How can I find the connections among numerous people with the same surname who lived in the same area at the same time? Complicating things is the fact that some of them also share common first names.
How can I find the connection between families that I KNOW are related but I don’t have evidence of the connection?
I’m hoping that Clooz software can help me make those connections.
Most genealogy software is lineage based. You enter the people you know are related and use documents to supply evidence of the relationships. Clooz is document based. You enter documents and the people in those documents. You can then analyze the collection of documents for possible kinships among those people.
My evidence from Polish ancestors comes from Roman Catholic church records that have been microfilmed by the Mormon church. These records can give clues to relationships that are not obvious. A Baptismal record is hard evidence of parentage, but it also lists the infant’s godparents. Who are these people? They are clearly important people in the lives of the baby’s parents. Are they siblings? Cousins? In-laws? Neighbors? The same holds for the witnesses shown in marriage records. They are undoubtedly close to the bride and groom – but how? I want to find the connections.
Problem is that it’s almost like starting from scratch because I must manually enter the documents. And I find the Clooz documentation to be only minimally helpful. The good news is that there are only a few families for which I need to do that.
I still don’t know for absolutely certain where my grandfather, Stanley Dachtera was born. When I began my research I found many people with the Dachtera surname in a relatively small geographic area. There were also a lot with variations on that name. How are they all connected? ARE they connected?
Back fifteen years ago I was able to print the pages from the microfilms but had to take them as they were – no enhancement was possible. Many of them are almost impossible to read. They’re smudged, or faded or very dark. And, of course they’re written in Polish or Latin in ancient handwriting.
So I’m going back to those microfilms again. This time with technology that lets me make electronic copies and even try to clear up and enhance the images before I copy them. Then I can use Photoshop to clean them up even more.
It is a bit daunting. Rereading the films. Learning new software. Entering the data. I sure hope it solves some mysteries.