Ancestry Daily News
Jumping to Conclusions
I immediately called my mother and asked her who died. Her recent e-mail indicated she was going to a visitation in Loraine, Illinois, in two days. My father has relatives in that area and I wondered who had passed away.
"Who died?" I asked when she answered the phone, barely saying hello.
"What do you mean, who died?" she replied.
"Your message said you were going to a visitation in Loraine?" I queried, still curious.
"I'm going to a school visitation of one of their elementary classrooms. Every so often we have to visit a neighboring district's classrooms." My mother is an elementary school teacher.
"Oh, I thought someone died."
That's how stories get started and funeral flowers get sent before it is necessary. Are you misinterpreting something someone has said or written? Are you jumping to the quick conclusion, which might not necessarily be the correct one? Hunches are not always wrong, but they are not always right either. Get clarification wherever possible.
I Made My Own "Brick Wall"
I then went to the microfilm cabinet and looked for the roll of microfilm for Colby County, Kansas. I looked and I looked, but it was not there. I even checked the roll numbers to make certain no rolls were missing or misplaced--all to no avail. I politely asked the lady behind the desk if she could help and she said, "I'll go check." She came back a few minutes later and very gently pointed out that Colby, Kansas was the county seat of Thomas County. If I got the roll for Thomas County, I most likely would find what I was looking for.
Embarrassed, I politely thanked her and waited for my face to turn every shade of red. Once I had the roll for Thomas County, locating the family in question was easily done. I had made my own "brick wall." I just wish they all came down this easily.
Think, Go Back, Read Over, Don't Jump to Conclusions. You might be failing to open the door because you "push" when it says "pull."
And remember: We all have "bad hair days" and some of us won't be getting most of ours back!
Used by the Author on his web site with permission.
More Genealogy Articles by Michael John Neill
---type in your surname or county and state in the search box that comes up on the left hand side of your screen. I've found and purchased several books this way!