FamilySearch Wiki:WikiProject What is a Record

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What is a Record? Project

The purpose of this project is to provide an engaging video for beginners to genealogy research who are learning about how to find their ancestors in records.  The following are the guidelines and requirements for this project.

Project Details and Requirements
Project Name: What is a Record
Project objective: Create a short, engaging video with narration and examples of documents explaining the purpose and types of records in genealogy research. Suggested content is listed below.
Deliverable medium (how this will be delivered): Video
Audience Beginners to genealogy that wish to find their ancestors in records.
Language: English
Main goal of project: Teach concept of what genealogical records are and what they can contain about someone's ancestor to beginners just starting in genealogy research.
Additional goals: Tell an interesting story using various genealogical records.
Due date: August 15, 2014
Specifics and requirements:
  1. Need experience in creating videos
  2. Various records and record types  should be shown with specific examples to get the attention of beginners to genealogy research
  3. Must have own software to create video and host video on personal website
  4. Video should be between 1 minute to 1 minute and 30 seconds
Content to be covered: See below.

Content Outline

Concepts to be covered in video
Project Name: What is a Record
1. Definition of a record A record is a source of information.
2. Family members can be found in records.
3. Typical family history records:
  • Birth certificates
  • Marriage certificates
  • Death certificates
  • Baptism record
  • Family histories
  • Oral histories
4. Different kinds of groups that have created records:
  • Families
  • Governments
  • Churches
  • Businesses (cemetery, newspaper, etc.)
  • Military
5. Other types of family records.
  • Genealogies
  • Bible records
  • Diaries
  • Journals
  • Letters or postcards
6. Types of government records.
  • Census
  • Passenger lists
  • Naturalization records
  • Court records
  • Land records
  • Notarial records
  • Police records
  • Tax records
  • Wills and other probate records
7. Types of church records.
  • Christenings
  • Baptisms
  • Marriages
  • Burials
8. Types of military records for ancestors who served in the military:
  • Draft records
  • Conscription records
  • Service records
  • Pensions
9. Types of business records or other organizations:
  • Cemetery records
  • Funeral home records
  • Newspapers
  • Directories
  • Employment records
  • Etc.
  • Not all records are written.
  • Information may be stored in someone’s memory.
  • Ask family, friends, neighbors, and associates for stories or recollections of your ancestor.
11. Photographs can give clues about persons, places, dates, ages, relationships, and occupations.
12. Records come in different formats, such as:
  • Original documents
  • Books
  • Films
  • Fiche
  • CDs
  • Video or Audio Recordings
13. Records are found:
  • Online (more every day)
  • Your home or relatives home
  • Archives and libraries
  • Government repositories
14. Information on a record may not always be accurate. One record may disagree with a fact on another.
For example:
  • Names may be spelled differently from record to record. Ex. Smith, Smyth; Nielson, Nelson, Neilson, Nielsen, Nelsen, Neilsen; Wright, Right
  • Dates may differ between two records. Ex. A death certificate may show that a person died 5 May 1912, while the cemetery headstone says 7 May 1912.
  • Ages may vary from one document to another. Ex. In a census record, a person may be 25 years; 10 years later on the next census, she is only 31.
15. Finding more than one record is necessary to determine the most accurate information.

Records were not always created immediately after an event occurred, and people didn’t always remember things accurately. Thus the discrepancy and need for more information