Tuesday, June 12, 2012

A lot more facts and a lot less drama

Family lore tends to cloud our view of historical facts with each passing generation. Competent genealogists scour surviving original records for info about ancestors. Sometimes those documents provide conflicting or obscure info that must be clearly reconciled in the final analysis. Preferring hearsay evidence is not worthy of a book put forth as a genealogy of Michelle' Obama's ancestry. Thank-you Megan for being a genealogical myth-buster! 

Regarding Michelle Obama's Ancestors: 'American Tapestry' Has Holes in It Megan Smolenyak Smolenyak calls 'em like she sees 'em in this book review. It's so frustrating to me that myths are still weightier than facts in some so-called genealogy books. Megan added this comment on my public wall:

Thanks for sharing this, Pat. I had such high hopes for this book, given how much the author was starting out with and the fact that she had more than 2 years to research and write, but she seemed to lose her way once she wandered off the trail of what had already been established before she started. Greatly appreciate comments on this article at HuffPo from fellow genealogists to reinforce the apparently startling notion that accuracy matters!

If I could speak to the author of American Tapestry, it would be to say, "How about a lot more facts and a lot less drama?"

Happy family tree climbing!
Myrt     :)
Your friend in genealogy.

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