Genealogy tips from Thomas W. Jones

By Tracey Arial

I’ve been listening to tapes from the 2013 Federation of Genealogical Society conference.

One of my favourite speakers is Thomas W. Jones, who specializes in Fairfax, Virginia research. Jones also wrote the book Mastering Genealogical Proof.

In his presentation about Genealogical Documentation, Jones made three comments I think are important:

Documentation is all about communicating clearly and you can’t communicate something you don’t understand. You have to start by understanding the source you’re using. What is it? Where did it come from? Why was it created?”

There are many ways to cite right. Will the reader understand clearly the context from your citation? That’s what important.”

We use conventions that are short cuts. Italicizing a name of something means that it was published. If we quote something from an unpublished manuscript, we don’t italicize it.”

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