Thursday, August 1, 2013

"Mastering Genealogical Proof" by Thomas W. Jones Chapter 5 homework part one

Chapter Five homework from the book "Mastering Genealogical Proof" by Thomas W. Jones

The book is available from the National Genealogical Society

It is submitted as a panelist for the group study moderated by Dear Mytle.  The discussion can be watched on her Youtube channel and discussion can be read in her Google+ Community.

The questions can be seen on pg 67.


1.            a.            The Bible page  is probably a derivative work.  All the handwriting is the same,  the years span from 1871-1893,  although written in chronological order were probably written at one sitting. perhaps even copied from another source.

                b.            The Bible page was copied by the author of the book and was obtained from the daughter of Ida Leach.  The handwriting is similar to Ida and she could have been present for all the dates on the Bible Page.

                c.             If Ida wrote the record of Earl's birth it would have been primary information as she is his mother.

                d.            If the question I wanted to answer Was when Earl was born then I would have direct evidence of his birth.  The Bible notation regarding Earl is in relation to the date of his birth only on February 4th, 1876,

                e.            If I was using the Bible page entries to determine when Ida and Charles McClain were divorced the answer of between Feb 4, 1876 and March  29, 1878.  This would be between the birth of Earl in Feb 1876 and Ida's second marriage to Calvin Leach in 1878.  of course,  one could also use the 8-9 month period prior to Earl's birth since Charles only needed to be there for conception.  I do not know the divorce laws of the 1870s so do not know if Ida would have had to have Earl prior to her divorce form earl's father.

                f.             It was common to record births, marriages and deaths in the family Bible so one can concur that they were written to record these events for future family members.

                g.            Although Earl was born in 1876 the recording was probably made after 1893 since the handwriting is all the same and that is the last date recorded.

                h.            The page the event are recorded on has ink blots, crossed out words and words squeezed into the edge of the page therefore the writer was probably not very careful when written although the final dates were correct.

                i.              Since the writer of the page was the mother of the children recorded, the wife in the marriages and the widow of Calvin whose death is recorded the dates are probably pretty accurate.

                j.             The record could be changed, tampered with and a bias in the documentation.

                k.            The recorder could have changed or fudged birth dates of the children to better occur within the marriages.

                l.              The information obtained from this record would be a starting point but would require further data/sources to reach a Genealogical Proof.



 2.            In the 1850 Missouri Census is the following info:

                Don Figele           bricklayer           pob Germany    dob  1811-1812 (age 38)

                Barb Figele                                          pob Germany    dob   1825-1826 (age 24)

                Ad Figele                                             pob Germany    dob   1844-1845 (age 5)

                Fritz Figele                                          pob Germany    dob  1845-1856 (age 4) 

                Joh  Figele                                           pob Missouri      dob   1847-1848 (age 2)

                Marie Figele                                       pob Missouri      dob   1849-1850 (age 6/12)

                Corn Figele         Bricklayer            pob Germany    dob   1826-1827 (age 23)


                In the 1860 Illinois Census is the following info:

                Antoine Higley  Stone Mason     pob Hanover      dob 1809-1810 (age 50)

                Barbra Higley                                     pob Hanover      dob 1826-1827 (age 33)

                Adolf Higley                                        pob Hanover      dob 1845-1856 (age 14)

                Fredk Higley                                       pob Hanover      dob  1847-1848 (age 13)

                Mary Higley                                        pob Hanover      dob  1849-1850 (age 11)

                Sophia Higley                                     pob Hanover      dob 1850-1851  (age 9)

                Jacob Higley                                       pob Illinois          dob 1853-1854 (age 6)

                Louisa   Higley                                    pob Illinois          dob 1856-1857 (age 3


The census' seem to contain the following information:

                a.            The 2 families are probably the same. 

                                1.            The first names seem to match with one census containing the German and the other the Americanized version of the same name in the 2nd census.

                                2.            The ages are fairly consistent for those in both census.

                                3.            The birthplace of Germany in the first census probably refers to general German countries and the 2nd a more specific location.

                                4.            The occupation of bricklayer is consistent with a Stone Mason in the 2nd census.

                b.            Corn was probably a brother to Don.  Don was too young to have fathered Corn and since they were living in the same household they would probably be related.  Also the occupations were the same. 

                c.             The family was in Germany and arrived in America in 1847 or 48 but giving them enough time to travel from their arrival port to Missouri prior to the birth of Joh (? John) and relocated to Illinois prior to 1853-1854 when Jacob was born.

                d.             John probably has died by 1860 since he is not in the Census.

                e.            The birth place for Mary and Sophia is wrong in the 2nd census.  They were probably born in Missouri.

                f.             In the 2nd census Corn had probably left to form his own family.  He may have remained in the same area in Missouri or may be located in the Illinois census near Antoine.  Corn may also have died between the 1850 and 1860 census.

                g.            Using only these census' to gain information on this family would not be termed "exhaustive search" and would require more information to meet the Genealogical Proof Statement.