Why You Might Want To Revisit Your Research

Genealogy is not a one-and-done hobby (or profession). It is a cycle of questioning what you want to know, making a plan, executing it…then starting over with a new question.

But sometimes you have to go back to what you think you already know to be true and revisit your work because some new clue pops up that has you wondering…Is my prior research correct?

question marks on craft paper

That happened to me this beautiful Sunday morning. I’m continuing to look at the McKamey family line with my 3x great-grandfather, John C. McKamey, father of John McKamey who died in the Fraterville Mine Explosion.

In my tree I have John C. McKamey married to Nancy Seiber, but searching on Ancestry, the name Zerelda Tunnell keeps popping up as married to John C. McKamey. What’s going on?

Like me, I’m sure many of your ancestors were not that creative when it came to naming their children so they used the same names… a lot! This is the case with the two John C. McKamey’s here.

I went back and looked at all the records I had and verified the lineage of my John. I’m confident that he was born to Andrew and Margaret McKamey.

I then did research on the second John (and Zerelda) and found completely different locations and records that help separate them. It seems they were cousins!

Graphic made in Lucid Chart (www.lucidchart.com)

As an added bonus, the women John and Andrew married had the maiden name of McKamey and were possibly sisters. So two McKamey brothers married two McKamey sisters.

Since the McKamey surname is so prevalent in this portion of my tree (for maiden and married names), I think it’s time to make sure it is all correct. While I think I’ve got it figured out, I will take some time and go back to the beginning and analyze each record to make sure it is attached to the proper John C. McKamey. Satisfaction isn’t always found in discovering something new.

Genealogy tip: It might be good to revisit some of your early work when you were a new genealogist. Back then you didn’t have the skills you have today. Since you know more and know to look for more, go back and see what you missed the first time.

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