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Bill Guion
26 May 2009, 10:40 AM
As I review the information available on-line about my 6G grandfather and his descendants, I discover a lot of inconsistencies. Now this does not surprise me, but it leaves me with two questions, one general/philosophical and one specific.

The philosophical question is, given that these events occurred at the end of the 1600's/early 1700's and the possible lack of primary records for that period, how much energy should one put in to resoloving differences that may not be resolvable? At what point do you throw in the towel and say, "I'll probably never resolve this" and simply document what you have found. For example, my 6G grandfather was a Huguenot who left France about 1685 and ended up in New Rochelle, New York, along with a lot of other Huguenots. Some accounts say he and his family went to Holland and thence to England, sailing from England to New York. Other accounts do not mention Holland at all. His second son, Louis Guion, was born in, well, maybe 1685 at sea, maybe 1685 in New Rochelle, maybe 1684 in England, or maybe in France earlier than these dates or maybe New Rochelle as late as 1687.

And when one does give up on trying to resolve a problem, how do you document the various options in Reunion?

As for the specific, technical question, one way I thought I might eliminate some of the the above options is to review the 1690 census of New Rochelle. A number of sources cite that as a resource. But, I have not been able to find that resource on-line. So the specific question is, is this census available on-line? Or maybe less pointed, where can I find a copy of this census that I can review?

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

-----===== Bill =====-----

Linda G
26 May 2009, 02:29 PM
how much energy should one put in to resoloving differences that may not be resolvable?

<snip>

And when one does give up on trying to resolve a problem, how do you document the various options in Reunion?
Inconsistencies pop up in all time periods. At least they do for my ancestors, even the more recent ones. Doesn't seem to matter when they lived. And when I think of how I've filled out forms during my life, I don't think the problem will ever vanish.

My approach is to record everything I find in various note fields that I created. I commonly use ones for name/relationship, birth, marriage, death. These are fully cited. For example, in the BirthEvidence note field might be recorded what I found regarding an individual's birth from: passport application, censuses, gravestone, birth, marriage, death certificates, published genealogies, etc. Then, for the birth event fields I evaluate all that I've found to date and store my assessment. I don't associate sources with the birth event, because I'm using the event fields to reflect my 'best guess' of birth date/place from the details recorded in the BirthEvidence note field. Once I devised this structure it made recording inconsistent information much, much easier, as well as being able to identify exactly where I got each morsel of information.

It's a more difficult to state the standards I use to evaluate different findings. In general, records created closer to the event by eye-witnesses are more reliable than those generated later by non-witnesses. And certainly original records are more credible than translations, transcriptions, extracts, abstracts, indexes, etc. Another desirable goal is to find corroborating, independent sources. Also my assessment (right or wrong) of the source's credibility affects my evaluation of the findings. As one learns more about a specific source and the how/why/when/who of it's creation, one forms opinions regarding how much weight to give that source--and whether there's not yet another 'original' to track down.

There is no one answer to your question about how much energy one should give to resolving differences. Basically because there's not enough time or money to do it all. So we each set our priorities. Some are fascinated by a specific ancestor or a specific time/place and devote their energies there. Others set limits according to record accessibility. Others focus on direct ancestors only. We each make choices reflecting resources available to us and our personal interests. These choices may be different according to ancestor, place or time period. I basically move on when I get bored, distracted by another project, run out of easily accessible records, etc -- knowing that I can always return and relatively easily pick up where I left off.

You might find interesting discussion about the Genealogical Proof Standard(GPS). It doesn't answer the question of how much energy one should devote, but it does give an idea of current thinking about what it means to 'prove' something genealogically.
http://www.bcgcertification.org/resources/standard.html
http://genealogy.about.com/cs/citing/a/proof.htm

kmuch
26 May 2009, 08:36 PM
As I review the information available on-line about my 6G grandfather and his descendants, I discover a lot of inconsistencies. Now this does not surprise me, but it leaves me with two questions, one general/philosophical and one specific.

The philosophical question is, given that these events occurred at the end of the 1600's/early 1700's and the possible lack of primary records for that period, how much energy should one put in to resoloving differences that may not be resolvable? At what point do you throw in the towel and say, "I'll probably never resolve this" and simply document what you have found. For example, my 6G grandfather was a Huguenot who left France about 1685 and ended up in New Rochelle, New York, along with a lot of other Huguenots. Some accounts say he and his family went to Holland and thence to England, sailing from England to New York. Other accounts do not mention Holland at all. His second son, Louis Guion, was born in, well, maybe 1685 at sea, maybe 1685 in New Rochelle, maybe 1684 in England, or maybe in France earlier than these dates or maybe New Rochelle as late as 1687.

And when one does give up on trying to resolve a problem, how do you document the various options in Reunion?

As for the specific, technical question, one way I thought I might eliminate some of the the above options is to review the 1690 census of New Rochelle. A number of sources cite that as a resource. But, I have not been able to find that resource on-line. So the specific question is, is this census available on-line? Or maybe less pointed, where can I find a copy of this census that I can review?

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

-----===== Bill =====-----There may be some Huguenot records in London that could help.

You could also check _The Palatine Families of New York_ by Henry Z. Jones, Jr., published in 1985 at Universal City, California; Documents Relating to the Colonial History of the State of New York (multi-volume set); Carl Boyer, ed. _Ship Passenger Lists, New York and New Jersey (1600-1825)_ (Newhall, Calif., 1978).

I document conflicting information in the Notes for each person. I choose a date for each event on the basis of probability and mention the conflicts in the Detail, giving all the Sources I used.

Good luck,
Kathleen

Jack Countryman
26 May 2009, 09:38 PM
As I review the information available on-line about my 6G grandfather and his descendants, I discover a lot of inconsistencies. Now this does not surprise me, but it leaves me with two questions, one general/philosophical and one specific.

The philosophical question is, given that these events occurred at the end of the 1600's/early 1700's and the possible lack of primary records for that period, how much energy should one put in to resoloving differences that may not be resolvable? At what point do you throw in the towel and say, "I'll probably never resolve this" and simply document what you have found. For example, my 6G grandfather was a Huguenot who left France about 1685 and ended up in New Rochelle, New York, along with a lot of other Huguenots. Some accounts say he and his family went to Holland and thence to England, sailing from England to New York. Other accounts do not mention Holland at all. His second son, Louis Guion, was born in, well, maybe 1685 at sea, maybe 1685 in New Rochelle, maybe 1684 in England, or maybe in France earlier than these dates or maybe New Rochelle as late as 1687.

And when one does give up on trying to resolve a problem, how do you document the various options in Reunion?

As for the specific, technical question, one way I thought I might eliminate some of the the above options is to review the 1690 census of New Rochelle. A number of sources cite that as a resource. But, I have not been able to find that resource on-line. So the specific question is, is this census available on-line? Or maybe less pointed, where can I find a copy of this census that I can review?

Thanks in advance for any help you can provide.

-----===== Bill =====-----
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Since the first US census wasn't till 1790, what census would there have been prior to that in the area of interest?

Al Poulin
26 May 2009, 09:54 PM
The philosophical question is, given that these events occurred at the end of the 1600's/early 1700's and the possible lack of primary records for that period, how much energy should one put in to resoloving differences that may not be resolvable? At what point do you throw in the towel and say, "I'll probably never resolve this" and simply document what you have found. For example, my 6G grandfather was a Huguenot who left France about 1685 and ended up in New Rochelle, New York, along with a lot of other Huguenots. Some accounts say he and his family went to Holland and thence to England, sailing from England to New York. Other accounts do not mention Holland at all. His second son, Louis Guion, was born in, well, maybe 1685 at sea, maybe 1685 in New Rochelle, maybe 1684 in England, or maybe in France earlier than these dates or maybe New Rochelle as late as 1687.

As for the specific, technical question, one way I thought I might eliminate some of the the above options is to review the 1690 census of New Rochelle. A number of sources cite that as a resource. But, I have not been able to find that resource on-line. So the specific question is, is this census available on-line. Or maybe less pointed, where can I find a copy of this census that I can review?

It may be that the conflicting accounts point more to lack of rigor and a tendency by the authors of those accounts to make assumptions than to a lack of primary or even good secondary records. I like to use hard copy, published accounts with documented citations. Accounts available online often show no documentation. You may be able to probe the authors to reveal to you their sources. By careful comparison of the various accounts you may be able to divine that one simply derives from another. In testing for the source of a particular "fact," you may find that there is no basis. So the question boils down to what was the basis for any particular account? You may end up with your own assumption that the family came via Holland only based on firm evidence that the family's cousins came that way.

You may be able to borrow for a small fee a microfilm (if one exists) of the 1690 census through your local Family History Center, available from the Family History Library:
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/default.asp
Click on the Library and Search Records tabs. In a Keyword Search for "New Rochelle," I see your surname at the bottom of a long page. But in a Place Search, I was not able to see the census listed. That census may be part of a publication by another title. I'd contact a local public library or an historical society in or near town.

The FHL publishes Research Outlines keyed to states in the U.S.A. and to foreign countries. The guide for France treats the Huguenots. Pertinent to the migration issue are pages 14 and 15 at:
http://www.familysearch.org/eng/search/RG/images/34715_France.pdf

Also helpful should be the American-French Genealogical Society in Rhode Island:
http://afgs.org/
I have seen the AFGS referring to the Huguenots, both in the U.S.A. and in Canada.

Al Poulin
26 May 2009, 10:10 PM
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Since the first US census wasn't till 1790, what census would there have been prior to that in the area of interest?

If it exists, possibly a local head count by the church or civil authority.

Terry Medlar
27 May 2009, 03:14 AM
The first United States census was taken in 1790. You could try to call the
city of new Rochelle and ask if they have any early records.
It was common for Huguenots to go to Holland first. Search for your name in the Brooklyn and Staten Island records. I know this is all vague, but it may be a start.

Bill Guion
27 May 2009, 09:05 AM
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Since the first US census wasn't till 1790, what census would there have been prior to that in the area of interest?

The city of New Rochelle took the census I'm looking for. I believe in my original email I said 1690 - I should have said 1698. It is my understanding that this census was the 10th anniversary of the city's founding, and that it was taken to establish a basis for taxation.

Similarly, New York state performed its own census at least prior to the Federal census, and perhaps for a few years after the Federal census. North Carolina, I understand, also took a census prior the the Federal census. These, and others, are referred to by some as Colonial censuses.

-----===== Bill =====-----

Terry Medlar
27 May 2009, 12:51 PM
The city of New Rochelle took the census I'm looking for. I believe in my original email I said 1690 - I should have said 1698. It is my understanding that this census was the 10th anniversary of the city's founding, and that it was taken to establish a basis for taxation.

-----===== Bill =====-----
Try this
Huguenot Historical Society Library
88 Huguenot Street, New Paltz, NY (in Ulster County)
Holdings include: several genealogies of New Rochelle Huguenot families.

Also there is an Old Huguenot Burying Ground in New Rochelle. Try calling Trinity-St. Paul's Episcopal Church
311 Huguenot, New Rochelle, NY; Phone: 914-632-5368

Bill Guion
30 May 2009, 11:24 AM
As I review the information available on-line about my 6G grandfather and his descendants, I discover a lot of inconsistencies. Now this does not surprise me, but it leaves me with two questions, one general/philosophical and one specific.
<snip>
-----===== Bill =====-----

Thanks to all who replied. I very much like the idea of evaluating the "evidence" and making an informed choice which I use, then note the various options in the notes. I'm not so far along that this approach will be a problem.

Also thanks to those who suggested sources. The next few days will be spend tracking all of them down.

I appreciate your inputs.

-----===== Bill =====-----