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Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Comparing Records

Comparing genealogical records to determine how they fit into your ancestor's timeline can be tedious. For example, the mere mention of your ancestor as a witness to a deed may seem trivial.  However, it does established his residence in that county for that date. Another vague source is tax digests which are not alphabetical (listed by districts) and difficult to read.  But the devil is in the detail.  The tax records lists specific lands. Example 202-1/2 acres.  That denomination came from a land lottery. So the next step is to search the land lotteries from 1805 to 1832 in Georgia.  Almost everybody drew in a land lottery at one time or the other.  It was free land, so why not?  Whether or not they ever took it up is another question.  That is where the deed records come in and such new information should send you forthwith to a search of that county's deeds.  Also on the Tax Digests are other tracts of lands, names of waterways, names of adjoining neighbors, and (always) the county where the land was located.  But wait, we are not finished.  At the end of each district is a list of "defaulters". These are persons who did not pay their tax for that year.  That could mean that the person died or left the county.  Only the deed records in all of the counties where he owned land will provide further data.  Remember, during the Indian removals, people were moving on.

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