Author Topic: Confused about data on family tree sites.  (Read 2167 times)

Offline Gilli-Anne

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Confused about data on family tree sites.
« on: Thursday 27 April 17 12:35 BST (UK) »
In researching information on William Owens (1734-1839), I have found sites which indicate that his mother was Matilda Knox and that she was born in 1672, which would make her rather an elderly mother. I know modern methods allow for elderly mothers, but surely that would not have been possible in the 18th century, unless, of course, he was adopted?

Gillian

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Offline hallmark

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Re: Confused about data on family tree sites.
« Reply #1 on: Thursday 27 April 17 12:48 BST (UK) »
People do all sorts with Trees, unless it has a source then I don't believe them...

Had similar myself with a Wm, Mary, and 6 children went to Australia, shipping lists showed them and someone put them on their tree, Mary became a mother at 61 according to records...... but Mary was his mother not his wife Mary who had died!!

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Offline lizdb

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Re: Confused about data on family tree sites.
« Reply #2 on: Thursday 27 April 17 12:50 BST (UK) »
What is the source of Matilda being his mother? Have you seen a parish register of a Christening?

If you are just looking at other peoples trees, then be aware that many are totally inaccurate, copied from each other, and not based on actual research.  So if the info on the tree is not backed up from an original source, forget it, especially as in this case it just doesn't add up!  She could not have been his mother at 62.
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Offline casram

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Re: Confused about data on family tree sites.
« Reply #3 on: Thursday 27 April 17 13:30 BST (UK) »
I saw a tree on A******y which had a woman giving birth 60 years after she had died so as other posters have said take anything you see in online trees with a large pinch of salt unless the person has given an original source, even then I would want to see the original for myself before I took the information as fact.

Carolyn
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Offline Gilli-Anne

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Re: Confused about data on family tree sites.
« Reply #4 on: Saturday 03 June 17 14:42 BST (UK) »
I've seen no records to prove these facts, but another family tree shows the same people as parents, but with different birth and death dates.

How reliable is Wikitree? I found my William Owens (1734 - 1839) there, with a different father.

Both sets of dates are possible, but again, no records to prove it.

Gillian

Offline youngtug

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Re: Confused about data on family tree sites.
« Reply #5 on: Saturday 03 June 17 14:48 BST (UK) »
Wikitree, like other trees that are the product of another "researcher" are only as good as that "researcher". Some are flights of fancy, some are correct, others are just copies of someone else's tree already online, be it good or bad. Best to look at the records yourself,
.http://www.rootschat.com/links/05q2/   
  WILSON;-Wiltshire.
 SOUL;-Gloucestershire.
 SANSUM;-Berkshire-Wiltshire
 BASSON-BASTON;- Berkshire,- Oxfordshire.
 BRIDGES;- Wiltshire.
 DOWDESWELL;-Wiltshire,Gloucestershire
 JORDAN;- Berkshire.
 COX;- Berkshire.
 GOUDY;- Suffolk.
 CHATFIELD;-Sussex-- London
 MORGAN;-Blaenavon-Abersychan
 FISHER;- Berkshire.
 BLOMFIELD-BLOOMFIELD-BLUMFIELD;-Suffolk.
DOVE. Essex-London
YOUNG-Berkshire
ARDEN.
PINEGAR-COLLIER-HUGHES-JEFFERIES-HUNT-MOSS-FRY

Offline Peter V Crabb

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Re: Confused about data on family tree sites.
« Reply #6 on: Saturday 03 June 17 15:15 BST (UK) »
I once found a tree that gave my grandmother a bigamous second marriage and family in parallel with the one with my grandfather.

I am sure that some people just accept all the hints in Ancestry or FindMyPast witihout checking.
Crabb from Laurencekirk / Fordoun and Scurry from mid Essex

Offline Mike Morrell (NL)

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Re: Confused about data on family tree sites.
« Reply #7 on: Saturday 03 June 17 18:27 BST (UK) »
Hi Gillian, I agree with all the comments made so far.

I started out on Ancestry a couple of years back. Initially, all the 'hints' seemed great and the plausible ones allowed me to expand my family tree quickly. But as others have pointed out, other family trees are not always well-researched. On sites like Ancestry, family tree data (well-researched or not) tends to be copied into multiple family trees.

I've gone through my tree a couple of times looking for 'weak links' that:
a) aren't supported by sufficient facts and evidence to back these up
b) may have alternative evidence supporting other facts

I've gradually learned to 'own' my tree data and not to just assume that hints or data in other trees are correct. Hints' from family tree websites are fine. But you really do need to check the supporting facts and evidence. You also need to check for any conflicting facts/evidence.

Our tree data will be copied by others. So the more reliable (and well-researched) our tree data is, the less unfounded tree data will be propagated through the family tree websites.

Mike
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Re: Confused about data on family tree sites.
« Reply #8 on: Saturday 03 June 17 21:04 BST (UK) »
Found someone I was looking for on Wikitree just a few weeks ago and contacted tree owner hoping to exchange details. I did mention that wife's maiden name was totally incorrect (well both surnames did start 'Ch') but they didn't seem to pick up that part of my message. I tried again by explaining that I already had quite a bit of detail on the family, etc. and the surname I had was correct but never heard back from them so guess they are interested in accuracy  ::)
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