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Family Data Collection hints

Family Data Collection hints

Posted: 3 Oct 2012 7:03AM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 3 Oct 2012 1:22PM GMT
Hi, I've now got my family tree back to the colonial era and I'm finding many hints called 'Family Data Collection'. What exactly are these hints? Are they extracted from other Ancestry trees? How valid are they? I find I'm spending a lot of time reviewing them and, for the most part, accepting them. But what really are they and am I spending too much time on them?

Re: Family Data Collection hints

Posted: 3 Oct 2012 2:33PM GMT
Classification: Query
1. Did you read ACOM's description of the data sets?
"Millions of individual records were created (while gathering genealogical data for use in the study of human genetics and disease) from birth, marriage and death records; obituaries; probate records; books of remembrance; family histories; genealogies; family group sheets; pedigree charts; and other sources."

2. Did you read ACOM's caveat for the data sets?
"When you find the name of an ancestor listed, confirm the facts in original sources, such as birth, marriage, and death records, church records, census enumerations, and probate records for the place where the even took place."

3. Do you realize that all of the entries are undocumented as disclosed by ACOM?
". . . despite the absence of cited documentation, the electronic rights to the data were purchased, rather than see it destroyed."
So, in essence you have been accepting hints for people whose source is suspect and whose documentation is totally lacking. No matter how much time you spent, it was probably too much. And you will spend even more time unwinding the problems you may have created in your tree.

Re: Family Data Collection hints

Posted: 4 Oct 2012 3:43PM GMT
Classification: Query
Edited: 4 Oct 2012 3:44PM GMT
I agree with BobNy, these are just what they say...hints. Hints are to be followed up with further research to find the records that the supposed info was based on, and the Family Data Collections, which have been around for years, has never shown themselves to be entirely accurate. Never just accept a hint, and don't just review it, how do you know it is correct unless you research the info yourself?
I've seen so many trees that accept every single hint that comes up on Ancestry, now those threes look like a complete hodge podge of inconsistent info. Hints can show what Ancestry considers the possible same person in several different locations in the same Census year, and the scary part about it, many people go right on ahead and accept all of those hints.
I'd suggest that you go back over those "Family Data Collections" records that you collected and de-link them, then use the info to look for the records to support them yourself.

Re: Family Data Collection hints

Posted: 4 Oct 2012 8:54PM GMT
Classification: Query
In essence this database is junk, just like the Millennium file and other compilations from family group sheets, genealogies that may have been based on no evidentiary records at all, or queries in newsletters.

While some of what seems to connect with your families may actually be correct, there is no way to tell from the database if any of it is based in evidence.

The material is not taken from trees, but most trees throughout the internet contain stuff from the same sources.

You are best off to ignore it and its kin, and do actual research in records, step by step, generation by generation and relationship by relationship.

Re: Family Data Collection hints

Posted: 4 Oct 2012 9:03PM GMT
Classification: Query
I agree with Deloris. Use them as a starting point for further research but don't use them as a "source" as many contain incorrect information. Once you verify the info contained in the Family Data Collection hint your're researching, or find that it is incorrect, it is nice to go back to it and post the information or verifiable sources you have discovered in the comment section for that hint. Hopefull those that then use the hint in the future will actually read your comment before just linking it to their family tree. My experience in doing this suggests that most won't do that and just carry foreward with the base data but at least your comments will continue for others to read if they choose.
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