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Genealogical Standards of Evidence: A Guide for Family Historians [Paperback]

Brenda Dougall Merriman
3.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (1 customer review)
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Book Description

March 15 2010 Genealogist's Reference Shelf (Book 2)

Genealogical evidence is the information that allows us to identify an individual, an event in his or her life, or the relationship between individuals. In such a process, we often hear or use words such as evidence, proof, or documentation. Brenda Dougall Merriman takes readers through the genealogical process of research and identification, along the way examining how the genealogical community has developed standards of evidence and documentation, what those standards are, and how they can be applied. As a supplement to courses, workshops, and seminars, this book provides both an in-depth and inexpensive reference, perfect for compiling and checking research notes.


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Review

Genealogical evidence is the information that allows us to identify an individual, an event in his or her life, or the relationship between individuals. In such a process, we often hear or use words such as evidence, proof, or documentation. Brenda Dougall Merriman takes readers through the genealogical process of research and identification, along the way examining how the genealogical community has developed standards of evidence and documentation, what those standards are, and how they can be applied. As a supplement to courses, workshops, and seminars, this book provides both an in-depth and inexpensive reference, perfect for compiling and checking research notes.



...should be considered a must-read by anyone doing family history research in Canada. This easy-to-read book makes it simple to understand the different record sources, and the limitations and possibilities of each one. Merriman's book makes it clear that it does not have to be difficult to get your facts right.

(Times-Colonist, The)

This work is essential in the Internet age.

(Ottawa Citizen, The)

How often do genealogists encounter a methodology book they can't put down? Merriman's is such a book." "Merriman's delightful book explains and illustrates standards and evidential concepts and acts like a pocket-sized reference source for further study.

(Elissa Scalise Powell National Genealogical Society Quarterly 2010-09-01)

This slim book tackles a bold and worthy goal.

(Jay Fonkert International Society of Family History Writers and Editors 2010-06-01)

Genealogical Standards of Evidence: A Guide for Family Historians by Brenda Dougall Merriman is a must for the serious genealogist.

(Linda Kent The Lindsay Post 2010-01-01)

This book is an excellent practical reference guide to current genealogical standards and how to apply them to ones own research. It is highly recommended for a researchers personal collection.

(FGS Forum)

The author’s grasp of genealogical research principles and extensive experience with Canadians records are evident throughout. (International Society of Family History Writers and Editors)

Merriman’s delightful book explains and illustrates standards and evidential concepts and acts like a pocket-sized reference source for further study. (National Genealogical Society Quarterly)

About the Author

Brenda Dougall Merriman, Certified Genealogist (CG), is the author of Genealogy in Ontario and United Empire Loyalists: A Guide to Tracing Loyalist Ancestors in Upper Canada. A member of the Ontario Genealogical Society since 1970, she founded the Ontario Chapter of the Association of Professional Genealogists. She lives in Toronto.


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3.0 out of 5 stars Genealogical Standards of Evidence May 6 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Although the book is only 108 pages it would have been better with an index. A quick read and possibly useful in your library.
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Amazon.com: 4.4 out of 5 stars  5 reviews
12 of 12 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Documentation is everything Dec 6 2012
By grt - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
A TV detective, I don't remember which one, was noted for saying, "Just the facts..." With the proliferation of genealogy sites on the internet and very misleading advertising that suggest that all you have to do is enter a name and a search engine will put it all together for you in any format your want, Ancestry.com and other similar sites are saturated with user submitted research, much of which is undocumented and sorely lacking in accuracy. Without verifiable documentation, genealogy research results are often little more than a hodgepodge of wishful thinking, family folklore (often interesting, but just as often disconected from reality), skipped generations, families merged due to name and place similarity, etc., etc., etc. Most of these problems with user submitted research results could be eleminated with close attention to documentation. These same problems often appear in printed genealogies, as well. The information one finds in GENEALOGICAL STANDARDS OF EVIDENCE will not make your brick walls vanish or magically find your missing ancestor, though it might help. Rather, the book explains the standards of evidence that, when met, will help the researcher eleminate wishful thinking, family folklore, skipped generations, merged families, and the like. Researching and preserving our family histories/genealogies is an honorable endeavor. We owe it to those who came before us and those who will follow us to do it right. When used properly GENEALOGICAL STANDARDS OF EVIDENCE is one of the best tools on the market for helping amateurs and professionals do genealogy right.
4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent resource for establishing provable linege June 11 2013
By P. Munson-siter - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Kindle Edition|Verified Purchase
This is one of several excellent books that discusses the level of proof (documented sources, etc) you will need to establish a lineage to particular people, rather than the rather loose standards you often find beginning and rank amature family historians using to say they descend from someone. I am a serious genealogist who has worked helping potential members of the DAR work on proving their descent from American patriots of the American Revolution. Far to many of them start out with family pedigrees they have found online, and they are often surprised when I start trying to find proper documentation for each and every link. This book explains the types of proper documentation anyone wanting to establish a provable lineage up to the current standards of most lineage societies I know of. However, it isn't just genealogists looking to prove descent from specific people (Mayflower, Colonial Dames, War of 1812, DAR/SAR, etc) who will find this book invaluable. Any family historian who aspires to be viewed as a serious genealogist rather than a 'mere' hobbits will find this book of grate value in evaluating your own research and the source documentation you have found to support the conclusions you are making about your family history.
5.0 out of 5 stars Great Source for Genies June 16 2014
By K. Howard - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
This book was recommended by genealogists on the national level. I was fortunate to have found a copy on Amazon. Use it quite often.
1 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Discussion of the Genealogical Proof Standard May 22 2013
By Betsy R. Miller - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
I was very interested by the discussion of the GPS, and the "Checklist of Genealogical Sources" (across 6 pages of the book!) was a welcome bonus.
0 of 6 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Okay June 2 2013
By bookchore - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
It is a recommended book for my certification. As of now it's too early to tell its full worth and usefulness.
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