Monday, March 22, 2010

Methodology Monday with more spiral research

The research day that rudely pushed blog posting aside also provided some fodder. One of today's projects involves several lawsuits with almost two dozen people suing and being sued, many of them related and the rest probably so. The lawsuits themselves appear to have vanished from official custody at some point in the past century or two, so it's especially important to glean all possible information from the relevant property records. (Naturally the lawsuits were about property and inheritance!)

The first time I hit the deed books I didn't yet have all the family names; when I returned with a full list of names (from one especially informative deed) I found four more deeds. One had actually been recorded in response to the conclusion of one of the lawsuits. Another was a deed of trust spelling out various descendants' shares resulting from a partition suit (one of the missing lawsuits). Now those deeds have suggested that certain additional lawsuits indexed in the clerk's office may be relevant. Hopefully they have not absconded too.

We always berate ourselves for having to go back -- and we should if it was just inadequate preparation -- but often doing so is part of a natural and necessary learning process. We are chronological animals, and as someone said, time is nature's way of making sure that everything doesn't happen all at once.

1 comment:

PalmsRV said...

I especially like genealogical detective work that involves deeds. Nice post.