After lunch Wednesday (which will receive it’s own post later this week), I attended Fitting the Pieces Together: A Case Study in City Research by F. Warren Bittner, CG. This was one of the best presentations I have ever seen. Mr. Bittner is a wonderful presenter and his presentation was good for all levels of genealogists, in my opinion. This is one I would recommend purchasing the CD for.
Bittner started with a basic overview of the genealogical proof standard and then put it into practice with a case study on his New York City ancestors. The main takeaways from this lecture are that the address a family lived at in a city is one of the most important items you can have. The second is that indirect evidence which comes from comparing documents tends to provide the best proof of identity. Lastly, always make sure every statement you make is cited. My favorite quote was that that when looking at “complex evidence: Compare sources, resolve conflicts, must include a written proof summary. Otherwise, we doom the next generation to redo the research.”
The last workshop that I attended was
Ladies and Gentlemen of the Jury: The Evidence Presented Clearly Shows by Barbara Vines Little. Little discussed the different types of proof summaries, list-style and narrative-style. She said that the narrative-style tends to make a more convincing argument, as you can include more details. The main takeaways from this lecture were that it is not enough to say that a record does not exist, you need to tell where you have looked for it and that these proof summaries, particularly if you use the narrative-style, become your written family history.
After the workshop ended, I sat in the NGS home-study course round table. I did not stay long as this was for a more basic level than I was looking for. I do highly recommend this course for beginner and intermediate genealogists.
Later that night there was a blogger meet-up at Champs in the Hyatt. It was great to meet new bloggers and discuss the lectures people had went to. I also met Jennifer Holik who has recently written a group of books on engaging the next generation of genealogists, some of which have lesson plans for every age level. I looked through these briefly and am very impressed. I plan on reading them and reviewing them on my blog as soon as possible.
Thank you for the great time out, ladies!