Re: Searching for John McLeod


On Sat, Jul 4, 2020 at 1:10 AM Anne Burgess via <> wrote:
[Edited Message Follows]

It is possible that the John McLeod born in Forgue is the father of Alexander McLeod.

However he shows up as a coachman in every census, and Alexander's father said he was a blacksmith.

I think you still need to follow up the one who was in Ladysbridge Hospital in 1881 and find out whether he was a blacksmith. If he was, then he is more likely to be your John McLeod than the one born in Forgue.

By all means use FamilySearch for pointers. But do not trust anything you find online unless it is an image of an original records. Even then, be wary.

I do use the FamilySearch Family Tree for a couple of reasons -- first, it is the most widely-used free site, and many people trust it, therefor I try to make the sourcing and information for my family members the best possible.

Second, if you use the tree, their hints are now good enough and other tools powerful enough to easily add links between sources and family members when appropriate. As Anne says, just because a person is named in some document /record and it's the same name as your person of interest -- does not mean that the two are linked! 

It's alway necessary to analyze the person of interest's life, *and* what is in the record, to see if they are connected. Fortunately, if you mistakenly (or someone else mistakenly) attached records to the wrong person, they can be *un*-attached. And if there are multiple profiles for the same person, they can (with care) be merged. Thank you for doing that work. It makes the tree better for everyone.

That said, the documents and other records in FamilySearch do not need to be attached to anyone in a tree on FamilySearch. They can be downloaded to your own machine and used in your own private tree, and IMO should be! Images and information can also be uploaded to WikiTree,, MyHeritage, GeneaNet, Geni, etc and linked up to trees there. 

Don't forget the 80% of record images that are not indexed! They are trying to make it easier to find what you need, but there will need to be some work done on your part to find those wills, deeds, arrest records, probate files, etc. We no longer need to go to Family History Centers or libraries and crank microfilm. We can do it in our bunny slippers right in our own homes. 


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