Member of the National Genealogical Society 2018
Member of the New Mexico Genealogical Society 2018

Now That We're Up And Running...

Over the past few weeks, we've been tweaking, changing, and enjoying the journey of bringing forth our passion for Genealogy.

If you have a love for searching the archives for those who have passed, you'll understand the thrill so many of us share when discovering ancestral story pieces!

And this blog would love to share that with you! Want to discover your ancestral history? We'll teach you how, or can do it for you. Our goal is not to have you spend the equivalent of a new car to discover where you've come from. Instead, ask us questions (we'll answer them on here), take a Skype class, or let us do it for you (please visit our Consulations & Services page).

In the meantime, over the next few days, please enjoy some of the FAQ we have received from other readers. Perhaps you'll think of one of your own or find the answer below.

Why are there so many misspellings when searching the old Census Records?

Depending on the era and location they lived, many of our ancestors were illiterate or had only attained a few grades. I know mine were. And when it came to hiring someone to help with the Census taking, the more educated of the County performed this task. If the "more educated" had only gone through the 6th grade, that was the person who got the job.

Therefore, as they traveled and took down the information, they were also using phonics, and spelling the best they could. Warren might have shown up as Warrin or Warron, depending upon the Census taker. 

My great-grandmother living in Kentucky would have pronounced her name with a drawl that sounded like Plina and that's what he wrote instead of Paulina.

Ask any genealogist. It makes for an interesting search!

Why can't I find any US Federal Census records after 1940?

Because they always wait 75 years between the time of the Census to the time of publishing. This way, most (not all) of the people in the census will have passed on. The 1950 US Federal Census will not be published until 2025.

However, in the US we are lucky that they give us this much leeway. In the UK, the last published Census Transcriptions is 1911. Makes it bit more of a challenge.

I found an error in the original documents. How do I get it changed?

You don't. You may know that your mother spelled her name a different way and her birth certificate may reflect it. But when transcribing documents, transcribers must input the data as seen on the page. My grandmother wrote our last name as Patten even though it was spelled Patton. She was angry at her soon-to-be ex-husband and didn't want to feel associated.

All these little idiosyncrasies, even though irritating at times, tell a story! Read between the lines and discover personalities.

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