Breamlea, Victoria

Breamlea, Victoria

Saturday, 18 April 2015

the person with the most doesn't win

Hi everyone,

I use myheritage sometimes and so I got an email today saying they had a match for my family tree.

The match was for my great Uncle, who died at 9 years old or so.

When I went to the particular website that listed the match, I found that the person had nearly 23,000 people in their family tree. Is this a bad case of biggest tree wins?  I bet the tree maker would not have a clue who my great Uncle was really.

However, the tree maker was from Victoria, Australia which made me feel a little better for no logical reason.  Also there were details about my family six generations back, while I had only managed to go back three generations.

I saw that he had copied the mistake that I had accidentally put in Ancestry when I first started. And thus the mistake grows over the internet.

I guess I have a different point of view than the one of  'the person with the most wins.'  To me it is much more important to get the recent history down; the stories, the people.  Records will always be available.  In fact, more records will be available later on when the backlog of records are digitised.

What cannot be replaced is the personal memories of the people who are alive today.  Their memories help us make sense of the records we find.  The casual comment, "oh, that's because..." will be lost forever as each person in the family passes on.  Their understanding, their take on things is irreplaceable.  Historians of the future will always be able to couch facts into our historical social setting.  What they can't know and what is our imperative job to preserve, as only we can preserve it, is each individual's place within it.
Historically yours,
Valerius Copernicus

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