Friday, May 17, 2019

Problems with Find A Grave

Find A Grave has the same problem as does Wikipedia, except it might be worse. In Wikipedia, as an editor, I can go in and make a change with supporting material. Many times, it's just removing graffiti. With the Talk page, one can discuss what is what with regard to what might be on the page. I have an example of that with Thomas Gardner's burial. We visited the cemetery and have details about what we learned. It took a long while to figure out an issue with where the cemetery staff directs people's attention. Essentially, the burial site was trashed, stones broken, some bodies moved, some stones moved, and the remainder of the bodies in an unknown condition. Yet, on Find A Grave, the most I could do was get them to mention this: Gardner's Hill Burial Ground (Defunct). In which, I might add, they say there will be no memorials. But, I have already started to collect names of those buried there.

Now, with regard to a newer burial, I pointed to a findagrave record from WikiTree for Elizabeth A. Blake Lunt. The WikiTree information is correct but incomplete. I have all of the documents required for several lines from this records due to working applications for organizations under the auspices of the Hereditary Society Community. But, yesterday, I went to look as I wanted to reference the record. I find this.

My first thought is that the adage of watching the web for changes to your stuff is very much correct. It ought to be daily. Companies might think real time and actually do. Then, I contacted the owner and pointed him to the WikiTree record. Too, I wondered who might have asked for the change.

Notice, please, that I put records related to Elizabeth there, yesterday. Alfred, her son, notes who her parents were. Also, he references some of her ancestors. His brother was S.A.R. based upon this. And, we have her brother's, Jeremiah's, word about his parents and their parents. Also, I made a new record for John and Ruth (sponsored by the TGS, Inc.) but will look further for their record on findagrave, if there is one. In any case, we need to get the WikiTree information supported with documents (which I have, it's a matter of time).

It occurred to me, though, that I started with AOL. My last entry there was about 2010. After we talked to a D.A.R. genealogist who was great, I started my own tree and filing system. It is huge based upon nine years of work. Though, I need to transfer to something readily available. As an aside, I have been looking. It is nice that the NEHGS recently offered another option (more later).

In 2014, I saw that there was a WikiTree record for Thomas Gardner. I made note of some discoveries about his wife and the mother of his children. Who, btw, had been dissed by the genealogists prior to our recent work. In 2018, they started to look at Margaret. I provided the material that I had collected and my written analysis. And, the discussion was done on WikiTree (where the NEHGS genealogists hang out, for one thing - or did). I'm not sure how the Thomas Gardner findagrave is right now. They have him moved to Harmony Grove Cemetery. That did not happen. Expect to hear more on this.

But, back to AOL. All over, you see these heritage groups saying, no AOL. Why? For one thing, those little shaky leaves. I knew nothing back in 2009 when I started to look at a tree on AOL. But, I remember this Colby connect; in fact, I have notes from then having blogged and kept a journal about this work from the beginning.

Per usual, there is a lot to discuss. But, this post is a FYI about developments and work that needs to be done. The internet allows good documentation; we ought to take advantage of that benefit.

And, about issues of wrong information? I found an article by the principal Gardner author from the late 1890s that was published. It had the pedigree of his grandmother. Nice, I thought. But, then, I see that it differs from what he published in his book in 1907. You see. Just like me having some stuff on AOL that might be publicly accessible (which I will go and point to WikiTree if I can), Dr. Frank never thought that his early work would be picked up by some digitizing effort over 100 years later and spread worldwide via the internet.

I have heard talk about Tudor propaganda. We can discuss. How will we know what is what in the future? Think of that. The Thomas Gardner Society, Inc. has that one it plate as something that you plan for. It'll require a mindset change; too, though, there is (will continue to be) a cost.

Who is looking at the broader picture in terms of genealogy? At least, some in science are seeing just how much of a problem is the computer. Actually, we not talking trivial. So, expect this theme to appear now and then, as well.

Remarks: Modified: 05/23/2019

05/17/2019 -- Or no problem. I found this brother of John Blake (father of Elizabeth who was mother of Alfred E. Lunt) who was named John and died early:

05/18/2009 -- Brother, Alpheus Perley Blake, died before Elizabeth. His obit mentions her as well as the surviving brothers.

05/23/2019 -- Having spent about four days looking at the Blakes, it's time to write a post. Go to WikiTree (John Blake and find profiles of some of his children and a biography in progress). Alpheus had a sister Caroline whose husband became a veteran of the Civil War. We have linked his grave record to the record of his wife (which points to WikiTree as the focus for continuing work).

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