Some will bemoan the fact that people don’t cite their sources, research too quickly, and give nary a thought as to accurate and sound methodology. I understand that, but I also understand that many people just don’t want to read lengthy diatribes extolling why those things are important.
I firmly believe in those concepts and I don’t want to read those diatribes either.
Two quick examples in my own research indicate why it’s important to take our time and think as we research. Our ancestors did things on purpose to confuse us. Many times that confusion centers around names.
- Hancock County, Illinois brothers Riley Rampley (1835-1893) and James Rampley (1844-1913) married first cousins who were both named Nancy Newman. Of course both men served in the Civil War and both their widows received pensions. This was done just to confuse the pension department. It is fun to confuse the government.
- Scott County, Iowa, first cousins George A. Freund (1858-1928) and George K. Freund (1854-1941) married women named Katharine Cawiezell and Catherine Schilling, respectively. Can you imagine how easy it is to get those two couples confused? After all, they were both George and “Catherine” Freund….and we know that first names can be spelled incorrectly.
My grandfather John H. Ufkes (1917-2003) had a first cousin John G. Ufkes and another first cousin John H. Ufkes. You don’t even want to know how many John H. Ufkeses there have been since the immigrant John H. Ufkes died in Illinois in 1924.
It’s About Them…Not About Me
It’s so that I can keep Nancy (Newman) Rampley separate from Nancy (Newman ) Rampley and Catherine (Schilling) Freund separate from Katherine (Cawiezell) Freund and the myriad of John Ufkeses separate from each other.