Wednesday, April 2, 2014

The RAGU Challenge: 3-2-1 CITE! - Abigail A. (Vaux) Smith's Birth Date

DearMYRTLE posted "You Are Bigger Than Your Genealogy Program" yesterday and "The RAGU Challenge: 3-2-1 CITE!" today.  In the first post, she wrote:
"You ARE bigger than your genealogy program. You won't settle for "fill in the blank" thinking. You will put your genealogy database program to the test, make it bend to your will and add multiple sources of information for each event in an ancestor's life."
Please read the whole post!

The second post about the RAGU Challenge (no, I have no clue if RAGU is an acronym - maybe that can be this week's SNGF challenge - make up the words) is to show three documents, write two paragraphs for the one event in an ancestor 's or relative's life.  Again, read the whole post.

OK, I'm up for a challenge like this, and have many candidates to pick from.  I choose to do Abigail A. (Vaux) Smith's birth as the Event.  I have three records that provide an exact date of birth for Abbie!  Here they are, along with their source citations:

1)  A Bible record (in the hand of her husband, Devier J. Smith):

Source citation (in First Reference Note format):

Devier J. Smith Family Bible Records, 1889-1920, Unknown title, Unknown edition (Unknown place: Unknown publisher, before 1889), loose page, Births, Abbey A. Smith entry, 28 October 1844; privately held by Randall J. Seaver, [address for private use], Chula Vista, Calif. 91911, owned 1988 to present. Devier J. Smith to Abbie A. (Vaux) Smith in 1894, to Della (Smith) Carringer in 1931, to Lyle L. Carringer in 1946, to Betty (Carringer) Seaver in 1977, to Randall J. Seaver (2nd great-grandson) in 1988.

2)  Abbie Smith's list of family names and dates (in Abbie's hand):

Source citation  (in First Reference Note format):

Smith/Carringer Family Correspondence (Loose Letters, 1888–1902), Abigail (Vaux) Smith list of family births and deaths, Abbie A. Smith birth entry, 28 October 1844, originals privately held by Randall J. Seaver, [address for private use], Chula Vista CA 91911, 1988 (great grandson). Family letters to and from Abigail (Vaux) Smith, Rebecca (Spangler) Carringer, and Della (Smith) Carringer. written by Abbie (Vaux) Smith in about 1895, passed to Della (Smith) Carringer in 1931, to Lyle L. Carringer in 1946, to Betty (Carringer) Seaver in 1977, and to Randall J. Seaver (2nd great-grandson) in 1988.

3)  Death Certificate:

Source citation  (in First Reference Note format):

Abbie A. Smith, death certificate (Certificate of Vital Record) No. 31-050190 (certificate dated 18 June 1996) (11 September 1931), State of California, Department of Public Health, San Diego County, San Diego, California.

The two paragraphs:

Abbie A. (Vaux) Smith was born on 28 October 1844 according to three available records - a Births page from a family Bible, a handwritten list of family names, birth, marriage and death dates and places, and a death certificate issued by a county registrar of vital records.  In addition, United States Census records (1850 to 1930) indicate a birth year between 1843 and 1846, especially the 1900 census which states "Oct 1844."  I have been unable to find a family Bible for Abbie's parents, Samuel and Mary Ann (Underhill) Vaux, nor a church record in Aurora, Erie county, New York, and there are no vital records for the 1844 time period in Erie County, New York.

The Bible record is an original source in the hand of Abbie's husband (Devier J. Smith), but the information is Secondary Information (because it was recorded in 1889 according to another loose page in the hand of Devier J. Smith), and it is Direct Evidence (because it answers the research question explicitly).  Abbie Smith's list of names and dates is also an Original Source, Secondary Information and Direct Evidence.  The County Death Certificate is also an Original Source (because it is an official document with information provided soon after her death), Secondary Information (as to the birth date) and Direct Evidence.  The three documents are probably derived from the same informant - Devier asked Abbie what her birth date was for the Bible entry, Abbie wrote her own birth date entry on her list, and Della (Smith) Carringer (Abbie's daughter) was probably the informant to the funeral parlor person that provided the information to the San Diego County registrar.

So how did I do?  I will enter this into DearMYRTLE's challenge contest, and look forward to the next challenge.

The URL for this post is:

Copyright (c) 2014, Randall J. Seaver

1 comment:

Cousin Russ said...



Thank you for sharing and joining this challenge.