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

Adding and Subtracting In Your Family Tree

Most of you will wonder why this issue needs to be addressed, but over the months and years, I repeatedly run into this problem.

It's the family tree whereby women are having children at 6 years old, or at 56! Better yet, the women who have babies three years after they have passed away. These should be red flags flying to get your attention.

We all like our family trees to bear names and the more names, the more successful we feel we have been in our research. Yet, it is better to have several names with cited information than a series of names and dates that read like the above.

Do you have lines in your family history that don't make sense? Don't worry - take it as a challenge! Be the first to clean up the information in that line.

Perhaps the era is before 1850 and documentation is limited. Search for wills online and check out the names of the family members. These can be a god-send. You won't find their birth dates in a will, but you have a real name to build upon.

Consider not adding questionable children until you discover the answer. Perhaps there were two wives for your ancestor and you'll want to have the correct parentage before inputting them online or in your personal software.

It's a simple start to cleaning up a family tree - add and subtract the ages of your ancestors and their children. It will save a lot of time later on down the road.

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