Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Finding William Small Howe (part 3)

As we saw in Part 1 and Part 2 of Finding William Small Howe, after disappearing from the Colony of New Brunswick after the 1851 census William Small Howe was found in the State of Maine, USA. We still haven't found that smoking gun document that connects him with his parents after he moves to Maine but the evidence looks pretty good when it is presented as a bundle. So what else can we discover?

Since I have a paid subscription with Ancestry I will continue to search there...

The first hint that popped up is one from the U.S., Find A Grave Index, 1600s-Current database. Since this is an index I want to check out the Find A Grave page to see if it is just a simple memorial page gleaned from other sources without a picture of the marker or, if we are very lucky, there will be a picture with other details provided.

And we are lucky!

The memorial has not just a picture of the marker but also a close up of the writing and calculated relationships.

Find A Grave, database and images (http://findagrave.com : accessed 6 Jan 2017), memorial page for Dr. William S Howe (1835-1891), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15825309, citing Pittsfield Village Cemetery, Pittsfield, Somerset County, Maine, USA; photograph provided by Jennifer Kelley.
Find A Grave, database and images (http://findagrave.com : accessed 6 Jan 2017), memorial page for Dr. William S Howe (1835-1891), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15825309, citing Pittsfield Village Cemetery, Pittsfield, Somerset County, Maine, USA; photograph provided by Jennifer Kelley.
But is this the right William S. Howe? We need to check the rest of the names on the marker. We find:

Grace E. Howe1
C. Emery Howe2
Annie P. Howe3
Find A Grave, database and images (http://findagrave.com : accessed 6 Jan 2017), memorial page for Grace E Howe (1834-1907), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15825313, citing Pittsfield Village Cemetery, Pittsfield, Somerset County, Maine, USA; photograph provided by Jim.

Find A Grave, database and images (http://findagrave.com : accessed 6 Jan 2017), memorial page for C Emery Howe (unknown-1882), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15825300, citing Pittsfield Village Cemetery, Pittsfield, Somerset County, Maine, USA; photograph provided by Jim.

Find A Grave, database and images (http://findagrave.com : accessed 6 Jan 2017), memorial page for Annie P Howe (unknown-1876), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15825317, citing Pittsfield Village Cemetery, Pittsfield, Somerset County, Maine, USA; photograph provided by Jim.


All three of those people were found in the 1870 Federal Census of Somerset County, Maine, USA in the household of William S. Howe. This looks to be the right family. Of course, that is assuming the family in the 1870 census is the right family. Might was well continue going down this rabbit hole unless some fact or event proves otherwise.

Now that I have the probable death date for William S Howe, Ancestry provided another hint. This time it is from the Maine, Wills and Probate Records, 1584-1999 collection. This collection has digitized images of wills and probates. A wonderful find! It is presented as a virtual microfilm and it isn't just one image but the will and probate file for William S. Howe goes from image 383 to image 405. We even find the will itself:
"Maine, Wills and Probate Records, 1584-1999," database and images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.ca: accessed 6 Jan 2017), William S Howe will dated 13 Jun 1891; citing Probate Court (Androscoggin County, Maine)
"Maine, Wills and Probate Records, 1584-1999," database and images, Ancestry (http://www.ancestry.ca: accessed 6 Jan 2017), William S Howe will dated 13 Jun 1891; citing Probate Court (Androscoggin County, Maine) 
William mentions his daughter Josie E. Howe and his wife Grace E. Howe. We saw them in the 1880 Federal Census, Somerset County, Maine, USA. So the will and probate appears to be for the same William S. Howe we have been following.

A hint from the U.S., Newspaper Extractions from the Northeast, 1704-1930 collection also appears. This is only an index and for the image of the index document it states, "Howe, Dr.,W.S., d. Aug,25,1891(T . Aug.26)". This is a pointer to the August 26, 1891 edition of the Boston Transcript. So, where do we find the Boston Transcript? The Vita Brevis blog of the New England Historical Genealogical Society posted on November 7, 2016 "Boston Transcript column now online" is a great write up on finding that newspaper so I will defer to them.

Unfortunately me for, the August 26, 1891 edition isn't in the Google News Archive. Murphy's Law strikes again...the August 25 edition has been digitized but not the 26th.

But wait a second

If I go to the August 25 edition and keep going through the pages I come to the August 26th edition. Interesting!

On page 8 of the Boston Evening Transcript under "Recent Deaths" I find this notice:
"Recent Deaths - Dr. W. S. Howe," Boston Evening Transcript, 26 Aug 1891, p. 8, col. 5; digital images, Google News Archives (http://news.google.com/newspapers : accessed 6 Jan 2017).
"Recent Deaths - Dr. W. S. Howe," Boston Evening Transcript, 26 Aug 1891, p. 8, col. 5; digital images, Google News Archives (http://news.google.com/newspapers : accessed 6 Jan 2017).

Captain in the First Maine Cavalry? I wonder where this will lead me?

To be continued...


1. Find A Grave, database and images (http://findagrave.com : accessed 6 Jan 2017), memorial page for Grace E Howe (1834-1907), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15825313, citing Pittsfield Village Cemetery, Pittsfield, Somerset County, Maine, USA; photograph provided by Jim.

2. Find A Grave, database and images (http://findagrave.com : accessed 6 Jan 2017), memorial page for C Emery Howe (unknown-1882), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15825300, citing Pittsfield Village Cemetery, Pittsfield, Somerset County, Maine, USA; photograph provided by Jim.

3. Find A Grave, database and images (http://findagrave.com : accessed 6 Jan 2017), memorial page for Annie P Howe (unknown-1876), Find A Grave Memorial no. 15825317, citing Pittsfield Village Cemetery, Pittsfield, Somerset County, Maine, USA; photograph provided by Jim.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Finding William Small Howe (part 2)

I'm still trying to figure out if the William S. Howe found in Maine, USA, husband of Grace E, is the same as the William Small Howe, my 3rd Great-Granduncle, husband of Grace E. The last we left the family I had found William S. Howe in the 1860, 1870, and 1880 censuses of the United States of America in Maine.

Maybe any records left by William S. Howe's children will help so I turn to the various census enumerations for help. In 1860 a son, Charles E., is found. But no such luck finding any additional records online such as a birth registration. In 1870 a daughter, Annie P.,is now in the family. Yet no birth registration is found online...sigh. Unfortunately a trip to Maine is out of the question at this time to check with the town clerk in Ashland for any records or with the State Archives in Maine.


In the 1880 census a third child, Josie E. is found. We get lucky with her when an Ancestry leaf appears beside her name. She marries Walter Woodruff Parmalee on September 16, 1902.

Ancestry.com, "Maine Marriages, 1892-1996," database index, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 12 Feb 2012), entry for Walter W Parmalee and Josephine E Howe, married 16 Sep 1902; citing Maine State Archives. Maine Marriages 1892-1996 (except 1967 to 1976).
Ancestry.com, "Maine Marriages, 1892-1996," database index, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 12 Feb 2012), entry for Walter W Parmalee and Josephine E Howe, married 16 Sep 1902; citing Maine State Archives. Maine Marriages 1892-1996 (except 1967 to 1976).


Yet the image presented by Ancestry only has the marriage details.

One tip when looking at Ancestry images is you need to look at the image before and after also. In this case the next image is the back of the record of marriage and it has the important clue!

Ancestry.com, "Maine Marriages, 1892-1996," database index, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 12 Feb 2012), entry for Walter W Parmalee and Josephine E Howe, married 16 Sep 1902 (back of page); citing Maine State Archives. Maine Marriages 1892-1996 (except 1967 to 1976).
Ancestry.com, "Maine Marriages, 1892-1996," database index, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 12 Feb 2012), entry for Walter W Parmalee and Josephine E Howe, married 16 Sep 1902 (back of page); citing Maine State Archives. Maine Marriages 1892-1996 (except 1967 to 1976).
Here her father is recorded as William Small Howe, dead. His occupation was physician and he was born in St. John, New Brunswick. This is a great find.

Possibly a Google Search will provide us some clues. Here we find William Small Howe, a physician in Lewiston, Maine, USA.
General Catalogue of Bowdoin College 1794-1889; PDF Download, Google Books (https://books.google.ca/ : downloaded 2 Jan 2017), 116.
General Catalogue of Bowdoin College 1794-1889; PDF Download, Google Books (https://books.google.ca/ : downloaded 2 Jan 2017), 116.
Looks to be the same person.

One thing to note, Saint John, New Brunswick is the closest major city to the area of Kings County where the Howe family lived. It wouldn't be unusual for his birth place to be listed as St. John. It seems like the William Small Howe in the record of marriage as the father for Josephine E Howe and the entry in the Bowdoin College is the same person.

A very recent find (literally as I wrote this blog) in the Daniel F Johnston's New Brunswick Newspaper Vital Statistics has this from the Saint John New Brunswick Courier:
m. Woodstock (Carleton Co.) Thursday 10th inst, at residence of bride's father, by Rev. Thos. Todd, Rev. William S. HOWE, Pastor of Baptist Church, Chipman (Queens Co.) / Miss Grace E. EMERY, Woodstock.
This seems to be an announcement of marriage for the the same William S. Howe we have been tracking. One thing I have found when researching a number of my Howe ancestors is that they have often taken up the calling of Baptist Minister. But still no document that clearly establishes that William Small Howe here is my 3rd Great-Granduncle. But is certainly seems like it is the right person.

Remember the "C.B." as the occupation for William S. Howe in the 1860 Federal Census of Maine? Could it stand for "Cleryman Baptist" or something like that?

To be continued...

Wednesday, January 4, 2017

Finding William Small Howe (part 1)

For those that chase down the various lines of siblings of their direct line one of the challenges faced is when the brothers and sisters move away from the homestead. Sometimes the family members stay in the same area and you can find them in previous or subsequent pages in the census. Other times, it can become a challenge. This is the case of William Small Howe.

In the 1851 census of Upham Parish, Kings County, New Brunswick we find the household of Robert and Sarah Howe with their son Edwin, Robert's grandmother Esther, Robert's mother Hannah, and Robert's siblings including an absent William, age 23 years, native born (that is, born in New Brunswick), a blacksmith.

1851 census of Canada East, Canada West, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Kings County, sub-district 42, Upham, p. 37, Household of Robert; RG 31; digital images, Ancestry.com, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 6 Oct 2011); citing citing Library and Archives Canada microfilm C-995.
1851 census of Canada East, Canada West, New Brunswick, and Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Kings County, sub-district 42, Upham, p. 37, Household of Robert; RG 31; digital images, Ancestry.com, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 6 Oct 2011); citing citing Library and Archives Canada microfilm C-995.

William Small Howe is known to be still alive in 1853 due to the deed between the Heirs and widow of Charles Howe and Robert Howe that was found in the New Brunswick Deed Registry Books for Kings County
New Brunswick, Kings County Registry Records 1785-1914, K2: 355, Heirs and widow of Charles Howe to Robert Howe, 1 Jul 1853; Provincial Archives of New Brunswick, Fredericton; RS 89 F6237, item 12200.
New Brunswick, Kings County Registry Records 1785-1914, K2: 355, Heirs and widow of Charles Howe to Robert Howe, 1 Jul 1853; Provincial Archives of New Brunswick, Fredericton; RS 89 F6237, item 12200.

However, after 1853 he seems to disappear from the records in what later became Canada.

The question that always arises is did William Small Howe die between 1853 and the date of the 1861 census? If the answer was yes, is there any evidence such as a grave marker, a few lines in the newspaper, or a will? If the answer is no, where did he disappear to?

Once again, those often overlooked land records come to the rescue.

The 1885 there is a deed made between William S. Howe and William Franklin Howe.
Kings, New Brunswick, County Deed Registry Books, 1780-1941, K-4: 173, William S. Howe and wife Grace E. to William Franklin Howe, deed, 8 Jul 1885; digital images, FamilySearch.org, FamilySearch.org (https://familysearch.org/ : accessed 5 Feb 2012).
Kings, New Brunswick, County Deed Registry Books, 1780-1941, K-4: 173, William S. Howe and wife Grace E. to William Franklin Howe, deed, 8 Jul 1885; digital images, FamilySearch.org, FamilySearch.org (https://familysearch.org/ : accessed 5 Feb 2012).
William Franklin Howe is my 2nd great-grandfather and the son of the Robert Howe from the previous deed. But is this William S. Howe the same person as the William Small Howe that I'm looking for? There are some clues that might be able to help me. In 1885 William S. Howe:
  • is residing in Lewiston, Maine, USA
  • is a Doctor of  Medicine
  • is married to "Grace E."

Can I find a William S. Howe married to Grace E. in the 1880 census of the USA somewhere in the State of Maine (warning, rhetorical question)?
1880 U.S. census, Somerset County, Maine, population schedule, Pittsfield, enumeration district (ED) 170, p. 12, dwelling 106, family 120, household of William S Howe; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2012); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T9, roll 487.
1880 U.S. census, Somerset County, Maine, population schedule, Pittsfield, enumeration district (ED) 170, p. 12, dwelling 106, family 120, household of William S Howe; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2012); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm T9, roll 487.

So a William S. Howe, born in New Brunswick, father born in New Brunswick, mother born in Massachusetts, a homeophic [sic] physician, married to Grace E. was found in Pittsfield, Maine, USA. But is this my William Small Howe since I know his mother was born in New Brunswick? His age is out by a few years in this census based on what was recorded in the 1851 census. His son's name of "Charles" is the same name as William's father. That might be a clue or just a red-herring.

We need to keep working back in time in the hopes of finding a clue...
1870 U.S. census, Somerset County, Maine, population schedule, Pittsfield, p. 1, 322 [stamped], dwelling 2, family 2, household of William S. Howe; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2012); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm M593, roll 559.
1870 U.S. census, Somerset County, Maine, population schedule, Pittsfield, p. 1, 322 [stamped], dwelling 2, family 2, household of William S. Howe; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2012); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm M593, roll 559.





1860 U.S. census, Aroostook County, Maine, population schedule, Ashland, p. 10, dwelling 57, family 57, household of William S. Howe; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2012); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm M653, roll 434.
1860 U.S. census, Aroostook County, Maine, population schedule, Ashland, p. 10, dwelling 57, family 57, household of William S. Howe; digital images, Ancestry.com (http://www.ancestry.com/ : accessed 5 Feb 2012); citing National Archives and Records Administration microfilm M653, roll 434.

As a side note, the occupation of "C.B." in the 1860 census in Maine is curious. It isn't blacksmith or physician and all the other occupations on the page were written in full. Yet another mystery.


If this is my William Small Howe then finding him in the 1860 census of the USA would explain why I couldn't find him in the 1861 census of New Brunswick.

To be continued...

The Return

Dear gentle reader, it has been a long time since I last wrote in this blog. I'm sorry for dropping off the face of the blogosphere without notice but life (and death) has a way of changing one's focus. Genealogy and this blog had to take a backseat to other aspects of my life.

The biggest change was the death of my father, Ronald Warrener McKinlay, in September 2015. The challenge of witnessing his passing and subsequently completing his Ontario Death Registration document along with helping in writing his obituary took more out of me than I expected. Combine that with a full time job and also learning that Richard Noel Frizell, the husband of my late grand aunt, passed away in December 2015 I found that I just didn't feel like recording any more deaths. Genealogy was no longer fun. It is only recently that I have started back researching the various branches of my family lines.

The posts will not be on a regular schedule. However, I will try to write something up on a weekly basis about my genealogy research and how I answer the various questions that always seem to crop up when delving into one's family history.

I do hope you will stay tuned to see what I have learned over the past year and a half and what I will learn in the future.


Saturday, July 18, 2015

New Brunswick Research Sites

It has been a while since my last post but my new job has kept me busy and at the end of the day I haven't had the energy to do any genealogy research. However, I'm slowly getting back into working on my own tree. This means my posts here will, unfortunately, be infrequent.

One province where I find a number of branches of my family tree is New Brunswick, Canada. Fortunately there are some great online resources that touch upon that province. The best and my go to site is the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick, AKA PANB. There you will find quite a number of freely available resources including1:
  • Vital Statistics from Government Records. This collection often includes the images of the documents that you can download to your computer...for free. It includes:
    • Index to Late Registration of Births (1810-1919)
    • Index to Late Registration of Births: County Series (1869-1901)
    • Index to County Birth Registers (1800-1913)
    • Index to Provincial Registrations of Births (1870-1919)
    • Index to New Brunswick Marriages (1847-1964)
    • Index to County Death Registers (1885-1921)
    • Provincial Returns of Deaths (1815-1919)
    • Index to Death Certificates (1920-1964)
  • Daniel F Johnson's New Brunswick Newspaper Vital Statistics. The late Daniel F. Johnson, over a span of 23 years, went through many of the early New Brunswick newspapers and indexed the names found within. Many times this index will be the only clue concerning a birth, marriage, or death of your ancestor.
  • Wallace Hale's Early New Brunswick Probate, 1785-1835. This is a database created from Wallace Hale's "Early New Brunswick Probates, 1785-1835" and has been made freely available to all researchers through this site. Since this is an abstract of the probates you should go to your local library and order, through the Interlibrary Loan program, the microfilm containing the probate file from PANB.
  • Index to Marriage Bonds 1810-1932. This is an index of the marriage bonds. Just note that the date of the bond is not that of the marriage. Additionally the couple may not have gone through with the marriage.
  • Index to Land Petitions: Original Series, 1783-1918. If you are tracing Loyalist ancestors in New Brunswick this is a great resource. Although an index it does tell you which microfilm you need to order via the Interlibrary Loan program so you can view the petition.
  • Wallace Hale's Fort Havoc. For my Loyalist research Wallace Hale's Fort Havoc collection has been very useful since PANB has posted many of his transcriptions of documents that may be hard to find.
  • Place Names of New Brunswick. If I am trying to find a name of a community in New Brunswick this is my starting place. Here you will find descriptions of communities, some of their history, distances to nearby places, and, most importantly, cadastral maps from the early to mid 1800s.
Ancestry.ca and Library and Archives Canada (LAC) are where I find the ancestors in the census records. Since I already have a subscription to Ancestry they make it easy2 for me to locate those distant connections in the census. However, for the 1901 and 1911 census Ancestry gives a range for the microfilm number the page came from so I head on over to the LAC Census page to find the entry there so I can record the correct microfilm number in my citation.

FamilySearch has also a number of freely available records on their site concerning New Brunswick. Although you can find the vital statistics collection on the Provincial Archives of New Brunswick site sometimes using the search by the names of parents only to find missing children is easier on FamilySearch. But the main reason to use FamilySearch is for the New Brunswick, County Deed Registry Books, 1780-1930 collection. Although not computer indexed this collection isn't that hard to use. You will not only find land transactions like deeds and mortgages but also copies of wills and separation agreements. Basically if it had to do with buying, selling, or transferring land you will probably find it in this collection.

For recent obituaries, besides searching the Obituary Daily Times, I also stop by the obituary search page for the Telegraph-Journal. Since that site searches the contents of the posted obituaries I often find mentions of siblings and spouses within the obituaries.

Archive.org is another site I make use of after I have found the information in the vital statistics and census pages. Maybe you have come across a notation like "NYGBR v35" when looking for your New Brunswick Loyalists. First you need to know that NYGBR refers to the "New York Genealogical and Biographical Record". Since that volume is out of copyright the fine folks at the Internet Archive have actually digitized that book for your viewing and reading pleasure. You can also find a black and white scan of the Atlas of the Maritime Provinces of the Dominion of Canada for viewing and even downloading to your computer.

For the first edition of the Atlas of the Maritime Province of the Dominion of Canada then check out the David Rumsey Map Collection. Actually, just check out his site for an amazing collection of old maps. You can also drop by the Grant Reference Plan Viewer provided by GeoNB. Of course if helps if you already know where your ancestor settled in the province first.

There is always a good Google search to find interesting sites. Places such as FamilyHeritage.ca and New Brunswick GenWeb

Hopefully these sites will help in your exploration of your New Brunswick ancestors.


1. This is just a highlight of what is available. There is so much more.
2. Sort of easy. It all depends on the index transcription.

Monday, June 1, 2015

Voices from the Dust - Ottawa's Rootstech - Jun 20, 2015

If you are in Ottawa or the surrounding area and you can't make it out to the Quebec Family History Society's Roots 2015 Conference in Montreal then the Ottawa Ontario Stake Family History Centre will be the place to be on Saturday, June 20th, 2015 between 1 pm and 5 pm for Voices from the Dust.

The speakers and talks are:

Sarah ChatfieldResearching Your Family History at Library and Archives Canada
The basics of the genealogical research and the genealogical information resources available at Library and Archives Canada.

Romaine HoneyGenealogy Resources and Services at the Ottawa Public Library
An introduction to books, online resources, research guides, and professional services available to you at the public library. Come find out how the library can help with your genealogy.

Gloria TubmanParish Records a Resource for Family Historians
The usefulness of parish records as a resource for researchers of family history will be discussed. These records can be a substitute for or use to verify information on civil registrations. The discussion will include the information one can expect to find, the types of records, the differences in records among some of the various churches and the possible gems one can discover in the parish records. Parish records from England, Ontario and Quebec will be discussed.

Magdalene CarsonYour Family History in Book Form as an Enduring Heirloom
Once you have completed your research, you have the stories and facts, the photos and documents — then what? This session will look at various options for putting your genealogical project into book format as enduring heirloom for future generations. Topics such as the proper preparation of text and visuals, copyright questions, and the citing of sources will be covered. Whatever the stage of your project, you will find this session pertinent.

Ken McKinlay (Yours truly) – Doing Family Tree Research in Your Pajamas
As more records become available, doing your research from the comfort of your own home is a big plus. Ken will be touching upon the various on-line data sources and the methodologies to find the information. Using real life examples Ken will be referring to the various records and information that can be used to help trace your family history all via the use of information found in Internet resources.

Kyla UbbinkKeeping the Past: Storing and Preserving Family Archives and Memorabilia
Stop the deterioration of your family’s historic documents, letters, photographs, albums, clippings, books, memorabilia and scrapbooks through the practice of archival preservation. Learn how to avoid damage caused by pollutants, poor climate, light, pests, and mould through proper boxing, housing and storage. Acquire safe handling techniques, explore digitization options, and gain knowledge in regular maintenance and basic treatments that you can apply at home. Demonstrations in cleaning books and paper, removing clips and staples, separating photographs from ‘sticky’ album pages, and how to make simple book jackets will provide you with the skills needed to start saving your family archives now.

Brenda BowmanLearn FamilySearch Indexing
Understand what FamilySearch Indexing is, and how easy it is do participate in and assist in a worthwhile cause.

Shirley-Ann PyefinchFamilySearch.org A Place for You and Me!
Learn what tools and resources are available for free with FamilySearch.org. Gain an understanding of how to enable online collaboration with family members and other researchers to get the research results you need.

Thursday, May 21, 2015

Answering Facebook Genealogy Questions

Due to a new job I haven't been spending much time on genealogy research or even reading the posts within the various genealogy related Facebook groups. However, I decided to spend some of my "free" time this past weekend reading and answering some of the queries recently posted in several on the Canadian focused groups.

I know I shouldn't be surprised but the number of responses where all that is given is an answer with no indication of the source or how it was found still bothers me. Sometimes it is a image from a record collection behind a paywall such as from Ancestry or Findmypast. Other times it is a copy and paste of the text from a web site. Besides the issue of copyright, something that both Judy G. Russell of The Legal Genealogist and James Tanner of Genealogy's Star write about often, there is the issue of education. If you, my gentle reader, just spoon feeds the information without any form of explanation of how or where it was found then the original poster won't learn how to find the information for themselves in the future.

For example, if someone was to ask a question about trying to find the obituary which is the better answer:
  1. Copy and pasting the obituary without any citation or indication of where it came from.
  2. Walking them through the web site used and providing the links so that they can learn how to do it themselves plus they get the question answered.

Note that I didn't say the right answer. Both are good answers since they provide an answer to the original question. However, if you said that "2" was the better answer then you are ready to start helping someone to learn about the "how to" of genealogy.

Of course this means that the original poster has to do some work1 by actually reading what you wrote and following links but it may mean they find additional resources to help them answer even more of questions. It also requires those that may be in the position to answer the question to read your posting. This takes work2 and I've noticed that is often not done.

Additionally, by teaching or showing how you found the record you give back something to the genealogy community. At the same time you get a better understanding of how you do your research.

So, although it may take a few minutes longer to answer the question and you may not be the first one to post, try providing a link to where you found the answer. Maybe even take the time to explain how you found it.



1. Oh no! I'm actually expected to do something?
2. See footnote #1