determining ancestry that predates living people's memory just guess work?

Answer Magnus: No it is a combination of
a) what we know about the time people lived in 

b) the knowledge we have of the sources we use
c) the knowledge we what claims this source can be used for and what accuracy it has
d) last but not least an analyse of the claims we get from the different sources is the key to add an specific fact to ancestry

E.g. when a priest in Sweden writes lungsot in the death certificate then we should try to get so much information as possible about what tools/knowledge this person had when he/she was living. In Sweden we had in the 1700 31 possible death causes (if I remember correct) and the priest didn't have any particular medical knowledge plus you had theories about different liquids?!?!?

We can never be sure what we read and what we assume but we can with more facts and better understanding get a much better pictures. Plus if we document what we have found and how we understand what we have found this is a key to other genealogist who will use are material which means that they can follow how we thought and also go back to the sources we have used to see if the agree.

Question: Or do we blindly trust every source we examine and ignore inconsistencies

Answer Magnus: 
No see answer on the question before

Question: Should we perhaps do the opposite - mistrust sources to the point that our conslusion are most tentative?

Answer Magnus: Maybe....

Question: Can we not determine reliable which genealogical findings reflect the past?

Answer Magnus: Never be sure but buy doing the homework we will learn more and get a better understanding of our ancestries and also get a better understanding of the history, how life was.....

Question: If we can make that determination, how can we demonstrate credibility to family members and other researches?

Answer Magnus: Make it easier for the next generation what sources we had and make it possible for them to find the sources we have used and also document what we think a surce is claiming or where we have problems to trust a source.
Chapter 1 discussion questions:

How does the definition of genealogy in this chapter differ from or mesh with your own definition?
What questions occur to you as you read this chapter?

Answer Magnus: I am a beginner and I am still getting surprised of all the different fields I run into doing genealogy which makes fun for me. If I can find out more about my family tree then that is a bonus.

Please feel free to respond to each other's comments and questions--the livelier the discussions the more we all will learn!

Chapter 2

I'll post several questions for this chapter.  Please feel free to choose only one for your discussion or to answer/discuss as many as you wish.  My questions are intended to be a springboard for your discussion--and oftentimes, your questions will lead to even better discussion, so feel free to ask them!

Are there any "new" concepts in this chapter you would like to discuss (for me, a major new idea was that the calculation of a birth date from an age on a tombstone provides direct evidence--that calculation does not make evidence indirect as I had previously thought)?

A) Can you give an example of a published work with an author listed that would not be an authored work and explain why it would not be an authored work?

B) Why are land and probate records less likely to contain error than such records as censuses?

C) Can you give an example of a research question changed from too broad to focused or from too narrow to appropriately focused?  This may be from your own research, if you desire, but may be made up to show you understand the concept of too broad, too narrow, appropriately focused.

D) What other questions do you have or concepts would you like to discuss?

I participate in a study group on the book Mastering Genealogical Proofs (Kindle) see Gen Proof Study Groups HomeGen Proof Study Group 36

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