Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Pruning The Tree: Genealogy Do-Over

Since I began the Genealogy Do Over on Jan 1, I have been working on cleaning up some bad info I had linked to my tree early on in my genealogy adventure. I have decided the best way, for me, to address this issue is to break down my tree into four mini trees. One for each of my grandparents. My paternal side is mostly good, and doesn't need a complete genealogy do-over overhaul. I have set those two mini trees aside. For now.

My maternal side ..... whole different story entirely. It desperately calls for a complete re-do. BUT I did not want to mess with anything on my main tree, so I left that intact and just set it aside. I have created two sets of mini trees for my maternal grandparents. One with collateral and one direct only. I started with the direct only and began ruthlessly pruning anyone that was not either a) in my grandmother's original research or b) sourced with legitimate sources 

First to go: everyone collected from Public Family Trees. I had "relatives" as far back as the 1100's! What was I thinking? Eager newbie. Now I'm paying the price of being an enthusiastic clickophile. This will take some time.
Public Tree Hints - Oh My!!!

One problem solved.
What I am discovering is that I really like the clean, neat, direct line I am creating. I can work it. It makes sense. And I really don't care about all the offspring of my 6th great grandparents. Sorry. I just don't. I had an epiphany last night as I was pruning. With all the "One Trees" out there now, that might be the way to go for collateral relatives. Once my direct tree is cleaned and sourced I am thinking of uploading it to FamilySearch or WikiTree and using THAT as my collateral tree. 

It's a thought in progress. I could change my mind. Probably will a few times before I settle on a direction I feel most comfortable with. But it is making sense to me for the moment.

I am beginning to see a light at the end of this crazy ancestral maze I have built over the last 10 years. I wish I hadn't been so afraid of a little pruning earlier on, I might have saved myself some time and been on to better things. Ah well. Lesson learned. The hard way. This time. 

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